Date of Award

Fall 2009

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering


Aerospace Engineering

Committee Chair

Dr. Richard "Pat" Anderson

Committee Member

Dr. Bogdan Udrea

Committee Member

Professor Charles Eastlake


The purpose of this study is to demonstrate capability of flight regime recognition during complex maneuvers flown in a fixed wing airplane using measured data from an Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU). Flight Regime Recognition (FRR) is required for numerous applications in the aerospace and aviation industry, including the determination of loads for stress and strain analysis. It can also be used in recreational aviation for maneuver recognition, for example in aerobatics.

This study uses a flight simulator to generate representative flight data that is parsed by a specifically developed algorithm into appropriate flight regimes. This algorithm is a filter technique that uses states based on the aircraft's attitude, accelerations and rates and compares them to known trajectories for the identification of specific maneuvers. Particular care has been taken to ensure appropriate noise rejection and tolerance to errors in the realization of the maneuver.

Presented here will be a particularly challenging test case of identification of complex aerobatic, aresti maneuvers, from specific flight trajectory. Results are conclusive in terms of regime recognition but further testing of the maneuver identification algorithms will be necessary in order to derive a robust maneuver recognition program.