MMaterialsgateNEWS 2017/02/17

Related MaterialsgateCARDS

Sensors embedded in sports equipment could provide real-time analytics to your smartphone

Credit: University of Illinois

Sports analytics--tracking how fast the ball is moving or how players move across the field--is becoming a key component of how coaches make decisions and fans view games.

Data for these analytics is currently sourced through cameras in stadiums and courts and is incredibly expensive to acquire.

In an effort to make big data analytics more accessible for the sports industry, researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have utilized IoT devices--low-cost sensors and radios--that can be embedded into sports equipment (e.g., balls, rackets, and shoes), as well as in wearable devices.

"There's a lot of interest in analyzing sports data though high-speed cameras, but a system can cost up to $1 million to implement and maintain. It's only accessible to big clubs," said Mahanth Gowda, a PhD candidate in computer science and lead author of the study, "Bringing IoT to Sports Analytics." "We want to cut down the expense significantly by replacing cameras with inexpensive internet-of-things devices (costing less than $100 in total) to make it possible for many other organizations to use the technology."

The team--led by Romit Roy Choudhury, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and computer science at Illinois, jointly with Sharon Yang from Intel--has developed advanced motion tracking algorithms from the various incomplete and noisy measurements of inertial measurement unit (IMU) sensors and wireless radios, fitted inside a ball and players' shoes. If the technology gains traction, real-time analytics should be possible at anytime, anywhere.

The tiny sensors, which are wrapped in a protective case and distributed evenly in equipment, employ inferencing algorithms that can track movement to within a few centimeters. They can accurately characterize 3D ball motion, such as trajectory, orientation, and revolutions per second.

"This level of accuracy and accessibility could help players in local clubs read their own performance from their smartphones via Bluetooth, or school coaches could offer quantifiable feedback to their students," said Roy Choudhury, who is also a research professor at Illinois' Coordinated Science Lab. The feedback could also help with detecting and analyzing player injuries, such as concussions. The sensor inside a soccer ball, for example, can measure how hard it hits a player's head, giving coaches an indication about whether to treat the player for head injury.

"We've truly scratched the surface for applications with these sensors. The algorithms provide extremely fine-grained detail and accuracy in measurements, but use common measuring tools that can be found in any smartphone," said Gowda.

The paper, to be published in USENIX NSDI 2017, explores tracking the 3D trajectory and spin parameters of a cricket ball; however, the core motion tracking techniques can be generalized to many different sports analytics.

The team, composed of students Ashutosh Dhekne, Sheng Shen, along with other Intel collaborators, have also been developing methods to charge the sensors, including harvesting energy from the spin of the ball.

"We're motivated to develop this technology to help coaches make better decisions on and off the field and provide enhanced entertainment to viewers," said Roy Choudhury. "We want to bring advanced but affordable sports analytics to everyone, anywhere, anytime."

Source: University of Illinois College of Engineering – 15.02.2017.

Investigated and edited by:

Dr.-Ing. Christoph Konetschny, Inhaber und Gründer von Materialsgate
Büro für Material- und Technologieberatung
The investigation and editing of this document was performed with best care and attention.
For the accuracy, validity, availability and applicability of the given information, we take no liability.
Please discuss the suitability concerning your specific application with the experts of the named company or organization.

You want additional material or technology investigations concerning this subject?

Materialsgate is leading in material consulting and material investigation.
Feel free to use our established consulting services

MMore on this topic

Credit: Ryan Owens, MU College of Engineering

MU engineering team develops sensor technology that could have wide application

Piezoelectric sensors measure changes in pressure, acceleration, temperature, strain or force and are used in a vast array of devices important to everyday life. However, these sensors often can be limited by the "white noise" they detect that can give engineers and health care workers false readings. Now, a University of Missouri College of Engineering research team has developed methods to enhance piezoelectric sensing capabilities. Enhanced sensors could be used to improve aviation, detect structural damage in buildings and bridges, and boost the capabilities of health monitors. Guoliang Huang, an associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering in the MU College... more read more

Credit: Justin Williams research group

In 2014, when University of Wisconsin-Madison engineers announced in the journal Nature Communications that they had developed transparent sensors for use in imaging the brain, researchers around the world took notice.

Then the requests came flooding in. "So many research groups started asking us for these devices that we couldn't keep up," says Zhenqiang (Jack) Ma, the Lynn H. Matthias Professor and Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor in electrical and computer engineering at UW-Madison. Ma's group is a world leader in developing revolutionary flexible electronic devices. The see-through, implantable micro-electrode arrays were light years beyond anything ever created. Although he and collaborator Justin Williams, the Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor in biomedical engineering and neurological surgery at UW-Madison, patented the technology through the Wisconsin Alumni... more read more

According to the American Cancer Society approximately 5.4 million basal and squamous cell skin cancers are diagnosed each year.

Yet, the sun does contribute to the production of Vitamin D, which is necessary for bone health, and perhaps even useful in preventing some cancers. So how does one know how much sun exposure is enough? Andrea M Armani, the Fluor Early Career Chair and Associate Professor and doctoral candidate Michele E. Lee in the Mork Family Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering have developed a color-changing wearable that can notify users of their total exposure, allowing them to achieve a balance. A user wears the 0.5" by 0.5" millimeter sized flexible patch and is notified of total UV exposure by the change in color. When the sensor... more read more

MaterialsgateNEWSLETTER

Partner of the Week

Search in MaterialsgateNEWS

Books and products

MaterialsgateFAIR:
LET YOURSELF BE INSPIRED