49113: Student Electrical Engineering or similar - Prototype Development for Tracking First Responders

German Aerospace Center (DLR)

Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany

Work group:

Institute of Communications and Navigation



Area of research:

Scientific support staff,Other



Part-Time Suitability:

The position is suitable for part-time employment.



Job description:


In indoor emergency situations, such as a building on fire, usually the first responders arrive by emergency vehicles and small teams of them enter the building without knowing the floorplan. At the same time, the commander of the first responders on sight needs to know the positions of the first responders in the building to coordinate their actions. Therefore, DLR developed a pedestrian dead reckoning (PDR) solution based on inertial measurements with a sensor located on the foot or inside the pocket. The PDR solution enables indoor navigation, where GNSS navigation is difficult, erroneous and often totally fails. Combining the PDR solution with a simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) algorithm, the first responder can be accurately located within a learned map of the environment while walking. The SLAM algorithm processes the individual tracks at the central command to learn the map more precisely and visualize the first responders’ positions accurately for coordination. Hence, the PDR positions have to be communicated reliably to the central command.
The complete wearable PDR system shall be integrated into a small prototype that has the size of a “cigarette box”. It includes the inertial sensor, a CPU/microcontroller for the PDR algorithm, GNSS and a communication unit. The prototype shall be light weight, small size and consume little power.


Your task is to test for the prototype different commercially available CPU/microcontroller boards and communication units that are already or can be combined with inertial/GNSS sensors.


In detail, your tasks are:


prepare and test existing CPU/microcontroller boards for performing the PDR. Candidates are for instance Arduino based solutions or a Raspberry Pi in combination with microE boards research extensively possible solutions of existing communication technologies that are candidates for communicating position information of first responders with an excellent building penetration. Examples are WLAN, BLE, LTE Cat M1, LTE NB-IoT, Sigfox and LoRa build up and test the hardware and program suitable input/output-interfaces for data transmission test and compare candidate communication technologies, i.e. highlight differences in performance and analyze advantages/disadvantages with particular focus on robustness and reliable transmission with quasi error free transmission of the pedestrians’ position.

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: 49113