Through Wall Indoor Location


One fun aspect of working in a new technology is the harder you work, the better performance gets. The performance of Q-Track’s Near-Field Electromagnetic Ranging indoor location systems just got even better.

Bob DePierre and I started off in the ultrawideband (UWB) industry years ago – I designed antennas, and Bob work on RF front ends. We saw the problems faced by UWB location systems coping with tracking objects through walls. Even short pulse signals are prone to multipath interference, and that multipath makes it difficult to accurately localize a transmitter. That’s why Bob and I decided to investigate whether low frequency, long wavelength signals could provide a more accurate system for indoor location. The result was Near-Field Electromagnetic Ranging or NFER indoor location systems.

The latest performance we’re achieving is remarkable. Here’s a screen shot from a recent test. My colleague, John Unden, place three locator-receivers (the green dots, below) on the ground outside our building and assessed tracking accuracy throughout a 7000 square foot area of our lab environment.

The resulting track (in red) and photos of the receiver placement are below.

Q-TrackIndoorLocationAccuracyThat red line is the track showing John walking in and around our facility. Note that in all cases, the receivers are tracking through not only the exterior wall, but also at least one additional interior wall. Accuracy is on the order of 40cm, and the worst case error is no more than 1m. That’s an excellent example of the kind of robust through-wall performance Q-Track can deliver to solve your indoor location problems.

If you’d like to learn more, check out Q-Track’s website.


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