Pervasive Computing

Volume 6030 of the series Lecture Notes in Computer Science pp 337-354

Using Height Sensors for Biometric Identification in Multi-resident Homes

  • Vijay SrinivasanAffiliated withDepartment of Computer science, University of Virginia
  • , John StankovicAffiliated withDepartment of Computer science, University of Virginia
  • , Kamin WhitehouseAffiliated withDepartment of Computer science, University of Virginia

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access


In this study, we evaluate the use of height for biometric identification of residents, by mounting ultrasonic distance sensors above the doorways in a home. Height sensors are cheap, are convenient for the residents, are simple to install in an existing home, and are perceived to be less invasive than cameras or microphones. Height is typically only a weak biometric, but we show that it is well suited for identifying among a few residents in the home, and can potentially be improved by using the history of height measurements at multiple doorways in a tracking approach. We evaluate this approach using 20 people in a controlled laboratory environment and by installing in 3 natural, home environments. We combine these results with public anthropometric data sets that contain the heights of residents in 2077 elderly multi-resident homes to conclude that height sensors could potentially achieve at least 95% identification accuracy in 95% of elderly homes in the US.