Indoor Localization


Localization and navigation technologies based on Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS), like GPS, Galileo and Glonass, are widely used thanks to the integration of their receivers in many kinds of dedicated devices, like car navigators, smartphones and tablets, to support location-based applications.

In Non Line-of-Sight (NLoS) conditions, which are typical of indoor environments, the accuracy of GNSS is significantly degraded; after the release of ISM bands for unlicensed use, an increasing number of  communication technologies that used those bands has been released, and some of them have been exploited for indoor localization. Few examples are the following:

  • IEEE802.11 / Wi-Fi

  • IEEE802.15 / Bluetooth / ZigBee

  • UWB

  • RFID

Our research activity addresses techniques used to localize a user inside a building, a situation where satellite navigation services are not available.
In particular the applications in which we are interested in are:

  • Indoor tracking for movement data analysis

  • Indoor navigation. in particular, related to emergency operations, like guiding a rescue team in case of low visibility.

R&D Objectives

The following technologies will be independently analyzed , then eventually data fusion between them will be implemented:

  • RFID platforms, ensuring communication non only between tags and readers, but also between tags, thus decreasing the system hardware requirements; a platform using 2.4 GHz proprietary communication protocol is used, exploiting both multi power level communication between tag and reader, and proximity information between tags. Moreover, exploiting the possibility to modify the reader firmware, more sophisticated signal processing techniques will be investigated;

  • Dead reckoning systems, consisting of collecting the sensors (accelerometers) readings carried by a user, to estimate its relative movement and direction changes; in particular an Android smartphone carrying inertial sensors like accelerometers, gyroscopes and magnetic sensors is used;

  • Wi-Fi technology, widely used in indoor localization systems. The aim is to integrate the Wi-Fi information with the sensor readings, using Android smartphones and commercial access points;

  • UWB systems will be evaluated for high precision localization;


Unversity of Rome La Sapienza

ISI Foundation

Activities & related projects

SpinV (Supporting People Indoor: a Navigation Venture), a Spin-off of University of Rome La Sapienza, comes from the need to support people navigation and orientation, filling the existing gap of positioning and location-based services in indoor environments. The idea is to create a system able to guide people in public places like university campuses and hospitals, and provide them information about the place where they are or they want to reach (what is going on, who is there)

The aim is to provide a platform including:

  • Hybrid positioning systems (WiFI, RFID, reckoning);

  • 3D routing algorithms;

  • CAD and GIS maps integration and conversion;

  • 3D information and position representation (augmented reality);

  • Safety applications integration (ad hoc infrastructure).