RodFIter: Attitude Reconstruction from Inertial Measurement by Functional Iteration

Yuanxin Wu

Rigid motion computation or estimation is a cornerstone in numerous fields. Attitude computation can be achieved by integrating the angular velocity measured by gyroscopes, the accuracy of which is crucially important for the dead-reckoning inertial navigation. The state-of-the-art attitude algorithms have unexceptionally relied on the simplified differential equation of the rotation vector to obtain the attitude. This paper proposes a Functional Iteration technique with the Rodrigues vector (named the RodFIter method) to analytically reconstruct the attitude from gyroscope measurements. The RodFIter method is provably exact in reconstructing the incremental attitude as long as the angular velocity is exact. Notably, the Rodrigues vector is analytically obtained and can be used to update the attitude over the considered time interval. The proposed method gives birth to an ultimate attitude algorithm scheme that can be naturally extended to the general rigid motion computation. It is extensively evaluated under the attitude coning motion and compares favorably in accuracy with the mainstream attitude algorithms. This work is believed having eliminated the long-standing theoretical barrier in exact motion integration from inertial measurements.

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