Localization is a key capability for autonomous vehicles especially in urban scenarios. We propose the use of pole-like landmarks as primary features in these environments, as they are distinct, long-term stable and can be detected reliably with a stereo camera system. Furthermore, the resulting map representation is memory efficient, allowing for easy storage and on-line updates. The localization is performed in real-time by a stereo camera system as a main sensor, using vehicle odometry and an off-the-shelf GPS as secondary information sources. Localization is performed by a particle filter approach, coupled with an Kalman filter for robustness and sensor fusion. This leads to a lateral accuracy below 20 cm in various urban test areas. The system has been included in our autonomous test vehicle and successfully demonstrated the full loop from mapping to autonomous driving.
Pole-based Localization for Autonomous Vehicles in Urban Scenarios