Sensor fusion to improve behavioral observation


Stereoscopic vision in rodents and primates

Figure 1: Stereoscopic vision in rodents and primates (modified from Priebe & McGee, 2014).

Sensor fusion is the combination of sensory data from independent sources to produce a more accurate interpretation of reality than can be achieved from a single source (Haghighat et al. 2011). One particularly illustrative example is stereoscopic vision of rodents and primates amongst others. By using two overlapping visual fields, rodents and primates are able to form a three-dimensional representation of the outside world that cannot be achieved through a single visual source.
Sensor fusion is indispensable in modern everyday technology, like GPS/INS, where Global Positioning System and inertial navigation system data is fused (e.g., to determine the position of an aircraft in three-dimensional space).

Applications in behavioral sciences

We have applied the sensor fusion principle to behavioral analysis in the Behavioral Spectrometer (Figure 2). By combining video, vibration and photobeam sensors we are able to produce the most accurate and detailed observation of mouse behavior available (Brodkin et al., 2014).

Figure 2: The Behavioral Spectrometer combines Biobserve’s video tracking analysis with Behavioral Instruments’ vibration based behavior pattern recognition.

Recently, Inserra and colleagues (Inserra et al., 2017) used our instruments and software to validate their findings based on imaging and electrophysiological approaches on the pathological effects of Pacific ciguatoxin-1 in vivo.  By assessing the behaviour of their animal model in a multi-sensor recording chamber (Behavioral Spectrometer, Figure 2) they were able to significantly reduce the uncertainty of these behaviour-based interpretations.

Reduce uncertainty in your research

Biobserve has developed a range of multi-sensory & fully automated instruments and software for behavioral researchers, which help to reduce ambiguity often associated with behavioral data (e.g., the BEHAVIORAL SPECTROMETER  and the CAGE GUARD).
We offer scientifically validated software and instruments to support you in conducting reproducible behavioural experiments and analysing your research data.

Biobserve in short:

  • Staffed with scientists only
  • Covering any type of behavioral experiments
  • Ability (and interest) to support novel approaches and methods


Please do not hesitate to contact us regarding your next behavioral study!


Inserra, M. C. et al. (2017) Multiple sodium channel isoforms mediate the pathological effects of Pacific ciguatoxin-1. Sci. Rep. 7, 42810.

Brodkin J. et al. (2014) Validation and implementation of a novel high-throughput behavioral phenotyping instrument for mice. J Neurosci Methods. 15;224:48-57.

Haghighat, M. B. A. et al. (2011). Multi-focus image fusion for visual sensor networks in DCT domain. Computers & Electrical Engineering, 37(5), 789-797.