Dynamic 3-D Indoor Radio Propagation Model and Applications with Radios from 433 MHZ to 2.4 GHz


Proliferation of indoor sensor infrastructure has created a new niche for mobile communications, yet research in indoor radio propagation still has not generated a definite model that is able to 1) precisely capture radio signatures in 3-D environments and 2) effectively apply to radios at a wide range of frequency bands. This paper first introduces the impact of wall obstructions on indoor radio propagation by experimental results through a full cycle of an indoor construction process; it then exploits a dynamic 3-D indoor radio propagation model in a two-story building using radio technologies at both 433 MHz and 2.4 GHz. Experimental measurements and evaluation results show that the proposed 3-D model generates accurate signal strength values at all data evaluation positions. Comparing the two radio technologies, this study also indicates that low frequency radios (such as 433 MHz) might not be attractive for indoor mobile computing applications because of larger experimental errors or constant absence of measurement data.

Share and Cite:

Y. Ji, "Dynamic 3-D Indoor Radio Propagation Model and Applications with Radios from 433 MHZ to 2.4 GHz," International Journal of Communications, Network and System Sciences, Vol. 5 No. 11, 2012, pp. 753-766. doi: 10.4236/ijcns.2012.511079.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] M. Weiser, “Ubiquitous Computing,” Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, 2012. http://sandbox.xerox.com/ubicomp/
[2] Weiser, Mark, “The Computer for the 21st Century,” Scientific American, 1991. http://www.ics.uci.edu/~dutt/ics212-wq05/weiser-sci-am-sep-91.pdf
[3] Insight Research Corp., “Location Based Services Market, 2007-2011: A Market Research Report,” 2007. http://www.insightcorp.com/reports/ipappslbs.asp
[4] S. Dhar and U. Varshney, “Challenges and Business Models for Mobile Location-Based Services and Advertising,” Communications of the ACM, Vol. 54, No. 5, 2011, pp. 121-128. doi:10.1145/1941487. 1941515
[5] M. Satyanarayanan, “Mobile Computing: The Next Decade,” Proceedings of the 1st ACM Workshop on Mobile Cloud Computing & Services: Social Networks and Beyond, ACM, New York, 2010, pp. 5:1-5:6. doi:10.1145/1810931.1810936.
[6] Y. Ji, S. Biaz, S. Pandey and P. Agrawal, “ARIADNE: A Dynamic Indoor Signal Map Construction and Localization System,” The 4th International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications, and Services, Uppsala, 19-22 June 2006.
[7] Y. Ji, S. Biaz, S. Wu and B. Qi, “Optimal Sniffers Deployment for Wireless Indoor Localization,” 16th International Conference on Computer Communications and Networks, Honolulu, 13-16 August 2007.
[8] Y. Ji, “Navigation Using Environmental Constraints,” 6th Annual IEEE Consumer Communications and Networking Conference, Las Vegas, 10-13 January 2009.
[9] Y. Ji and L. Chen, “Dynamic Indoor Location Determination: Mechanisms and Robustness Evaluation,” 6th International Conference on Autonomic and Autonomous Systems, Cancun, 7-13 March 2010, pp. 70-77.
[10] Y. Ji and P. Robert, “A 3-D Indoor Radio Propagation Model for WiFi and RFID,” 9th ACM International Symposium on Mobility Management and Wireless Access, Miami, 31 October-4 November 2011.
[11] Y. Ji, “Indoor Localization Robustness and Performance Improvement,” International Journal of Communication Networks and Distributed Systems: Special Issue on Scalable Wireless Networks, No. 1/2, 2011, pp. 3-15.
[12] Y. Ji, “Performance Analysis for Indoor Location Determination,” International Journal of Ad Hoc and Ubiquitous Computing: Special Issue on Wireless Network Algorithm and Theory, No. 1/2, 2011, pp. 3-15.
[13] R. Want, A. Hopper, V. Falcao and J. Gibbons, “The Active Badge Location Systems,” ACM Transactions on Information Systems, Vol. 10, No. 1, 1992, pp. 91-102.
[14] N. Priyantha, A. Chakraborty and H. Balakrishnan, “The Cricket Location Support System,” Proceedings of MOBICOM, Boston, 6-11 August 2000, pp. 266-274.
[15] A. Savvides, C.-C. Han and M. B. Strivastava, “Dynamic Fine-Grained Localization in Ad-Hoc Networks of Sensors,” MOBICOM, Rome, 16-21 July 2001.
[16] O. Vinyals, E. Martin and G. Friedland, “Multimodal Indoor Localization: An Audio-Wireless-Based Approach,” 4th International Conference on Semantic Computing, Pittsburgh, 22-24 September 2010, pp. 120-125.
[17] S. P. Tarzia, P. A. Dinda, R. P. Dick and G. Memik, “Demo: Indoor Localization without Infrastructure Using the Acoustic Background Spectrum,” Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications, and Services, ACM, New York, 2011, pp. 385-386. doi:10.1145/1999995.2000047.
[18] J. Krumm, S. Harris, B. Meyers, B. Brumitt, M. Hale and S. Shafer, “Multi-Camera Multi-Person Tracking for Easy Living,” 3rd IEEE International Workshop on Visual Surveillance, Dublin, 1 July 2000.
[19] M. Kais, S. Dauvillier, A. De la Fortelle, I. Masaki and C. Laugier, “Towards Outdoor Localization Using GIS, Vision System and Stochastic Error Propagation,” Palmerston North (NZ), 2004. http://emotion.inrialpes.fr/bibemotion/2004/KDDML04.
[20] M. Agrawal and K. Konolige, “Real-Time Localization in Outdoor Environments Using Stereo Vision and Inexpensive GPS,” Proceedings of the 18th International Conference on Pattern Recognition, IEEE Computer Society, Washington, 2006, pp. 1063-1068.
[21] N. Lemieux and H. Lutfiyya, “Whlocator: Hybrid Indoor Positioning System,” Proceedings of the 2009 International Conference on Pervasive Services, ACM, New York, 2009, pp. 55-64. doi:10.1145/1568199.1568209.
[22] O. Woodman and R. Harle, “Pedestrian Localization for Indoor Environments,” Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on Ubiquitous Computing, ACM, New York, 2008, pp. 114-123. doi:10.1145/1409635.1409651.
[23] P. Robertson, M. Angermann and B. Krach, “Simultaneous Localization and Mapping for Pedestrians Using Only Foot-Mounted Inertial Sensors,” Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Ubiquitous Computing, ACM, New York, 2009, pp. 93-96. doi:10.1145/ 1620545.1620560.
[24] P. Bahl and V. Padmanabhan, “RADAR: An In-Building RF-Based User Location and Tracking System,” Infocom, 2000, pp. 775-784.
[25] A. LaMarca, Y. Chawathe, S. Consolvo, J. Hightower, I. Smith, J. Scott, T. Sohn, J. Howard, J. Hughes, F. Potter, J. Tabert, P. Powledge, G. Borriello and B. Schilit, “Place Lab: Device Positioning Using Radio Beacons in the Wild,” Proceedings of Pervasive, Munich, 8-13 May 2005, pp. 116-133.
[26] Y.-C. Cheng, Y. Chawathe, A. LaMarca and J. Krumm, “Accuracy Characterization for Metropolitan-Scale Wi-Fi Localization,” Mobisys, 2005.
[27] S. Tadakamadla, “Indoor Local Positioning System for Zigbee, Based on RSSI,” Master’s Thesis, Mid Sweden University, Ostersund, 2006.
[28] J. Blumenthal, R. Grossmann, F. Golatowski and D. Timmermann, “Weighted Centroid Localization in Zig-Bee-Based Sensor Networks,” IEEE International Symposium on Intelligent Signal Processing, Alcala De Henares, 3-5 October 2007, pp. 1-6.
[29] A.-I. Noh, W. Lee and J. Ye, “Comparison of the Mechanisms of the ZigBee’s Indoor Localization Algorithm,” 9th ACIS International Conference on Software Engineering, Artificial Intelligence, Networking, and Parallel/Distributed Computing, Kyoto, 6-8 August 2008, pp. 13-18.
[30] K. Curran and E. Furey, “Pinpointing Users with Location Estimation Techniques and Wi-Fi Hotspot Technology,” International Journal of Network Management, Vol. 18, No. 5, 2008, pp. 395-408. doi:10.1002/nem.683.
[31] Y.-S. Chiou, C.-L. Wang, S.-C. Yeh and M.-Y. Su, “Design of an Adaptive Positioning System Based on Wi-Fi Radio Signals,” Computer Communications, Vol. 32, No. 7-10, 2009, pp. 1245-1254. http://portal.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=1542555.1542776.
[32] K. Chintalapudi, A. PadmanabhaIyer and V. N. Padmanabhan, “Indoor Localization without the Pain,” Proceedings of the 16th Annual International Conference on Mobile Computing and Networking, ACM, New York, 2010, pp. 173-184. doi:10.1145/ 1859995.1860016.
[33] M. Giuberti, M. Martalo and G. Ferrari, “Fingerprinting-Based Wireless 3d Localization for Motion Capture Applications,” Proceedings of the 1st ACM Mobi Hoc Workshop on Pervasive Wireless Healthcare, ACM, New York, 2011, pp. 6:1-6:8. doi:10.1145/ 2007036.2007044.
[34] R. Russell, “A Practical Demonstration of the Application of Olfactory Sensing to Robot Navigation,” Proceedings of the International Advanced Robotics Program, Sydney, 18-19 May 1995, pp. 35-43.
[35] S. K. Yeluri, “Outdoor Localization Technique Using Landmarks to Determine. Position and Orientation,” Master’s Thesis, University of Florida, Gainesville, 2003.
[36] L. E. Miller, P. F. Wilson, N. P. Bryner, M. H. Francis, J. R. Guerrieri, D. W. Stroup and L. Klein-Berndt, “Rfid-Assisted Indoor Localization and Communication for First Responders,” The European Conference on Antennas and Propagation, Nice, 6-10 October 2006.
[37] J. Borkowski and U. Lempiainen, “Practical Network- Based Techniques for Mobile Positioning in Umts,” EURASIP Journal on Applied Signal Processing, 2006, pp. 1-15, Article ID 12930.
[38] A. Kealy, G. Roberts and G. Retscher, “Evaluating the Performance of Low Cost Mems Inertial Sensors for Seamless Indoor/Outdoor Navigation,” Position Location and Navigation Symposium, Indian Wells, 4-6 May 2010, pp. 157-167.
[39] M. Isaac, “New Version of Google Maps Brings Indoor Floor Plans to Your Phone,” CNN Tech, 2011. http://www.cnn.com/2011/11/30/tech/mobile/new-version-googlemaps-indoors-wired/.
[40] J. Hightower and G. Boriello, “Localization Systems for Ubiquitous Computing,” IEEE Computer Magazine, Vol. 34, No. 8, 2001, pp. 57-66.
[41] S. Thrun, “Robotic Mapping: A Survey,” 2002. http://citeseer.ist.psu.edu/thrun02robotic.html.
[42] R. J. Fontana, E. Richley and J. Barney, “Commercialization of an Ultra-Wideband Precision Asset Location System,” IEEE Conference on Ultra-Wideband Systems and Technologies, Reston, 16-19 November 2003, pp. 369-373.
[43] E. Elnahrawy, X. Li and R. P. Martin, “The Limits of Localization Using Signal Strength: A Comparative Study,” Sensor Systems, Baltimore, 3-5 November 2004, pp. 283-284.
[44] X. Cheng, A. Thaeler, G. Xue and D. Chen, “TPS: A Time-Based Positioning Scheme for Outdoor Sensor Networks,” IEEE Infocom, Vol. 4, 2004, pp. 2685-2696.
[45] A. H. Sayed, A. Tarighat and N. Khajehnouri, “Network-Based Wireless Location: Challenges Faced in Developing Techniques for Accurate Wireless Location Information,” IEEE Signal Processing Magazine, Vol. 22, No. 4, 2005, pp. 24-40.
[46] M. Youssef, A. Youssef, C. Rieger, U. Shankar and A. Agrawala, “Pinpoint: An Asynchronous Time-Based Location Determination System,” MobiSys 2006, ACM Press, New York, 2006, pp. 165-176.
[47] H. Lim, L. Kung, R. Doverspike and J. Hou, “Zero-Config., Robust Indoor Localization: Theory and Experimentation,” InfoCom, 2006.
[48] A. Aksu and P. Krishnamurthy, “Sub-Area Localization: A Simple Calibration Free Approach,” Proceedings of the 13th ACM International Conference on Modeling, Analysis, and Simulation of Wireless and Mobile Systems, ACM, New York, 2010, pp. 63-72. doi:10.1145/ 1868521.1868534.
[49] M. Kallmann, “Shortest Paths with Arbitrary Clearance from Navigation Meshes,” Proceedings of the 2010 ACM SIGGRAPH/Eurographics Symposium on Computer Animation, Eurographics Association, Aire-la-Ville, 2010, pp. 159-168. http://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm? id=1921427.1921451
[50] K. Lin, A. Kansal, D. Lymberopoulos and F. Zhao, “Energy-Accuracy Trade-Off for Continuous Mobile Device Location,” Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications, and Services, ACM, New York, 2010, pp. 285-298. doi:10.1145/ 1814433.1814462.
[51] H. Lim, L.-C. Kung, J. C. Hou and H. Luo, “Zero-Configuration Indoor Localization over IEEE 802.11 Wireless Infrastructure,” Wireless Networks, Vol. 16, 2010, pp. 405-420. doi:10.1007/s11276-008-0140-3.
[52] A. M. Ladd, K. E. Bekris, A. P. Rudys, D. S. Wallach and L. E. Kavraki, “On the Feasibility of Using Wireless Ethernet for Indoor Localization,” IEEE Transactions on Robotics and Automation, Vol. 20, No. 3, 2004, pp. 555-559.
[53] P. Krishnan, A. Krishnakumar, W. Ju, C. Mallows and S. Ganu, “A Systemfor LEASE: System for Location Estimation Assisted by Stationary Emitters for Indoor Wireless Networks,” Infocom, 2004.
[54] Skyhook Wireless, 2012. http://www.skyhookwireless.com/
[55] A. Haeberlen, E. Flannery, A. M. Ladd, A. Rudys, D. S. Wallach and L. E.Kavraki, “Practical Robust Localization over Large-Scale 802.11 Wireless Networks,” MobiCom, Philadelphia, 2004.
[56] A. Hatami and K. Pahlavan, “In Building Intruder Detection for WLAN Access,” Position Location and Navigation Symposium, Monterey, 26-29 April 2004, pp. 592-597.
[57] M. Chen, T. Sohn, J. Hightower, T. Sohn, A. LaMarca, I. Smith, D. Chmelev, J. Hughes and F. Potter, “Practical Metropolitan-Scale Positioning for GSM Phones,” Proceedings of Ubicomp, Orange County, 17-21 September 2006.
[58] Y.-S. Chiou, C.-L. Wang and S.-C. Yeh, “An Adaptive Location Estimator Using Tracking Algorithms for Indoor WLANS,” Wireless Networks, Vol. 16, 2010, pp. 1987-2012. doi:10.1007/ s11276-010-0240-8.
[59] G. P. Roston and E. Krotkov, “Dead Reckoning Navigation for Walking Robots,” Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, 1991.
[60] J. Craig, “Introduction to Robotics, Mechanics and Control,” Addison-Wesley, New York, 1986.
[61] N. Satthamnuwong, “Dead Reckoning-Aided GPS Vehicle Navigation Using Sequential Least Squares with Weighted Constraints,” Ph.D. Dissertation, Purdue University, West Lafayette, 2002.
[62] D. Gebre-Egziabher, J. D. Powell, and P. Enge, “Design and Performance Analysis of a Low-Cost Aided Dead Reckoning Navigation System,” International Conference on Integrated Navigation Systems, St. Petersburg, 28-30 May 2001.
[63] N. A. Alsindi, “Performance of Toa Estimation Algorithms in Different Indoor Multipath Conditions,” Master’s Thesis, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, 2004.
[64] T. S. Rappaport, “Wireless Communications: Principles and Practice,” 2nd Edition, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, 2001.
[65] M. Lott and I. Forkel, “A Multi-Wall-and-Floor Model for Indoor Radio Propagation,” Vehicular Technology Conference, Vol. 1, 2001, pp. 464-468.
[66] S. Phaiboon, “An Empirically Based Path Loss Model for Indoor Wireless Channels in Laboratory Building,” IEEE TENCON, Vol. 2, 2002, pp. 1020-1023.
[67] M. Hassan-Ali and K. Pahlavan, “A New Statistical Model for Site-Specific Indoor Radio Propagation Prediction Based on Geometric Optics and Geometric Probability,” IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications, Vol. 1, 2002, pp. 112-124.
[68] A. Hills, J. Schlegel and B. Jenkins, “Estimating Signal Strengths in the Design of an Indoor Wireless Network,” IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications, Vol. 3, No. 1, 2004, pp. 17-19.
[69] A. M. Hossain, H. N. Van, Y. Jin and W.-S. Soh, “Indoor Localization Using Multiple Wireless Technologies,” IEEE Mobile Ad Hoc and Sensor Systems, Pisa, 8-11 October 2007, pp. 1-8.
[70] Y. Ji, “Ultimate Precision Bound and Comparison Study of Dynamic Indoor Localization Systems,” Wireless Conference (EW), Lucca, 12-15 April 2010, pp. 149-156.
[71] W. S. Holland, “Development of an Indoor Real-Time Localization System Using Passive Rfid Tags and Artificial Neural Networks,” Master’s Thesis, Ohio University, Athens, 2009.
[72] G. Y. Jin, X. Y. Lu and M.-S. Park, “An Indoor Localization Mechanism Using Active Rfid Tag,” International Conference on Sensor Networks, Ubiquitous, and Trustworthy Computing, Vol. 1, 2006, pp. 40-43.
[73] K. Curran and S. Norrby, “Rfid-Enabled Location Determination within Indoor Environments,” International Journal of Ambient Computing and Intelligence, Vol. 1, No. 4, 2009, pp. 63-86.
[74] E. Welbourne, K. Koscher, E. Soroush, M. Balazinska and G. Borriello, “Longitudinal Study of a Building-Scale Rfid Ecosystem,” Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications, and Services, ACM, New York, 2009, pp. 69-82. doi:10.1145/ 1555816.1555824.
[75] T. Li, S. Chen and Y. Ling, “Identifying the Missing Tags in a Large RFID System,” Proceedings of the 11th ACM International Symposium on Mobile Ad Hoc Networking and Computing, ACM, New York, 2010, pp. 1-10. doi:10.1145/1860093.1860095.
[76] C. Wang, B. Li, M. Daneshmand, K. Sohraby and R. Jana, “On Object Identification Reliability Using RFID,” Mobile Networks and Applications, Vol. 16, 2011, pp. 71-80. doi:10.1007/s11036 -010-0226-x.
[77] T. Kuflik, O. Stock, M. Zancanaro, A. Gorfinkel, S. Jbara, S. Kats, J. Sheidin and N. Kashtan, “A Visitor’s Guide in an Active Museum: Presentations, Communications, and Reflection,” Journal on Computing and Cultural Heritage, Vol. 3, 2011, pp. 11:1-11:25. doi:10.1145/1921614.1921618.
[78] R. A. Valenzuela, O. Landron, and D. L. Jacobs, “Estimating Local Mean Signal Strength of Indoor Multipath Propagation,” Vehicular Technology Conference, Vol. 46, No. 1, 1997, pp. 203-212.
[79] P. Ali-Rantala, L. Sydanheimo, M. Keskilammi and M. Kivikoski, “Indoor Propagation Comparison between 2.45 GHz and 433 MHz Transmissions,” Antennas and Propagation Society International Symposium, Vol. 1, 2002, pp. 240-243.
[80] Y. Alvarez, M. E. de Cos, J. Lorenzo and F. Las-Heras, “Novel Received Signal Strength-Based Indoor Location System: Development and Testing,” EURASIP Journal on Wireless Communications and Networking, Vol. 2010, 2010, pp. 1-11. doi:10.1155/ 2010/254345.
[81] R. A. Valenzuela, “Ray Tracing Prediction of Indoor Radio Propagation,” Wireless Networks—Catching the Mobile Future, 5th IEEE International Symposium on Personal, Indoor and Mobile Radio Communications, AT&T Bell Laboratories, Crawford Hill Laboratory, Holmdel, 18-23 September 1994.
[82] C.-F. Yang, B.-C. Wu and C.-J. Ko, “A Ray-Tracing Method for Modeling Indoor Wave Propagation and Penetration,” IEEE Transaction on Antennas and Propagation, Vol. 46, No. 6, 1998.
[83] K. Remley, H. Anderson and A. Weisshar, “Improving the Accuracy of Ray Tracing Techniques for Indoor Propagation Modeling,” IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology, Vol. 49, No. 6, 2000, pp. 2350-2358.
[84] H. Weghorst, G. Hooper and D. P. Greenberg, “Improved Computational Methods for Ray Tracing,” ACM Transactions on Graphics, Vol. 3, No. 1, 1984, pp. 52-69. doi:10.1145/357332.357335.
[85] F. A. Agelet, F. P. Fontan and A. Formella, “Fast Ray Tracing for Microcellular and Indoor Environments,” IEEE Transactions on Magnetics, Vol. 33, No. 2, 1997, pp. 1484-1487.
[86] Z. Ji, B.-H. Li, H.-X. Wang, H.-Y. Chen and T. K. Sarkar, “Efficient Ray-Tracing Methods for Propagation Prediction for Indoor Wireless Communications,” IEEE Antennas and Propatation Magazine, Vol. 43, No. 2, 2001, pp. 41-49.
[87] C. Oestges and A. Paulraj, “Propagation into Buildings for Broad-Band Wireless Access,” IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology, Vol. 53, No. 2, 2004, pp. 521-526.
[88] Y. Ji, S. biaz, S. Wu and B. Qi, “Impact of Building Environment on the Performance of Dynamic Indoor Localization,” 8th Annual IEEE Wireless and Microwave Technology Conference, Clearwater, 4-5 December 2006.
[89] WaveTrend, “Wave Trend Personal Tag tg501,” 2012. http://www.wavetrend.net/downloads/information-sheets/TG501-0API-A4.pdf.

Copyright © 2023 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.