Auburn researchers are building a prototype system that will help the visually impaired navigate to their destinations.
The team is looking at the possible use of cameras, inertial sensors and communications devices to track the movements of the visually impaired wearers. The system of devices could potentially include an ankle bracelet with sensors or a camera positioned in a pair of glasses.
GPS data as well as wireless information already available from pedestrian signals will be integrated into the device to guide users.
The system will include technology developed for soldiers and unmanned vehicles by Draper Laboratory, a not-for-profit engineering research and development organization dedicated to solving national challenges. Utilizing Draper Laboratory's robotics expertise in vision navigation and Auburn's GPS and pedestrian dead-reckoning capabilities allows the system to provide blind people with more precise positioning, as well as indoor navigation.
A prototype device is expected to be available in 2015.