News Column

Data on Robotics Reported by Researchers at University of Alabama

February 10, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Robotics & Machine Learning -- Investigators publish new report on Robotics. According to news reporting originating from Huntsville, Alabama, by VerticalNews correspondents, research stated, "A Hardware-In-The-Loop (HIL) testbed design for small unmanned helicopters which provides a safe and low-cost platform to implement control algorithms and tune the control gains in a controlled environment is described. Specifically, it allows for testing the robustness of the controller to external disturbances by emulating the hover condition."

Our news editors obtained a quote from the research from the University of Alabama, "A 6-DOF nonlinear mathematical model of the helicopter has been validated in real flight tests. This model is implemented in real-time to estimate the states of the helicopter which are then used to determine the actual control signals on the testbed. Experiments of the longitudinal, lateral and heading control tests are performed. To minimize the structural stress on the fuselage in case of controller failure or a subsystem malfunction, a damping system with a negligible parasitic effect on the dynamics of the helicopter around hover is incorporated. The HIL testbed is capable of testing the helicopter in hover, as well as on any smooth trajectories such as cruise flight, figure-8, etc."

According to the news editors, the research concluded: "Experimentally tuning the controller on the HIL testbed is described and results in a controller which is robust to the external disturbances, and achieves an accuracy of +/- 2.5 cm in the position control on the longitudinal and lateral trajectory tracking, and +/- 5 deg accuracy around the yaw axis on the heading trajectory tracking."

For more information on this research see: A HIL Testbed for Initial Controller Gain Tuning of a Small Unmanned Helicopter. Journal of Intelligent & Robotic Systems, 2014;73(1-4):289-308. Journal of Intelligent & Robotic Systems can be contacted at: Springer, Van Godewijckstraat 30, 3311 Gz Dordrecht, Netherlands. (Springer -; Journal of Intelligent & Robotic Systems -

The news editors report that additional information may be obtained by contacting S.P. Khaligh, University of Alabama, Dept. of Mech & Aerosp Engn, Huntsville, AL 35899, United States. Additional authors for this research include A. Martinez, F. Fahimi and C.R. Koch.

Keywords for this news article include: Alabama, Robotics, Huntsville, United States, North and Central America

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Source: Robotics & Machine Learning

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