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Stereo based visual odometry

Description

The exponential rise in unmanned aerial vehicles has necessitated the need for accurate pose estimation under any extreme conditions. Visual Odometry (VO) is the estimation of position and orientation of a vehicle based on analysis of a sequence of images

The exponential rise in unmanned aerial vehicles has necessitated the need for accurate pose estimation under any extreme conditions. Visual Odometry (VO) is the estimation of position and orientation of a vehicle based on analysis of a sequence of images captured from a camera mounted on it. VO offers a cheap and relatively accurate alternative to conventional odometry techniques like wheel odometry, inertial measurement systems and global positioning system (GPS). This thesis implements and analyzes the performance of a two camera based VO called Stereo based visual odometry (SVO) in presence of various deterrent factors like shadows, extremely bright outdoors, wet conditions etc... To allow the implementation of VO on any generic vehicle, a discussion on porting of the VO algorithm to android handsets is presented too. The SVO is implemented in three steps. In the first step, a dense disparity map for a scene is computed. To achieve this we utilize sum of absolute differences technique for stereo matching on rectified and pre-filtered stereo frames. Epipolar geometry is used to simplify the matching problem. The second step involves feature detection and temporal matching. Feature detection is carried out by Harris corner detector. These features are matched between two consecutive frames using the Lucas-Kanade feature tracker. The 3D co-ordinates of these matched set of features are computed from the disparity map obtained from the first step and are mapped into each other by a translation and a rotation. The rotation and translation is computed using least squares minimization with the aid of Singular Value Decomposition. Random Sample Consensus (RANSAC) is used for outlier detection. This comprises the third step. The accuracy of the algorithm is quantified based on the final position error, which is the difference between the final position computed by the SVO algorithm and the final ground truth position as obtained from the GPS. The SVO showed an error of around 1% under normal conditions for a path length of 60 m and around 3% in bright conditions for a path length of 130 m. The algorithm suffered in presence of shadows and vibrations, with errors of around 15% and path lengths of 20 m and 100 m respectively.

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Date Created
2010

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Image processing using approximate data-path units

Description

In this work, we present approximate adders and multipliers to reduce data-path complexity of specialized hardware for various image processing systems. These approximate circuits have a lower area, latency and power consumption compared to their accurate counterparts and produce fairly

In this work, we present approximate adders and multipliers to reduce data-path complexity of specialized hardware for various image processing systems. These approximate circuits have a lower area, latency and power consumption compared to their accurate counterparts and produce fairly accurate results. We build upon the work on approximate adders and multipliers presented in [23] and [24]. First, we show how choice of algorithm and parallel adder design can be used to implement 2D Discrete Cosine Transform (DCT) algorithm with good performance but low area. Our implementation of the 2D DCT has comparable PSNR performance with respect to the algorithm presented in [23] with ~35-50% reduction in area. Next, we use the approximate 2x2 multiplier presented in [24] to implement parallel approximate multipliers. We demonstrate that if some of the 2x2 multipliers in the design of the parallel multiplier are accurate, the accuracy of the multiplier improves significantly, especially when two large numbers are multiplied. We choose Gaussian FIR Filter and Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) algorithms to illustrate the efficacy of our proposed approximate multiplier. We show that application of the proposed approximate multiplier improves the PSNR performance of 32x32 FFT implementation by 4.7 dB compared to the implementation using the approximate multiplier described in [24]. We also implement a state-of-the-art image enlargement algorithm, namely Segment Adaptive Gradient Angle (SAGA) [29], in hardware. The algorithm is mapped to pipelined hardware blocks and we synthesized the design using 90 nm technology. We show that a 64x64 image can be processed in 496.48 µs when clocked at 100 MHz. The average PSNR performance of our implementation using accurate parallel adders and multipliers is 31.33 dB and that using approximate parallel adders and multipliers is 30.86 dB, when evaluated against the original image. The PSNR performance of both designs is comparable to the performance of the double precision floating point MATLAB implementation of the algorithm.

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2013

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FPGA-based implementation of QR decomposition

Description

This thesis report aims at introducing the background of QR decomposition and its application. QR decomposition using Givens rotations is a efficient method to prevent directly matrix inverse in solving least square minimization problem, which is a typical approach for

This thesis report aims at introducing the background of QR decomposition and its application. QR decomposition using Givens rotations is a efficient method to prevent directly matrix inverse in solving least square minimization problem, which is a typical approach for weight calculation in adaptive beamforming. Furthermore, this thesis introduces Givens rotations algorithm and two general VLSI (very large scale integrated circuit) architectures namely triangular systolic array and linear systolic array for numerically QR decomposition. To fulfill the goal, a 4 input channels triangular systolic array with 16 bits fixed-point format and a 5 input channels linear systolic array are implemented on FPGA (Field programmable gate array). The final result shows that the estimated clock frequencies of 65 MHz and 135 MHz on post-place and route static timing report could be achieved using Xilinx Virtex 6 xc6vlx240t chip. Meanwhile, this report proposes a new method to test the dynamic range of QR-D. The dynamic range of the both architectures can be achieved around 110dB.

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2014

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RRAM-based PUF: design and applications in cryptography

Description

The recent flurry of security breaches have raised serious concerns about the security of data communication and storage. A promising way to enhance the security of the system is through physical root of trust, such as, through use of physical

The recent flurry of security breaches have raised serious concerns about the security of data communication and storage. A promising way to enhance the security of the system is through physical root of trust, such as, through use of physical unclonable functions (PUF). PUF leverages the inherent randomness in physical systems to provide device specific authentication and encryption.

In this thesis, first the design of a highly reliable resistive random access memory (RRAM) PUF is presented. Compared to existing 1 cell/bit RRAM, here the sum of the read-out currents of multiple RRAM cells are used for generating one response bit. This method statistically minimizes any early-lifetime failure due to RRAM retention degradation at high temperature or under voltage stress. Using a device model that was calibrated using IMEC HfOx RRAM experimental data, it was shown that an 8 cells/bit architecture achieves 99.9999% reliability for a lifetime >10 years at 125℃ . Also, the hardware area overhead of the proposed 8 cells/bit RRAM PUF architecture was smaller than 1 cell/bit RRAM PUF that requires error correction coding to achieve the same reliability.

Next, a basic security primitive is presented, where the RRAM PUF is embedded in the cryptographic module, SHA-256. This architecture is referred to as Embedded PUF or EPUF. EPUF has a security advantage over SHA-256 as it never exposes the PUF response to the outside world. Instead, in each round, the PUF response is used to change a few bits of the message word to produce a unique message digest for each IC. The use of EPUF as a key generation module for AES is also shown. The hardware area requirement for SHA-256 and AES-128 is then analyzed using synthesis results based on TSMC 65nm library. It is shown that the area overhead of 8 cells/bit RRAM PUF is only 1.08% of the SHA-256 module and 0.04% of the AES-128 module. The security analysis of the PUF based systems is also presented. It is shown that the EPUF-based systems are resistant towards standard attacks on PUFs, and that the security of the cryptographic modules is not compromised.

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Date Created
2015

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Radiation detection and imaging: neutrons and electric fields

Description

The work presented in this manuscript has the overarching theme of radiation. The two forms of radiation of interest are neutrons, i.e. nuclear, and electric fields. The ability to detect such forms of radiation have significant security implications

The work presented in this manuscript has the overarching theme of radiation. The two forms of radiation of interest are neutrons, i.e. nuclear, and electric fields. The ability to detect such forms of radiation have significant security implications that could also be extended to very practical industrial applications. The goal is therefore to detect, and even image, such radiation sources.

The method to do so revolved around the concept of building large-area sensor arrays. By covering a large area, we can increase the probability of detection and gather more data to build a more complete and clearer view of the environment. Large-area circuitry can be achieved cost-effectively by leveraging the thin-film transistor process of the display industry. With production of displays increasing with the explosion of mobile devices and continued growth in sales of flat panel monitors and television, the cost to build a unit continues to decrease.

Using a thin-film process also allows for flexible electronics, which could be taken advantage of in-house at the Flexible Electronics and Display Center. Flexible electronics implies new form factors and applications that would not otherwise be possible with their single crystal counterparts. To be able to effectively use thin-film technology, novel ways of overcoming the drawbacks of the thin-film process, namely the lower performance scale.

The two deliverable devices that underwent development are a preamplifier used in an active pixel sensor for neutron detection and a passive electric field imaging array. This thesis will cover the theory and process behind realizing these devices.

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Date Created
2015

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Underwater optical sensorbot for in situ pH monitoring

Description

Continuous underwater observation is a challenging engineering task that could be accomplished by development and deployment of a sensor array that can survive harsh underwater conditions. One approach to this challenge is a swarm of micro underwater robots, known as

Continuous underwater observation is a challenging engineering task that could be accomplished by development and deployment of a sensor array that can survive harsh underwater conditions. One approach to this challenge is a swarm of micro underwater robots, known as Sensorbots, that are equipped with biogeochemical sensors that can relay information among themselves in real-time. This innovative method for underwater exploration can contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of the ocean by not limiting sampling to a single point and time. In this thesis, Sensorbot Beta, a low-cost fully enclosed Sensorbot prototype for bench-top characterization and short-term field testing, is presented in a modular format that provides flexibility and the potential for rapid design. Sensorbot Beta is designed around a microcontroller driven platform comprised of commercial off-the-shelf components for all hardware to reduce cost and development time. The primary sensor incorporated into Sensorbot Beta is an in situ fluorescent pH sensor. Design considerations have been made for easy adoption of other fluorescent or phosphorescent sensors, such as dissolved oxygen or temperature. Optical components are designed in a format that enables additional sensors. A real-time data acquisition system, utilizing Bluetooth, allows for characterization of the sensor in bench top experiments. The Sensorbot Beta demonstrates rapid calibration and future work will include deployment for large scale experiments in a lake or ocean.

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Date Created
2012

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Multi-user diversity systems with application to cognitive radio

Description

This thesis aims to investigate the capacity and bit error rate (BER) performance of multi-user diversity systems with random number of users and considers its application to cognitive radio systems. Ergodic capacity, normalized capacity, outage capacity, and average bit error

This thesis aims to investigate the capacity and bit error rate (BER) performance of multi-user diversity systems with random number of users and considers its application to cognitive radio systems. Ergodic capacity, normalized capacity, outage capacity, and average bit error rate metrics are studied. It has been found that the randomization of the number of users will reduce the ergodic capacity. A stochastic ordering framework is adopted to order user distributions, for example, Laplace transform ordering. The ergodic capacity under different user distributions will follow their corresponding Laplace transform order. The scaling law of ergodic capacity with mean number of users under Poisson and negative binomial user distributions are studied for large mean number of users and these two random distributions are ordered in Laplace transform ordering sense. The ergodic capacity per user is defined and is shown to increase when the total number of users is randomized, which is the opposite to the case of unnormalized ergodic capacity metric. Outage probability under slow fading is also considered and shown to decrease when the total number of users is randomized. The bit error rate (BER) in a general multi-user diversity system has a completely monotonic derivative, which implies that, according to the Jensen's inequality, the randomization of the total number of users will decrease the average BER performance. The special case of Poisson number of users and Rayleigh fading is studied. Combining with the knowledge of regular variation, the average BER is shown to achieve tightness in the Jensen's inequality. This is followed by the extension to the negative binomial number of users, for which the BER is derived and shown to be decreasing in the number of users. A single primary user cognitive radio system with multi-user diversity at the secondary users is proposed. Comparing to the general multi-user diversity system, there exists an interference constraint between secondary and primary users, which is independent of the secondary users' transmission. The secondary user with high- est transmitted SNR which also satisfies the interference constraint is selected to communicate. The active number of secondary users is a binomial random variable. This is then followed by a derivation of the scaling law of the ergodic capacity with mean number of users and the closed form expression of average BER under this situation. The ergodic capacity under binomial user distribution is shown to outperform the Poisson case. Monte-Carlo simulations are used to supplement our analytical results and compare the performance of different user distributions.

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Date Created
2012

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Towards energy efficient computing with Linux: enabling task level power awareness and support for energy efficient accelerator

Description

With increasing transistor volume and reducing feature size, it has become a major design constraint to reduce power consumption also. This has given rise to aggressive architectural changes for on-chip power management and rapid development to energy efficient hardware accelerators.

With increasing transistor volume and reducing feature size, it has become a major design constraint to reduce power consumption also. This has given rise to aggressive architectural changes for on-chip power management and rapid development to energy efficient hardware accelerators. Accordingly, the objective of this research work is to facilitate software developers to leverage these hardware techniques and improve energy efficiency of the system. To achieve this, I propose two solutions for Linux kernel: Optimal use of these architectural enhancements to achieve greater energy efficiency requires accurate modeling of processor power consumption. Though there are many models available in literature to model processor power consumption, there is a lack of such models to capture power consumption at the task-level. Task-level energy models are a requirement for an operating system (OS) to perform real-time power management as OS time multiplexes tasks to enable sharing of hardware resources. I propose a detailed design methodology for constructing an architecture agnostic task-level power model and incorporating it into a modern operating system to build an online task-level power profiler. The profiler is implemented inside the latest Linux kernel and validated for Intel Sandy Bridge processor. It has a negligible overhead of less than 1\% hardware resource consumption. The profiler power prediction was demonstrated for various application benchmarks from SPEC to PARSEC with less than 4\% error. I also demonstrate the importance of the proposed profiler for emerging architectural techniques through use case scenarios, which include heterogeneous computing and fine grained per-core DVFS. Along with architectural enhancement in general purpose processors to improve energy efficiency, hardware accelerators like Coarse Grain reconfigurable architecture (CGRA) are gaining popularity. Unlike vector processors, which rely on data parallelism, CGRA can provide greater flexibility and compiler level control making it more suitable for present SoC environment. To provide streamline development environment for CGRA, I propose a flexible framework in Linux to do design space exploration for CGRA. With accurate and flexible hardware models, fine grained integration with accurate architectural simulator, and Linux memory management and DMA support, a user can carry out limitless experiments on CGRA in full system environment.

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Date Created
2013

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Camera calibration using adaptive segmentation and ellipse fitting for localizing control points

Description

There is a growing interest for improved high-accuracy camera calibration methods due to the increasing demand for 3D visual media in commercial markets. Camera calibration is used widely in the fields of computer vision, robotics and 3D reconstruction. Camera calibration

There is a growing interest for improved high-accuracy camera calibration methods due to the increasing demand for 3D visual media in commercial markets. Camera calibration is used widely in the fields of computer vision, robotics and 3D reconstruction. Camera calibration is the first step for extracting 3D data from a 2D image. It plays a crucial role in computer vision and 3D reconstruction due to the fact that the accuracy of the reconstruction and 3D coordinate determination relies on the accuracy of the camera calibration to a great extent. This thesis presents a novel camera calibration method using a circular calibration pattern. The disadvantages and issues with existing state-of-the-art methods are discussed and are overcome in this work. The implemented system consists of techniques of local adaptive segmentation, ellipse fitting, projection and optimization. Simulation results are presented to illustrate the performance of the proposed scheme. These results show that the proposed method reduces the error as compared to the state-of-the-art for high-resolution images, and that the proposed scheme is more robust to blur in the imaged calibration pattern.

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Date Created
2012

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Probabilistic fatigue damage localization at unknown temperatures using guided wave methods

Description

This research examines the current challenges of using Lamb wave interrogation methods to localize fatigue crack damage in a complex metallic structural component subjected to unknown temperatures. The goal of this work is to improve damage localization results for a

This research examines the current challenges of using Lamb wave interrogation methods to localize fatigue crack damage in a complex metallic structural component subjected to unknown temperatures. The goal of this work is to improve damage localization results for a structural component interrogated at an unknown temperature, by developing a probabilistic and reference-free framework for estimating Lamb wave velocities and the damage location. The methodology for damage localization at unknown temperatures includes the following key elements: i) a model that can describe the change in Lamb wave velocities with temperature; ii) the extension of an advanced time-frequency based signal processing technique for enhanced time-of-flight feature extraction from a dispersive signal; iii) the development of a Bayesian damage localization framework incorporating data association and sensor fusion. The technique requires no additional transducers to be installed on a structure, and allows for the estimation of both the temperature and the wave velocity in the component. Additionally, the framework of the algorithm allows it to function completely in an unsupervised manner by probabilistically accounting for all measurement origin uncertainty. The novel algorithm was experimentally validated using an aluminum lug joint with a growing fatigue crack. The lug joint was interrogated using piezoelectric transducers at multiple fatigue crack lengths, and at temperatures between 20°C and 80°C. The results showed that the algorithm could accurately predict the temperature and wave speed of the lug joint. The localization results for the fatigue damage were found to correlate well with the true locations at long crack lengths, but loss of accuracy was observed in localizing small cracks due to time-of-flight measurement errors. To validate the algorithm across a wider range of temperatures the electromechanically coupled LISA/SIM model was used to simulate the effects of temperatures. The numerical results showed that this approach would be capable of experimentally estimating the temperature and velocity in the lug joint for temperatures from -60°C to 150°C. The velocity estimation algorithm was found to significantly increase the accuracy of localization at temperatures above 120°C when error due to incorrect velocity selection begins to outweigh the error due to time-of-flight measurements.

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Date Created
2013