Statistical Analysis and Data Mining

Sequential optimal positioning of mobile sensors using mutual information

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  • Author(s): Kathleen Schmidt, Ralph C. Smith, Jason Hite, John Mattingly, Yousry Azmy, Deepak Rajan, Ryan Goldhahn
  • Article first published online: 19 Jul 2019
  • DOI: 10.1002/sam.11431
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Abstract Source localization, such as detecting a nuclear source in an urban area or ascertaining the origin of a chemical plume, is generally regarded as a well‐documented inverse problem; however, optimally placing sensors to collect data for such problems is a more challenging task. In particular, optimal sensor placement—that is, measurement locations resulting in the least uncertainty in the estimated source parameters—depends on the location of the source, which is typically unknown a priori. Mobile sensors are advantageous because they have the flexibility to adapt to any given source position. While most mobile sensor strategies designate a trajectory for sensor movement, we instead employ mutual information, based on Shannon entropy, to choose the next measurement location from a discrete set of design conditions.

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