Xsens Position and Orientation Sensing GNSS/INS Dev Kit

Table of contents


The MTi-680 is a RTK Global Navigation Satellite Systems/Inertial Navigation Systems (GNSS/INS) MEMS-based orientation sensor with an integrated sensor fusion algorithm in an easy-to-use Development Kit. It enables accurate cm-level orientation and position data at high speed.


It's a great fit for applications that require data to support navigation functions, such as outdoor robotics and autonomous vehicles. These applications can be found in agriculture, last-mile deliveries, autonomous driving and driver assistance systems (ADAS) In addition, interesting markets for the MTi-680 are mapping and recording or stabilization applications. These include, for example, automotive testing, LIDAR, Sonars and USBL, gimbal/camera/platform stabilization or pedestrian navigation.

RoadTest Goal

We want to provide this $1700 development kit free to a roadtester who can test its easy of use, out-of-box experience and experiment with its motion tracking capabilities. Optional tasks would include checking its accuracy, data and navigation functions. Verifying the documentation would also be part of the roadtest.

Product Variants

Within each MTi series, Xsens offers several product variants. Each variant is based on a firmware version which enables different functionalities. The figure below summarizes the functionality of each variant.

The IMU variant is an Inertial Measurement Unit that measures 3D acceleration and 3D rate of turn with the addition of 3D magnetic field data and, depending on the product, barometric pressure. It does not fuse sensor data to deliver orientation estimates. The IMU can also be configured to output data generated by the strapdown integration algorithm (orientation increments ∆q and velocity increments ∆v).

The Vertical Reference Unit (VRU) adds the first layer of algorithms which uses gravity as a reference for roll and pitch calculations. Essentially it delivers the same data as the AHRS, except for the yaw. The yaw estimate of a VRU product is unreferenced, which means that it is computed without any geographic/magnetic reference, though still superior to just gyroscope integration (e.g., when using the gyro bias estimation techniques). All data outputs from the IMU are also available in this product version. The AHS feature is also available in this product variant (see also chapter Additional setting options and features).

This is the full Attitude and Heading Reference System (AHRS). It provides various outputs: roll, pitch and heading (magnetic referenced yaw). In addition, all functionalities of the IMU and VRU are also available in this product variant.

GNSS/INS -- this is the variant that is being provided for this roadtest: MTi-680-DK 
The GNSS/INS variant is a product with an interface to an external or internal (RTK) GNSS receiver as well as a barometer. It provides roll, pitch, yaw/heading, as well as 3D position, 3D velocity and time data. In addition, all data outputs of the IMU, VRU and AHRS are also available in this product variant.

Kit Contents

  • MTi-680
  • Development Kit Daughter card
  • RTK / GNSS card
  • RTK GNSS antenna
  • MTi flat cable
  • USB cable

Hardware Technical Description

The MTi-680 provides a GNSS/INS solution offering a centimeter-accurate position and velocity output in addition to orientation estimates. The MTi-680 uses advanced sensor fusion algorithms developed by Xsens to synchronize the inputs from the module’s on-board gyroscope, accelerometer, magnetometer and barometer, with the data from an external, RTK-enabled GNSS receiver. The raw sensor signals are combined and processed at a high frequency to produce a real-time data stream with the device’s 3D position, velocity and orientation (roll, pitch and yaw) up to 400 Hz.

The MTi-680 is a RTK GNSS/INS with a small form-factor design for deep integration into your application. Building on the proven MTi 600-series technology it enables a robust and easy to use centimeter-level positioning and orientation tracking. If features a interface to an external RTK GNSS receiver so you can efficiently design your application. It is designed for easy integration and seamless interfacing with other equipment. 

The MTi-680 represents the highest standard in GNSS/INS (Global Navigation Satellite Systems/Inertial Navigation Systems) when connected to an external Real-Time Kinematic GNSS receiver (RTK). The MTi-680 supports RTK accuracy, which means you get access to smooth high frequency (400Hz) centimeter-level accuracy in position even in GNSS-denied environments. As a part of the MTi 600-series, this module is lightweight, robust and cost-effective. You can seamlessly integrate the MTi-680 in your application with the header facing down, directly mounted on a PCB, or as a standalone unit, with a flat cable for communication. It is also highly flexible, with native CAN support. The MTi-680 RTK GNSS/INS comes as an industrial-grade, highly affordable MEMS-based orientation sensor with an integrated sensor fusion algorithm and an easy-to-use Development Kit.


  • CAN interface, for bus communications
  • External GNSS receiver support (MTi-670, MTi-680)
  • Support protocols: Xbus, NMEA, CAN
  • Industrial grade accuracy with all sensors 100% calibrated and tested
  • Available with internal RTK GNSS receiver
  • Extended Kalman Filtering
  • Addressing small & large robotics and unmanned system innovators, in any domain: subsea, sea, land air


The MT Software Suite offers all the software tools and information you need to work effectively with your MTi-680. The suite contains a specially developed, easy-to-use graphical user interface, as well as drivers for various operating systems, for example, source code and full documentation. Its software programs include:

  • MT SDK, including programming examples for C, C++, C#, MATLAB, Python, ROS and Nucleo boards
  • Magnetic Field Mapper (MFM) calibration tool, as GUI and SDK

Go to this link to download latest stable software and firmware (select MTi products)

Getting Started

Go to this link to learn how to do the following:

  • Setting up the Development Kit
  • Installing MT Software Suite
  • Displaying data in MT Manager
  • Configuring the MTi 600-series

Other Additional Information

Important Dates

Begin enrollment:  June 1, 2022
End enrollment: August 12, 2022
Select RoadTesters:  Aug 15 2022
Ship unit:  Aug 15 2022
Begin RoadTesting: Aug 22 2022
Element14 follow up:  Sept 22 2022
Post Reviews by:  Oct 22 2022


Kilohercas due date Oct 22 2022

saadtiwana_int due date Oct 22 2022

ajayvishaal due date Dec 2022 (waiting on parts shipment)

Terms and Conditions

Click Here to read the Terms and Conditions.

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