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Design of a gust-attenuation controller for landing operations of Unmanned Autonomous Helicopters

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Queensland University of Technology ePrints Archive
Keywords
  • 090106 Flight Dynamics
  • Helicopter Control
  • Feed-Forward Control
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Abstract

This paper presents an innovative and practical approach to controlling heave motion in the presence of acute stochastic atmospheric disturbances during landing operations of an Unmanned Autonomous Helicopter (UAH). A heave motion model of an UAH is constructed for the purpose of capturing dynamic variations of thrust due to horizontal wind gusts. Additionally, through construction of an effective observer to estimate magnitudes of random gusts, a promising and feasible feedback-feedforward PD controller is developed, based on available measurements from onboard equipment. The controller dynamically and synchronously compensates for aerodynamic variations of heave motion resulting from gust influence, to increase the disturbance-attenuation ability of the UAH in a windy environment. Simulation results justify the reliability and efficiency of the suggested gust observer to estimate gust levels when applied to the heave motion model of a small unmanned helicopter, and verify suitability of the recommended control strategy to realistic environmental conditions.

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