Nonlinear modeling and flight control system design of an unmanned aerial vehicle

Karakaş, Deniz
The nonlinear simulation model of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) in MATLAB®/Simulink® environment is developed by taking into consideration all the possible major system components such as actuators, gravity, engine, atmosphere, wind-turbulence models, as well as the aerodynamics components in the 6 DOF equations of motion. Trim and linearization of the developed nonlinear model are accomplished and various related analyses are carried out. The model is validated by comparing with a similar UAV data in terms of open loop dynamic stability characteristics. Using two main approaches; namely, classical and optimal, linear controllers are designed. For the classical approach, Simulink Response Optimization (SRO) tool of MATLAB®/Simulink® is utilized, whereas for the optimal controller approach, linear quadratic (LQ) controller design method is implemented, again by the help of the tools put forth by MATLAB®. The controllers are designed for control of roll, heading, coordinated turn, flight path, pitch, altitude, and airspeed, i.e., for the achievement of all low-level control functions. These linear controllers are integrated into the nonlinear model, by carrying out gain scheduling with respect to airspeed and altitude, controller input linearization regarding the perturbed states and control inputs, and anti integral wind-up scheme regarding the possible wind-up of the integrators in the controller structures. The responses of the nonlinear model controlled with the two controllers are compared based on the military flight control requirements. The advantages and disadvantages of these two frequently used controllers in industry are investigated and discussed. These results are to be evaluated by the designers themselves based on the design criteria of a project that is worked on.


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Citation Formats
D. Karakaş, “Nonlinear modeling and flight control system design of an unmanned aerial vehicle,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2007.