Signals and systems demonstrations for undergraduates using Android-based localization

Paul Curtis, Mahesh K. Banavar, Xue Zhang, Andreas Spanias, Vitor Weber

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations


This project aims to contribute to education research using mobile apps to demonstrate how signals and systems concepts are used in sensor network localization. An educational demonstration of sensor localization on mobile devices is described with the mobile devices acting as nodes of a sensor network. In our approach, we are developing an app that uses a modified version of time-difference of arrival (TDOA) using audio signals and commercial Android devices. At a high level, the app can be used to illustrate how triangulation can be used to localize devices, which is a concept that is used in GPS. Students are exposed to signal processing concepts such as correlation and the fast Fourier transform (FFT), and their utility in sensor localization. The use of FFT-based convolution for computing correlations is also demonstrated. Since the app has been developed for Android devices, it can be made widely available and has the added benefit of appealing to students that are eager to use educational apps on their mobile phones. Assessments will be performed to evaluate the effectiveness of the app in education. The work engages NSF REU and REV students who are involved in developing and testing the app.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
StatePublished - Feb 17 2015
Event44th Annual Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE 2014 - Madrid, Spain
Duration: Oct 22 2014Oct 25 2014


Other44th Annual Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE 2014


  • Android
  • autocorrelation
  • convolution
  • FFT
  • localization
  • ranging
  • signal processing
  • time difference of arrival

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Software
  • Education


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