Real-Time Indoor Geolocation Tracking for Assisted Healthcare Facilities

Real-Time Indoor Geolocation Tracking for Assisted Healthcare Facilities

Kinjal Gala (San Diego State University, San Diego, USA), Paul David Bryden (University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland), Christopher Paolini (San Diego State University, San Diego, USA), Matthew Wang (University of California, Los AngelesUSA), Albena Dimitrova Mihovska (CTIF Global Capsule (CGC), Denmark) and Mahasweta Sarkar (San Diego State University, San Diego, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/IJITN.2020040101
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Abstract

A leading cause of physical injury sustained by elderly persons is the event of unintentionally falling. A delay between the time of fall and the time of medical attention can exacerbate injury if the fall resulted in a concussion, traumatic brain injury, or bone fracture. The authors present a solution capable of finding and tracking, in real-time, the location of an elderly person within an indoor facility, using only existing Wi-Fi infrastructure. This paper discusses the development of an open source software framework capable of finding the location of an individual within 3m accuracy using 802.11 Wi-Fi in good coverage areas. This framework is comprised of an embedded software layer, a Web Services layer, and a mobile application for monitoring the location of individuals, calculated using trilateration, with Kalman filtering employed to reduce the effect of multipath interference. The solution provides a real-time, low cost, extendible solution to the problem of indoor geolocation to mitigate potential harm to elderly persons who have fallen and require immediate medical help.
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Background

The ability to identify the geographic location of an individual residing outside of a building by latitude, longitude, and altitude is easily accomplished using a relatively inexpensive GPS receiver. Typical commercially available receivers for under $100 can provide coordinates within a sampling time of 30 seconds to an accuracy of 3m. For example, the Copernicus II 12-channel GPS module from Trimble is under $70 and can provide updated coordinates with a period of 3s. GPS receivers typically use a carrier wave in the L1 band at 1575.42 MHz on which navigation messages are modulated. Unfortunately, such microwave signals are significantly attenuated by building roofs and walls, rendering GPS unusable in indoor setups.

Indoor position measurements can be accomplished using different mechanisms such as radio signals, magnetic fields, and sound waves. Newer, emerging technologies employ computer vision to identify objects in a camera field of a view. A vision system can measure distances in between recognized objects, and between a user and recognized objects. These measurements provide a system with depth perception and can identify how far a user is away from a surface or other rigid body in a field of view.

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