Localization of Autonomous Underwater Vehicles using Airborne Visible Light Communication Links





Citation of Original Publication

J. B. Saif, M. Younis, F. -S. Choa and A. Ahmed, "Localization of Autonomous Underwater Vehicles using Airborne Visible Light Communication Links," 2023 32nd Wireless and Optical Communications Conference (WOCC), Newark, NJ, USA, 2023, pp. 1-6, doi: 10.1109/WOCC58016.2023.10139492.


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In an application involving Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV) it is important to track the trajectory and spatially correlate the collected data. Relying on an Inertial Navigation System (INS) while factoring in the initial AUV position would not suffice given the major accumulated errors. Employing surface nodes is a logistically complicated option, especially for missions involving emerging events. This paper proposes a novel localization approach that offers both agility and accuracy. The idea is to exploit a communication mechanism across the air-water interface. In particular, we employ an airborne unit, e.g., a drone, that scans the area of interest and uses visual light communication (VLC) to reach the AUV. In essence, the airborne unit defines virtual anchors with known GPS coordinates. The AUV uses the light intensity of the received VLC transmissions to estimate the range relative to the anchor points and then determine its own global coordinates at various time instances. The proposed approach is validated through extensive simulation experiments. The simulation results demonstrate the viability of our approach and analyze the effect of the VLC parameters.