6D SLAM ͑simultaneous localization and mapping͒ or 6D concurrent localization and mapping of mobile robots considers six dimensions for the robot pose, namely, the x, y, and z coordinates and the roll, yaw, and pitch angles. Robot motion and localization on natural surfaces, e.g., driving outdoor with a mobile robot, must regard these degrees of freedom. This paper presents a robotic mapping method based on locally consistent 3D laser range scans. Iterative Closest Point scan matching, combined with a heuristic for closed loop detection and a global relaxation method, results in a highly precise mapping system. A new strategy for fast data association, cached kd-tree search, leads to feasible computing times. With no ground-truth data available for outdoor environments, point relations in maps are compared to numerical relations in uncalibrated aerial images in order to assess the metric validity of the resulting 3D maps.
a b s t r a c tIntelligent autonomous action in ordinary environments calls for maps. 3D geometry is generally required for avoiding collision with complex obstacles and to self-localize in six degrees of freedom (6 DoF) (x, y, z positions, roll, yaw, and pitch angles). Meaning, in addition to geometry, becomes inevitable if the robot is supposed to interact with its environment in a goal-directed way. A semantic stance enables the robot to reason about objects; it helps disambiguate or round off sensor data; and the robot knowledge becomes reviewable and communicable.The paper describes an approach and an integrated robot system for semantic mapping. The prime sensor is a 3D laser scanner. Individual scans are registered into a coherent 3D geometry map by 6D SLAM. Coarse scene features (e.g., walls, floors in a building) are determined by semantic labeling. More delicate objects are then detected by a trained classifier and localized. In the end, the semantic maps can be visualized for human inspection. We sketch the overall architecture of the approach, explain the respective steps and their underlying algorithms, give examples based on a working robot implementation, and discuss the findings.
A globally consistent solution to the simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) problem in 2D with three degrees of freedom (DoF) poses was presented by Lu and Milios [F. Lu, E. Milios, Globally consistent range scan alignment for environment mapping, Autonomous Robots 4 (April) (1997) 333-349]. To create maps suitable for natural environments it is however necessary to consider the 6DoF pose case, namely the three Cartesian coordinates and the roll, pitch and yaw angles. This article describes the extension of the proposed algorithm to deal with these additional DoFs and the resulting non-linearities. Simplifications using Taylor expansion and Cholesky decomposition yield a fast application that handles the massive amount of 3D data and the computational requirements due to the 6DoF. Our experiments demonstrate the functionality of estimating the exact poses and their covariances in all 6DoF, leading to a globally consistent map. The correspondences between scans are found automatically by use of a simple distance heuristic.
Accurate three-dimensional (3D) data from indoor spaces are of high importance for various applications in construction, indoor navigation and real estate management. Mobile scanning techniques are offering an efficient way to produce point clouds, but with a lower accuracy than the traditional terrestrial laser scanning (TLS). In this paper, we first tackle the problem of how the quality of a point cloud should be rigorously evaluated. Previous evaluations typically operate on some point cloud subset, using a manually-given length scale, which would perhaps describe the ranging precision or the properties of the environment. Instead, the metrics that we propose perform the quality evaluation to the full point cloud and over all of the length scales, revealing the method precision along with some possible problems related to the point clouds, such as outliers, over-completeness and misregistration. The proposed methods are used to evaluate the end product point clouds of some of the latest methods. In detail, point clouds are obtained from five commercial indoor mapping systems, Matterport, NavVis, Zebedee, Stencil and Leica Pegasus: Backpack, and three research prototypes, Aalto VILMA , FGI Slammer and the Würzburg backpack. These are compared against survey-grade TLS point clouds captured from three distinct test sites that each have different properties. Based on the presented experimental findings, we discuss the properties of the proposed metrics and the strengths and weaknesses of the above mapping systems and then suggest directions for future research.
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