Due to the universal presence of motion, vibration, and shock, inertial motion sensors can be applied in various contexts. Development of the microelectromechanical (MEMS) technology opens up many new consumer and industrial applications for accelerometers and gyroscopes. The multiformity of applications creates different requirements to inertial sensors in terms of accuracy, size, power consumption and cost. This makes it challenging to choose sensors that are suited best for the particular application. In addition, development of signal processing algorithms for inertial sensor data require understanding on the physical principles of both motion generated and sensor operation principles. This chapter aims to aid the system designer to understand and manage these challenges. The principles of operation of accelerometers and gyroscopes are explained with examples of different applications using inertial sensors data as input. Especially, detailed examples of signal processing algorithms for pedestrian navigation and motion classification are given.
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