Depth mapping can be carried out by ultrasound measuring devices using the time of flight method. Ultrasound measurements are favorable in such environments, where the light or radio frequency measurements can not be applied due to the noise level, calculation complexity, reaction time, size and price of the device, accuracy or electromagnetic compatibility. It is also usual to apply and fusion ultrasound sensors with other types of sensors to increase the precision and reliability. In the case of visually impaired people, an echolocation based aid for determining the distance and the direction of obstacles in the surroundings can improve the life quality by giving the possibility to move alone and individually in unlearnt or rapidly changing environments. In the following considerations, a model system is presented which can provide rather reliable position and distance to multiple objects. The mathematical model based on the time of flight method with a correction: it uses the measured analog sensor signals, which represent the probability of the presence of an obstacle. The device consists of multiple receivers, but only one source. The sensor fusion algorithm for this setup and the results of indoor experiments are presented. The mathematical model allows the usage, processing, and fusion of the signals of up to an infinite number of sensors. In addition, the positions of the sensors can be arbitrary, and the mathematical model does not restrict them to be placed in regular formations.
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