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Special Issue "Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Intelligent Sensors".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 1 July 2019

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Roberto Sabatini

Professor of Aerospace Engineering and Aviation, Head of the Cyber-Physical Systems and Trusted Autonomy Group, RMIT University, School of Engineering, PO Box 71, Bundoora, VIC 3083, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Aerospace Sensors and Systems; Cyber-Physical Systems; Avionics; Air Traffic Management; Autonomous Systems; Unmanned Aircraft Systems; Defence Systems; Intelligent Transport Systems; Space Traffic Management; Sustainable Aviation; Navigation, Guidance and Control; Satellite Navigation; Electro-Optics and Infrared Systems; Human Factors and Ergonomics; Cognitive Ergonomics; Multisensor Data Fusion
Guest Editor
Dr. Alessandro Gardi

THALES Research Fellow in Air Traffic Management, Cyber-Physical Systems and Trusted Autonomy Group, RMIT University, School of Engineering, PO Box 71, Bundoora, VIC 3083, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Air Traffic Management; Avionics; Optimal Control; Cyber-Physical Systems; Trajectory Optimization; Human Factors and Ergonomics; Cognitive Ergonomics; Guidance, Navigation and Control; Sustainable Aviation; LIDAR and Electro-Optics; Trusted Autonomous Systems; Flight Dynamics; Space Traffic Management; Sense-and-Avoid

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Continuing rapid advances in aerospace electronics and electro-optical sensors are stimulating the development of highly integrated and multisensor systems, which are now capable of providing all information required for autonomous (or minimally supervised) operations, including navigation and guidance, weather/traffic surveillance and a growing number of mission-specific tasks. Many civil/military aircraft and Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) are already equipped with Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) sensors (RADAR, electro-optical sensors, etc.), Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS), Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) and/or low cost Micro Electro-Mechanical System (MEMS) inertial measurement units (IMU). In addition to integrated ISR and multisensor navigation systems, there are a growing number of aerospace applications where information from multiple sensors is combined to improve performance, provide redundancy management, increase robustness, or achieve graceful degradation when sensor failures (or outages) occur. Significant advances have also been experienced in the field of space sensors and multisensor systems, with several emerging concepts being developed for future suborbital/orbital space transport, satellite applications and interplanetary exploration missions.

 

Topics to be covered include, but are not limited to the following:

  •  Sensors for Guidance, Navigation and Control;
  •  Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Sensors;
  •  Sensors for Separation Assurance and Collision Avoidance;
  •  Radar and Electro-Optical Sensors;
  •  Bio-Inspired Aerospace Sensors;
  •  Sensors and Systems for Air Traffic Management;
  •  Space Sensor and Multisensor Systems;
  •  Sensors and Systems for Debris Avoidance and Space Traffic Management;
  •  Biosensors for Cognitive Ergonomics;
  •  Innovative Multi-Sensor Data Fusion Techniques;
  •  Health Monitoring Sensors and Data Processing.

Prof. Dr. Roberto Sabatini
Dr. Alessandro Gardi
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sensors is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Simulating and Testing Microvibrations on an Optical Satellite Using Acceleration Sensor-Based Jitter Measurements
Sensors 2019, 19(8), 1797; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19081797
Received: 19 February 2019 / Revised: 2 April 2019 / Accepted: 8 April 2019 / Published: 15 April 2019
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Abstract
The present study uses a method to address microvibrations effects on an optical satellite by combining simulations and experiments based on high-precision acceleration sensors. The displacement and angular displacement of each optical component can be obtained by introducing flywheel perturbation data from a [...] Read more.
The present study uses a method to address microvibrations effects on an optical satellite by combining simulations and experiments based on high-precision acceleration sensors. The displacement and angular displacement of each optical component can be obtained by introducing flywheel perturbation data from a six-component test bench to the finite element model of the optical satellite. Combined with an optical amplification factor inferred from the linear optical model, the pixel offset of the whole optical system is calculated. A high accuracy and broad frequency range for a new microvibration measurement experimental system is established to validate the simulation. The pixel offset of the whole optical system can be measured by testing the acceleration signals of each optical component and calculating optical amplification factors. The results are consistent with optical imaging test results, indicating correctness of the experimental scheme and the effectiveness of the simulation. The results suggest that the effect of microvibrations on a camera can be verified by using mechanical simulators instead of a whole optical camera for the experiment scheme, which is demonstrated to be an effective way for increasing efficiency in jitter measurements. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Adaptive Estimation and Cooperative Guidance for Active Aircraft Defense in Stochastic Scenario
Sensors 2019, 19(4), 979; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19040979
Received: 24 November 2018 / Revised: 1 February 2019 / Accepted: 20 February 2019 / Published: 25 February 2019
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Abstract
The active aircraft defense problem is investigated for the stochastic scenario wherein a defending missile (or a defender) is employed to protect a target aircraft from an attacking missile whose pursuit guidance strategy is unknown. For the purpose of identifying the guidance strategy, [...] Read more.
The active aircraft defense problem is investigated for the stochastic scenario wherein a defending missile (or a defender) is employed to protect a target aircraft from an attacking missile whose pursuit guidance strategy is unknown. For the purpose of identifying the guidance strategy, the static multiple model estimator (sMME) based on the square-root cubature Kalman filter is proposed, and each model represents a potential attacking missile guidance strategy. Furthermore, an estimation enhancement approach is provided by using pseudo-measurement. For each model in the sMME, the model-matched cooperative guidance laws for the target and defender are derived by formulating the active defense problem as a constrained linear quadratic problem, where an accurate defensive interception and the minimum evasion miss distance are both considered. The proposed adaptive cooperative guidance laws are the result of mixing the model-matched optimal cooperative guidance laws in the criterion of maximum a posteriori probability in the framework of the sMME. By adopting the adaptive cooperative guidance laws, the target can facilitate the defender’s interception with the attacking missile with less control effort. Also, simulation results show that the proposed guidance laws increase the probability of successful target protection in the stochastic scenario compared with other defensive guidance laws. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Infrared-Inertial Navigation for Commercial Aircraft Precision Landing in Low Visibility and GPS-Denied Environments
Sensors 2019, 19(2), 408; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19020408
Received: 22 December 2018 / Revised: 16 January 2019 / Accepted: 17 January 2019 / Published: 20 January 2019
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Abstract
This paper proposes a novel infrared-inertial navigation method for the precise landing of commercial aircraft in low visibility and Global Position System (GPS)-denied environments. Within a Square-root Unscented Kalman Filter (SR_UKF), inertial measurement unit (IMU) data, forward-looking infrared (FLIR) images and airport geo-information [...] Read more.
This paper proposes a novel infrared-inertial navigation method for the precise landing of commercial aircraft in low visibility and Global Position System (GPS)-denied environments. Within a Square-root Unscented Kalman Filter (SR_UKF), inertial measurement unit (IMU) data, forward-looking infrared (FLIR) images and airport geo-information are integrated to estimate the position, velocity and attitude of the aircraft during landing. Homography between the synthetic image and the real image which implicates the camera pose deviations is created as vision measurement. To accurately extract real runway features, the current results of runway detection are used as the prior knowledge for the next frame detection. To avoid possible homography decomposition solutions, it is directly converted to a vector and fed to the SR_UKF. Moreover, the proposed navigation system is proven to be observable by nonlinear observability analysis. Last but not least, a general aircraft was elaborately equipped with vision and inertial sensors to collect flight data for algorithm verification. The experimental results have demonstrated that the proposed method could be used for the precise landing of commercial aircraft in low visibility and GPS-denied environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Decoupling of Airborne Dynamic Bending Deformation Angle and Its Application in the High-Accuracy Transfer Alignment Process
Sensors 2019, 19(1), 214; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19010214
Received: 21 November 2018 / Revised: 3 January 2019 / Accepted: 4 January 2019 / Published: 8 January 2019
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Abstract
In the traditional airborne distributed position and orientation system (DPOS) transfer alignment process, the coupling angle between the dynamic deformation and body angular motion is not estimated or compensated, which causes the process to have low precision and long convergence time. To achieve [...] Read more.
In the traditional airborne distributed position and orientation system (DPOS) transfer alignment process, the coupling angle between the dynamic deformation and body angular motion is not estimated or compensated, which causes the process to have low precision and long convergence time. To achieve high-precision transfer alignment, a decoupling method for the airborne dynamic deformation angle is proposed in this paper. The model of the coupling angle is established through mathematical derivation. Then, taking the coupling angle into consideration, angular velocity error and velocity error between the master INS and slave IMU are corrected. Based on this, a novel 27-state Kalman filter model is established. Simulation results demonstrate that, compared with the traditional transfer alignment model, the model proposed in this paper has faster convergence time and higher accuracy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Sensitivity-Compensated Micro-Pressure Flexible Sensor for Aerospace Vehicle
Sensors 2019, 19(1), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19010072
Received: 23 November 2018 / Revised: 17 December 2018 / Accepted: 18 December 2018 / Published: 25 December 2018
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Abstract
When flight vehicles (e.g., aerospace vehicles, Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites, near-space aircrafts, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and drones) fly at high speed, their surfaces suffer the micro-pressure from high-altitude thin air. The long-term effect of this pressure causes the surface components of [...] Read more.
When flight vehicles (e.g., aerospace vehicles, Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites, near-space aircrafts, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and drones) fly at high speed, their surfaces suffer the micro-pressure from high-altitude thin air. The long-term effect of this pressure causes the surface components of flight vehicle to deform or fall off, which can lead to a serious accident. To solve this problem, this paper proposes a sensitivity-compensated micro-pressure flexible sensor based on hyper-elastic plastic material and plate parallel capacitance. The sensor is able to measure a range of 0–6 kPa micro-pressure suffered by the flight vehicle’s surface with high sensitivity and flexible devices. In this paper, we propose the principle, structure design and fabrication of the sensitivity-compensated micro-pressure flexible sensor. We carried out experiments to obtain the static characteristic curve between micro-pressure and the output capacitance of the sensor devices, and investigated the relationship between sensitivity and geometric parameters. We also compared the performance of the flexible sensor before and after sensitivity compensation. The result shows that the sensor can measure a range of 0–2 kPa and 2–6 kPa with a sensitivity of 0.27 kPa−1 and 0.021 kPa−1, which are 80% and 141.38% higher than the sensor before compensation; a linearity of 1.39% and 2.88%, which are 51.7% and 13.1% higher than the sensor before compensation; and a hysteresis and repeatability of 4.95% and 2.38%, respectively. The sensor has potential applications in flight vehicles to measure the micro-pressure with high sensitivity and flexibility. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Bio-Inspired Neural Adaptive Control of a Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Based on Airflow Sensors
Sensors 2018, 18(10), 3233; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18103233
Received: 8 August 2018 / Revised: 22 September 2018 / Accepted: 24 September 2018 / Published: 26 September 2018
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Abstract
Inspired by the exceptional flight ability of birds and insects, a bio-inspired neural adaptive flight control structure of a small unmanned aerial vehicle was presented. Eight pressure sensors were elaborately installed in the leading-edge area of the forward wing. A back propagation neural [...] Read more.
Inspired by the exceptional flight ability of birds and insects, a bio-inspired neural adaptive flight control structure of a small unmanned aerial vehicle was presented. Eight pressure sensors were elaborately installed in the leading-edge area of the forward wing. A back propagation neural network was trained to predict the aerodynamic moment based on pressure measurements. The network model was trained, validated, and tested. An adaptive controller was designed based on a radial basis function neural network. The new adaptive laws guaranteed the boundedness of the adaptive parameters. The closed-loop stability was analyzed via Lyapunov theory. The simulation results demonstrated the robustness of the bio-inspired flight control system when subjected to measurement noise, parametric uncertainties, and external disturbance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Composite Hierarchical Anti-Disturbance Control with Multisensor Fusion for Compact Optoelectronic Platforms
Sensors 2018, 18(10), 3190; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18103190
Received: 19 August 2018 / Revised: 13 September 2018 / Accepted: 17 September 2018 / Published: 21 September 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1466 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In the aerospace field, compact optoelectronic platforms (COPs) are being increasingly equipped on unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). They assist UAS in a range of mission-specific tasks such as disaster relief, crop testing, and firefighting. However, the strict constraint of structure space makes COPs [...] Read more.
In the aerospace field, compact optoelectronic platforms (COPs) are being increasingly equipped on unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). They assist UAS in a range of mission-specific tasks such as disaster relief, crop testing, and firefighting. However, the strict constraint of structure space makes COPs subject to multi-source disturbances. The application of a low-cost and low-precision sensor also affects the system control performance. A composite hierarchical anti-disturbance control (CHADC) scheme with multisensor fusion is explored herein to improve the motion performance of COPs in the presence of internal and external disturbances. Composite disturbance modelling combining the characteristic of wire-wound moment is presented in the inner layer. The adaptive mutation differential evolution algorithm is implemented to identify and optimise the model parameters of the system internal disturbance. Inverse model compensation and finite-time nonlinear disturbance observer are then constructed to compensate for multiple disturbances. A non-singular terminal sliding mode controller is constructed to attenuate disturbance in the outer layer. A stability analysis for both the composite disturbance compensator and the closed-loop system is provided using Lyapunov stability arguments. The phase lag-free low-pass filter is implemented to interfuse multiple sensors with different order information and achieve satisfactory noise suppression without phase lag. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed CHADC strategy with a higher-quality signal has an improved performance for multi-source disturbance compensation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Robust Adaptive Cubature Kalman Filter and Its Application to Ultra-Tightly Coupled SINS/GPS Navigation System
Sensors 2018, 18(7), 2352; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18072352
Received: 28 June 2018 / Revised: 9 July 2018 / Accepted: 16 July 2018 / Published: 20 July 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2428 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this paper, we propose a robust adaptive cubature Kalman filter (CKF) to deal with the problem of an inaccurately known system model and noise statistics. In order to overcome the kinematic model error, we introduce an adaptive factor to adjust the covariance [...] Read more.
In this paper, we propose a robust adaptive cubature Kalman filter (CKF) to deal with the problem of an inaccurately known system model and noise statistics. In order to overcome the kinematic model error, we introduce an adaptive factor to adjust the covariance matrix of state prediction, and process the influence introduced by dynamic disturbance error. Aiming at overcoming the abnormality error, we propose the robust estimation theory to adjust the CKF algorithm online. The proposed adaptive CKF can detect the degree of gross error and subsequently process it, so the influence produced by the abnormality error can be solved. The paper also studies a typical application system for the proposed method, which is the ultra-tightly coupled navigation system of a hypersonic vehicle. Highly dynamical scene experimental results show that the proposed method can effectively process errors aroused by the abnormality data and inaccurate model, and has better tracking performance than UKF and CKF tracking methods. Simultaneously, the proposed method is superior to the tracing method based on a single-modulating loop in the tracking performance. Thus, the stable and high-precision tracking for GPS satellite signals are preferably achieved and the applicability of the system is promoted under the circumstance of high dynamics and weak signals. The effectiveness of the proposed method is verified by a highly dynamical scene experiment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Efficient Node and Sensed Module Management for Multisensory Wireless Sensor Networks
Sensors 2018, 18(7), 2328; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18072328
Received: 14 June 2018 / Revised: 5 July 2018 / Accepted: 16 July 2018 / Published: 18 July 2018
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Abstract
In target tracking wireless sensor networks, choosing a part of sensor nodes to execute tracking tasks and letting the other nodes sleep to save energy are efficient node management strategies. However, at present more and more sensor nodes carry many different types of [...] Read more.
In target tracking wireless sensor networks, choosing a part of sensor nodes to execute tracking tasks and letting the other nodes sleep to save energy are efficient node management strategies. However, at present more and more sensor nodes carry many different types of sensed modules, and the existing researches on node selection are mainly focused on sensor nodes with a single sensed module. Few works involved the management and selection of the sensed modules for sensor nodes which have several multi-mode sensed modules. This work proposes an efficient node and sensed module management strategy, called ENSMM, for multisensory WSNs (wireless sensor networks). ENSMM considers not only node selection, but also the selection of the sensed modules for each node, and then the power management of sensor nodes is performed according to the selection results. Moreover, a joint weighted information utility measurement is proposed to estimate the information utility of the multiple sensed modules in the different nodes. Through extensive and realistic experiments, the results show that, ENSMM outperforms the state-of-the-art approaches by decreasing the energy consumption and prolonging the network lifetime. Meanwhile, it reduces the computational complexity with guaranteeing the tracking accuracy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerospace Sensors and Multisensor Systems)
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