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Aerospace, Volume 3, Issue 1 (March 2016) – 8 articles

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Open AccessArticle
Guidance, Navigation and Control of Unmanned Airships under Time-Varying Wind for Extended Surveillance
Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace3010008 - 17 Feb 2016
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3751
Abstract
This paper deals with the control of lighter-than-air vehicles, more specifically the design of an integrated guidance, navigation and control (GNC) scheme that is capable of navigating an airship through a series of constant-altitude, planar waypoints. Two guidance schemes are introduced, a track-specific [...] Read more.
This paper deals with the control of lighter-than-air vehicles, more specifically the design of an integrated guidance, navigation and control (GNC) scheme that is capable of navigating an airship through a series of constant-altitude, planar waypoints. Two guidance schemes are introduced, a track-specific guidance law and a proportional navigation guidance law, that provide the required signals to the corresponding controllers based on the airship position relative to a target waypoint. A novel implementation of the extended Kalman filter, namely the scheduled extended Kalman filter, estimates the required states and wind speed to enhance the performance of the track-specific guidance law in the presence of time-varying wind. The performance of the GNC system is tested using a high fidelity nonlinear dynamic simulation for a variety of flying conditions. Representative results illustrate the performance of the integrated system for chosen flight conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Unmanned Aerial Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Validation of a Discontinuous Galerkin Implementation of the Time-Domain Linearized Navier–Stokes Equations for Aeroacoustics
Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace3010007 - 17 Feb 2016
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3122
Abstract
The propagation of small perturbations in complex geometries can involve hydrodynamic-acoustic interactions, coupling acoustic waves and vortical modes. A propagation model, based on the linearized Navier–Stokes equations, is proposed. It includes the mechanism responsible for the generation of vorticity associated with the hydrodynamic [...] Read more.
The propagation of small perturbations in complex geometries can involve hydrodynamic-acoustic interactions, coupling acoustic waves and vortical modes. A propagation model, based on the linearized Navier–Stokes equations, is proposed. It includes the mechanism responsible for the generation of vorticity associated with the hydrodynamic modes. The linearized Navier–Stokes equations are discretized in space using a discontinuous Galerkin formulation for unstructured grids. Explicit time integration and non-reflecting boundary conditions are described. The linearized Navier–Stokes (LNS) model is applied to two test cases. The first one is the time-harmonic source line in an incompressible inviscid two-dimensional mean shear flow in an infinite domain. It is shown that the proposed model is able to capture the trailing vorticity field developing behind the mass source and to represent the redistribution of the vorticity. The second test case deals with the analysis of the acoustic propagation of an incoming perturbation inside a circular duct with a sudden area expansion in the presence of a mean flow and the evaluation of its scattering matrix. The computed coefficients of the scattering matrix are compared to experimental data for three different Mach numbers of the mean flow, M0 = 0.08, 0.19 and 0.29. The good agreement with the experimental data shows that the proposed method is suitable for characterizing the acoustic behavior of this kind of network. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Aeroacoustics)
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Open AccessArticle
Turbulence Effects on Modified State Observer-Based Adaptive Control: Black Kite Micro Aerial Vehicle
Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace3010006 - 05 Feb 2016
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3415
Abstract
This paper presents the implementation of a modified state observer-based adaptive dynamic inverse controller for the Black Kite micro aerial vehicle. The pitch and velocity adaptations are computed by the modified state observer in the presence of turbulence to simulate atmospheric conditions. This [...] Read more.
This paper presents the implementation of a modified state observer-based adaptive dynamic inverse controller for the Black Kite micro aerial vehicle. The pitch and velocity adaptations are computed by the modified state observer in the presence of turbulence to simulate atmospheric conditions. This state observer uses the estimation error to generate the adaptations and, hence, is more robust than model reference adaptive controllers which use modeling or tracking error. In prior work, a traditional proportional-integral-derivative control law was tested in simulation for its adaptive capability in the longitudinal dynamics of the Black Kite micro aerial vehicle. This controller tracks the altitude and velocity commands during normal conditions, but fails in the presence of both parameter uncertainties and system failures. The modified state observer-based adaptations, along with the proportional-integral-derivative controller enables tracking despite these conditions. To simulate flight of the micro aerial vehicle with turbulence, a Dryden turbulence model is included. The turbulence levels used are based on the absolute load factor experienced by the aircraft. The length scale was set to 2.0 meters with a turbulence intensity of 5.0 m/s that generates a moderate turbulence. Simulation results for various flight conditions show that the modified state observer-based adaptations were able to adapt to the uncertainties and the controller tracks the commanded altitude and velocity. The summary of results for all of the simulated test cases and the response plots of various states for typical flight cases are presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Unmanned Aerial Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Target Tracking in 3-D Using Estimation Based Nonlinear Control Laws for UAVs
Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 5; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace3010005 - 01 Feb 2016
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3479
Abstract
This paper presents an estimation based backstepping like control law design for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) to track a moving target in 3-D space. A ground-based sensor or an onboard seeker antenna provides range, azimuth angle, and elevation angle measurements to a [...] Read more.
This paper presents an estimation based backstepping like control law design for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) to track a moving target in 3-D space. A ground-based sensor or an onboard seeker antenna provides range, azimuth angle, and elevation angle measurements to a chaser UAV that implements an extended Kalman filter (EKF) to estimate the full state of the target. A nonlinear controller then utilizes this estimated target state and the chaser’s state to provide speed, flight path, and course/heading angle commands to the chaser UAV. Tracking performance with respect to measurement uncertainty is evaluated for three cases: (1) stationary white noise; (2) stationary colored noise and (3) non-stationary (range correlated) white noise. Furthermore, in an effort to improve tracking performance, the measurement model is made more realistic by taking into consideration range-dependent uncertainties in the measurements, i.e., as the chaser closes in on the target, measurement uncertainties are reduced in the EKF, thus providing the UAV with more accurate control commands. Simulation results for these cases are shown to illustrate target state estimation and trajectory tracking performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Unmanned Aerial Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
The Effect of the Phase Angle between the Forewing and Hindwing on the Aerodynamic Performance of a Dragonfly-Type Ornithopter
Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace3010004 - 25 Jan 2016
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 4183
Abstract
Dragonflies achieve agile maneuverability by flapping four wings independently. Different phase angles between the flapping forewing and hindwing have been observed during various flight modes. The aerodynamic performance depends on phase angle control, as exemplified by an artificial flying ornithopter. Here, we present [...] Read more.
Dragonflies achieve agile maneuverability by flapping four wings independently. Different phase angles between the flapping forewing and hindwing have been observed during various flight modes. The aerodynamic performance depends on phase angle control, as exemplified by an artificial flying ornithopter. Here, we present a dragonfly-like ornithopter whose phase angle was designed to vary according to the phase lag between the slider-cranks of the forewing and hindwing. Two microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) differential pressure sensors were attached to the center of both forewing and hindwing to evaluate the aerodynamic performance during flapping motions when the phase angle was changed. By varying the phase angle in both the tethered condition and free-flight, the performance of the forewing remained approximately constant, whereas that of the hindwing exhibited obvious variations; the maximum average value was two-fold higher than the minimum. The experimental results suggest that simple phase angle changes enable a flying ornithopter to control flight force balance without complex changes in the wing kinematics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flapping Wings)
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Open AccessEditorial
Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Aerospace in 2015
Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace3010003 - 21 Jan 2016
Viewed by 2281
Abstract
The editors of Aerospace would like to express their sincere gratitude to the following reviewers for assessing manuscripts in 2015. [...] Full article
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Analysis of Radio Frequency Blackout for a Blunt-Body Capsule in Atmospheric Reentry Missions
Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace3010002 - 06 Jan 2016
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 4448
Abstract
A numerical analysis of electromagnetic waves around the atmospheric reentry demonstrator (ARD) of the European Space Agency (ESA) in an atmospheric reentry mission was conducted. During the ARD mission, which involves a 70% scaled-down configuration capsule of the Apollo command module, radio frequency [...] Read more.
A numerical analysis of electromagnetic waves around the atmospheric reentry demonstrator (ARD) of the European Space Agency (ESA) in an atmospheric reentry mission was conducted. During the ARD mission, which involves a 70% scaled-down configuration capsule of the Apollo command module, radio frequency blackout and strong plasma attenuation of radio waves in communications with data relay satellites and air planes were observed. The electromagnetic interference was caused by highly dense plasma derived from a strong shock wave generated in front of the capsule because of orbital speed during reentry. In this study, the physical properties of the plasma flow in the shock layer and wake region of the ESA ARD were obtained using a computational fluid dynamics technique. Then, electromagnetic waves were expressed using a frequency-dependent finite-difference time-domain method using the plasma properties. The analysis model was validated based on experimental flight data. A comparison of the measured and predicted results showed good agreement. The distribution of charged particles around the ESA ARD and the complicated behavior of electromagnetic waves, with attenuation and reflection, are clarified in detail. It is suggested that the analysis model could be an effective tool for investigating radio frequency blackout and plasma attenuation in radio wave communication. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Aerospace)
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Open AccessReview
Multiple-Scenario Unmanned Aerial System Control: A Systems Engineering Approach and Review of Existing Control Methods
Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace3010001 - 04 Jan 2016
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 4340
Abstract
The use of unmanned aerial systems (UASs) in both the public and military environments is predicted to grow significantly. As the demand for UASs grows, the availability of more robust and capable vehicles that can perform multiple mission types will be needed. In [...] Read more.
The use of unmanned aerial systems (UASs) in both the public and military environments is predicted to grow significantly. As the demand for UASs grows, the availability of more robust and capable vehicles that can perform multiple mission types will be needed. In the public sector, the demand will grow for UASs to be used for agriculture, forestry, and search and rescue missions. Militaries continue to demand more UAS capabilities for diverse operations around the world. Significant research has been performed and continues to progress in the areas of autonomous UAS control. A majority of the work focuses on subsets of UAS control: path planning, autonomy, small UAS controls, and sensors. Minimal work exists on a system-level problem of multiple-scenario UAS control for integrated systems. This paper provides a high-level modular system architecture definition that is modifiable across platform types and mission requirements. A review of the current research and employment of UAS capabilities is provided to evaluate the state of the capabilities required to enable the proposed architecture. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Unmanned Aerial Systems)
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