Researchers train drones to use Wi-Fi to look through walls | TechCrunch

This is quite interesting -or frightening – WiFi radar application.

A new system by University of California, Santa Barbara researchers Yasamin Mostofi and Chitra R. Karanam uses two drones, a massive Wi-Fi antenna, and a little interpolation to literally see through solid walls.

One drone blasts Wi-Fi through the structure and another picks up the signal. The two drones fly around the solid structure to map the differences in wave strength at different points. Using this information the researchers have been able to create a 3D model of a closed building.


  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    No, really. You can see through walls using drones and Wi-Fi
    Researchers explore 3D imaging using drones

    Drones can perform three-dimensional imaging of objects through walls using Wi-Fi, a team of researchers demonstrated for the first time.

    Chitra Karanam, a PhD student, and Yasamin Mostofi, a professor at the department of electrical and computer engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara, presented their results [PDF] at the Association for Computing Machinery/Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers International Conference on Information Processing in Sensor Networks.

    “Our proposed approach has enabled unmanned aerial vehicles to image details through walls in 3D with only Wi-Fi signals. This approach utilizes only Wi-Fi RSSI measurements, does not require any prior measurements in the area of interest and does not need objects to move to be imaged,” Mostofi said on Monday.

    RSSI stands for received signal strength indicator. A drone beams radio waves at 2.4GHz, and another drone on the other side of the wall measures the power of the signals.

    3D Through-Wall Imaging
    with Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Using WiFi

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Scientists Develop Technology to Create Wi-Fi Holograms

    Scientists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have developed a holographic imaging process that depicts the radiation of a Wi-Fi transmitter to generate three-dimensional images of the surrounding environment. While optical holograms require laser technology, generating holograms with the microwave radiation of a Wi-Fi transmitter requires only one fixed and one movable antenna. The researchers envision fields of deployment especially in automated industrial facilities, in which localizing parts and devices can be difficult. Processes that allow the localization of microwave radiation, even through walls, already exist.

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    ‘X-Ray Eyes in the Sky’ – Drones and WiFi for 3D Through-Wall Imaging

    Researchers from the University of California Santa Barbara have demonstrated high-resolution, 3D through-wall imaging of completely unknown areas – using only WiFi signals and unmanned aerial vehicles. In their approach, two UAVs move autonomously outside of the area of interest, while one transmits a WiFi signal and the other one measures the received signal strength (RSSI) of the corresponding transmission, in order to image the unknown area in 3D.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *