Comparison of EKF and UKF for robot localization and a method of selection of a subset of the available sonar sensors

Luigi D’Alfonso, Walter Lucia, Pietro Muraca, Paolo Pugliese, Mobile robot localization via EKF and UKF: A comparison based on real data, Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Volume 74, Part A, December 2015, Pages 122-127, ISSN 0921-8890, DOI: 10.1016/j.robot.2015.07.007.

In this work we compare the performance of two well known filters for nonlinear models, the Extended Kalman Filter and the Unscented Kalman Filter, in estimating the position and orientation of a mobile robot. The two filters fuse the measurements taken by ultrasonic sensors located onboard the robot. The experimental results on real data show a substantial equivalence of the two filters, although in principle the approximating properties of the UKF are much better. A switching sensors activation policy is also devised, which allows to obtain an accurate estimate of the robot state using only a fraction of the available sensors, with a relevant saving of battery power.

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