Towards Consistent Visual-Inertial Navigation

TitleTowards Consistent Visual-Inertial Navigation
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsHuang G, Kaess M, Leonard JJ
Conference NameInternational Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA)
Date Published05/2014

Visual-inertial navigation systems (VINS) have prevailed in various applications, in part because of the complementary sensing capabilities and decreasing costs as well as sizes. While many of the current VINS algorithms undergo inconsistent estimation, in this paper we introduce a new extended Kalman filter (EKF)-based approach towards consistent estimates. To this end, we impose both state-transition and obervability constraints in computing EKF Jacobians so that the resulting linearized system can best approximate the underlying nonlinear system. Specifically, we enforce the propagation Jacobian to obey the semigroup property, thus being an appropriate state-transition matrix. This is achieved by parametrizing the orientation error state in the global, instead of local, frame of reference, and then evaluating the Jacobian at the propagated, instead of the updated, state estimates. Moreover, the EKF linearized system ensures correct observability by projecting the most-accurate measurement Jacobian onto the observable subspace so that no spurious information is gained. The proposed algorithm is validated by both Monte-Carlo simulation and real-world experimental tests.