The real-time recognition of absolute (or relative) position and orientation on a network of roads is a core technology for fully automated or driving-assisted vehicles. This paper presents an empirical investigation of the design, implementation, and evaluation of a self-positioning system based on a magnetic marker reference sensing method for an autonomous vehicle. Specifically, the estimation accuracy of the magnetic sensing ruler (MSR) in the up-to-date estimation of the actual position was successfully enhanced by compensating for time delays in signal processing when detecting the vertical magnetic field (VMF) in an array of signals. In this study, the signal processing scheme was developed to minimize the effects of the distortion of measured signals when estimating the relative positional information based on magnetic signals obtained using the MSR. In other words, the center point in a 2D magnetic field contour plot corresponding to the actual position of magnetic markers was estimated by tracking the errors between pre-defined reference models and measured magnetic signals. The algorithm proposed in this study was validated by experimental measurements using a test vehicle on a pilot network of roads. From the results, the positioning error was found to be less than 0.04 m on average in an operational test.
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