A quick analysis of the e-puck’s infrared proximity and light sensors

Recently I have begun developing for the e-puck robot as part of my thesis. The e-puck is a small (75 mm in diameter) differential drive robot that has several sensors and actuators, such as 8 infrared proximity sensors, a VGA camera, a 3D accelerometer, 3 microphones, a speaker and two wheels. For my research, I needed to model the way the infrared proximity sensors reacted to close objects and to light.

Proximity sensors

The e-puck can sense obstacles around itself via the use of 8 infrared proximity sensors, which are positioned around its perimeter. The measurements were taken with the wheels of the e-puck moving, but the robot itself was fixed in place. They were taken for 10 seconds with a sampling rate of 10 samples per second (for a total of 100 samples) and repeated at increments of 0.5 cm from 0 cm to 2 cm and at increments of 1 cm from 2 cm to 12 cm. The measured sensor was perpendicular to the wooden wall. The following data is the average values for 4 of the 8 sensors (sensors number 0, 2, 5 and 7) in two different e-pucks:

You can download the data as a CSV file. Included in the file is also the standard deviation: epuck_proximity_sensors.csv

Light sensors

The proximity sensors also can be used as light sensors. Following the same method as above, the e-puck was placed next to an LED lamp and measurements were taken for 2 of the 8 sensors (sensor 2 and sensor 5). The following data was gathered:

You can download the data as a CSV file. Included in the file is also the standard deviation and the reference value for the ambient light: epuck_light_sensors.csv