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Title:A modular simulation environment for the improved dynamic simulation of multirotor unmanned aerial vehicles
Author(s):Vervoorst, Jan Willem
Department / Program:Industrial&Enterprise Sys Eng
Discipline:Systems & Entrepreneurial Engr
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:M.S.
Genre:Thesis
Subject(s):Multirotors
Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV)
Simulation
Abstract:Multirotor unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have gained immense popularity in both research and commercial applications due to their versatility and mechanical simplicity. However, despite these advantages, multirotor systems still constitute a considerable challenge in the design of powerful control architectures that guarantee safe and reliable flight performance. As is customary today, the design of guidance, control and navigation algorithms (GNC) is mostly performed in simulation. In order to guarantee a seamless transition between control solutions generated in a simulation environment and real-world flight performance, the simulation should reproduce real-world behavior with sufficient fidelity. It is of course not feasible to attempt to model every minute dynamic effect acting on the airframe, but at least the major influences should be modeled so that the simulation provides users with realistic and relevant test data that is comparable with flight test data. This thesis addresses the problem of improved modeling of multirotor UAVs for the design of GNC algorithms. First, a simplified simulation model is derived fully and complete solutions for a number of standard airframe configurations are presented. For this model to be valid, several significant simplifications and assumptions are made about the structure of the airframe. This model may already be sufficient for users who only want to simulate basic multirotor behavior, for example for the design and stability testing of low-level control algorithms. However, the model is not able to properly represent more complicated three-dimensional airframes or realistic environmental effects like wind resistance or dynamic thrust. The thesis then outlines an improved dynamic model that does not require any of the previous simplifying assumptions. This allows the model to be used for just about any imaginable multirotor airframe, regardless of symmetry or specific layout. The included environmental effects also help to make the simulation behave more natural when compared to flying a real UAV outside. The main deliverable is a MATLAB/Simulink simulation environment that includes all scenarios described in this thesis. It allows the user the realistic simulation of any arbitrary multirotor airframe.
Issue Date:2016-04-27
Type:Thesis
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/90660
Rights Information:Copyright 2016 by Jan Willem Vervoorst
Date Available in IDEALS:2016-07-07
Date Deposited:2016-05


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