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Sensors 2015, 15(6), 13270-13287;

Monocular-Vision-Based Autonomous Hovering for a Miniature Flying Ball

School of Mechanical Engineering, Beijing Institute of Technology, 5 Zhongguancun South Street, Haidian District, Beijing 100081, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Gonzalo Pajares Martinsanz
Received: 14 April 2015 / Revised: 31 May 2015 / Accepted: 1 June 2015 / Published: 5 June 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Imaging: Sensors and Technologies)
Full-Text   |   PDF [2827 KB, uploaded 5 June 2015]   |  


This paper presents a method for detecting and controlling the autonomous hovering of a miniature flying ball (MFB) based on monocular vision. A camera is employed to estimate the three-dimensional position of the vehicle relative to the ground without auxiliary sensors, such as inertial measurement units (IMUs). An image of the ground captured by the camera mounted directly under the miniature flying ball is set as a reference. The position variations between the subsequent frames and the reference image are calculated by comparing their correspondence points. The Kalman filter is used to predict the position of the miniature flying ball to handle situations, such as a lost or wrong frame. Finally, a PID controller is designed, and the performance of the entire system is tested experimentally. The results show that the proposed method can keep the aircraft in a stable hover. View Full-Text
Keywords: monocular-vision sensor; vision measurement; flying height detecting; MAVs; hovering monocular-vision sensor; vision measurement; flying height detecting; MAVs; hovering

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Lin, J.; Han, B.; Luo, Q. Monocular-Vision-Based Autonomous Hovering for a Miniature Flying Ball. Sensors 2015, 15, 13270-13287.

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