Rear vehicle tracking on a bicycle using active sensor orientation control

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


This paper focuses on the development of an active sensing system for a bicycle to accurately detect and track rear vehicles. A collision detection sensor on a bicycle is required to be inexpensive, small, and lightweight. A single beam laser sensor that meets these constraints is mounted on a rotationally controlled platform for this sensing mission. The rotational orientation of the laser sensor needs to be actively controlled in real time in order to continue to focus on a rear vehicle, as the vehicle's lateral and longitudinal distances change. This tracking problem requires controlling the real-time angular position of the laser sensor without knowing the future trajectory of the vehicle. The challenge is addressed using a novel receding horizon framework for active control and an interacting multiple model framework for estimation. The features and benefits of this active sensing system are shown first using simulation results. Then, extensive experimental results are presented using an instrumented bicycle to show the performance of the system in detecting and tracking rear vehicles during both straight and turning maneuvers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8101535
Pages (from-to)2638-2649
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Manuscript received November 1, 2016; revised March 19, 2017 and July 14, 2017; accepted October 3, 2017. Date of publication November 8, 2017; date of current version August 1, 2018. This work was supported in part by the Roadway Safety Institute, a Region 5 University Transportation Center of the USDOT, and in part by a research grant from the National Science Foundation under Grant PFI-1631133. The Associate Editor for this paper was A. Amditis. (Corresponding author: Rajesh Rajamani.) The authors are with the Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN 55455 USA (e-mail:

Publisher Copyright:
© 2000-2011 IEEE.


  • Active sensing
  • bicycle safety
  • interacting multiple model (IMM)
  • vehicle detection
  • vehicle tracking

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Rear vehicle tracking on a bicycle using active sensor orientation control'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this