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Model-free control algorithms for micro air vehicles with transitioning flight capabilities

Abstract : Micro air vehicles with transitioning flight capabilities, or simply hybrid micro air vehicles, combine the beneficial features of fixed-wing configurations, in terms of endurance, with vertical take-off and landing capabilities of rotorcrafts to perform five different flight phases during typical missions, such as vertical takeoff, transitioning flight, forward flight, hovering and vertical landing. This promising micro air vehicle class has a wider flight envelope than conventional micro air vehicles, which implies new challenges for both control community and aerodynamic designers. One of the major challenges of hybrid micro air vehicles is the fast variation of aerodynamic forces and moments during the transition flight phase which is difficult to model accurately. To overcome this problem, we propose a flight control architecture that estimates and counteracts in real-time these fast dynamics with an intelligent feedback controller. The proposed flight controller is designed to stabilize the hybrid micro air vehicle attitude as well as its velocity and position during all flight phases. By using model-free control algorithms, the proposed flight control architecture bypasses the need for a precise hybrid micro air vehicle model that is costly and time consuming to obtain. A comprehensive set of flight simulations covering the entire flight envelope of tailsitter micro air vehicles is presented. Finally, real-world flight tests were conducted to compare the model-free control performance to that of the Incremental Nonlinear Dynamic Inversion controller, which has been applied to a variety of aircraft providing effective flight performances.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, April 15, 2020 - 8:55:51 AM
Last modification on : Wednesday, May 27, 2020 - 2:24:02 PM

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Jacson Barth, Jean-Philippe Condomines, Murat Bronz, Jean-Marc Moschetta, Cédric Join, et al.. Model-free control algorithms for micro air vehicles with transitioning flight capabilities. International Journal of Micro Air Vehicles, SAGE, 2020, 12, pp.1-22. ⟨10.1177/1756829320914264⟩. ⟨hal-02542982⟩

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