Cooperative Control of Unmanned Air Vehicles (C2UAV)

This concentration addresses the problem of coordinating the motion of a possibly large number of heterogeneous mobile agents, in order to provide persistent, real-time, human-driven tactical services, to operators in the field. Mobile agents will in general include autonomous or semi-autonomous fixed- and rotary wing aircraft, ground vehicles, and human-controlled units, operating over a geographically extended region of interest. Services of interest may include, for example, Urban Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), cooperative attack, cooperative sensing, and communication relays. The objective of the cooperative control effort will be to ensure the highest possible aggregate Quality of Service. The proposed work will focus on two main issues:

Air-Breathing Hypersonic Vehicles (ABHV)

Designing effective controllers for air-breathing hypersonic vehicles require reliable characterization of these vehicles' unique dynamics. These come from the strong interactions between the aerodynamics, elastic airframe and control effector deformations, heat transfer, and propulsion system (itself tightly integrated into the lifting body), making the characterization of the flight dynamics of such vehicles very challenging. The proposed work will focus on two main issues:

Flapping-Wing Micro Aerial Vehicles (FWMAV)

There is a growing interest in flapping-wing micro aerial vehicles because of their ability to perform in both the flight regimes of helicopters (hovering, backwards flight, perching) and of aircraft (fixed wing gliding). The proposed increase in maneuverability and power efficiency are being evaluated through the following methods: