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Research Papers

Estimating the Angular Velocity From Body-Fixed Accelerometers

[+] Author and Article Information
Peng He

Robotics Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Laval University, Quebec City, QC, G1V 0A6, Canadapeng.he.1@ulaval.ca

Philippe Cardou

Robotics Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Laval University, Quebec City, QC, G1V 0A6, Canadapcardou@gmc.ulaval.ca

J. Dyn. Sys., Meas., Control 134(6), 061015 (Oct 08, 2012) (10 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4006364 History: Received October 25, 2011; Revised February 24, 2012; Published October 08, 2012

This paper presents a novel way of determining the angular velocity of a rigid body from accelerometer measurements. This method finds application in crashworthiness and motion analysis in sports, for example, where impacts forbid the use of mechanical gyroscopes. Based on previous work, the time-integration (TI) and polynomial-roots (PR) estimates of the angular velocity are first computed. The TI and PR estimates are then linearly combined through a weighted sum whose weighting factor is chosen so as to minimize the `variance of the resulting estimate. The proposed method is illustrated in an experiment, where the twelve accelerometer array (OCTA) is moved manually. A comparison of the angular-velocity estimates obtained from the proposed method and those obtained from a magnetic displacement sensor shows that the resulting estimates are robust and do not suffer from the drift problems that hinder the TI method. Moreover, comparison with a previously reported method indicates that the method proposed here is less sensitive to measurement errors, especially at low angular velocities.

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Copyright © 2012 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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References

Figures

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Figure 8

Relationship between the weighting factor w and angular velocity

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Figure 1

A rigid body equipped with m accelerometers moving in space

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Figure 2

Photograph of OCTA

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Figure 3

CAD drawing of OCTA

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Figure 4

The first component of the angular-velocity estimates over 100 s

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Figure 5

The first component of the angular-velocity estimates over 10 s

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Figure 6

Errors on the angular-velocity estimates

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Figure 7

Weighting factor w

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