Advancing profiling sensors with a wireless approach
In general, profiling sensors are low-cost crude imagers that typically utilize a sparse detector array, whereas traditional cameras employ a dense focal-plane array. Profiling sensors are of particular interest in applications that require classification of a sensed object into broad categories, such as human, animal, or vehicle. However, profiling sensors have many other applications in which reliable classification of a crude silhouette or profile produced by the sensor is of value. The notion of a profiling sensor was first realized by a Near-Infrared (N-IR), retro-reflective prototype consisting of a vertical column of sparse detectors. Alternative arrangements of detectors have been implemented in which a subset of the detectors have been offset from the vertical column and placed at arbitrary locations along the anticipated path of the objects of interest. All prior work with the N-IR, retro-reflective profiling sensors has consisted of wired detectors. This thesis surveys prior work and advances this work with a wireless profiling sensor prototype in which each detector is a wireless sensor node and the aggregation of these nodes comprises a profiling sensor's field of view. In this novel approach, a base station pre-processes the data collected from the sensor nodes, including data re-alignment, prior to its classification through a back-propagation neural network. Such a wireless detector configuration advances deployment options for N-IR, retro-reflective profiling sensors.^
David J. Russomanno, Purdue University.