Robust Global Localization Using Laser Reflectivity
Dongxiang Zhang, Ryo Kurazume, Yumi Iwashita,
and Tsutomu Hasegawa
Graduate School of Information Science and Electrical Engineering, Kyushu University, 744 Motooka, Nishi-ku, Fukuoka 819-0395, Japan
Global localization, which determines an accurate global position without prior knowledge, is a fundamental requirement for a mobile robot. Map-based global localization gives a precise position by comparing a provided geometric map and current sensory data. Although 3D range data is preferable for 6D global localization in terms of accuracy and reliability, comparison with large 3D data is quite timeconsuming. On the other hand, appearance-based global localization, which determines the global position by comparing a captured image with recorded ones, is simple and suitable for real-time processing. However, this technique does not work in the dark or in an environment in which the lighting conditions change remarkably. We herein propose a two-step strategy, which combines map-based global localization and appearance-based global localization. Instead of camera images, which are used for appearance-based global localization, we use reflectance images, which are captured by a laser range finder as a byproduct of range sensing. The effectiveness of the proposed technique is demonstrated through experiments in real environments.
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