Motion sensor combines centimetre-accurate positioning and inertial measurements

Motion sensor combines centimetre-accurate positioning and inertial measurements

New Products |
By Christoph Hammerschmidt

Dutch technology company Movella has developed a miniaturised SMD motion sensor that combines outputs for centimetre-accurate positioning data with a broadband inertial navigation system (INS) for precise dead reckoning. Thus, unlike standalone RTK-GNSS receivers, the new MTi-8 provides fast and accurate positioning data as well as attitude determination to attitude at all times and under all conditions, which is important in many applications.

The MTi-8 is based on a proven inertial measurement unit, a platform first implemented in the existing MTi-3 and MTi-7 products. The MTi-8 also has an interface for an RTK GNSS satellite receiver for position determination. The interface is compatible with the universal NMEA format and supports the u-blox, Septentrio and Trimble data formats.

These features make the MTi-8 suitable for a wide range of applications in slow and fast navigation, stabilisation, mapping and scanning. It can be used in autonomous vehicles, mobile robots for outdoor use and many other products.

With the MTi-8’s onboard INS capability, RTK satellite positioning data can be augmented in several ways:

– to update real-time positioning information through dead reckoning in tunnels, under bridges or in other locations where satellite or RTK signal reception may temporarily fail

– to correct temporarily erroneous satellite positioning data when positioning or RTK signal is temporarily lost or disturbed

– to increase the update rate of position and velocity data in high-speed applications. The typical update rate of the RTK GNSS receiver is 10 Hz. The MTi-8 increases this rate up to 100 Hz by filling the gaps between GNSS receiver outputs with INS calculations.

The MTi-8’s hardware consists of a 3D gyroscope, a 3D accelerometer and a magnetometer. It has an interface for an external GNSS receiver and a barometer – all this in a housing measuring only 12.1 x 12.1 x 2.55 mm.

The Xsens sensor software provides precisely synchronised readings for roll, pitch and yaw/course, speed and position. This software operates with extremely low latency to ensure high accuracy at output rates up to 100 Hz.

Development with MTi-8 is supported by the Xsens MT Software Suite. It consists of the MT Manager with various tools, including a firmware updater and a magnetic field mapper; a software development kit; code samples and drivers for LabVIEW, ROS (Robot Operating System) and GO.

The MTi-8 is available in production quantities from authorised distributors worldwide.


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