Evaluation of bluetooth low energy technology for indoor localization in built environments

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2016
Topak, Fatih
Localization in indoor built environments has a considerable importance for architecture, engineering and construction industry. It has a wide scope including building occupancy detection, automated asset tracking in construction sites, supporting facility maintenance and operations, and guiding people in building emergency response operations. Among the uses cases of indoor localization, occupancy detection is shown to be the most critical one, considering the large share of built environments in total energy consumption of the world and the huge potential of automated demand driven building operations, which are based on presence of people, in increasing energy efficiency of buildings. Although there are some existing approaches for detecting the location of occupants in buildings, there is not a widely accepted and reliable solution due to the certain drawbacks of the current approaches including uncertainties in detection, time latency and privacy issues, inability for multiple detection and costly utilization and maintenance requirements. The aim of this research is to assess the possibility of establishing a mobile information technology device integrated framework for building occupancy detection and to investigate the usability of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology for indoor localization. BLE technology is already embedded in most of the mobile devices and its properties such as ultra-low power consumption, low cost and low latency in data exchange make it a good alternative to currently available technologies. In order to determine the viability of the proposed framework and BLE technology, multiple field experiments carried out in MATPUM Building at Middle East Technical University. Location fingerprinting method was used as the wireless localization technique and k-nearest neighbor algorithm was utilized to assess the feasibility of BLE technology for indoor localization. The results of the field experiments show that, detecting occupancy through a mobile device integrated framework is possible without any complex infrastructure requirement, and BLE technology can be used as a reliable solution for indoor localization as it gives better accuracy and precision results when compared to existing approaches in the industry.

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Citation Formats
F. Topak, “Evaluation of bluetooth low energy technology for indoor localization in built environments,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2016.