Project: Wireless Ad-Hoc System for Positioning (WASP)

December 11th, 2013

Wireless Ad-Hoc System for Positioning (WASP)

Minimising risks in the workplace, improving the productivity of industry and contributing to the efficiency and improvements of athletic training skills via a high-accuracy indoor localisation system.


Primarily focused on safety, efficiency and productivity, Wireless Ad-hoc System for Positioning (WASP) is a world-leading high accuracy indoor localisation system which is a highly flexible and can be tailored to a wide range of challenging environments and demanding applications.

The Challenge

Locating and tracking people and objects is needed in many situations in order to increase safety and efficiency.

Traditional technologies such as GPS and WiFi tracking do not work well, or even at all, in many situations, such as subterranean spaces, open-cut mines, city CBDs, indoors, or disaster zones where existing infrastructure is damaged or destroyed.

The Solution

Through substantial research and development in wireless localisation technology, we developed the WASP system which uses low cost, portable hardware to provide highly accurate tracking of people and objects where traditional technologies do not work and clear reception of radio signals is difficult.

WASP features anchor nodes at known locations around the area being monitored communicating wirelessly with a small mobile tag attached to the object(s) being tracked.

The distances between the tracking object and the anchor nodes are measured to the accuracy of nano-seconds using a novel super-resolution detection of time-of-arrival estimation technology which has been patented.

Combined with innovative technologies including online non-line-of-sight (NLOS) mitigation, channel aggregation, and non-intrusive compatibility design, the WASP system provides highly accurate tracking with low cost, portable hardware.

Behaving like a high-precision GPS network, it can display the location of mobile equipment and personnel in real time with sub-metre level accuracy.

Impact on Industry

  • The WASP system has significantly improved the workplace safety and productivity of Australian industries.
  • It has been deployed in multiple important application areas, including tracking elite athletes for improved training, tracking personnel and vehicles in mines for improved safety and production monitoring; and was demonstrated to the NSW Fire Brigade as a way to track and monitor firefighters for improved incident response.
  • The system was previously adopted by Catapult Sports and Australian Institute of Sports, and successfully commercialized through Minetec with a total income of $3M so far (Minetec, DSTG, Boeing, Catapult).
  • Other engagements also include Australian Institute of Sport, Rockwell Collins, Newcrest Mining, Orica, and Aurizon.

Science Impact

  • Seven major publications.
  • Stories published by ABC News, The Conversation, Spatial Source.

Recognition from Peers

  • Australian Engineering Excellence Award 2013 for “Tracking elite athletes using revolutionary ClearSky technology,”
  • CSIRO and Catapult Sports previously partnered in the invention of a revolutionary system for tracking elite athletes. The ClearSky system solved the current challenge of tracking athletes indoors or in GPS poor environments such as large stadiums, fulfilling a growing need by coaches, training staff and broadcast media around the world to accurately track athletes.
  • Winner of two NSW division awards
    • Winner, Software and Embedded Systems Excellence Award
    • Winner, President’s Award
  • Winner of a National Award
  • iAward NSW division in R&D category, 2010, for “wireless tracking technology”  
  • Engineering Excellence Award from NSW division of Engineers Australia in Research and Development category 2009, for “wireless localisation project”.

For more information contact: Wei Ni.

Our highly skilled team of world class researchers and engineers is open to partnerships and collaborations for research, development, and commercialisation.

Contact us to learn more.

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