MDPose: Human Skeletal Motion Reconstruction Using WiFi Micro-Doppler Signatures

Chong Tang, Wenda Li, Shelly Vishwakarma, Fangzhan Shi, Simon Julier, Kevin Chetty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
22 Downloads (Pure)


Motion tracking systems based on optical sensors typically suffer from poor lighting conditions, occlusion, limited coverage, and may raise privacy concerns. More recently, radiofrequency (RF) based approaches using commercial WiFi devices have emerged which offer low-cost ubiquitous sensing whilst preserving privacy. However, RF sensing systems typically output range-Doppler maps, time-frequency spectrograms, cross-range plots etc which cannot represent human motion intuitively and usually requires further processing. In this study, we propose MDPose, a novel framework for human skeletal motion reconstruction base on WiFi micro-Doppler signatures. MDPose provides an effective solution to represent human activity by reconstructing a skeleton model with 17 key points, which can assist with the interpretation of conventional RF sensing outputs in a more understandable way. Specifically, MDPose is implemented over three sequential stage to address a series of challenges: First, a denoising algorithm is employed to remove any unwanted noise that may affect feature extraction and enhance weak Doppler measurements. Secondly, a convolutional neural network (CNN)-recurrent neural network (RNN) architecture is applied to learn temporal spatial dependenc from clean micro-Doppler signatures and restore velocity information to key points under the supervision of the motion capture (Mocap) system. Finally, a pose optimisation mechanism based on learning optimisation vectors is employed to estimate the initial state of the skeleton and to limit additional errors. We have conducted a comprehensive set of tests in a variety of environments using numerous subjects with a single receiver radar system to demonstrate the performance of MDPose, and report 29.4mm mean absolute error over all key points positions on several common daily activities, which has performance comparable to that of state-of-the-art RF-based pose estimation systems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Aerospace and Electronic Systems
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 14 Mar 2023


  • Deep Learning
  • Human Skeletal Motion Reconstruction
  • Noise reduction
  • Security
  • Sensors
  • Skeleton
  • Spectrogram
  • Training
  • WiFi Sensing Technology
  • Wireless fidelity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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