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International Journal of Reconfigurable Computing
Volume 2010, Article ID 480208, 17 pages
Research Article

Robotic Mapping and Localization with Real-Time Dense Stereo on Reconfigurable Hardware

1Department of Informatics and Communications, Technological Educational Institute of Serres, Terma Magnisias, 62124 Serres, Greece
2Section of Electronics and Information Systems Technology, Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Engineering, School of Engineering, Democritus University of Thrace, 67100 Xanthi, Greece

Received 1 March 2010; Revised 20 July 2010; Accepted 20 November 2010

Academic Editor: Viktor K. Prasanna

Copyright © 2010 John Kalomiros and John Lygouras. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A reconfigurable architecture for dense stereo is presented as an observation framework for a real-time implementation of the simultaneous localization and mapping problem in robotics. The reconfigurable sensor detects point features from stereo image pairs to use at the measurement update stage of the procedure. The main hardware blocks are a dense depth stereo accelerator, a left and right image corner detector, and a stage performing left-right consistency check. For the stereo-processor stage, we have implemented and tested a global-matching component based on a maximum-likelihood dynamic programming technique. The system includes a Nios II processor for data control and a USB 2.0 interface for host communication. Remote control is used to guide a vehicle equipped with a stereo head in an indoor environment. The FastSLAM Bayesian algorithm is applied in order to track and update observations and the robot path in real time. The system is assessed using real scene depth detection and public reference data sets. The paper also reports resource usage and a comparison of mapping and localization results with ground truth.