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Sensors

Sensors

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Published by sidhuharmeet
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Published by: sidhuharmeet on Jul 11, 2009
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Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
Autonomous systemsAutonomous systems
Sensors
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
SensingSensing
Key requirement
of autonomous systems.
An AS should be connected to the outside world.
Convert a physical value to an electrical value.
From
temperature, humidity, light, …
to
current, voltage, …
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
ClassificationClassification
Classification 1
Internal sensorProvides feedback on internal state of the robot (battery level,wheel positions, joint angles of a robot arm). Also called
proprioception
.External sensorProvides feedback on external state of robot (light in theenvironment, temperature, humidity).
Classification 2
Passive sensorsPassively receive energy from the environment (light sensor,camera).Active sensorsMake observations by emitting energy or by modifying theenvironment (ultrasonic sensor, laser range scanner).
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
PropertiesProperties
Input range:
the operating range to which the sensor issensitive.
E.g. Temperature sensor operating reliably from -5°C to 40°C.Outside this range the sensor’s fault tolerance is exceeded.
Output range:
range of the output signal.
E.g. Temperature sensor returns voltage between 0 and 5 V.
Sensitivity:
How is a change in the input signal mapped tothe output signal?
E.g. an inclination sensor produces a change in output voltage of 1mV for every 2.30°.
 
2
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
Properties (2)Properties (2)
Latency:
Speed with which the sensor reacts to change.
E.g. A temperature sensor having a latency of 14 s per 10°C.
Stability:
insensitivity to factors other than the measuredphysical quantity.
Noise: undesired change from ideal output value. E.g. thermalnoise in the sensor.Distortions. E.g. radioactive radiation influencing the sensor.Environmental influences. E.g. temperature, air pressure,
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
Operating regimesOperating regimes
LogarithmicLinear 
outin
Logarithmic
outin
Exponential
outin
Binary
outin
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
Operating regimes (2)Operating regimes (2)
Just as interesting factHuman sensors exhibit a logarithmicoperating regime.
Very sensitive to small changes when signal is small.Less sensitive to changes as soon as amplitude of signal is large.
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
NoiseNoise
Anything that obscures a desired signal.External noise
Part of the environmentEg: temperature, electromagnetic interference (power lines,combustion engines, electric motors, radio & TV), sun light,gravitational flux, …
Internal noise
White noise (uniform)
E.g. thermal noise
Pink noise (1/f)
noisenoise
. .
P kT f 
=
 
3
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
Modeling sensors and noiseModeling sensors and noise
Ideal sensor
r = readingf = sensor functione = physical property
r = f(e)
Sensor with noise
r = f(e) + n
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
How to estimate the noise term n?How to estimate the noise term n?
Often noise can be estimated with a Normal distribution
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
SamplingSampling
What is
sampling
?Discrete reading of sensor values.Why sample?
Converting to digital value. Very obvious: needed for digitalprocessing by computer.Latency of sensors.
Some sensors
Send-wait-sense cycle.
Autonomous Systems –Tony Belpaeme
Sampling rateSampling rate
Nyquisttheorem
The sampling rate has to be at least
twice as high
as the fastestchanges. If not, you are going to miss relevant information.E.g. If sound signal changes at 3 kHz, you have to sample at atleast 6 kHz to not miss anything of the signal.

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