Author Information

Gregory EnriquezFollow

Is this project an undergraduate, graduate, or faculty project?

Undergraduate

individual

Authors' Class Standing

Gregory Enriquez, Senior

Lead Presenter's Name

Gregory Enriquez

Faculty Mentor Name

Dr. John Michael Robbins

Abstract

The purpose for this project is to design a HIL simulation architecture in validating a small quadcopter’s flight operation functionality with self-autonomous mission integration using a ground control station (GCS) software called Qgroundcontrol. HIL simulation is where the hardware’s functionality is simulated by various simulation modeling techniques. To design the HIL simulation architecture, the hardware of the airframe and the flight dynamic model (FDM) of the airframe must be determined. The airframe will be a QWinOut drone with a 4-axle quadcopter configuration, and the hardware will be the Pixhawk PX4 flight controller which will be analyzed through HIL simulations before the actual flight tests of the QWinOut drone. The FDM, which is a mathematical representation of flight dynamic systems, will be created based from classical flight dynamic theories. Both the FDM and the HIL simulation architecture will then be implemented in MATLAB Simulink and will then be connected to the GCS software for self-autonomous mission functionality. CatiaV5, a computer aided design (CAD) software, will be used to create the 3-D computer model of the QWinOut drone, and Gazebo, a simulator specialized for sUAV, will be used as the 3-D environment for the 3-D model of the drone. Finally, the data obtained from the HIL simulation will be validated against the data obtained from real flight tests. The design and methodology explored from this project will help in the preliminary design process of sUAV and will help in obtaining reliability data of sUAV designs without having to do actual flight tests.

Did this research project receive funding support from the Office of Undergraduate Research.

Yes, Spark Grant

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Design of a Hardware-in-the-Loop (HIL) Simulation of a Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (sUAV) for Self Autonomous Mission Capability

The purpose for this project is to design a HIL simulation architecture in validating a small quadcopter’s flight operation functionality with self-autonomous mission integration using a ground control station (GCS) software called Qgroundcontrol. HIL simulation is where the hardware’s functionality is simulated by various simulation modeling techniques. To design the HIL simulation architecture, the hardware of the airframe and the flight dynamic model (FDM) of the airframe must be determined. The airframe will be a QWinOut drone with a 4-axle quadcopter configuration, and the hardware will be the Pixhawk PX4 flight controller which will be analyzed through HIL simulations before the actual flight tests of the QWinOut drone. The FDM, which is a mathematical representation of flight dynamic systems, will be created based from classical flight dynamic theories. Both the FDM and the HIL simulation architecture will then be implemented in MATLAB Simulink and will then be connected to the GCS software for self-autonomous mission functionality. CatiaV5, a computer aided design (CAD) software, will be used to create the 3-D computer model of the QWinOut drone, and Gazebo, a simulator specialized for sUAV, will be used as the 3-D environment for the 3-D model of the drone. Finally, the data obtained from the HIL simulation will be validated against the data obtained from real flight tests. The design and methodology explored from this project will help in the preliminary design process of sUAV and will help in obtaining reliability data of sUAV designs without having to do actual flight tests.