Robotics: Science and Systems III

Gaussian Beam Processes: A Nonparametric Bayesian Measurement Model for Range Finders

Christian Plagemann, Kristian Kersting, Patrick Pfaff, and Wolfram Burgard

Abstract: In probabilistic mobile robotics, the development of measurement models plays a crucial role as it directly influences the efficiency and the robustness of the robot’s performance in a great variety of tasks including localization, tracking, and map building. In this paper, we present a novel probabilistic measurement model for range finders, called Gaussian beam processes, which treats the measurement modeling task as a nonparametric Bayesian regression problem and solves it using Gaussian processes. The major benefit of our approach is its ability to generalize over entire range scans directly. This way, we can learn the distributions of range measurements for whole regions of the robot’s configuration space from only few recorded or simulated range scans. Especially in approximative approaches to state estimation like particle filtering or histogram filtering, this leads to a better approximation of the true likelihood function. Experiments on real world and synthetic data show that Gaussian beam processes combine the advantages of two popular measurement models.



    AUTHOR    = {C. Plagemann and K. Kersting and P. Pfaff and W. Burgard},
    TITLE     = {Gaussian Beam Processes: A Nonparametric Bayesian Measurement Model for Range Finders},
    BOOKTITLE = {Proceedings of Robotics: Science and Systems},
    YEAR      = {2007},
    ADDRESS   = {Atlanta, GA, USA},
    MONTH     = {June},
    DOI       = {10.15607/RSS.2007.III.018}