Sensors 2013, 13(9), 12192-12217; doi:10.3390/s130912192
Article

Fast Thermal Calibration of Low-Grade Inertial Sensors and Inertial Measurement Units

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Received: 28 June 2013; in revised form: 11 August 2013 / Accepted: 5 September 2013 / Published: 12 September 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Modeling, Testing and Reliability Issues in MEMS Engineering 2013)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: The errors of low-cost inertial sensors, especially Micro-Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS) ones, are highly dependent on environmental conditions such as the temperature. Thus, there is a need for the development of accurate and reliable thermal compensation models to reduce the impact of such thermal drift of the sensors. Since the conventional thermal calibration methods are typically time-consuming and costly, an efficient thermal calibration method to investigate the thermal drift of a full set of gyroscope and accelerometer errors (i.e., biases, scale factor errors and non-orthogonalities) over the entire temperature range in a few hours is proposed. The proposed method uses the idea of the Ramp method, which removes the time-consuming process of stabilizing the sensor temperature, and addresses its inherent problems with several improvements. We change the temperature linearly for a complete cycle and take a balanced strategy by making comprehensive use of the sensor measurements during both heating and cooling processes. Besides, an efficient 8-step rotate-and-static scheme is designed to further improve the calibration accuracy and efficiency. Real calibration tests showed that the proposed method is suitable for low-grade IMUs and for both lab and factory calibration due to its efficiency and sufficient accuracy.
Keywords: MEMS inertial sensors; IMU; thermal calibration; turntable; temperature chamber
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MDPI and ACS Style

Niu, X.; Li, Y.; Zhang, H.; Wang, Q.; Ban, Y. Fast Thermal Calibration of Low-Grade Inertial Sensors and Inertial Measurement Units. Sensors 2013, 13, 12192-12217.

AMA Style

Niu X, Li Y, Zhang H, Wang Q, Ban Y. Fast Thermal Calibration of Low-Grade Inertial Sensors and Inertial Measurement Units. Sensors. 2013; 13(9):12192-12217.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Niu, Xiaoji; Li, You; Zhang, Hongping; Wang, Qingjiang; Ban, Yalong. 2013. "Fast Thermal Calibration of Low-Grade Inertial Sensors and Inertial Measurement Units." Sensors 13, no. 9: 12192-12217.

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