Enhancing Accuracy in Actigraphic Measurements: A Lightweight Calibration Method for Triaxial Accelerometers

This paper presents a simple, lightweight, automatic calibration method for low-cost triaxial accelerometers, utilizing the Earth’s gravitational constant in various orientations. It can be easily implemented using only fixed-point arithmetic and can run on low-power microcontrollers for real-time measurements, making it practical for scenarios with limited data storage and computational power, such as actigraphy or IoT applications. The method offers ease of use by automatically detecting motionless intervals, eliminating the need for complex positioning techniques. The procedure detects resting states and calculates the corresponding three-dimensional mean acceleration values during the measurement. After appropriately selecting these mean values, a set of calibration points is formed and passed to a gradient-based optimization algorithm for iterative estimation of the calibration coefficients. Different metrics were used for verification and comparison with other methods, which were calculated through simulations and tests based on real measurements. The results show that, despite its lightweight nature, the method performs equally to more complex solutions. This article provides a thorough explanation of a novel method for collecting calibration points, the optimization algorithm, and the methods used for performance evaluation in a reproducible manner.

View this article on IEEE Xplore