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Inertial Navigation Systems

Inertial Navigation Systems calculate the real-time position, velocity and orientation of a moving vehicle via the use of motion sensors. The measurements provided by accelerometers and gyroscopes within these systems are used to track the movements of an object relative to a known starting position.

Both commercial and military projects have seen the use of Inertial Navigation Systems for several decades, during which these systems were under constant development and revision. An Inertial Navigation System is basically divided into two parts:

  • An Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU), which provides live measurements of acceleration and velocity in the body frame
  • A state update system, which uses the values provided by the IMU to update the position, velocity and orientation of the vehicle in the navigation frame and orientation of the vehicle in the navigation frame

The MEMS sensors

The way in which an INU is designed affects the cost of the entire Inertial Navigation System. As such, finding low-cost and lightweight solutions is critical when attempting to make Inertial Navigation Systems available to applications that cannot implement large-sized, heavy sensors – such as human motion capture.

MEMS inertial sensors solve these issues and provide exceptional levels of performance in terms of long-term stability, temperature stability and accuracy. Moreover, MEMS inertial sensors can function successfully under harsh conditions.

Colibrys MEMS accelerometer

Our MS1000 family encompasses extra-small accelerometers dedicated to inertial sensing applications. Accelerometers in this family have an excellent long-term bias stability and can operate under extreme shock, vibrations and temperature.

The MS1000 single-axis analog accelerometer has a dynamic range of ±2g to ±100g, embeds a low-power ASI and a temperature sensor. It comes fully calibrated in a robust, hermetically-sealed LCC20 ceramic package, guaranteeing long-term stability and durability.

Recommended sensor

Safran Colibrys strongly recommends the MS1000 for Inertial Navigation Systems. The sensor features long term stability,  high repeatability bias after shock.

Inertial Navigation Systems Sensor