Image courtesy of the Shadow Robot Company

Antennas and Radios for Localisation and Tele-control

Motion capture is being studied in many areas such as animation, health care, sport science, robotic tele-operation and human computer interaction. Currently, research on motion capture is mainly focused on activity detection and gesture recognition for relatively simple tasks. Few projects have attempted to provide the full body motion capture abilities required for biomechanical analysis, particularly during clinical motion analysis, physical rehabilitation and athlete training. In physiotherapy, motion capture systems allow continuous and accurate monitoring of physical activities, providing all important parameters of movement in order to evaluate the effectiveness of any exercises. The monitoring of athletes in sports such as athletics, gymnastics, golf, tennis and football, can provide detailed information to enhance athletic performance and reduce possible injury. However, the extra complexity inherent in full body movement capture has prevented cutting-edge systems being sufficient to fulfil these professional needs.

Ultra-wideband Full-Body Motion Capture

Attempting to overcome the technological difficulties associated with inertial tracking, the Antennas group is very active on research projects related to new techniques to enable the development of a wireless full body motion capture system based purely on ultra wideband (UWB) electromagnetic transceivers/sensors arranged in a mesh or star network topology.

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The Antennas Group has teamed up with the Shadow Robot Company to secure funding from the Technology Strategy Board under their “Technology Inspired Collaborative R&D” programme, and runs for one year from Summer 2013. The partners will explore how to read the motion of a human, and transfer this into commands for a robot, with greater precision and reliability than existing methods. The project aims to take basic research principles and translate them into real life applications. The Shadow robot can be viewed in action on YouTube.

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Selected Research Grants and Projects

Selected Recent Publications