SITIS Archives - Topic Details
Program:  SBIR
Topic Num:  A10-093 (Army)
Title:  Intelligent Human Motion Detection Sensor
Research & Technical Areas:  Sensors, Electronics

Acquisition Program:  PM Future Combat Systems Brigade Combat Team
  Objective:  Design and build a small and inexpensive human motion detection sensor that can quickly and with reliable accuracy detect various types of human motion such as: stationary, slow/fast walking, slow/fast running, walking sideways, walking backward, crawling, walking upstairs /downstairs, jumping, and etc. Information from this sensor could be used to enhance the position estimation of Soldier platforms in Global Positioning System (GPS) degraded and denied environments.
  Description:  Future Force dismounted Soldiers will be required to operate in areas with poor GPS signal availability, such as in buildings and caves. Future Combat Systems (FCS) Future Operating Capability (FOC-05-01) requires position/navigation to a 1-meter Circular Error Probable without continuous electronic emission. A self-contained navigation sub-system is desired to provide this capability. The currently implemented Land Warrior Navigation Sub-System (LWNSS) is an integration of GPS, digital compass, barometer, and pedometer. However, the pedometer operates on the assumption that every detected step will be forward only. This can introduce a large error into the overall position estimation should the Soldier perform movements other than walking forward. This topic calls for an advanced human motion detection sensor to be used as an aid for an integrated navigation system. These intelligent sensors are expected to perform better than the current pedometers used in the LWNSS. The topic puts major emphasis on Size, Weight, Power, and Cost needs for the dismounted Soldier and other small sensor platform applications. Potential technologies can include MEMS IMUs and MEMS accelerometers among others.

  PHASE I: Develop sensor approaches for characterizing various types of human motion such as: stationary, slow/fast walking, slow/fast running, walking sideways, walking backwards, crawling, walking upstairs /downstairs, jumping, and etc. The result of the process must provide a specific signature for each type of motion. Perform a feasibility study that determines the technical merit and of the selected method for use in real time position estimation techniques. Develop and demonstrate an algorithm that can reliably and quickly identify types of human motion based on the selected sensor inputs.
  PHASE II: Design and build a prototype of the human motion detection sensor based on the work from Phase I. Develop an algorithm that takes the sensor inputs to enhance the platform position estimation. Incorporate the algorithm into the sensor prototype and demonstrate the sensor performance on a real person. The sensor must quickly and reliably detect various human motion with 95% accuracy in GPS denied environment.

  PHASE III: Enhance and refine the sensor design taken into the account of small size, weight, power, and cost. The end product must have an embedded system form factor that can be integrated into the future ground soldier navigation system. Going beyond the military application, the commercial applications for this type of product are not significantly less important. In Homeland Security, for example, rescue persons entering a burning building or a tunnel where GPS is not available, or robots entering a damaged nuclear reactor to perform similar search and rescue efforts. In physical training or exercises, for example, an intelligent pedometer will provide more accurately not only what types of motions the working-out person is performing, but also the number of calories burned from his/her motions based on strides, height, and the weight of that person. The device will in turn promote people's weight-loss effort. Studies show that pedometer use is an effective intervention for promoting physical activity. Another commercial application of this technology is tracking people in GPS degraded environments. One example is tracking hikers in deep wooden areas where they have great potential for getting lost.

  References:   1. Davrondzhon Gafurov and Einar Snekkenes, "Gait Recognition Using Wearable Motion Recording Sensors", EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing Volume 2009 (2009), Article ID 415817, 16 pagesdoi:10.1155/2009/415817 2. US Army CERDEC, “Future Force Warrior Navigation Sub-System Performance Evaluation Test Report", August 2008. 3.

Keywords:  Human Motion, Detection, MEMS, Accelerometer, Navigation, GPS Denied Environment

Questions and Answers:
Q: Is a navigation system that employs an IMU embedded in the heel of the user's boot an admissible option?
A: The scope of this topic is the Human motion detection sensor.

As long as your sensor can determine what type of motion performed by the person carrying it.

Q: The second reference does not seem to exist on the CERDEC website or anywhere else I've searched on the web. Where can this reference 2 be found?
A: Please contact the TPOC directly to receive a copy of the reference via email. (Refer to solicitation for contact information.)

Q: Will the Appendices A and E of Ref 2 be made available?
A: Appendices were written in one document.

The document contains other sensitive data that are not related to the SBIR topic. We keep it for our internal use only.
Q: 1. What is the required output sample rate of the system?

2. What outputs will be required and what type of output is currently given from the pedometer to the LWNSS?
A: 1. What is the required output sample rate of the system?
Answer: It should be 1 Hz. The current LWNSS has variable rate. The pedometer may put out data per step.

2. What outputs will be required and what type of output is currently given from the pedometer to the LWNSS?
Answer: In general, the outputs should be: Date/Time, detected step, type of motion, motion decision confident level, position in Lat/long, Position confident level, altitude, and etc.
The pedometer provides step detection, step length estimation , heading to the LWNSS to integrate with the GPS.
Q: Is any calibration/training per individual soldier acceptable ?
A: Calibration/training and alignment should be minimal and transparent to users.
Q: It appears that the sensor to be designed is meant to replace the pedometer that is currently used. Is this a fair assessment ??
A: The intention is to do so.
However, we don't have the authority to make decision.
Q: In relation to reference #3, what name should be used as the sponsor when registering with the AKO website? "Nhut Vo", the TPOC was attempted but was rejected as invalid.
A: There is no reference 3. This link is a mistake. Ref. 3 has now been deleted. Please disregard.
Q: 1: Are these sensors meant to be stand alone (for individual soldiers) or is the intended use for a distributed system?

2: If the intended use is for a distributed system, is the communication between sensors a requirement for the solution?

3: The topic calls for a "A self-contained navigation sub-system", does this include map/sensor integration or is the development work for the sensor uniquely? If map/sensor integration is required, would that be an individual map or would a command and control link necessary?

4: Since this is an individual motion detection sensor, the sensor need not be aware (or monitor) any other movement than the movement of the host carrier?

5: Would the soldier rely on this system for navigation in low, impaired or no visibility situations?
A: 1) It is intended as a stand alone system.

2) The system must be able to send the data (raw and non-raw) to another system upon request.

3) The topic calls for a "A self-contained navigation sub-system. It is intended to enhance the dummy pedometer. There is no restriction on map/sensor integration. However, a complicated system may not be desired here.

4) That's true. The sensor just needs to detect the user's motions.

5) Yes. The motion detected by the sensor will be used to update the user position (again pedometer is in focus here).
Q: 1: The solicitation states that GPS cannot be used during operation of the RF reference sources. Can the GPS be used for initial calibration of one or several reference soures.

2: The positional accuracy needed is stated (1-meter Circular Error Probable). Is there a desired orientation accuracy?
A: 1) The GPS can be used to calibrate/align the sensor if available. However, the process should be transparent to user.

2) There currently no desire for orientation accuracy.

Q: Can you provide a link to the second reference? It is not on DTIC. Thank you.
A: The reference document is so large. It cannot pass through the regular email system and it cannot be uploaded in SITIS at this time.

The reference 2 is the test report showing that the Army is having some issues with the current LW NSS system. One issue is the dummy pedometer as specified in the SBIR topic. Contractors should be able to propose without referring to the document. However, this document will be provided to proposers after award if requested.
Q: NOTE: Ref. 3 is no longer valid, and has been deleted 06/04/10.
A: o

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