aerial rendezvous, small unmanned aircraft
A method for aerial rendezvous of small unmanned aircraft systems is proposed. The system includes placing a passively towed drogue into an orbit that is suitable for a small unmanned aircraft systems to follow, and a seeker guidance method for use with a monocular camera mounted on the centerline of the unmanned aircraft systems. The principle contributions of the work include a method for controlling the drogue path in moderate winds by manipulating the mothership orbit and airspeed, and a vision-based nonlinear pursuit tracking method that uses pitch rate and roll commands to guide the unmanned aircraft systems to an aerial rendezvous with the drogue. Simulation and flight-test results are presented to demonstrate the suitability of these methods.
Original Publication Citation
Nichols, J., Sun, L., Beard, R., and McLain, T. Aerial Rendezvous of Small Unmanned Aircraft Using a Passive Towed Cable System, AIAA Journal of Guidance, Control, and Dynamics, vol. 37, no. 4, pp. 1131-1142, DOI 10.2514/1.62220, 2014.
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
McLain, Timothy; Beard, Randall W.; Nichols, Joseph W.; and Sun, Liang, "Aerial Rendezvous of Small Unmanned Aircraft Using a Passive Towed Cable System" (2014). All Faculty Publications. 1899.
Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology
©2017 AIAA. This is the author's submitted version of this article. The definitive version can be found at https://arc.aiaa.org/doi/10.2514/1.62220
Copyright Use Information