Rugged open source inertial measurement unit sensor launched

21st June 2019
Lanna Cooper

ACEINNA has announced its new OpenIMU300RI. A rugged, sealed-package, open-source, nine-Degree-of-Freedom (9-DoF) Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) for autonomous off road, construction, agricultural and automotive vehicle applications. This new open-source IMU, allows engineers to easily optimise an attitude, navigation or other algorithm for their vehicle/application and run it in on the IMU.

This minimises communication on the bus and frees-up their processor to do other things, or to even use a less expensive processor. The IMU or processed IMU data can be used for many applications including keeping a cab level, returning an arm to a specific position, keeping a bucket stable while traveling, locking out control for safety applications, supplementing GNSS data to keep a tractor on course, etc.

The new OpenIMU300RI adds a sealed rugged module with CAN and RS232 interface through an IP67 Ampseal 16 connector to the product line running the breakthrough professional-grade open-source navigation stack supported by ACEINNA’s free Navigation Studio. It complements Aceinna’s popular OpenIMU300ZA 9-DOF IMU OEM module, which has SPI and UART interfaces.

Each OpenIMU300RI is calibrated on precision rate tables and in temperature chambers providing trustworthy 3D linear acceleration, 3D rotation rate, and 3D magnetic field measurement information to designers of autonomous vehicle and other control systems.

“Different vehicle platforms have different dynamics,” explained James Fennelly, Product Manager at ACEINNA. “To get the best performance, the attitude, navigation or other algorithm needs to be tailored for each vehicle platform and application. The ACEINNA OpenIMU300RI open-source platform gives designers a flexible and simple-to-integrate IMU solution that can be easily optimised for a wide range of vehicles and applications.”

In the past, designers who needed attitude information (Pitch, Roll and Yaw), had to choose between using a one-size-fits-all algorithm by purchasing a closed solution like the ACEINNA MTLT305D dynamic inclination sensor, or to design their own algorithm and have it run on their own processor. With a closed solution, optimisation of the algorithm for the platform or application is not possible.

If the application requires multiple distributed IMUs (for example precision excavation), the data needed to be transferred to their own processors can be quite taxing on the CAN bus. Instead, now with the OpenIMU300RI, designers have many choices. They can load ACEINNA’s published open-source algorithms. They can optimise the published ACEINNA algorithms for their own application, or they can build their own custom algorithms and custom messages to transmit only processed data needed by their control system. All can be loaded right into the module.

Because of its rugged design, the OpenIMU300RI can be mounted directly on construction and agriculture vehicles and attachments, which are exposed to the elements during operation or storage. It has an Ampseal 6 position IP67 rated connector. The module is completely over molded in plastic and features nickel-plated brass bushings for mounting. Input power conditioning and protection circuitry is designed for and is qualified for use on 12V and 24V vehicles. It supports input voltages between 5 and 32V.

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