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Journal of Sensors
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 643815, 11 pages
Research Article

Feasibility Investigation of Obstacle-Avoiding Sensors Unit without Image Processing

Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Kansai University, 3-3-35 Yamate-cho, Suita, Osaka 564-8680, Japan

Received 11 February 2013; Accepted 9 June 2013

Academic Editor: Aiguo Song

Copyright © 2013 Yasuhisa Omura et al. 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.


Feasibility of a simple method to detect step height, slope angle, and trench width using four infrared-light-source PSD range sensors is examined, and the reproducibility and accuracy of characteristic parameter detection are also examined. Detection error of upward slope angle is within 2.5 degrees, while it is shown that the detection error of downward slope angle exceeding 20 degrees is very large. In order to reduce such errors, a method to improve range-voltage performance of a range sensor is proposed, and its availability is demonstrated. We also show that increase in trial frequency is a better way, although so as not to increase the detection delay. Step height is identified with an error of ±1.5 mm. It is shown that trench width cannot be reliably measured at this time. It is suggested that an additional method is needed if we have to advance the field of obstacle detection.