Charles River Analytics, a developer of intelligent systems solutions, announces the release of state estimation software for the Robot Operating System (ROS). ROS is an open-source framework for robotics that has been widely adopted across academia, industry, and the military. Charles River’s robot_localization ROS package provides full 3D robot state estimation through sensor fusion.
“Our robot_localization package enables users to fuse inputs from an unlimited number of sensors to produce a state estimate that comprises the robot’s pose and velocity in 3D space,” explained Tom Moore, a lead software engineer at Charles River. “We designed it with ultimate flexibility in mind, providing the user the ability to tailor the input parameters to suit their specific needs.”
Existing ROS software restricts the number of sensor inputs, thereby unnecessarily limiting the overall accuracy of the robot’s position estimate. Features of Charles River’s new software include:
Fusion of any number of sensor inputs in estimating the robot’s state. Per-sensor input customization allowing users to exclude unwanted data in a sensor message from a state estimate. This allows users to fuse sensor messages whose data is incomplete without corrupting the state estimate.
Continuous estimation of the robot’s state, beginning when it receives an initial measurement and continuing, using a kinematic model, even during periods when no data is received. Continuous estimation is critical to the accurate functioning of higher level tools such as robot path planning and control.
Support for multiple ROS message types, including odometry, IMU, pose, and velocity (twist) messages.
Charles River’s robot_localization software fuses sensor data from multiple heterogeneous sensors to produce a complete state estimate in 3D space
Long an innovator in military robotics (named #3 in the Top Ten Robotics Businesses in Massachusetts by the Boston Business Journal in 2013), Charles River is working to make such innovations available to users in the commercial robotics community. The company has brought its software and sensor expertise to recent collaborations with industry partners such as QinetiQ, 5D Robotics, and others on programs ranging from vision-based scene understanding to multimodal interfaces for natural operator teaming with autonomous robots.
Rich Wronski, Division Vice President, Sensor Processing and Networking, said,“The release of our open-source state estimation software reflects our ongoing commitment to collaborate across the robotics community to advance the state-of-the-art in robotics.”
The robot_localization software is hosted on GitHub. It is also available as Ubuntu packages for ROS Groovy Galapagos, ROS Hydro Medusa, and the forthcoming ROS Indigo Igloo.
For more information, visit the robot_localization ROS wiki page at wiki.ros.org/robot_localization or contact us.
• Charles River Analytics Discusses Affect-Inspired Robotic Operating Systems at BICA
• Monocular Unmanned LEader-Follower (MULE-F)
• Robust Leader Tracking from an Unmanned Ground Vehicle
• Robust Tactical Communications Relay using Visual Object Detection on an Autonomous Mobile Robot
About Charles River Analytics
Since 1983, Charles River Analytics (cra.com) has been delivering intelligent systems that transform our customers' data into mission-relevant tools and solutions to support critical assessment and decision-making. Charles River continues to grow its technology, customer base, and strategic alliances through research and development programs for the DoD and the Intelligence Community, addressing a broad spectrum of mission areas and functional domains, including: sensor and image processing, situation assessment and decision aiding, human systems integration, and cyber analytics. These efforts have resulted in a series of successful products that support continued growth in our core R&D contracting business, as well as the commercial sector. Charles River became an employee-owned company in 2012, to set the stage for the next-generation of innovation, service, and growth.