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EBTIC and Khalifa University Robotics Institute shortlisted in the Lime Micro Hackathon

30th of October, 2017

EBTIC and KURI (Khalifa University Robotics Institute) recently participated in the Lime Micro Hackathon, a competition organized by British Telecom (BT) and Lime Microsystems. The EBTIC and KURI entry was one of the top 8 shortlisted entries out of 60 submissions from commercial companies and research institutes.

Development of wireless communication prototypes is a costly process, involving a large number of engineers with long development cycles. However, in recent years developing a proof of concept (PoC) using Software Defined Radio (SDR) has gained much popularity. The ability to move complex design components from hardware to software shortens the development cycle and decreases the cost. Many small companies and research institutions participated in the competition to demonstrate wireless solutions using LimeSDR, the SDR developed by Lime Microsystems.

EBTIC in collaboration with the researchers from Khalifa University demonstrated a solution for locating victims in a disaster situation. In search and rescue missions drones can be deployed to locate victims, usually equipped with thermal and vision sensors. However, they can miss out injured people in a non-line of sight situation. In the proposed solution, LimeSDR is used to augment these systems with wireless based victim detection. This significantly reduces the exploration time needed to locate victims, because unlike conventional robotics sensors which cannot operate in an occluded situation like wall, wireless sensors still operate as the signal can propagate through obstacles. LimeSDR was integrated on an autonomous drone that can identify and locate a WiFi signal transmitted from a victim. In the current implementation 802.11a Legacy signal is used to estimate the Received Signal Strength Indicator (RSSI) and Directional of Arrival (DoA), this information can then be used to generate an indoor map to facilitate locating the victim.