Target Tracking With Particle Filters Under Signal Propagation Delays

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Orguner U. , Gustafsson F.

IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON SIGNAL PROCESSING, vol.59, no.6, pp.2485-2495, 2011 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 59 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Doi Number: 10.1109/tsp.2011.2122260
  • Page Numbers: pp.2485-2495
  • Keywords: Constrained estimation, implicit constraints, particle filter, propagation delay, sequential Monte Carlo, state estimation, stochastic sampling, target tracking


Signal propagation delays are hardly a problem for target tracking with standard sensors such as radar and vision due to the fact that the speed of light is much higher than the speed of the target. This contribution studies the case where the ratio of the target and the propagation speed is not negligible, as in the case of sensor networks with microphones, geophones or sonars for instance, where the signal speed in air, ground and water causes a state dependent and stochastic delay of the observations. The proposed approach utilizes an augmentation of the state vector with the propagation delay in a particle filtering framework to compensate for the negative effects of the delays. The model of the physics rules governing the propagation delays is used in interaction with the target motion model to yield an iterative prediction update step in the particle filter which is called the propagation delayed measurement particle filter (PDM-PF). The performance of PDM-PF is illustrated in a challenging target tracking scenario by making comparisons to alternative particle filters that can be used in similar cases.