Vibration Event Localization in an Instrumented Building

  • Javier Schloemann
  • V. V. N. Sriram MalladiEmail author
  • Americo G. Woolard
  • Joseph M. Hamilton
  • R. Michael Buehrer
  • Pablo A. Tarazaga
Part of the Conference Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Mechanics Series book series (CPSEMS)


In this paper, we present the preliminary results of an indoor location estimation campaign using real data collected from vibration sensors mounted throughout an instrumented smart building. The Virginia Tech Smart Infrastructure Laboratory house a unique testbed featuring a fully instrumented operational building with over 240 accelerometers permanently mounted to the steel structure. It is expected that in the future, more and more buildings will be constructed with sensors scattered about their infrastructures, in no small part due to the envisioned promises of such systems which include improved energy efficiency, health and safety monitoring, stronger security, improved construction practices, and improved earthquake resistance. One of the most promising uses of this smart infrastructure is for indoor localization, a scenario in which traditional radio-frequency based techniques often suffer. The detection and localization of indoor seismic events has many potential applications, including that of aiding in meeting indoor positioning requirements recently proposed by the FCC and expected to become law in the near future. The promising initial results of a simplistic time-difference-of-arrival based localization system presented in this paper motivate further study into the use of vibration data for indoor localization.


Smart infrastructures Indoor localization Vibration sensing and detection Time-of-arrival  Time-difference-of-arrival 



The authors are thankful for the support and collaborative efforts provided by VTI Instruments, PCB Piezotronics Inc. and Dytran Instruments Inc. The work was conducted under the patronage of the Virginia Tech Smart Infrastructure Laboratory and its members.


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Copyright information

© The Society for Experimental Mechanics, Inc. 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Javier Schloemann
    • 1
  • V. V. N. Sriram Malladi
    • 2
    Email author
  • Americo G. Woolard
    • 2
  • Joseph M. Hamilton
    • 2
  • R. Michael Buehrer
    • 1
  • Pablo A. Tarazaga
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringBlacksburgUSA
  2. 2.Department of Mechanical Engineering Virginia Tech, Virginia Tech Smart Infrastructure Laboratory (VTSIL)Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State UniversityBlacksburgUSA

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