The German experimental robotics program PRIMUS (PRogram for Intelligent Mobile Unmanned Systems) is focused on solutions for autonomous driving in unknown open terrain, over several project phases under specific realization aspects for more than 12 years. The main task of the program is to develop algorithms for a high degree of autonomous navigation skills with off-the-shelf available hardware/sensor technology and to integrate this into military vehicles. For obstacle detection a Dornier-3D-LADAR is integrated on a tracked vehicle "Digitized WIESEL 2". For road-following a digital video camera and a visual perception module from the Universitaet der Bundeswehr Munchen (UBM) has been integrated. This paper gives an overview of the PRIMUS program with a focus on the last program phase D (2001 - 2003). This includes the system architecture, the description of the modes of operation and the technology development with the focus on obstacle avoidance and obstacle classification using a 3-D LADAR. A collection of experimental results and a short look at the next steps in the German robotics program will conclude the paper.
The present contribution reports the development of an application specific integrated circuit (ASIC) for application in space-borne electronic data handling systems. The function of the ASIC is to perform a two-dimensional, multi-level Discrete Wavelet Transform (DWT) at high data rate. The implemented DWT is detailed mathematically, and the functionality and the architecture of the ASIC are described. The DWT ASIC will perform pixel data decorrelation in the CWIC on-board image compressor.
An update of the development status of the CWIC on-board image compressor project is given. For the convenience of the reader, the features of CWIC are recollected: wavelet-based, high-speed, high resolution, constant-rate image compression using space-qualifiable hardware. The compression efficiency of CWIC has been reported earlier but is supplemented with a JPEG comparison presently. The precise real-time performance of CWIC has been obtained from netlist simulation. The CWIC architecture is shown with two interface options: either a parallel or a SpaceWire serial interface. The status of the demonstrator is reported, and the existing filter and coder boards are depicted.