WorldWideScience

Sample records for wing unmanned aerial

  1. Surfzone monitoring using rotary wing unmanned aerial vehicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brouwer, R.L.; De Schipper, M.A.; Rynne, P.F.; Graham, F.J.; Reniers, A.J.H.M.; Macmahan, J.H.

    2015-01-01

    This study investigates the potential of rotary wing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to monitor the surfzone. This paper shows that these UAVs are extremely flexible surveying platforms that can gather nearcontinuous moderate spatial resolution and high temporal resolution imagery from a fixed

  2. Design and testing of shape memory alloy actuation mechanism for flapping wing micro unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamaruzaman, N. F.; Abdullah, E. J.

    2017-12-01

    Shape memory alloy (SMA) actuator offers great solution for aerospace applications with low weight being its most attractive feature. A SMA actuation mechanism for the flapping micro unmanned aerial vehicle (MAV) is proposed in this study, where SMA material is the primary system that provides the flapping motion to the wings. Based on several established design criteria, a design prototype has been fabricated to validate the design. As a proof of concept, an experiment is performed using an electrical circuit to power the SMA actuator to evaluate the flapping angle. During testing, several problems have been observed and their solutions for future development are proposed. Based on the experiment, the average recorded flapping wing angle is 14.33° for upward deflection and 12.12° for downward deflection. This meets the required design criteria and objective set forth for this design. The results prove the feasibility of employing SMA actuators in flapping wing MAV.

  3. Comparative Study of Wing Lift Distribution Analysis for High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) Unmaned Aerial Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silitonga, Faber Y.; Agoes Moelyadi, M.

    2018-04-01

    The development of High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) has been emerged for both civil and military purposes. Its ability of operating in high altitude with long endurance is important in supporting maritime applications.Preliminary analysis of HALE UAV lift distribution of the wing presented to give decisive consideration for its early development. Ensuring that the generated lift is enough to compensate its own weight. Therotical approach using Pradtl’s non-linear lifting line theory will be compared with modern numerical approach using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). Results of wing lift distribution calculated from both methods will be compared to study the reliability of it. HALE UAV ITB has high aspect ratio wing and will be analyze at cruise flight condition. The result indicates difference between Non-linear Lifting Line and CFD method.

  4. Validation of morphing wing methodologies on an unmanned aerial system and a wind tunnel technology demonstrator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabor, Oliviu Sugar

    To increase the aerodynamic efficiency of aircraft, in order to reduce the fuel consumption, a novel morphing wing concept has been developed. It consists in replacing a part of the wing upper and lower surfaces with a flexible skin whose shape can be modified using an actuation system placed inside the wing structure. Numerical studies in two and three dimensions were performed in order to determine the gains the morphing system achieves for the case of an Unmanned Aerial System and for a morphing technology demonstrator based on the wing tip of a transport aircraft. To obtain the optimal wing skin shapes in function of the flight condition, different global optimization algorithms were implemented, such as the Genetic Algorithm and the Artificial Bee Colony Algorithm. To reduce calculation times, a hybrid method was created by coupling the population-based algorithm with a fast, gradient-based local search method. Validations were performed with commercial state-of-the-art optimization tools and demonstrated the efficiency of the proposed methods. For accurately determining the aerodynamic characteristics of the morphing wing, two new methods were developed, a nonlinear lifting line method and a nonlinear vortex lattice method. Both use strip analysis of the span-wise wing section to account for the airfoil shape modifications induced by the flexible skin, and can provide accurate results for the wing drag coefficient. The methods do not require the generation of a complex mesh around the wing and are suitable for coupling with optimization algorithms due to the computational time several orders of magnitude smaller than traditional three-dimensional Computational Fluid Dynamics methods. Two-dimensional and three-dimensional optimizations of the Unmanned Aerial System wing equipped with the morphing skin were performed, with the objective of improving its performances for an extended range of flight conditions. The chordwise positions of the internal actuators

  5. Learning Control of Fixed-Wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Using Fuzzy Neural Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erdal Kayacan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available A learning control strategy is preferred for the control and guidance of a fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicle to deal with lack of modeling and flight uncertainties. For learning the plant model as well as changing working conditions online, a fuzzy neural network (FNN is used in parallel with a conventional P (proportional controller. Among the learning algorithms in the literature, a derivative-free one, sliding mode control (SMC theory-based learning algorithm, is preferred as it has been proved to be computationally efficient in real-time applications. Its proven robustness and finite time converging nature make the learning algorithm appropriate for controlling an unmanned aerial vehicle as the computational power is always limited in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs. The parameter update rules and stability conditions of the learning are derived, and the proof of the stability of the learning algorithm is shown by using a candidate Lyapunov function. Intensive simulations are performed to illustrate the applicability of the proposed controller which includes the tracking of a three-dimensional trajectory by the UAV subject to time-varying wind conditions. The simulation results show the efficiency of the proposed control algorithm, especially in real-time control systems because of its computational efficiency.

  6. Nonlinear Dynamic Modeling of a Fixed-Wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicle: a Case Study of Wulung

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fadjar Rahino Triputra

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Developing a nonlinear adaptive control system for a fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV requires a mathematical representation of the system dynamics analytically as a set of differential equations in the form of a strict-feedback systems. This paper presents a method for modeling a nonlinear flight dynamics of the fixed-wing UAV of BPPT Wulung in any conditions of the flight altitude and airspeed for the first step into designing a nonlinear adaptive controller. The model was formed into 10-DOF differential equations in the form of strict-feedback systems which separates the terms of elevator, aileron, rudder and throttle from the model. The model simulation results show the behavior of the flight dynamics of the Wulung UAV and also prove the compliance with the actual flight test results.

  7. Design and control of a vertical takeoff and landing fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malang, Yasir

    With the goal of extending capabilities of multi-rotor unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for wetland conservation missions, a novel hybrid aircraft design consisting of four tilting rotors and a fixed wing is designed and built. The tilting rotors and nonlinear aerodynamic effects introduce a control challenge for autonomous flight, and the research focus is to develop and validate an autonomous transition flight controller. The overall controller structure consists of separate cascaded Proportional Integral Derivative (PID) controllers whose gains are scheduled according to the rotors' tilt angle. A control mechanism effectiveness factor is used to mix the multi-rotor and fixed-wing control actuators during transition. A nonlinear flight dynamics model is created and transition stability is shown through MATLAB simulations, which proves gain-scheduled control is a good fit for tilt-rotor aircraft. Experiments carried out using the prototype UAV validate simulation results for VTOL and tilted-rotor flight.

  8. Control and navigation system for a fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruiyong Zhai

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a flight control and navigation system for a fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV with low-cost micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS sensors. The system is designed under the inner loop and outer loop strategy. The trajectory tracking navigation loop is the outer loop of the attitude loop, while the attitude control loop is the outer loop of the stabilization loop. The proportional-integral-derivative (PID control was adopted for stabilization and attitude control. The three-dimensional (3D trajectory tracking control of a UAV could be approximately divided into lateral control and longitudinal control. The longitudinal control employs traditional linear PID feedback to achieve the desired altitude of the UAV, while the lateral control uses a non-linear control method to complete the desired trajectory. The non-linear controller can automatically adapt to ground velocity change, which is usually caused by gust disturbance, thus the UAV has good wind resistance characteristics. Flight tests and survey missions were carried out with our self-developed delta fixed-wing UAV and MEMS-based autopilot to confirm the effectiveness and practicality of the proposed navigation method.

  9. Sensor-driven area coverage for an autonomous fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paull, Liam; Thibault, Carl; Nagaty, Amr; Seto, Mae; Li, Howard

    2014-09-01

    Area coverage with an onboard sensor is an important task for an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) with many applications. Autonomous fixed-wing UAVs are more appropriate for larger scale area surveying since they can cover ground more quickly. However, their non-holonomic dynamics and susceptibility to disturbances make sensor coverage a challenging task. Most previous approaches to area coverage planning are offline and assume that the UAV can follow the planned trajectory exactly. In this paper, this restriction is removed as the aircraft maintains a coverage map based on its actual pose trajectory and makes control decisions based on that map. The aircraft is able to plan paths in situ based on sensor data and an accurate model of the on-board camera used for coverage. An information theoretic approach is used that selects desired headings that maximize the expected information gain over the coverage map. In addition, the branch entropy concept previously developed for autonomous underwater vehicles is extended to UAVs and ensures that the vehicle is able to achieve its global coverage mission. The coverage map over the workspace uses the projective camera model and compares the expected area of the target on the ground and the actual area covered on the ground by each pixel in the image. The camera is mounted on a two-axis gimbal and can either be stabilized or optimized for maximal coverage. Hardware-in-the-loop simulation results and real hardware implementation on a fixed-wing UAV show the effectiveness of the approach. By including the already developed automatic takeoff and landing capabilities, we now have a fully automated and robust platform for performing aerial imagery surveys.

  10. Path planning for persistent surveillance applications using fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, James F.

    This thesis addresses coordinated path planning for fixed-wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) engaged in persistent surveillance missions. While uniquely suited to this mission, fixed wing vehicles have maneuver constraints that can limit their performance in this role. Current technology vehicles are capable of long duration flight with a minimal acoustic footprint while carrying an array of cameras and sensors. Both military tactical and civilian safety applications can benefit from this technology. We make three main contributions: C1 A sequential path planner that generates a C 2 flight plan to persistently acquire a covering set of data over a user designated area of interest. The planner features the following innovations: • A path length abstraction that embeds kino-dynamic motion constraints to estimate feasible path length. • A Traveling Salesman-type planner to generate a covering set route based on the path length abstraction. • A smooth path generator that provides C 2 routes that satisfy user specified curvature constraints. C2 A set of algorithms to coordinate multiple UAVs, including mission commencement from arbitrary locations to the start of a coordinated mission and de-confliction of paths to avoid collisions with other vehicles and fixed obstacles. C3 A numerically robust toolbox of spline-based algorithms tailored for vehicle routing validated through flight test experiments on multiple platforms. A variety of tests and platforms are discussed. The algorithms presented are based on a technical approach with approximately equal emphasis on analysis, computation, dynamic simulation, and flight test experimentation. Our planner (C1) directly takes into account vehicle maneuverability and agility constraints that could otherwise render simple solutions infeasible. This is especially important when surveillance objectives elevate the importance of optimized paths. Researchers have developed a diverse range of solutions for persistent

  11. Drones at the Beach - Surf Zone Monitoring Using Rotary Wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rynne, P.; Brouwer, R.; de Schipper, M. A.; Graham, F.; Reniers, A.; MacMahan, J. H.

    2014-12-01

    We investigate the potential of rotary wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) to monitor the surf zone. In recent years, the arrival of lightweight, high-capacity batteries, low-power electronics and compact high-definition cameras has driven the development of commercially available UAVs for hobbyists. Moreover, the low operation costs have increased their potential for scientific research as these UAVs are extremely flexible surveying platforms. The UAVs can fly for ~12 min with a mean loiter radius of 1 - 3.5 m and a mean loiter error of 0.75 - 4.5 m, depending on the environmental conditions, flying style, battery type and vehicle type. Our experiments using multiple, alternating UAVs show that it is possible to have near continuous imagery data with similar Fields Of View. The images obtained from the UAVs (Fig. 1a), and in combination with surveyed Ground Control Points (GCPs) (Fig. 1b, red squares and white circles), can be geo-rectified (Fig. 1c) to pixel resolution between 0.01 - 1 m and a reprojection error, i.e. the difference between the surveyed GPS location of a GCP and the location of the GCP obtained from the geo-rectified image, of O(1 m). These geo-rectified images provide data on a variety of coastal aspects, such as beach width (Wb(x,t)), surf zone width (Wsf(x,t)), wave breaking location (rectangle B), beach usage (circle C) and location of dune vegegation (rectangle D), amongst others. Additionally, the possibility to have consecutive, high frequency (up to 2 Hz) rectified images makes the UAVs a great data instrument for spatially and temporally variable systems, such as the surf zone. Our first observations with the UAVs reveal the potential to quickly obtain surf zone and beach characteristics in response to storms or for day to day beach information, as well as the scientific pursuits of surf zone kinematics on different spatial and temporal scales, and dispersion and advection estimates of pollutants/dye. A selection of findings from

  12. Active AirCore Sampling: Constraining Point Sources of Methane and Other Gases with Fixed Wing Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bent, J. D.; Sweeney, C.; Tans, P. P.; Newberger, T.; Higgs, J. A.; Wolter, S.

    2017-12-01

    Accurate estimates of point source gas emissions are essential for reconciling top-down and bottom-up greenhouse gas measurements, but sampling such sources is challenging. Remote sensing methods are limited by resolution and cloud cover; aircraft methods are limited by air traffic control clearances, and the need to properly determine boundary layer height. A new sampling approach leverages the ability of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) to measure all the way to the surface near the source of emissions, improving sample resolution, and reducing the need to characterize a wide downstream swath, or measure to the full height of the planetary boundary layer (PBL). The "Active-AirCore" sampler, currently under development, will fly on a fixed wing UAS in Class G airspace, spiraling from the surface to 1200 ft AGL around point sources such as leaking oil wells to measure methane, carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide. The sampler collects a 100-meter long sample "core" of air in an 1/8" passivated stainless steel tube. This "core" is run on a high-precision instrument shortly after the UAS is recovered. Sample values are mapped to a specific geographic location by cross-referencing GPS and flow/pressure metadata, and fluxes are quantified by applying Gauss's theorem to the data, mapped onto the spatial "cylinder" circumscribed by the UAS. The AirCore-Active builds off the sampling ability and analytical approach of the related AirCore sampler, which profiles the atmosphere passively using a balloon launch platform, but will add an active pumping capability needed for near-surface horizontal sampling applications. Here, we show design elements, laboratory and field test results for methane, describe the overall goals of the mission, and discuss how the platform can be adapted, with minimal effort, to measure other gas species.

  13. Morphing unmanned aerial vehicles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gomez, Juan Carlos; Garcia, Ephrahim

    2011-01-01

    Research on aircraft morphing has exploded in recent years. The motivation and driving force behind this has been to find new and novel ways to increase the capabilities of aircraft. Materials advancements have helped to increase possibilities with respect to actuation and, hence, a diversity of concepts and unimagined capabilities. The expanded role of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) has provided an ideal platform for exploring these emergent morphing concepts since at this scale a greater amount of risk can be taken, as well as having more manageable fabrication and cost requirements. This review focuses on presenting the role UAVs have in morphing research by giving an overview of the UAV morphing concepts, designs, and technologies described in the literature. A presentation of quantitative information as well as a discussion of technical issues is given where possible to begin gaining some insight into the overall assessment and performance of these technologies. (topical review)

  14. Perancangan dan Implementasi Kontroler PID untuk Pengaturan Heading dan Pengaturan Arah pada Fixed-Wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hery setyo widodo

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle merupakan kendaraan udara tanpa awak yang dikendalikan dari jarak jauh oleh atau tanpa seorang pilot (Autopilot. Kontrol pesawat UAV ada dua variasi utama, variasi pertama yaitu dikontrol melalui pengendali jarak jauh dan variasi kedua adalah pesawat yang terbang secara mandiri berdasarkan program yang dimasukan. Sebuah fixed-winng UAV harus mampu mempertahankan posisinya pada lintasan yang sudah ditentukan selama melakukan tracking lintasan. Keakuratan dalam tracking arah dan heading pesawat sangat berpengaruh terhadap keberhasilan misi penerbangan pesawat UAV dalam memperthankan lintasannya untuk mencapai target. Oleh karena itu pada Tugas Akhir ini dirancang sistem pengaturan dengan menggunakan metode kontrol PID untuk mengatasi kesalahan dalam menjaga lintasan pesawat. Pengaturan arah dan heading pesawat UAV dilakukan dengan memanfaatkan dinamika gerak lateral yang meliputi gerak roll dan yaw dan input dari GPS (Global Positioning System. Dari simulasi diperoleh proses tracking dapat mengikuti rancangan gerak yang diinginkan Pergeseran lintasan pesawat pada saat implementasi kontroler PID disebabkan akurasi GPS yang masih rendah yaitu 3 meter.

  15. Handbook of unmanned aerial vehicles

    CERN Document Server

    Vachtsevanos, George

    2015-01-01

    The Handbook of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles is a reference text for the academic and research communities, industry, manufacturers, users, practitioners, Federal Government, Federal and State Agencies, the private sector, as well as all organizations that are and will be using unmanned aircraft in a wide spectrum of applications. The Handbook covers all aspects of UAVs, from design to logistics and ethical issues. It is also targeting the young investigator, the future inventor and entrepreneur by providing an overview and detailed information of the state-of-the-art as well as useful new concepts that may lead to innovative research. The contents of the Handbook include material that addresses the needs and ‘know how’ of all of the above sectors targeting a very diverse audience. The Handbook offers a unique and comprehensive treatise of everything one needs to know about unmanned aircrafts, from conception to operation, from technologies to business activities, users, OEMs, reference sources, conferences, ...

  16. Autonomous, Safe Take-Off and Landing Operations for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in the National Airspace, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Unmanned aerial systems (UAS's) and in particular intelligent, autonomous rotorcraft and fixed-wing aircraft have the potential to significantly impact modern...

  17. Detail design of empennage of an unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarker, Md. Samad; Panday, Shoyon; Rasel, Md; Salam, Md. Abdus; Faisal, Kh. Md.; Farabi, Tanzimul Hasan

    2017-12-01

    In order to maintain the operational continuity of air defense systems, unmanned autonomous or remotely controlled unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) plays a great role as a target for the anti-aircraft weapons. The aerial vehicle must comply with the requirements of high speed, remotely controlled tracking and navigational aids, operational sustainability and sufficient loiter time. It can also be used for aerial reconnaissance, ground surveillance and other intelligence operations. This paper aims to develop a complete tail design of an unmanned aerial vehicle using Systems Engineering approach. The design fulfils the requirements of longitudinal and directional trim, stability and control provided by the horizontal and vertical tail. Tail control surfaces are designed to provide sufficient control of the aircraft in critical conditions. Design parameters obtained from wing design are utilized in the tail design process as required. Through chronological calculations and successive iterations, optimum values of 26 tail design parameters are determined.

  18. Bespilotne letjelice : Unmanned aerial vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vlado Jurić

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Bespilotne letjelice imaju širok spektar uporabe, i svrha im svakim danom sve više dobiva na značaju. Konstrukcija im se poboljšava, pronalaze se materijali koji su optimalniji za obavljanje funkcija s kojima se trebaju suočiti. Pravna regulativa za bespilotne letjelice do 150 kg težine na polijetanju (MTOW se razlikuje od države do države. : Unmanned aerial vehicles have a wide range of applications, and their purpose is every day more important. Construction has been improving, finding the materials that are optimal for carrying out the functions which need to be cope with. Legal regulations for unmanned aircrafts up to 150 kg take-off weight (MTOW varies from country to country.

  19. A comparison of multicopter and fixed-wing unmanned aerial systems (UAS) applied to mapping debris flows in small alpine catchments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sotier, Bernadette; Lechner, Veronika

    2016-04-01

    The use of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) for documenting natural hazard events (e.g. debris flows) is becoming increasingly popular, as UAS allow on-demand, flexible and cost-efficient data acquisition. In this paper, we present the results of a comparison of multicopter and fixed-wing UAS. They were employed in the summer of 2015 to map two small alpine catchments located in Western Austria, where debris flows had occurred recently: The first event took place in the Seigesbach (Tyrol), the second occurred in the Plojergraben (Salzburg). For the Seigesbach mission, a fixed-wing UAS (Multiplex Mentor), equipped with a Sony NEX5 (50 mm prime lens, 14 MP sensor resolution) was employed to acquire approximately 4,000 images. In the Plojergraben an AustroDrones X18 octocopter was used, carrying a Sony ILCE-7R (35 mm prime lens, 36 MP sensor resolution) to record 1,700 images. Both sites had a size of approximately 2km². 20 ground control points (GCP) were distributed within both catchments, and their location was measured (Trimble GeoXT, expected accuracy 0.15 m). Using standard structure-from-motion photogrammetry software (AgiSoft PhotoScan Pro, v. 1.1.6), orthophotos (5 cm ground sampling distance - GSD) and digital surface models (DSM) (20 cm GSD) were calculated. Volume differences caused by the debris flow (i.e. deposition heights and erosion depths) computed by subtracting post-event from pre-event DSMs. Even though the terrain conditions in the two catchments were comparable, the challenges during the field campaign and the evaluation of the aerial images were very different. The main difference between the two campaigns was the number of flights required to cover the catchment: only four were needed by the fixed-wing UAS, while the multicopter required eleven in the Plojergraben. The fixed-wing UAS is specially designed for missions in hardly accessible regions, requiring only two people to carry the whole equipment, while in this case a car was needed for the

  20. A survey of hybrid Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saeed, Adnan S.; Younes, Ahmad Bani; Cai, Chenxiao; Cai, Guowei

    2018-04-01

    This article presents a comprehensive overview on the recent advances of miniature hybrid Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). For now, two conventional types, i.e., fixed-wing UAV and Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL) UAV, dominate the miniature UAVs. Each type has its own inherent limitations on flexibility, payload, flight range, cruising speed, takeoff and landing requirements and endurance. Enhanced popularity and interest are recently gained by the newer type, named hybrid UAV, that integrates the beneficial features of both conventional ones. In this survey paper, a systematic categorization method for the hybrid UAV's platform designs is introduced, first presenting the technical features and representative examples. Next, the hybrid UAV's flight dynamics model and flight control strategies are explained addressing several representative modeling and control work. In addition, key observations, existing challenges and conclusive remarks based on the conducted review are discussed accordingly.

  1. Performance measurements of a dual-rotor arm mechanism for efficient flight transition of fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGill, Karen Ashley Jean

    Reconfigurable systems are a class of systems that can be transformed into different configurations, generally to perform unique functions or to maintain operational efficiency under distinct conditions. A UAV can be considered a reconfigurable system when coupled with various useful features such as vertical take-off and landing (VTOL), hover capability, long-range, and relatively large payload. Currently, a UAV having these capabilities is being designed by the UTSA Mechanical Engineering department. UAVs such as this one have the following potential uses: emergency response/disaster relief, hazard-critical missions, offshore oil rig/wind farm delivery, surveillance, etc. The goal of this thesis is to perform experimental thrust and power measurements for the propulsion system of this fixed-wing UAV. Focus was placed on a rotating truss arm supporting two brushless motors and rotors that will later be integrated to the ends of the UAV wing. These truss arms will rotate via a supporting shaft from 0° to 90° to transition the UAV between a vertical take-off, hover, and forward flight. To make this hover/transition possible, a relationship between thrust, arm angle, and power drawn was established by testing the performance of the arm/motor assembly at arm angles of 0°, 15°, 30°, 45°, 60°, 75°, and 90°. Universal equations for this system of thrust as a function of the arm angle were created by correlating data collected by a load cell. A Solidworks model was created and used to conduct fluid dynamics simulations of the streamlines over the arm/motor assembly.

  2. Cooperative path planning of unmanned aerial vehicles

    CERN Document Server

    Tsourdos, Antonios; Shanmugavel, Madhavan

    2010-01-01

    An invaluable addition to the literature on UAV guidance and cooperative control, Cooperative Path Planning of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles is a dedicated, practical guide to computational path planning for UAVs. One of the key issues facing future development of UAVs is path planning: it is vital that swarm UAVs/ MAVs can cooperate together in a coordinated manner, obeying a pre-planned course but able to react to their environment by communicating and cooperating. An optimized path is necessary in order to ensure a UAV completes its mission efficiently, safely, and successfully. Focussing on the path planning of multiple UAVs for simultaneous arrival on target, Cooperative Path Planning of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles also offers coverage of path planners that are applicable to land, sea, or space-borne vehicles. Cooperative Path Planning of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles is authored by leading researchers from Cranfield University and provides an authoritative resource for researchers, academics and engineers working in...

  3. Optimization of the Flight Path of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasyl Myklukha

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The article describes the features of optimizing the flight path of an unmanned aerial vehicle. The paper analyzes the composition and designation of main equipment and payload of unmanned aerial vehicle. In particular, attention is drawn to the basic requirements that relate to the unmanned aerial vehicle today.

  4. ARM Unmanned Aerial Systems Implementation Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schmid, Beat [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Ivey, Mark [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2016-11-01

    Recent advances in Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) coupled with changes in the regulatory environment for operations of UAS in the National Airspace increase the potential value of UAS to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility. UAS include unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) and tethered balloon systems (TBS). The roles UAVs and TBSs could play within the ARM Facility, particularly science questions they could help address, have been discussed in several workshops, reports, and vision documents, including: This document describes the implementation of a robust and vigorous program for use of UAV and TBS for the science missions ARM supports.

  5. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Photogrammetry Produces ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Marinus Boon

    Department of Geography, Environmental Management and Energy Studies, University of ... The technique also only requires a few control measurements and the ... The number of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) referenced in the 2013 ... model aircraft airfield east of the R25 road, just south of the M6 intersection, up until ...

  6. Exploring Security Vulnerabilities of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodday, Nils Miro; de Oliveira Schmidt, R.; Pras, Aiko

    We are currently observing a significant increase in the popularity of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), popularly also known by their generic term drones. This is not only the case for recreational UAVs, that one can acquire for a few hundred dollars, but also for more sophisticated ones, namely

  7. A REVIEW OF TACTICAL UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE DESIGN STUDIES

    OpenAIRE

    Coban, Sezer; Oktay, Tugrul

    2017-01-01

    In this study, a literaturesearch was conducted on tactical unmanned aerial vehicles. First of all, it wasclassified as an unmanned aerial vehicle. It is mentioned about thecharacteristics of ZANKA-III, which is highly autonomous, passive and activemorphing, aerodynamically perfect, tactical unmanned aerial vehicle (TUAV)ZANKA-III, supported by TUBITAK's 1001 Ardeb program 115M603 by TUBITAK and itis mentioned that they have superior characteristics from other tacticalunmanned aerial veh...

  8. ARM Aerial Facility ArcticShark Unmanned Aerial System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmid, B.; Hubbell, M.; Mei, F.; Carroll, P.; Mendoza, A.; Ireland, C.; Lewko, K.

    2017-12-01

    The TigerShark Block 3 XP-AR "ArcticShark" Unmanned Aerial System (UAS), developed and manufactured by Navmar Applied Sciences Corporation (NASC), is a single-prop, 60 hp rotary-engine platform with a wingspan of 6.5 m and Maximum Gross Takeoff Weight of 295 Kg. The ArcticShark is owned by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and has been operated by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) since March 2017. The UAS will serve as an airborne atmospheric research observatory for DOE ARM, and, once fully operational, can be requested through ARM's annual call for proposals. The Arctic Shark is anticipated to measure a wide range of radiative, aerosol, and cloud properties using a variable instrument payload weighing up to 46 Kg. SATCOM-equipped, it is capable of taking measurements up to altitudes of 5.5 Km over ranges of up to 500 Km. The ArcticShark operates at airspeeds of 30 to 40 m/s, making it capable of slow sampling. With a full fuel load, its endurance exceeds 8 hours. The aircraft and its Mobile Operations Center (MOC) have been hardened specifically for operations in colder temperatures.ArcticShark's design facilitates rapid integration of various types of payloads. 2500 W of its 4000 W electrical systems is dedicated to payload servicing. It has an interior payload volume of almost 85 L and four wing-mounted pylons capable of carrying external probes. Its payload bay volume, electrical power, payload capacity, and flight characteristics enable the ArcticShark to accommodate multiple combinations of payloads in numerous configurations. Many instruments will be provided by the ARM Aerial Facility (AAF), but other organizations may eventually propose instrumentation for specific campaigns. AAF-provided measurement capabilities will include the following atmospheric state and thermodynamics: temperature, pressure, winds; gases: H2O and CO2; up- and down-welling broadband infrared and visible radiation; surface temperature; aerosol number concentration

  9. The prospects for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    OpenAIRE

    Brookes, Andrew

    2000-01-01

    In this study Andrew Brookes argues that Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) is the military fashion of the moment. Since the end of the 1990s many nations have added UAVs to their military inventories, and in 1999 half a dozen nations used UAVs over Kosovo. In the light of operational experience in Kosovo, Brookes re-evaluates the potential of this vehicle, and examines the roles, capabilities and future challenges of UAV.

  10. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Systems for Disaster Relief: Tornado Alley

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeBusk, Wesley M.

    2009-01-01

    Unmanned aerial vehicle systems are currently in limited use for public service missions worldwide. Development of civil unmanned technology in the United States currently lags behind military unmanned technology development in part because of unresolved regulatory and technological issues. Civil unmanned aerial vehicle systems have potential to augment disaster relief and emergency response efforts. Optimal design of aerial systems for such applications will lead to unmanned vehicles which provide maximum potentiality for relief and emergency response while accounting for public safety concerns and regulatory requirements. A case study is presented that demonstrates application of a civil unmanned system to a disaster relief mission with the intent on saving lives. The concept utilizes unmanned aircraft to obtain advanced warning and damage assessments for tornados and severe thunderstorms. Overview of a tornado watch mission architecture as well as commentary on risk, cost, need for, and design tradeoffs for unmanned aerial systems are provided.

  11. International Symposium on Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    CERN Document Server

    Oh, Paul; Piegl, Les

    2009-01-01

    Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) have seen unprecedented levels of growth during the last decade in both military and civilian domains. It is anticipated that civilian applications will be dominant in the future, although there are still barriers to be overcome and technical challenges to be met. Integrating UAS into, for example, civilian space, navigation, autonomy, see-detect-and-avoid systems, smart designs, system integration, vision-based navigation and training, to name but a few areas, will be of prime importance in the near future. This special volume is the outcome of research presented at the International Symposium on Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, held in Orlando, Florida, USA, from June 23-25, 2008, and presents state-of-the-art findings on topics such as: UAS operations and integration into the national airspace system; UAS navigation and control; micro-, mini-, small UAVs; UAS simulation testbeds and frameworks; UAS research platforms and applications; UAS applications. This book aims at serving as ...

  12. Delivery of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivancic, William D.; Sullivan, Donald V.

    2011-01-01

    To support much of NASA's Upper Atmosphere Research Program science, NASA has acquired two Global Hawk Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). Two major missions are currently planned using the Global Hawk: the Global Hawk Pacific (GloPac) and the Genesis and Rapid Intensification Processes (GRIP) missions. This paper briefly describes GloPac and GRIP, the concept of operations and the resulting requirements and communication architectures. Also discussed are requirements for future missions that may use satellite systems and networks owned and operated by third parties.

  13. Analysis Of Aerial Photography With Drone Type Fixed Wing In Kotabaru, Lampung

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Indreswari Suroso

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available In the world of photography is very closely related to the unmanned aerial vehicle called drones. Drones mounted camera so that the plane is pilot controlled from the mainland. Photography results were seen by the pilot after the drone aircraft landed. Drones are unmanned drones that are controlled remotely. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV, is a flying machine that operates with remote control by the pilot. Methode for this research are preparation assembly of drone, planning altitude flying, testing on ground, camera of calibration, air capture, result of aerial photos and analysis of result aerial photos. There are two types of drones, multicopter and fixed wing. Fixed wing  has an airplane like shape with a wing system. Fixed wing use bettery 4000 mAh . Fixed wing drone in this research used   mapping in  This drone has a load ability of 1 kg and operational time is used approximately 30 minutes for an areas 20 to 50 hectares with a height of 100 m  to 200 m and payload 1 kg  above ground level. The aerial photographs in Kotabaru produce excellent aerial photographs that can help mapping the local government in the Kotabaru region.

  14. Reliability Assessment for Low-cost Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeman, Paul Michael

    Existing low-cost unmanned aerospace systems are unreliable, and engineers must blend reliability analysis with fault-tolerant control in novel ways. This dissertation introduces the University of Minnesota unmanned aerial vehicle flight research platform, a comprehensive simulation and flight test facility for reliability and fault-tolerance research. An industry-standard reliability assessment technique, the failure modes and effects analysis, is performed for an unmanned aircraft. Particular attention is afforded to the control surface and servo-actuation subsystem. Maintaining effector health is essential for safe flight; failures may lead to loss of control incidents. Failure likelihood, severity, and risk are qualitatively assessed for several effector failure modes. Design changes are recommended to improve aircraft reliability based on this analysis. Most notably, the control surfaces are split, providing independent actuation and dual-redundancy. The simulation models for control surface aerodynamic effects are updated to reflect the split surfaces using a first-principles geometric analysis. The failure modes and effects analysis is extended by using a high-fidelity nonlinear aircraft simulation. A trim state discovery is performed to identify the achievable steady, wings-level flight envelope of the healthy and damaged vehicle. Tolerance of elevator actuator failures is studied using familiar tools from linear systems analysis. This analysis reveals significant inherent performance limitations for candidate adaptive/reconfigurable control algorithms used for the vehicle. Moreover, it demonstrates how these tools can be applied in a design feedback loop to make safety-critical unmanned systems more reliable. Control surface impairments that do occur must be quickly and accurately detected. This dissertation also considers fault detection and identification for an unmanned aerial vehicle using model-based and model-free approaches and applies those

  15. The Use of Unmanned Aerial Systems in Marine Mammal Research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorenzo Fiori

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned aerial systems (UAS, commonly referred to as drones, are finding applications in several ecological research areas since remotely piloted aircraft (RPA technology has ceased to be a military prerogative. Fixed-wing RPA have been tested for line transect aerial surveys of geographically dispersed marine mammal species. Despite many advantages, their systematic use is far from a reality. Low altitude, long endurance systems are still highly priced. Regulatory bodies also impose limitations while struggling to cope with UAS rapid technological evolution. In contrast, small vertical take-off and landing (VTOL UAS have become increasingly affordable but lack the flight endurance required for long-range aerial surveys. Although this issue and civil aviation regulations prevent the use of VTOL UAS for marine mammal abundance estimation on a large scale, recent studies have highlighted other potential applications. The present note represents a general overview on the use of UAS as a survey tool for marine mammal studies. The literature pertaining to UAS marine mammal research applications is considered with special concern for advantages and limitations of the survey design. The use of lightweight VTOL UAS to collect marine mammal behavioral data is also discussed.

  16. Pipeline monitoring with unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kochetkova, L. I.

    2018-05-01

    Pipeline leakage during transportation of combustible substances leads to explosion and fire thus causing death of people and destruction of production and accommodation facilities. Continuous pipeline monitoring allows identifying leaks in due time and quickly taking measures for their elimination. The paper describes the solution of identification of pipeline leakage using unmanned aerial vehicles. It is recommended to apply the spectral analysis with input RGB signal to identify pipeline damages. The application of multi-zone digital images allows defining potential spill of oil hydrocarbons as well as possible soil pollution. The method of multi-temporal digital images within the visible region makes it possible to define changes in soil morphology for its subsequent analysis. The given solution is cost efficient and reliable thus allowing reducing timing and labor resources in comparison with other methods of pipeline monitoring.

  17. Mathematical modelling of unmanned aerial vehicles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sarwar, S.; Rehman, S.U.

    2013-01-01

    UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) UAVs are emerging as requirement of time and it is expected that in next five to ten years, complete air space will be flooded with UAVs, committed in varied assignments ranging from military, scientific and commercial usage. Non availability of human pilot inside UAV necessitates the requirement of an onboard auto pilot in order to maintain desired flight profile against any unexpected disturbance and/or parameter variations. Design of such an auto pilot requires an accurate mathematical model of UAV. The aim of this paper is to present a consolidated picture of UAV model. This paper first consolidates complete 6 DOF Degree of Freedom) equations of motion into a nonlinear mathematical model and its simulation using model parameters of a real UAV. Model is then linearized into longitudinal and lateral modes. State space models of linearized modes are simulated and analyzed for stability parameters. The developed model can be used to design auto pilot for UAV. (author)

  18. Bioinspired optical sensors for unmanned aerial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chahl, Javaan; Rosser, Kent; Mizutani, Akiko

    2011-04-01

    Insects are dependant on the spatial, spectral and temporal distributions of light in the environment for flight control and navigation. This paper reports on flight trials of implementations of insect inspired behaviors on unmanned aerial vehicles. Optical flow methods for maintaining a constant height above ground and a constant course have been demonstrated to provide navigation capabilities that are impossible using conventional avionics sensors. Precision control of height above ground and ground course were achieved over long distances. Other vision based techniques demonstrated include a biomimetic stabilization sensor that uses the ultraviolet and green bands of the spectrum, and a sky polarization compass. Both of these sensors were tested over long trajectories in different directions, in each case showing performance similar to low cost inertial heading and attitude systems. The behaviors demonstrate some of the core functionality found in the lower levels of the sensorimotor system of flying insects and shows promise for more integrated solutions in the future.

  19. Getting Started with PEAs-Based Flapping-Wing Mechanisms for Micro Aerial Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José Carlos Durán Hernández

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper introduces recent advances on flapping-wing Micro and Nano Aerial Vehicles (MAVs and NAVs based on Piezoelectric Actuators (PEA. Therefore, this work provides essential information to address the development of such bio-inspired aerial robots. PEA are commonly used in micro-robotics and precise positioning applications (e.g., micro-positioning and micro-manipulation, whereas within the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs domain, motors are the classical actuators used for rotary or fixed-wing configurations. Therefore, we consider it pertinent to provide essential information regarding the modeling and control of piezoelectric cantilever actuators to accelerate early design and development stages of aerial microrobots based on flapping-wing systems. In addition, the equations describing the aerodynamic behavior of a flapping-wing configuration are presented.

  20. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles unique cost estimating requirements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malone, P.; Apgar, H.; Stukes, S.; Sterk, S.

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), also referred to as drones, are aerial platforms that fly without a human pilot onboard. UAVs are controlled autonomously by a computer in the vehicle or under the remote control of a pilot stationed at a fixed ground location. There are a wide variety of drone shapes, sizes, configurations, complexities, and characteristics. Use of these devices by the Department of Defense (DoD), NASA, civil and commercial organizations continues to grow. UAVs are commonly used for intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR). They are also use for combat operations, and civil applications, such as firefighting, non-military security work, surveillance of infrastructure (e.g. pipelines, power lines and country borders). UAVs are often preferred for missions that require sustained persistence (over 4 hours in duration), or are “ too dangerous, dull or dirty” for manned aircraft. Moreover, they can offer significant acquisition and operations cost savings over traditional manned aircraft. Because of these unique characteristics and missions, UAV estimates require some unique estimating methods. This paper describes a framework for estimating UAV systems total ownership cost including hardware components, software design, and operations. The challenge of collecting data, testing the sensitivities of cost drivers, and creating cost estimating relationships (CERs) for each key work breakdown structure (WBS) element is discussed. The autonomous operation of UAVs is especially challenging from a software perspective.

  1. Estimation and Prediction of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Trajectories, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — There is serious concern about the introduction of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) in the National Air Space (NAS) because of their potential to increase the risk of...

  2. Optimum Route Planning and Scheduling for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sonmezocak, Erkan; Kurt, Senol

    2008-01-01

    .... The route planning of UAVs is the most critical and challenging problem of wartime. This thesis will develop three algorithms to solve a model that produces executable routings in order to dispatch three Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV...

  3. Photogrammetric mapping using unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graça, N.; Mitishita, E.; Gonçalves, J.

    2014-11-01

    Nowadays Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technology has attracted attention for aerial photogrammetric mapping. The low cost and the feasibility to automatic flight along commanded waypoints can be considered as the main advantages of this technology in photogrammetric applications. Using GNSS/INS technologies the images are taken at the planned position of the exposure station and the exterior orientation parameters (position Xo, Yo, Zo and attitude ω, φ, χ) of images can be direct determined. However, common UAVs (off-the-shelf) do not replace the traditional aircraft platform. Overall, the main shortcomings are related to: difficulties to obtain the authorization to perform the flight in urban and rural areas, platform stability, safety flight, stability of the image block configuration, high number of the images and inaccuracies of the direct determination of the exterior orientation parameters of the images. In this paper are shown the obtained results from the project photogrammetric mapping using aerial images from the SIMEPAR UAV system. The PIPER J3 UAV Hydro aircraft was used. It has a micro pilot MP2128g. The system is fully integrated with 3-axis gyros/accelerometers, GPS, pressure altimeter, pressure airspeed sensors. A Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W300 was calibrated and used to get the image block. The flight height was close to 400 m, resulting GSD near to 0.10 m. The state of the art of the used technology, methodologies and the obtained results are shown and discussed. Finally advantages/shortcomings found in the study and main conclusions are presented

  4. The remote characterization of vegetation using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle photography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) can fly in place of piloted aircraft to gather remote sensing information on vegetation characteristics. The type of sensors flown depends on the instrument payload capacity available, so that, depending on the specific UAV, it is possible to obtain video, aerial phot...

  5. Unmanned Aerial System Four-Dimensional Gunnery Training Device Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-01

    Aerial System (UAS) Four-Dimensional Gunnery Training Device: Training Effectiveness Assessment (James & Miller, in press). 31 Technical ...Research Product 2018-05 Unmanned Aerial System Four-Dimensional Gunnery Training Device Development David R. James...for the Department of the Army by Northrop Grumman Corporation. Technical review by Thomas Rhett Graves, Ph.D., U.S. Army Research Institute

  6. AERIAL TERRAIN MAPPING USING UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE APPROACH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. N. Tahar

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper looks into the latest achievement in the low-cost Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV technology in their capacity to map the semi-development areas. The objectives of this study are to establish a new methodology or a new algorithm in image registration during interior orientation process and to determine the accuracy of the photogrammetric products by using UAV images. Recently, UAV technology has been used in several applications such as mapping, agriculture and surveillance. The aim of this study is to scrutinize the usage of UAV to map the semi-development areas. The performance of the low cost UAV mapping study was established on a study area with two image processing methods so that the results could be comparable. A non-metric camera was attached at the bottom of UAV and it was used to capture images at both sites after it went through several calibration steps. Calibration processes were carried out to determine focal length, principal distance, radial lens distortion, tangential lens distortion and affinity. A new method in image registration for a non-metric camera is discussed in this paper as a part of new methodology of this study. This method used the UAV Global Positioning System (GPS onboard to register the UAV image for interior orientation process. Check points were established randomly at both sites using rapid static Global Positioning System. Ground control points are used for exterior orientation process, and check point is used for accuracy assessment of photogrammetric product. All acquired images were processed in a photogrammetric software. Two methods of image registration were applied in this study, namely, GPS onboard registration and ground control point registration. Both registrations were processed by using photogrammetric software and the result is discussed. Two results were produced in this study, which are the digital orthophoto and the digital terrain model. These results were analyzed by using the root

  7. Land Survey from Unmaned Aerial Veichle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterman, V.; Mesarič, M.

    2012-07-01

    In this paper we present, how we use a quadrocopter unmanned aerial vehicle with a camera attached to it, to do low altitude photogrammetric land survey. We use the quadrocopter to take highly overlapping photos of the area of interest. A "structure from motion" algorithm is implemented to get parameters of camera orientations and to generate a sparse point cloud representation of objects in photos. Than a patch based multi view stereo algorithm is applied to generate a dense point cloud. Ground control points are used to georeference the data. Further processing is applied to generate digital orthophoto maps, digital surface models, digital terrain models and assess volumes of various types of material. Practical examples of land survey from a UAV are presented in the paper. We explain how we used our system to monitor the reconstruction of commercial building, then how our UAV was used to assess the volume of coal supply for Ljubljana heating plant. Further example shows the usefulness of low altitude photogrammetry for documentation of archaeological excavations. In the final example we present how we used our UAV to prepare an underlay map for natural gas pipeline's route planning. In the final analysis we conclude that low altitude photogrammetry can help bridge the gap between laser scanning and classic tachymetric survey, since it offers advantages of both techniques.

  8. Measured Noise from Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cabell, Randolph; McSwain, Robert; Grosveld, Ferdinand

    2016-01-01

    Proposed uses of small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), including home package delivery, have the potential to expose large portions of communities to a new noise source. This paper discusses results of flyover noise measurements of four small UAVs, including an internal combustion-powered model airplane and three battery-powered multicopters. Basic noise characteristics of these vehicles are discussed, including spectral properties and sound level metrics such as sound pressure level, effective perceived noise level, and sound exposure level. The size and aerodynamic characteristics of the multicopters in particular make their flight path susceptible to atmospheric disturbances such as wind gusts. These gusts, coupled with a flight control system that varies rotor speed to maintain vehicle stability, create an unsteady acoustic signature. The spectral variations resulting from this unsteadiness are explored, in both hover and flyover conditions for the multicopters. The time varying noise, which differs from the relatively steady noise generated by large transport aircraft, may complicate the prediction of human annoyance using conventional sound level metrics.

  9. Unmanned aerial systems for photogrammetry and remote sensing: A review

    OpenAIRE

    Colomina, Ismael; Molina, Pere

    2014-01-01

    We discuss the evolution and state-of-the-art of the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) in the field of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (PaRS). UAS, Remotely-Piloted Aerial Systems, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or simply, drones are a hot topic comprising a diverse array of aspects including technology, privacy rights, safety and regulations, and even war and peace. Modern photogrammetry and remote sensing identified the potential of UAS-sourced imagery more than thirty years ago. In the last...

  10. Unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) to prevent drowning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seguin, Celia; Blaquière, Gilles; Loundou, Anderson; Michelet, Pierre; Markarian, Thibaut

    2018-06-01

    Drowning literature have highlighted the submersion time as the most powerful predictor in assessing the prognosis. Reducing the time taken to provide a flotation device and prevent submersion appears of paramount importance. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) can provide the location of the swimmer and a flotation device. The objective of this simulation study was to evaluate the efficiency of a UAV in providing a flotation device in different sea conditions, and to compare the times taken by rescue operations with and without a UAV (standard vs UAV intervention). Several comparisons were made using professional lifeguards acting as simulated victims. A specifically-shaped UAV was used to allow us to drop an inflatable life buoy into the water. During the summer of 2017, 28 tests were performed. UAV use was associated with a reduction of time it took to provide a flotation device to the simulated victim compared with standard rescue operations (p < 0.001 for all measurements) and the time was reduced even further in moderate (81 ± 39 vs 179 ± 78 s; p < 0.001) and rough sea conditions (99 ± 34 vs 198 ± 130 s; p < 0.001). The times taken for UAV to locate the simulated victim, identify them and drop the life buoy were not altered by the weather conditions. UAV can deliver a flotation device to a swimmer safely and quickly. The addition of a UAV in rescue operations could improve the quality and speed of first aid while keeping lifeguards away from dangerous sea conditions. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. A Review of the Characteristics of Modern Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hristov Georgi Valentinov

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The main aim of this article is to present the modern unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs and the possibilities for real-time remote monitoring of flight parameters and payload data. In the introduction section of the paper we briefly present the characteristics of the UAVs and which are their major application areas. Later, the main parameters and the various data types for remote control and monitoring of the unmanned aerial vehicles are presented and discussed. The paper continues with the methods and the technologies for transmission of these parameters and then presents a general hardware model for data transmission and a software model of a communication system suitable for UAVs.

  12. Robust adaptive control for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahveci, Nazli E.

    The objective of meeting higher endurance requirements remains a challenging task for any type and size of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). According to recent research studies significant energy savings can be realized through utilization of thermal currents. The navigation strategies followed across thermal regions, however, are based on rather intuitive assessments of remote pilots and lack any systematic path planning approaches. Various methods to enhance the autonomy of UAVs in soaring applications are investigated while seeking guarantees for flight performance improvements. The dynamics of the aircraft, small UAVs in particular, are affected by the environmental conditions, whereas unmodeled dynamics possibly become significant during aggressive flight maneuvers. Besides, the demanded control inputs might have a magnitude range beyond the limits dictated by the control surface actuators. The consequences of ignoring these issues can be catastrophic. Supporting this claim NASA Dryden Flight Research Center reports considerable performance degradation and even loss of stability in autonomous soaring flight tests with the subsequent risk of an aircraft crash. The existing control schemes are concluded to suffer from limited performance. Considering the aircraft dynamics and the thermal characteristics we define a vehicle-specific trajectory optimization problem to achieve increased cross-country speed and extended range of flight. In an environment with geographically dispersed set of thermals of possibly limited lifespan, we identify the similarities to the Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP) and provide both exact and approximate guidance algorithms for the navigation of automated UAVs. An additional stochastic approach is used to quantify the performance losses due to incorrect thermal data while dealing with random gust disturbances and onboard sensor measurement inaccuracies. One of the main contributions of this research is a novel adaptive control design with

  13. Diagnosis of airspeed measurement faults for unmanned aerial vehicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Søren; Blanke, Mogens

    2014-01-01

    Airspeed sensor faults are common causes for incidents with unmanned aerial vehicles with pitot tube clogging or icing being the most common causes. Timely diagnosis of such faults or other artifacts in signals from airspeed sensing systems could potentially prevent crashes. This paper employs...

  14. Challenges of Integrating Unmanned Aerial Vehicles In Civil Application

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eid, B M; Albatsh, F; Faris, W F; Chebil, J

    2013-01-01

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) has evolved rapidly over the past decade. There have been an increased number of studies aiming at improving UAV and in its use for different civil applications. This paper highlights the fundamentals of UAV system and examines the challenges related with the major components such as motors, drives, power systems, communication systems and image processing tools and equipment

  15. UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE USE FOR WOOD CHIPS PILE VOLUME ESTIMATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Mokroš

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The rapid development of unmanned aerial vehicles is a challenge for applied research. Many technologies are developed and then researcher are looking up for their application in different sectors. Therefore, we decided to verify the use of the unmanned aerial vehicle for wood chips pile monitoring. We compared the use of GNSS device and unmanned aerial vehicle for volume estimation of four wood chips piles. We used DJI Phantom 3 Professional with the built-in camera and GNSS device (geoexplorer 6000. We used Agisoft photoscan for processing photos and ArcGIS for processing points. Volumes calculated from pictures were not statistically significantly different from amounts calculated from GNSS data and high correlation between them was found (p = 0.9993. We conclude that the use of unmanned aerial vehicle instead of the GNSS device does not lead to significantly different results. Tthe data collection consumed from almost 12 to 20 times less time with the use of UAV. Additionally, UAV provides documentation trough orthomosaic.

  16. Augmenting camera images for operators of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veltman, J.A.; Oving, A.B.

    2003-01-01

    The manual control of the camera of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) can be difficult due to several factors such as 1) time delays between steering input and changes of the monitor content, 2) low update rates of the camera images and 3) lack of situation awareness due to the remote position of the

  17. Mechanical Design of a Manipulation System for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keemink, A.Q.L.; Fumagalli, M.; Stramigioli, S.; Carloni, R.

    In this paper, we present the mechanical design and modeling of a manipulation system for unmanned aerial vehicles, which have to physically interact with environments and perform ultrasonic non-destructive testing experiments and other versatile tasks at unreachable locations for humans. The

  18. Optimal event handling by multiple unmanned aerial vehicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Roo, Martijn; Frasca, Paolo; Carloni, Raffaella

    This paper proposes a control architecture for a fleet of unmanned aerial vehicles that is responsible for handling the events that take place in a given area. The architecture guarantees that each event is handled by the required number of vehicles in the shortest time, while the rest of the fleet

  19. CADASTRAL AUDIT AND ASSESSMENTS USING UNMANNED AERIAL SYSTEMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Cunningham

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Ground surveys and remote sensing are integral to establishing fair and equitable property valuations necessary for real property taxation. The International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO has embraced aerial and street-view imaging as part of its standards related to property tax assessments and audits. New technologies, including unmanned aerial systems (UAS paired with imaging sensors, will become more common as local governments work to ensure their cadastre and tax rolls are both accurate and complete. Trends in mapping technology have seen an evolution in platforms from large, expensive manned aircraft to very small, inexpensive UAS. Traditional methods of photogrammetry have also given way to new equipment and sensors: digital cameras, infrared imagers, light detection and ranging (LiDAR laser scanners, and now synthetic aperture radar (SAR. At the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF, we work extensively with unmanned aerial systems equipped with each of these newer sensors. UAF has significant experience flying unmanned systems in the US National Airspace, having begun in 1969 with scientific rockets and expanded to unmanned aircraft in 2003. Ongoing field experience allows UAF to partner effectively with outside organizations to test and develop leading-edge research in UAS and remote sensing. This presentation will discuss our research related to various sensors and payloads for mapping. We will also share our experience with UAS and optical systems for creating some of the first cadastral surveys in rural Alaska.

  20. Tracking Unmanned Aerial Vehicle CTU FTS - Application of equipment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Hůlek

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Article which is about the Tracking Unmanned Aerial Vehicle continues in the description of the project development dealing with the utilization of the UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle. Documentation of the project progresses builds on the previous article. In that article the selection of observation and transmission equipment was summarized. In the article, the reader learns about an installation of the equipment on the UAV (helicopter, about an interconnection of the equipment to create complete and functional system, about testing of the UAV, about the solutions of the problems which came into being during testing and about protection of the equipment against unfavourable effects. The location of equipment on the unmanned vehicle was chosen after a considering of several parameters. These parameters are preservation of the functionality or an influence to the balance. To find out how the added equipment affect the centre of gravity of the UAV the tabular method of the centre of gravity calculation was used. The results of the existing work on the project are location and attaching of the equipment to the unmanned vehicle, balance of the unmanned vehicle, solutions of the problems coming into being during the testing and design of the equipment protection against unfavourable effects.

  1. Bio-inspired computation in unmanned aerial vehicles

    CERN Document Server

    Duan, Haibin

    2014-01-01

    Bio-inspired Computation in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles focuses on the aspects of path planning, formation control, heterogeneous cooperative control and vision-based surveillance and navigation in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) from the perspective of bio-inspired computation. It helps readers to gain a comprehensive understanding of control-related problems in UAVs, presenting the latest advances in bio-inspired computation. By combining bio-inspired computation and UAV control problems, key questions are explored in depth, and each piece is content-rich while remaining accessible. With abundant illustrations of simulation work, this book links theory, algorithms and implementation procedures, demonstrating the simulation results with graphics that are intuitive without sacrificing academic rigor. Further, it pays due attention to both the conceptual framework and the implementation procedures. The book offers a valuable resource for scientists, researchers and graduate students in the field of Control, Aeros...

  2. A concept of unmanned aerial vehicles in amphibious operations

    OpenAIRE

    Collins, Kipp A.

    1993-01-01

    Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. The purpose of this thesis was to perform a conceptual study of using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) in amphibious operations. It focused on the command relations, tasking and critical problems in UAV amphibious operations. This thesis investigated the question of whether using UAVs at sea is a feasible complement to current amphibious operational doctrine and, if so, then what expense is incurred to assets on which it is embarked an...

  3. Fuel Cells: A Real Option for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Propulsion

    OpenAIRE

    González_Espasandín, Oscar; Leo Mena, Teresa de Jesus; Navarro Arevalo, Emilio

    2013-01-01

    The possibility of implementing fuel cell technology in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) propulsion systems is considered. Potential advantages of the Proton Exchange Membrane or Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEMFC) and Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFC), their fuels (hydrogen and methanol), and their storage systems are revised from technical and environmental standpoints. Some operating commercial applications are described. Main constraints for these kinds of fuel cells are analyzed in order t...

  4. Fuzzy-4D/RCS for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    OpenAIRE

    Olivares Mendez, Miguel Angel; Campoy, Pascual; Mondragon, Ivan F.; Martinez, Carol

    2010-01-01

    Abstract This paper presents an improvement of the cognitive architecture, 4D/RCS, developed by the NIST. This improvement consist of the insertion of Fuzzy Logic cells (FLCs), in different parts and hierarchy levels of the architecture, and the adaptation of this architecture for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). This advance provides an improvement in the functionality of the system based on the uses of the Miguel Olivares’ Fuzzy Software for the definition of the FLCs and its...

  5. PARAMETRIC ANALYSIS OF LONGITUDINAL STABILITY UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ievgen Udartsev

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available 1024x768 We consider the aerodynamic characteristics of unmanned aircraft container type, which were obtained in a wind tunnel and refined amended by soot blowing elements propeller system and the influence of the earth's surface. The estimation of longitudinal static stability and its dependence on altitude, damping, coordinates of center of gravity, shoulder horizontal tail, wings rejection of mechanization. The variation of these parameters enables to optimize balancing system with minimal losses. Normal 0 false false false

  6. Classification of robotic battery service systems for unmanned aerial vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ngo Tien

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Existing examples of prototypes of ground-based robotic platforms used as a landing site for unmanned aerial vehicles are considered. In some cases, they are equipped with a maintenance mechanism for the power supply module. The main requirements for robotic multi-copter battery maintenance systems depending on operating conditions, required processing speed, operator experience and other parameters are analyzed. The key issues remain questions of the autonomous landing of the unmanned aerial vehicles on the platform and approach to servicing battery. The existing prototypes of service robotic platforms are differed in the complexity of internal mechanisms, speed of service, algorithms of joint work of the platform and unmanned aerial vehicles during the landing and maintenance of the battery. The classification of robotic systems for servicing the power supply of multi-copter batteries criteria is presented using the following: the type of basing, the method of navigation during landing, the shape of the landing pad, the method of restoring the power supply module. The proposed algorithmic model of the operation of battery power maintenance system of the multi-copter on ground-based robotic platform during solving the target agrarian problem is described. Wireless methods of battery recovery are most promising, so further development and prototyping of a wireless charging station for multi-copter batteries will be developed.

  7. Unmanned aerial systems for photogrammetry and remote sensing: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colomina, I.; Molina, P.

    2014-06-01

    We discuss the evolution and state-of-the-art of the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) in the field of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (PaRS). UAS, Remotely-Piloted Aerial Systems, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or simply, drones are a hot topic comprising a diverse array of aspects including technology, privacy rights, safety and regulations, and even war and peace. Modern photogrammetry and remote sensing identified the potential of UAS-sourced imagery more than thirty years ago. In the last five years, these two sister disciplines have developed technology and methods that challenge the current aeronautical regulatory framework and their own traditional acquisition and processing methods. Navety and ingenuity have combined off-the-shelf, low-cost equipment with sophisticated computer vision, robotics and geomatic engineering. The results are cm-level resolution and accuracy products that can be generated even with cameras costing a few-hundred euros. In this review article, following a brief historic background and regulatory status analysis, we review the recent unmanned aircraft, sensing, navigation, orientation and general data processing developments for UAS photogrammetry and remote sensing with emphasis on the nano-micro-mini UAS segment.

  8. Mapping reflectance anisotropy of a potato canopy using aerial images acquired with an unmanned aerial vehicle

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roosjen, Peter; Suomalainen, Juha; Bartholomeus, Harm; Kooistra, Lammert; Clevers, Jan

    2017-01-01

    Viewing and illumination geometry has a strong influence on optical measurements of natural surfaces due to their anisotropic reflectance properties. Typically, cameras on-board unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are affected by this because of their relatively large field of view (FOV) and thus large

  9. Assessment of Photogrammetric Mapping Accuracy Based on Variation Flying Altitude Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Udin, W S; Ahmad, A

    2014-01-01

    Photogrammetry is the earliest technique used to collect data for topographic mapping. The recent development in aerial photogrammetry is the used of large format digital aerial camera for producing topographic map. The aerial photograph can be in the form of metric or non-metric imagery. The cost of mapping using aerial photogrammetry is very expensive. In certain application, there is a need to map small area with limited budget. Due to the development of technology, small format aerial photogrammetry technology has been introduced and offers many advantages. Currently, digital map can be extracted from digital aerial imagery of small format camera mounted on light weight platform such as unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). This study utilizes UAV system for large scale stream mapping. The first objective of this study is to investigate the use of light weight rotary-wing UAV for stream mapping based on different flying height. Aerial photograph were acquired at 60% forward lap and 30% sidelap specifications. Ground control points and check points were established using Total Station technique. The digital camera attached to the UAV was calibrated and the recovered camera calibration parameters were then used in the digital images processing. The second objective is to determine the accuracy of the photogrammetric output. In this study, the photogrammetric output such as stereomodel in three dimensional (3D), contour lines, digital elevation model (DEM) and orthophoto were produced from a small stream of 200m long and 10m width. The research output is evaluated for planimetry and vertical accuracy using root mean square error (RMSE). Based on the finding, sub-meter accuracy is achieved and the RMSE value decreases as the flying height increases. The difference is relatively small. Finally, this study shows that UAV is very useful platform for obtaining aerial photograph and subsequently used for photogrammetric mapping and other applications

  10. The Use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle for Geothermal Exploitation Monitoring: Khankala Field Example

    OpenAIRE

    Sergey V. Cherkasov; Anvar M. Farkhutdinov; Dmitriy P. Rykovanov; Arbi A. Shaipov

    2018-01-01

    The article is devoted to the use of unmanned aerial vehicle for geothermal waters exploitation monitoring. Development of a geothermal reservoir usually requires a system of wells, pipelines and pumping equipment and control of such a system is quite complicated. In this regard, use of unmanned aerial vehicle is relevant. Two test unmanned aerial vehicle based infrared surveys have been conducted at the Khankala field (Chechen Republic) with the Khankala geothermal plant operating at differe...

  11. Mathematical Modelling of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saeed Sarwar

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available UAVs (Unmanned Arial Vehicleis UAVs are emerging as requirement of time and it is expected that in next five to ten years, complete air space will be flooded with UAVs, committed in varied assignments ranging from military, scientific and commercial usage. Non availability of human pilot inside UAV necessitates the requirement of an onboard autopilot in order to maintain desired flight profile against any unexpected disturbance and/or parameter variations. Design of such an autopilot requires an accurate mathematical model of UAV. The aim of this paper is to present a consolidated picture of UAV model. This paper first consolidates complete 6 DOF Degree of Freedom equations of motion into a nonlinear mathematical model and its simulation using model parameters of a real UAV. Model is then linearized into longitudinal and lateral modes. State space models of linearized modes are simulated and analyzed for stability parameters. The developed model can be used to design autopilot for UAV

  12. Design of Autonomous Navigation Controllers for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Using Multi-Objective Genetic Programming

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Barlow, Gregory J

    2004-01-01

    Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have become increasingly popular for many applications, including search and rescue, surveillance, and electronic warfare, but almost all UAVs are controlled remotely by humans...

  13. Applicability of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Research on Aeolian Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Algimantas, Česnulevičius; Artūras, Bautrėnas; Linas, Bevainis; Donatas, Ovodas; Kęstutis, Papšys

    2018-02-01

    Surface dynamics and instabilities are characteristic of aeolian formation. The method of surface comparison is regarded as the most appropriate one for evaluation of the intensity of aeolian processes and the amount of transported sand. The data for surface comparison can be collected by topographic survey measurements and using unmanned aerial vehicles. Time cost for relief microform fixation and measurement executing topographic survey are very high. The method of unmanned aircraft aerial photographs fixation also encounters difficulties because there are no stable clear objects and contours that enable to link aerial photographs, to determine the boundaries of captured territory and to ensure the accuracy of surface measurements. Creation of stationary anchor points is irrational due to intense sand accumulation and deflation in different climate seasons. In September 2015 and in April 2016 the combined methodology was applied for evaluation of intensity of aeolian processes in the Curonian Spit. Temporary signs (marks) were installed on the surface, coordinates of the marks were fixed using GPS and then flight of unmanned aircraft was conducted. The fixed coordinates of marks ensure the accuracy of measuring aerial imagery and the ability to calculate the possible corrections. This method was used to track and measure very small (micro-rank) relief forms (5-10 cm height and 10-20 cm length). Using this method morphometric indicators of micro-terraces caused by sand dunes pressure to gytia layer were measured in a non-contact way. An additional advantage of the method is the ability to accurately link the repeated measurements. The comparison of 3D terrain models showed sand deflation and accumulation areas and quantitative changes in the terrain very clearly.

  14. Structural and Functional Connectivity from Unmanned-Aerial System Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masselink, Rens; Heckmann, Tobias; Casalí, Javier; Giménez, Rafael; Cerdá, Artemi; Keesstra, Saskia

    2017-04-01

    Over the past decade there has been an increase in both connectivity research and research involving Unmanned-Aerial systems (UASs). In some studies, UASs were successfully used for the assessment of connectivity, but not yet to their full potential. We present several ways to use data obtained from UASs to measure variables related to connectivity, and use these to assess both structural and functional connectivity. These assessments of connectivity can aid us in obtaining a better understanding of the dynamics of e.g. sediment and nutrient transport. We identify three sources of data obtained from a consumer camera mounted on a fixed-wing UAS, which can be used separately or combined: Visual and near-infrared imagery, point clouds, and digital elevation models (DEMs). Imagery (or: orthophotos) can be used for (automatic) mapping of connectivity features like rills, gullies and soil and water conservation measures using supervised or unsupervised classification methods with e.g. Object-Based Image Analysis. Furthermore, patterns of soil moisture in the top layers can be extracted from visual and near-infrared imagery. Point clouds can be analysed for vegetation height and density, and soil surface roughness. Lastly, DEMs can be used in combination with imagery for a number of tasks, including raster-based (e.g. DEM derivatives) and object-based (e.g., feature detection) analysis: Flow routing algorithms can be used to analyse potential pathways of surface runoff and sediment transport. This allows for the assessment of structural connectivity through indices that are based, for example, on morphometric and other properties of surfaces, contributing areas, and pathways. Third, erosion and deposition can be measured by calculating elevation changes from repeat surveys. From these "intermediate" variables like roughness, vegetation density and soil moisture, structural connectivity and functional connectivity can be assessed by combining them into a dynamic index of

  15. Synthesis of the unmanned aerial vehicle remote control augmentation system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tomczyk, Andrzej

    2014-01-01

    Medium size Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) usually flies as an autonomous aircraft including automatic take-off and landing phases. However in the case of the on-board control system failure, the remote steering is using as an emergency procedure. In this reason, remote manual control of unmanned aerial vehicle is used more often during take-of and landing phases. Depends on UAV take-off mass and speed (total energy) the potential crash can be very danger for airplane and environment. So, handling qualities of UAV is important from pilot-operator point of view. In many cases the dynamic properties of remote controlling UAV are not suitable for obtaining the desired properties of the handling qualities. In this case the control augmentation system (CAS) should be applied. Because the potential failure of the on-board control system, the better solution is that the CAS algorithms are placed on the ground station computers. The method of UAV handling qualities shaping in the case of basic control system failure is presented in this paper. The main idea of this method is that UAV reaction on the operator steering signals should be similar - almost the same - as reaction of the 'ideal' remote control aircraft. The model following method was used for controller parameters calculations. The numerical example concerns the medium size MP-02A UAV applied as an aerial observer system

  16. Synthesis of the unmanned aerial vehicle remote control augmentation system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tomczyk, Andrzej, E-mail: A.Tomczyk@prz.edu.pl [Department of Avionics and Control Systems, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Aeronautics, Rzeszów University of Technology, Al. Powstañców Warszawy 12, 35-959 Rzeszów (Poland)

    2014-12-10

    Medium size Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) usually flies as an autonomous aircraft including automatic take-off and landing phases. However in the case of the on-board control system failure, the remote steering is using as an emergency procedure. In this reason, remote manual control of unmanned aerial vehicle is used more often during take-of and landing phases. Depends on UAV take-off mass and speed (total energy) the potential crash can be very danger for airplane and environment. So, handling qualities of UAV is important from pilot-operator point of view. In many cases the dynamic properties of remote controlling UAV are not suitable for obtaining the desired properties of the handling qualities. In this case the control augmentation system (CAS) should be applied. Because the potential failure of the on-board control system, the better solution is that the CAS algorithms are placed on the ground station computers. The method of UAV handling qualities shaping in the case of basic control system failure is presented in this paper. The main idea of this method is that UAV reaction on the operator steering signals should be similar - almost the same - as reaction of the 'ideal' remote control aircraft. The model following method was used for controller parameters calculations. The numerical example concerns the medium size MP-02A UAV applied as an aerial observer system.

  17. Safe Control for Spiral Recovery of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chang-Jian Ru

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available With unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs widely used in both military and civilian fields, many events affecting their safe flying have emerged. That UAV’s entering into the spiral is such a typical safety issue. To solve this safety problem, a novel recovery control approach is proposed. First, the factors of spiral are analyzed. Then, based on control scheduling of state variables and nonlinear dynamic inversion control laws, the spiral recovery controller is designed to accomplish guidance and control of spiral recovery. Finally, the simulation results have illustrated that the proposed control method can ensure the UAV autonomous recovery from spiral effectively.

  18. Fuel cells: a real option for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles propulsion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Espasandín, Óscar; Leo, Teresa J; Navarro-Arévalo, Emilio

    2014-01-01

    The possibility of implementing fuel cell technology in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) propulsion systems is considered. Potential advantages of the Proton Exchange Membrane or Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEMFC) and Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFC), their fuels (hydrogen and methanol), and their storage systems are revised from technical and environmental standpoints. Some operating commercial applications are described. Main constraints for these kinds of fuel cells are analyzed in order to elucidate the viability of future developments. Since the low power density is the main problem of fuel cells, hybridization with electric batteries, necessary in most cases, is also explored.

  19. Fuel Cells: A Real Option for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Propulsion

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    The possibility of implementing fuel cell technology in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) propulsion systems is considered. Potential advantages of the Proton Exchange Membrane or Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEMFC) and Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFC), their fuels (hydrogen and methanol), and their storage systems are revised from technical and environmental standpoints. Some operating commercial applications are described. Main constraints for these kinds of fuel cells are analyzed in order to elucidate the viability of future developments. Since the low power density is the main problem of fuel cells, hybridization with electric batteries, necessary in most cases, is also explored. PMID:24600326

  20. Fuel Cells: A Real Option for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Propulsion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Óscar González-Espasandín

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The possibility of implementing fuel cell technology in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV propulsion systems is considered. Potential advantages of the Proton Exchange Membrane or Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEMFC and Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFC, their fuels (hydrogen and methanol, and their storage systems are revised from technical and environmental standpoints. Some operating commercial applications are described. Main constraints for these kinds of fuel cells are analyzed in order to elucidate the viability of future developments. Since the low power density is the main problem of fuel cells, hybridization with electric batteries, necessary in most cases, is also explored.

  1. Validation of landfill methane measurements from an unmanned aerial system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Allen, Grant; Williams, Paul; Ricketts, hugo

    Landfill gas is made up of roughly equal amounts of methane and carbon dioxide. Modern UK landfills capture and use much of the methane gas as a fuel. But some methane escapes and is emitted to the atmosphere. Methane is an important greenhouse gas and controls on methane emissions are a part...... of international and national strategies to limit climate change. Better estimates of methane emissions from landfills and other similar sources would allow the UK to improve the quantification and control of greenhouse gas emissions. This project tested the accuracy of methane measurement using an unmanned aerial...

  2. Integrating Pavement Crack Detection and Analysis Using Autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-03-27

    INTEGRATING PAVEMENT CRACK DETECTION AND ANALYSIS USING AUTONOMOUS UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE...protection in the United States. AFIT-ENV-MS-15-M-195 INTEGRATING PAVEMENT CRACK DETECTION AND ANALYSIS USING AUTONOMOUS UNMANNED AERIAL...APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE; DISTRIBUTION UNLIMITED. AFIT-ENV-MS-15-M-195 INTEGRATING PAVEMENT CRACK DETECTION AND ANALYSIS USING AUTONOMOUS

  3. Use of Unmanned Aerial Assault Vehicles (UAAV) as an Asymmetric Factor

    OpenAIRE

    Eker, Alper Alpaslan; Sallar, Eray; Turan, Yasin

    2014-01-01

    In the 21st century, unmanned systems (especially unmanned aerial vehicles) will play a dominant role in the operational fields. Thanks to the technological developments witnessed in many fields, the use of unmanned aerial vehicles for military purposes is becoming easier. Looking at the operations carried out over the last 25 years, it can be seen that most were conducted in residential areas, where and techniques, tactics and equipment with asymmetric effects will make significant differenc...

  4. Reducing environmental damage through the use of unmanned aerial vehicles as the best available technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fedulova, E. A.; Akulov, A. O.; Rada, A. O.; Alabina, T. A.; Savina, Ju Ju

    2018-01-01

    The article examines the possibilities of using unmanned aerial vehicles as the best available technologies in the field of agriculture and mining. The object of the study is the use of unmanned aerial vehicles as the best available technology. The main areas of application of this technology are identified: agro technical operations, aerial photography of mining operations. The technology of unmanned aerial vehicles is compared with the technologies of ground agricultural machinery. The research methodology includes an expert evaluation of the unmanned aerial vehicle technology belonging to the class of the best available technologies by the criteria: the level of environmental impact, resource saving, the use of low-waste, non-waste processes, the existence of at least two objects, economic efficiency. Expert evaluations were processed using the apparatus of fuzzy sets, which make it possible to construct membership functions. This allowed us to prove that the technology of unmanned aerial vehicles belongs to a fuzzy set of the best available technologies. The results of the research show that the use of unmanned aerial vehicles provides a saving of resources, especially non-renewable combustible minerals, reduces emissions and discharges of pollutants into the atmosphere, and also reduces soil erosion. Unmanned aerial vehicles should be included in the national directories of the best available technologies for the mining industry and agriculture.

  5. The Application of Unmanned Rotary-Wing Aircraft in Tactical Logistics in Support of Joint Operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-13

    Reconnaissance Squadrons with a fixed-wing unmanned aircraft troop or company, and is in the market for an autonomous cargo unmanned rotary-wing...Warwick, Graham. “Sky Patrol.” Aviation Week & Space Technology 174, no. 32 (September 3, 2012): 55. Military & Government Collection, EBSCOhost

  6. Delayed Monocular SLAM Approach Applied to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munguia, Rodrigo; Urzua, Sarquis; Grau, Antoni

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, many researchers have addressed the issue of making Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) more and more autonomous. In this context, the state estimation of the vehicle position is a fundamental necessity for any application involving autonomy. However, the problem of position estimation could not be solved in some scenarios, even when a GPS signal is available, for instance, an application requiring performing precision manoeuvres in a complex environment. Therefore, some additional sensory information should be integrated into the system in order to improve accuracy and robustness. In this work, a novel vision-based simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) method with application to unmanned aerial vehicles is proposed. One of the contributions of this work is to design and develop a novel technique for estimating features depth which is based on a stochastic technique of triangulation. In the proposed method the camera is mounted over a servo-controlled gimbal that counteracts the changes in attitude of the quadcopter. Due to the above assumption, the overall problem is simplified and it is focused on the position estimation of the aerial vehicle. Also, the tracking process of visual features is made easier due to the stabilized video. Another contribution of this work is to demonstrate that the integration of very noisy GPS measurements into the system for an initial short period of time is enough to initialize the metric scale. The performance of this proposed method is validated by means of experiments with real data carried out in unstructured outdoor environments. A comparative study shows that, when compared with related methods, the proposed approach performs better in terms of accuracy and computational time.

  7. Delayed Monocular SLAM Approach Applied to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Munguia

    Full Text Available In recent years, many researchers have addressed the issue of making Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs more and more autonomous. In this context, the state estimation of the vehicle position is a fundamental necessity for any application involving autonomy. However, the problem of position estimation could not be solved in some scenarios, even when a GPS signal is available, for instance, an application requiring performing precision manoeuvres in a complex environment. Therefore, some additional sensory information should be integrated into the system in order to improve accuracy and robustness. In this work, a novel vision-based simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM method with application to unmanned aerial vehicles is proposed. One of the contributions of this work is to design and develop a novel technique for estimating features depth which is based on a stochastic technique of triangulation. In the proposed method the camera is mounted over a servo-controlled gimbal that counteracts the changes in attitude of the quadcopter. Due to the above assumption, the overall problem is simplified and it is focused on the position estimation of the aerial vehicle. Also, the tracking process of visual features is made easier due to the stabilized video. Another contribution of this work is to demonstrate that the integration of very noisy GPS measurements into the system for an initial short period of time is enough to initialize the metric scale. The performance of this proposed method is validated by means of experiments with real data carried out in unstructured outdoor environments. A comparative study shows that, when compared with related methods, the proposed approach performs better in terms of accuracy and computational time.

  8. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) data analysis for fertilization dose assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kavvadias, Antonis; Psomiadis, Emmanouil; Chanioti, Maroulio; Tsitouras, Alexandros; Toulios, Leonidas; Dercas, Nicholas

    2017-10-01

    The growth rate monitoring of crops throughout their biological cycle is very important as it contributes to the achievement of a uniformly optimum production, a proper harvest planning, and reliable yield estimation. Fertilizer application often dramatically increases crop yields, but it is necessary to find out which is the ideal amount that has to be applied in the field. Remote sensing collects spatially dense information that may contribute to, or provide feedback about, fertilization management decisions. There is a potential goal to accurately predict the amount of fertilizer needed so as to attain an ideal crop yield without excessive use of fertilizers cause financial loss and negative environmental impacts. The comparison of the reflectance values at different wavelengths, utilizing suitable vegetation indices, is commonly used to determine plant vigor and growth. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) have several advantages; because they can be deployed quickly and repeatedly, they are flexible regarding flying height and timing of missions, and they can obtain very high-resolution imagery. In an experimental crop field in Eleftherio Larissa, Greece, different dose of pre-plant and in-season fertilization was applied in 27 plots. A total of 102 aerial photos in two flights were taken using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle based on the scheduled fertilization. Α correlation of experimental fertilization with the change of vegetation indices values and with the increase of the vegetation cover rate during those days was made. The results of the analysis provide useful information regarding the vigor and crop growth rate performance of various doses of fertilization.

  9. Use of unmanned aerial vehicles for efficient beach litter monitoring

    KAUST Repository

    Martin, Cecilia

    2018-05-05

    A global beach litter assessment is challenged by use of low-efficiency methodologies and incomparable protocols that impede data integration and acquisition at a national scale. The implementation of an objective, reproducible and efficient approach is therefore required. Here we show the application of a remote sensing based methodology using a test beach located on the Saudi Arabian Red Sea coastline. Litter was recorded via image acquisition from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, while an automatic processing of the high volume of imagery was developed through machine learning, employed for debris detection and classification in three categories. Application of the method resulted in an almost 40 times faster beach coverage when compared to a standard visual-census approach. While the machine learning tool faced some challenges in correctly detecting objects of interest, first classification results are promising and motivate efforts to further develop the technique and implement it at much larger scales.

  10. Artificial guide stars for adaptive optics using unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basden, A. G.; Brown, Anthony M.; Chadwick, P. M.; Clark, P.; Massey, R.

    2018-06-01

    Astronomical adaptive optics (AO) systems are used to increase effective telescope resolution. However, they cannot be used to observe the whole sky since one or more natural guide stars of sufficient brightness must be found within the telescope field of view for the AO system to work. Even when laser guide stars are used, natural guide stars are still required to provide a constant position reference. Here, we introduce a technique to overcome this problem by using rotary unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as a platform from which to produce artificial guide stars. We describe the concept that relies on the UAV being able to measure its precise relative position. We investigate the AO performance improvements that can be achieved, which in the cases presented here can improve the Strehl ratio by a factor of at least 2 for a 8 m class telescope. We also discuss improvements to this technique, which is relevant to both astronomical and solar AO systems.

  11. Detection of unmanned aerial vehicles using a visible camera system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Shuowen; Goldman, Geoffrey H; Borel-Donohue, Christoph C

    2017-01-20

    Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) flown by adversaries are an emerging asymmetric threat to homeland security and the military. To help address this threat, we developed and tested a computationally efficient UAV detection algorithm consisting of horizon finding, motion feature extraction, blob analysis, and coherence analysis. We compare the performance of this algorithm against two variants, one using the difference image intensity as the motion features and another using higher-order moments. The proposed algorithm and its variants are tested using field test data of a group 3 UAV acquired with a panoramic video camera in the visible spectrum. The performance of the algorithms was evaluated using receiver operating characteristic curves. The results show that the proposed approach had the best performance compared to the two algorithmic variants.

  12. Use of unmanned aerial vehicles for medical product transport.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thiels, Cornelius A; Aho, Johnathon M; Zietlow, Scott P; Jenkins, Donald H

    2015-01-01

    Advances in technology and decreasing costs have led to an increased use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) by the military and civilian sectors. The use of UAVs in commerce is restricted by US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations, but the FAA is drafting new regulations that are expected to expand commercial applications. Currently, the transportation of medical goods in times of critical need is limited to wheeled motor vehicles and manned aircraft, options that can be costly and slow. This article explores the demand for, feasibility of, and risks associated with the use of UAVs to deliver medical products, including blood derivatives and pharmaceuticals, to hospitals, mass casualty scenes, and offshore vessels in times of critical demand. Copyright © 2015 Air Medical Journal Associates. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Mission control of multiple unmanned aerial vehicles: a workload analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dixon, Stephen R; Wickens, Christopher D; Chang, Dervon

    2005-01-01

    With unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), 36 licensed pilots flew both single-UAV and dual-UAV simulated military missions. Pilots were required to navigate each UAV through a series of mission legs in one of the following three conditions: a baseline condition, an auditory autoalert condition, and an autopilot condition. Pilots were responsible for (a) mission completion, (b) target search, and (c) systems monitoring. Results revealed that both the autoalert and the autopilot automation improved overall performance by reducing task interference and alleviating workload. The autoalert system benefited performance both in the automated task and mission completion task, whereas the autopilot system benefited performance in the automated task, the mission completion task, and the target search task. Practical implications for the study include the suggestion that reliable automation can help alleviate task interference and reduce workload, thereby allowing pilots to better handle concurrent tasks during single- and multiple-UAV flight control.

  14. FUZZY-GENETIC CONTROL OF QUADROTOR UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Attila Nemes

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available This article presents a novel fuzzy identification method for dynamic modelling of quadrotor unmanned aerial vehicles. The method is based on a special parameterization of the antecedent part of fuzzy systems that results in fuzzy-partitions for antecedents. This antecedent parameter representation method of fuzzy rules ensures upholding of predefined linguistic value ordering and ensures that fuzzy-partitions remain intact throughout an unconstrained hybrid evolutionary and gradient descent based optimization process. In the equations of motion the first order derivative component is calculated based on Christoffel symbols, the derivatives of fuzzy systems are used for modelling the Coriolis effects, gyroscopic and centrifugal terms. The non-linear parameters are subjected to an initial global evolutionary optimization scheme and fine tuning with gradient descent based local search. Simulation results of the proposed new quadrotor dynamic model identification method are promising.

  15. Estimating plant distance in maize using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jinshui; Basso, Bruno; Price, Richard F; Putman, Gregory; Shuai, Guanyuan

    2018-01-01

    Distance between rows and plants are essential parameters that affect the final grain yield in row crops. This paper presents the results of research intended to develop a novel method to quantify the distance between maize plants at field scale using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). Using this method, we can recognize maize plants as objects and calculate the distance between plants. We initially developed our method by training an algorithm in an indoor facility with plastic corn plants. Then, the method was scaled up and tested in a farmer's field with maize plant spacing that exhibited natural variation. The results of this study demonstrate that it is possible to precisely quantify the distance between maize plants. We found that accuracy of the measurement of the distance between maize plants depended on the height above ground level at which UAV imagery was taken. This study provides an innovative approach to quantify plant-to-plant variability and, thereby final crop yield estimates.

  16. Flight envelope protection system for unmanned aerial vehicles

    KAUST Repository

    Claudel, Christian G.

    2016-04-28

    Systems and methods to protect the flight envelope in both manual flight and flight by a commercial autopilot are provided. A system can comprise: an inertial measurement unit (IMU); a computing device in data communication with the IMU; an application executable by the computing device comprising: logic that estimates an angle of attack; a slip angle; and a speed of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) based at least in part on data received from the UAV. A method can comprise estimating, via a computing device, flight data of a UAV based at least in part on data received from an IMU; comparing the estimated flight data with measured flight data; and triggering an error indication in response to a determination that the measured flight data exceeds a predefined deviation of the estimated flight data. The estimated speed can comprise an estimated airspeed, vertical speed and/or ground velocity.

  17. Small catchments DEM creation using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gafurov, A. M.

    2018-01-01

    Digital elevation models (DEM) are an important source of information on the terrain, allowing researchers to evaluate various exogenous processes. The higher the accuracy of DEM the better the level of the work possible. An important source of data for the construction of DEMs are point clouds obtained with terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV). In this paper, we present the results of constructing a DEM on small catchments using UAVs. Estimation of the UAV DEM showed comparable accuracy with the TLS if real time kinematic Global Positioning System (RTK-GPS) ground control points (GCPs) and check points (CPs) were used. In this case, the main source of errors in the construction of DEMs are the errors in the referencing of survey results.

  18. Recent advances in research on unmanned aerial vehicles

    CERN Document Server

    Wang, Le; Yin, George

    2013-01-01

    A team of launched and coordinated Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), requires advanced technologies in sensing, communication, computing, and control to improve their intelligence and robustness towards autonomous operations. To enhance reliability, robustness, and mission capability of a team of UAVs, a system-oriented and holistic approach is desirable in which all components and subsystems are considered in terms of their roles and impact on the entire system.  This volume aims to summarize the recent progress, identify challenges and opportunities, and develop new methodologies and systems on coordinated UAV control. A group of experts working in this area have contributed to this volume in several related aspects of autonomous control of networked UAVs. Their papers introduce new control methodologies, algorithms, and systems that address several important issues in developing intelligent, autonomous or semi-autonomous, networked systems for the next generation of UAVs. The papers share a common focus on...

  19. A new robust control for minirotorcraft unmanned aerial vehicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mokhtari, M Rida; Cherki, Brahim

    2015-05-01

    This paper presents a new robust control based on finite-time Lyapunov stability controller and proved with backstepping method for the position and the attitude of a small rotorcraft unmanned aerial vehicle subjected to bounded uncertainties and disturbances. The dynamical motion equations are obtained by the Newton-Euler formalism. The proposed controller combines the advantage of the backstepping approach with finite-time convergence techniques to generate a control laws to guarantee the faster convergence of the state variables to their desired values in short time and compensate for the bounded disturbances. A formal proof of the closed-loop stability and finite-time convergence of tracking errors is derived using the Lyapunov function technique. Simulation results are presented to corroborate the effectiveness and the robustness of the proposed control method. Copyright © 2014 ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Use of unmanned aerial vehicles for efficient beach litter monitoring

    KAUST Repository

    Martin, Cecilia; Parkes, Stephen; Zhang, Qiannan; Zhang, Xiangliang; McCabe, Matthew; Duarte, Carlos M.

    2018-01-01

    A global beach litter assessment is challenged by use of low-efficiency methodologies and incomparable protocols that impede data integration and acquisition at a national scale. The implementation of an objective, reproducible and efficient approach is therefore required. Here we show the application of a remote sensing based methodology using a test beach located on the Saudi Arabian Red Sea coastline. Litter was recorded via image acquisition from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, while an automatic processing of the high volume of imagery was developed through machine learning, employed for debris detection and classification in three categories. Application of the method resulted in an almost 40 times faster beach coverage when compared to a standard visual-census approach. While the machine learning tool faced some challenges in correctly detecting objects of interest, first classification results are promising and motivate efforts to further develop the technique and implement it at much larger scales.

  1. Concept development of control system for perspective unmanned aerial vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koryanov Vsevolod V.

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Presented actual aspects of the development of the control system of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs in the example of perspective. Because the current and future UAV oriented to implementation of a wide range of tasks, taking into account the use of several types of payload, in this paper discusses the general principles of construction of onboard control complex, in turn, a hardware implementation of the automatic control system has been implemented in the microcontroller Arduino platform and the Raspberry Pi. In addition, in the paper presents the most common and promising way to ensure the smooth and reliable communication of the command post with the UAV as well as to the ways of parry considered and abnormal situations.

  2. Targeted Applications of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (Drones) in Telemedicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhatt, Kunj; Pourmand, Ali; Sikka, Neal

    2018-02-28

    Advances in technology have revolutionized the medical field and changed the way healthcare is delivered. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are the next wave of technological advancements that have the potential to make a huge splash in clinical medicine. UAVs, originally developed for military use, are making their way into the public and private sector. Because they can be flown autonomously and can reach almost any geographical location, the significance of UAVs are becoming increasingly apparent in the medical field. We conducted a comprehensive review of the English language literature via the PubMed and Google Scholar databases using search terms "unmanned aerial vehicles," "UAVs," and "drone." Preference was given to clinical trials and review articles that addressed the keywords and clinical medicine. Potential applications of UAVs in medicine are broad. Based on articles identified, we grouped UAV application in medicine into three categories: (1) Prehospital Emergency Care; (2) Expediting Laboratory Diagnostic Testing; and (3) Surveillance. Currently, UAVs have been shown to deliver vaccines, automated external defibrillators, and hematological products. In addition, they are also being studied in the identification of mosquito habitats as well as drowning victims at beaches as a public health surveillance modality. These preliminary studies shine light on the possibility that UAVs may help to increase access to healthcare for patients who may be otherwise restricted from proper care due to cost, distance, or infrastructure. As with any emerging technology and due to the highly regulated healthcare environment, the safety and effectiveness of this technology need to be thoroughly discussed. Despite the many questions that need to be answered, the application of drones in medicine appears to be promising and can both increase the quality and accessibility of healthcare.

  3. UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES IN THE NAVY: ITS BENEFITS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    GONÇALO CASTANHEIRA ROSA

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Military investment in UAV research, systems, and applied technologies is increasing, and potential uses for UAVs in civil and military operations are in development. These developments, along with growing scientific interest in UAVs, are fueling commercial interest in the unmanned market. The growing enthusiasm for UAVs is not unfounded. The vehicles offer a unique range of features, most notably ultra-long endurance and high-risk mission acceptance, which cannot be reasonably performed by manned aircraft. Coupled with advances in automation and sensor technologies, and the potential for costs savings, it is understandable that interest in and demand for UAVs is on the rise. Organizations like the Navy have all the benefits to accompany the technological evolution that every day surprises and surpasses us. An introduction or technological evolution that this kind of organizations has already begun to implement is the autonomous vehicles as a mean to an end. This paper describes and lists the advantages of the introduction of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in an organization like the navy and also the missions that such robots can perform and optimize.

  4. ROLE OF UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES IN PRECISION FARMING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Genadiy Yun

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: By 2050, world population will exceed 9 billion people. According to some projections to feed the world's population, the agricultural sector must increase production by 70%. The number of resources suitable for use in agriculture - land, water, energy - will decline. Here the farmers have to rely primarily on support of new technologies that not only increase production with limited resources, but also improve its effectiveness. Increased yields in crop production - a strategic task for Ukraine. Discussion: The object of research is the comparative analysis of the market of production and export of wheat in leading countries of the world is carried out. As well as advanced direction of crop capacity increasing in agriculture with help of Unmanned Aviation System is considered. Results: Practice shows that rural aircraft exceeds the performance processing ground equipment several times. It allows you to quickly carry out crops and their processing by pesticides, toxic chemicals, to make fertilizer, to monitor. The use of modern unmanned aerial vehicles will extend the benefits of small aircraft.

  5. Model identification of a flapping wing micro aerial vehicle

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aguiar Vieira Caetano, J.V.

    2016-01-01

    Different flapping wing micro aerial vehicles (FWMAV) have been developed for academic (Harvard’s RoboBee), military (Israel Aerospace Industries’ Butterfly) and technology demonstration (Aerovironment’s NanoHummingBird) purposes. Among these, theDelFly II is recognized as one of themost successful

  6. Wageningen UR Unmanned Aerial Remote Sensing Facility - Overview of activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartholomeus, Harm; Keesstra, Saskia; Kooistra, Lammert; Suomalainen, Juha; Mucher, Sander; Kramer, Henk; Franke, Jappe

    2016-04-01

    To support environmental management there is an increasing need for timely, accurate and detailed information on our land. Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) are increasingly used to monitor agricultural crop development, habitat quality or urban heat efficiency. An important reason is that UAS technology is maturing quickly while the flexible capabilities of UAS fill a gap between satellite based and ground based geo-sensing systems. In 2012, different groups within Wageningen University and Research Centre have established an Unmanned Airborne Remote Sensing Facility. The objective of this facility is threefold: a) To develop innovation in the field of remote sensing science by providing a platform for dedicated and high-quality experiments; b) To support high quality UAS services by providing calibration facilities and disseminating processing procedures to the UAS user community; and c) To promote and test the use of UAS in a broad range of application fields like habitat monitoring, precision agriculture and land degradation assessment. The facility is hosted by the Laboratory of Geo-Information Science and Remote Sensing (GRS) and the Department of Soil Physics and Land Management (SLM) of Wageningen University together with the team Earth Informatics (EI) of Alterra. The added value of the Unmanned Aerial Remote Sensing Facility is that compared to for example satellite based remote sensing more dedicated science experiments can be prepared. This includes for example higher frequent observations in time (e.g., diurnal observations), observations of an object under different observation angles for characterization of BRDF and flexibility in use of camera's and sensors types. In this way, laboratory type of set ups can be tested in a field situation and effects of up-scaling can be tested. In the last years we developed and implemented different camera systems (e.g. a hyperspectral pushbroom system, and multispectral frame cameras) which we operated in projects all

  7. Mathematical Modelling of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles with Four Rotors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zoran Benić

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Mathematical model of an unmanned aerial vehicle with four propulsors (quadcopter is indispensable in quadcopter movement simulation and later modelling of the control algorithm. Mathematical model is, at the same time, the first step in comprehending the mathematical principles and physical laws which are applied to the quadcopter system. The objective is to define the mathematical model which will describe the quadcopter behavior with satisfactory accuracy and which can be, with certain modifications, applicable for the similar configurations of multirotor aerial vehicles. At the beginning of mathematical model derivation, coordinate systems are defined and explained. By using those coordinate systems, relations between parameters defined in the earth coordinate system and in the body coordinate system are defined. Further, the quadcopter kinematic is described which enables setting those relations. Also, quadcopter dynamics is used to introduce forces and torques to the model through usage of Newton-Euler method. Final derived equation is Newton’s second law in the matrix notation. For the sake of model simplification, hybrid coordinate system is defined, and quadcopter dynamic equations derived with the respect to it. Those equations are implemented in the simulation. Results of behavior of quadcopter mathematical model are graphically shown for four cases. For each of the cases the propellers revolutions per minute (RPM are set in a way that results in the occurrence of the controllable variables which causes one of four basic quadcopter movements in space.

  8. Development Of Translational Motion Of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Using MATLAB

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thwe Thwe Htoo

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available This research work describes the translational motion analysis of unmanned aerial vehicle UAV. Since the center of mass of the receiver is timevarying the equations are written in a reference frame that is geometrically fixed in the aircraft. Due to the fact that aerial vehicle simulation and control deal with the position and orientation of the UAV the equations of motion are derived in terms of the translational and rotational position and velocity with respect to the aircraft location. The formation relative motion control is a challenging problem due to the coupled translational and rotational dynamics. As the translational vector depends on the current attitude and its angular velocity and some of the attitude constraints also couple the position and attitude of the spacecraft it makes the formation control problem high dimensional. This work develops UAV stability conditions including translational vector maneuverability condition and included angle condition between the translational and the rotational motion of UAV system and then presents two methods to calculate the UAV attitude. Both of the two methods need first design the optimal trajectory of the translational vector and then use geometric and nonlinear programming methods to calculate the target trajectory. The validity of the proposed approach is demonstrated in a UAV by using MATLAB. The performance of the translational motion control is evaluated by the simulated results.

  9. Fuzzy C-Means Algorithm for Segmentation of Aerial Photography Data Obtained Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akinin, M. V.; Akinina, N. V.; Klochkov, A. Y.; Nikiforov, M. B.; Sokolova, A. V.

    2015-05-01

    The report reviewed the algorithm fuzzy c-means, performs image segmentation, give an estimate of the quality of his work on the criterion of Xie-Beni, contain the results of experimental studies of the algorithm in the context of solving the problem of drawing up detailed two-dimensional maps with the use of unmanned aerial vehicles. According to the results of the experiment concluded that the possibility of applying the algorithm in problems of decoding images obtained as a result of aerial photography. The considered algorithm can significantly break the original image into a plurality of segments (clusters) in a relatively short period of time, which is achieved by modification of the original k-means algorithm to work in a fuzzy task.

  10. Conceptual Approach to Utilisation of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Diverse Activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jelena Ćosić Lesičar

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper considers current situation and development of software for group of mobile agents applicable on group of unmanned aerial vehicles. Generally, unmanned aerial vehicles are used for transfer of information, mass and energy and their group work enhances their success rate in comparison with the success rate of the use of a single unmanned aerial vehicle. Despite the constant daily use, their potential is realized only in a small portion. It is argued that software development is the natural further step in achieving considerably larger portion of realizations of their potential of groups of unmanned aerial vehicles. Starting requirements that such software must fulfill are rudimentariness of the code, openness regarding number of group members and closeness regarding information exchange. Prospective directions of development of that software are analyzed.

  11. 2017 NOAA/OCM Unmanned Aerial System Lidar: Grand Bay NERR

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Quantum Spatial (QSI) and PrecisionHawk (PH) collected lidar for test sites within the Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) using an unmanned aerial...

  12. Swarming Reconnaissance Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in a Parallel Discrete Event Simulation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Corner, Joshua

    2004-01-01

    .... Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) are one answer to this military requirement. Technology in the UAV arena is moving toward smaller and more capable systems and is becoming available at a fraction of the cost...

  13. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles: Progress Toward Meeting High Altitude Endurance Aircraft Price Goals

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    1998-01-01

    ...) High Altitude Endurance (HAE) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) program to determine whether the average flyaway cost for the Global Hawk and DarkStar HAE alr vehicles will be within DOD's cost goal...

  14. Regulation of Unmanned Aerial Systems and Related Privacy Issues in Lithuania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pūraitė Aurelija

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available In the past few years the use of unmanned aerial vehicles in Lithuania has significantly increased. However, enjoying the advantages of this technology, which improves society’s socio-economical safety (public safety in a broad sense, raises some privacy concerns. This article analyses European Union and national legal regulations regarding the use of unmanned aerial vehicles as well as legal tools for defence of the right to privacy or prevention from its breaches in the Republic of Lithuania. Unmanned aerial vehicles have become popular only recently; thus, legislation regarding their use has not yet become a common topic among lawyers. Furthermore, case law of the Republic of Lithuania is silent about it. Thus, the authors model a situation of breach of privacy using an unmanned aerial vehicle and analyse possible defence mechanisms.

  15. Determination of OB/OD/SF Emission Factors Using Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    A presentation to the Demilitarization Symposium. This proposal will present the methods of tethered aerostat and unmanned aerial system for collection of plume samples and determination of emission factors form open burning, open detonation, and static firing for weapon demilita...

  16. Analysis of the Vertical Takeoff and Landing Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (VTUAV) in Small Unit Urban Operations

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Cason, Roman

    2004-01-01

    ...) to replace the aging Pioneer Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) system. This thesis examines the critical elements this platform must possess to effectively support small units operating in urban environments...

  17. 2017 NOAA/OCM Unmanned Aerial System Lidar DEM: Grand Bay NERR

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Quantum Spatial (QSI) and PrecisionHawk (PH) collected lidar for test sites within the Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) using an unmanned aerial...

  18. A lightweight hyperspectral mapping system and photogrammetric processing chain for unmanned aerial vehicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Suomalainen, J.M.; Anders, N.S.; Iqbal, S.; Roerink, G.J.; Franke, G.J.; Wenting, P.F.M.; Hünniger, D.; Bartholomeus, H.; Becker, R.; Kooistra, L.

    2014-01-01

    During the last years commercial hyperspectral imaging sensors have been miniaturized and their performance has been demonstrated on Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV). However currently the commercial hyperspectral systems still require minimum payload capacity of approximately 3 kg, forcing usage of

  19. The Rise of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and its Effect on Manned Tactical Aviation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Meger, James P

    2006-01-01

    Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are not new concepts. Their history dates back to the Civil War with hot air balloons and has evolved into a crucial combat tool for commanders in the modern battlespace...

  20. Unmanned aerial complexes as a way of NPP and environment radiation monitoring

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Babak, V.P.; Kanchenko, V.A.; Klyuchnikov, A.A.; Krasnov, V.A.; Chepur, N.L.

    2012-01-01

    As a example of the using of unmanned aircraft for video monitoring and radiation background measurement in the accident area at the NPP Fukushima -1 are shown the efficiency of its use. The analyse of possible environmental monitoring remotely piloted ultralight unmanned aerial vehicle are carried out

  1. Application of lightweight materials in structure concept design of large-scale solar energy unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wei; Lv, Shengli; Guan, XiQi

    2017-09-01

    Carbon fiber composites and film materials can be effectively used in light aircraft structures, especially for solar unmanned aerial vehicles. The use of light materials can reduce the weight of the aircraft, but also can effectively improve the aircraft's strength and stiffness. The structure of the large aspect ratio solar energy UAV was analyzed in detail, taking Solar-impulse solar aircraft as an example. The solar energy UAV has a wing aspect ratio greater than 20, and the detailed digital model of the wing structure including beam, ribs and skin was built, also the Finite Element Method was applied to analyze the static and dynamic performance of the structure. The upper skin of the wing is covered with silicon solar cells, while the lower skin is light and transparent film. The single beam truss form of carbon fiber lightweight material is used in the wing structure. The wing beam is a box beam with rectangular cross sections. The box beam connected the front parts and after parts of the ribs together. The fuselage of the aircraft was built by space truss structure. According to the static and dynamic analysis with Finite Element method, it was found that the aircraft has a small wingtip deflection relative to the wingspan in the level flight state. The first natural frequency of the wing structure is pretty low, which is closed to the gust load.

  2. A hybrid system approach to airspeed, angle of attack and sideslip estimation in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    KAUST Repository

    Shaqura, Mohammad

    2015-06-01

    Fixed wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) are an increasingly common sensing platform, owing to their key advantages: speed, endurance and ability to explore remote areas. While these platforms are highly efficient, they cannot easily be equipped with air data sensors commonly found on their larger scale manned counterparts. Indeed, such sensors are bulky, expensive and severely reduce the payload capability of the UAVs. In consequence, UAV controllers (humans or autopilots) have little information on the actual mode of operation of the wing (normal, stalled, spin) which can cause catastrophic losses of control when flying in turbulent weather conditions. In this article, we propose a real-time air parameter estimation scheme that can run on commercial, low power autopilots in real-time. The computational method is based on a hybrid decomposition of the modes of operation of the UAV. A Bayesian approach is considered for estimation, in which the estimated airspeed, angle of attack and sideslip are described statistically. An implementation on a UAV is presented, and the performance and computational efficiency of this method are validated using hardware in the loop (HIL) simulation and experimental flight data and compared with classical Extended Kalman Filter estimation. Our benchmark tests shows that this method is faster than EKF by up to two orders of magnitude. © 2015 IEEE.

  3. Autonomous, Safe Take-Off and Landing Operations for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in the National Airspace, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) have the potential to significantly impact modern society. While the technology for unmanned air vehicles operating day in and day out...

  4. Unmanned Aerial Systems for Monitoring Trace Tropospheric Gases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Travis J. Schuyler

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs has changed the composition of the atmosphere during the Anthropocene. Accurately documenting the sources and magnitude of GHGs emission is an important undertaking for discriminating the contributions of different processes to radiative forcing. Currently there is no mobile platform that is able to quantify trace gases at altitudes <100 m above ground level that can achieve spatiotemporal resolution on the order of meters and seconds. Unmanned aerial systems (UASs can be deployed on-site in minutes and can support the payloads necessary to quantify trace gases. Therefore, current efforts combine the use of UASs available on the civilian market with inexpensively designed analytical systems for monitoring atmospheric trace gases. In this context, this perspective introduces the most relevant classes of UASs available and evaluates their suitability to operate three kinds of detectors for atmospheric trace gases. The three subsets of UASs discussed are: (1 micro aerial vehicles (MAVs; (2 vertical take-off and landing (VTOL; and, (3 low-altitude short endurance (LASE systems. The trace gas detectors evaluated are first the vertical cavity surface emitting laser (VCSEL, which is an infrared laser-absorption technique; second two types of metal-oxide semiconductor sensors; and, third a modified catalytic type sensor. UASs with wingspans under 3 m that can carry up to 5 kg a few hundred meters high for at least 30 min provide the best cost and convenience compromise for sensors deployment. Future efforts should be focused on the calibration and validation of lightweight analytical systems mounted on UASs for quantifying trace atmospheric gases. In conclusion, UASs offer new and exciting opportunities to study atmospheric composition and its effect on weather patterns and climate change.

  5. Effects of Hearing Protection Device Attenuation on Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Audio Signatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-03-01

    UAV ) Audio Signatures by Melissa Bezandry, Adrienne Raglin, and John Noble Approved for public release; distribution...Research Laboratory Effects of Hearing Protection Device Attenuation on Unmanned Aerial Vehicle ( UAV ) Audio Signatures by Melissa Bezandry...Aerial Vehicle ( UAV ) Audio Signatures 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) Melissa Bezandry

  6. Kinetic scrolling-based position mapping for haptic teleoperation of unmanned aerial vehicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ruesch, A.; Mersha, A.Y.; Stramigioli, Stefano; Carloni, Raffaella

    In this paper, we present a haptic teleoperation control algorithm for unmanned aerial vehicles, applying a kinetic scrolling-based position mapping. The proposed algorithm overcomes the master workspace limitations and enables to teleoperate the aerial vehicle in unbounded workspace in a fast and

  7. A Simple Aerial Photogrammetric Mapping System Overview and Image Acquisition Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenang Anurogo

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Aerial photogrammetry is one of the Alternative technologies for more detailed data, real time, fast and cheaper. Nowadays, many photogrammetric mapping methods have used UAV / unmanned drones or drones to retrieve and record data from an object in the earth. The application of drones in the field of geospatial science today is in great demand because of its relatively easy operation and relatively affordable cost compared to satellite systems especially high - resolution satellite imagery.  This research aims to determine the stage or overview of data retrieval process with DJI Phantom 4 (multi - rotor quad - copter drone with processing using third party software. This research also produces 2 - dimensional high resolution image data on the research area. Utilization of third party software (Agisoft PhotoScan making it easier to acquire and process aerial photogrammetric data. The results of aerial photogrammetric recording with a flying altitude of 70 meters obtained high resolution images with a spatial resolution of 2 inches / pixels.

  8. Survey on the novel hybrid aquatic-aerial amphibious aircraft: Aquatic unmanned aerial vehicle (AquaUAV)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xingbang; Wang, Tianmiao; Liang, Jianhong; Yao, Guocai; Liu, Miao

    2015-04-01

    The aquatic unmanned aerial vehicle (AquaUAV), a kind of vehicle that can operate both in the air and the water, has been regarded as a new breakthrough to broaden the application scenario of UAV. Wide application prospects in military and civil field are more than bright, therefore many institutions have focused on the development of such a vehicle. However, due to the significant difference of the physical properties between the air and the water, it is rather difficult to design a fully-featured AquaUAV. Until now, majority of partially-featured AquaUAVs have been developed and used to verify the feasibility of an aquatic-aerial vehicle. In the present work, we classify the current partially-featured AquaUAV into three categories from the scope of the whole UAV field, i.e., the seaplane UAV, the submarine-launched UAV, and the submersible UAV. Then the recent advancements and common characteristics of the three kinds of AquaUAVs are reviewed in detail respectively. Then the applications of bionics in the design of AquaUAV, the transition mode between the air and the water, the morphing wing structure for air-water adaptation, and the power source and the propulsion type are summarized and discussed. The tradeoff analyses for different transition methods between the air and the water are presented. Furthermore, it indicates that applying the bionics into the design and development of the AquaUAV will be essential and significant. Finally, the significant technical challenges for the AquaUAV to change from a conception to a practical prototype are indicated.

  9. Water Plume Temperature Measurements by an Unmanned Aerial System (UAS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony DeMario

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available We report on the development and testing of a proof of principle water temperature measurement system deployed on an unmanned aerial system (UAS, for field measurements of thermal discharges into water. The primary elements of the system include a quad-copter UAS to which has been integrated, for the first time, both a thermal imaging infrared (IR camera and an immersible probe that can be dipped below the water surface to obtain vertical water temperature profiles. The IR camera is used to take images of the overall water surface to geo-locate the plume, while the immersible probe provides quantitative temperature depth profiles at specific locations. The full system has been tested including the navigation of the UAS, its ability to safely carry the sensor payload, and the performance of both the IR camera and the temperature probe. Finally, the UAS sensor system was successfully deployed in a pilot field study at a coal burning power plant, and obtained images and temperature profiles of the thermal effluent.

  10. Direct Penguin Counting Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Image

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyun, C. U.; Kim, H. C.; Kim, J. H.; Hong, S. G.

    2015-12-01

    This study presents an application of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) images to monitor penguin colony in Baton Peninsula, King George Island, Antarctica. The area around Narębski Point located on the southeast coast of Barton Peninsula was designated as Antarctic Specially Protected Area No. 171 (ASPA 171), and Chinstrap and Gentoo penguins inhabit in this area. The UAV images were acquired in a part of ASPA 171 from four flights in a single day, Jan 18, 2014. About 360 images were mosaicked as an image of about 3 cm spatial resolution and then a subset including representative penguin rookeries was selected. The subset image was segmented based on gradient map of pixel values, and spectral and spatial attributes were assigned to each segment. The object based image analysis (OBIA) was conducted with consideration of spectral attributes including mean and minimum values of each segment and various shape attributes such as area, length, compactness and roundness to detect individual penguin. The segments indicating individual penguin were effectively detected on rookeries with high contrasts in the spectral and shape attributes. The importance of periodic and precise monitoring of penguins has been recognized because variations of their populations reflect environmental changes and disturbance from human activities. Utilization of very high resolution imaging method shown in this study can be applied to other penguin habitats in Antarctica, and the results will be able to support establishing effective environmental management plans.

  11. Building Change Detection from Harvey using Unmanned Aerial System (UAS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, A.; Yeom, J.; Jung, J.; Choi, I.

    2017-12-01

    Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) is getting to be the most important technique in recent days since the fine spatial and high temporal resolution data previously unobtainable from traditional remote sensing platforms. Advanced UAS data can provide a great opportunity for disaster monitoring. Especially, building change detection is the one of the most important topics for damage assessment and recovery from disasters. This study is proposing a method to monitor building change with UAS data for Holiday Beach in Texas, where was directly hit by Harvey on 25 August 2017. This study adopted 3D change detection to monitor building damage and recovery levels with building height as well as natural color information. We used a rotorcraft UAS to collect RGB data twice on 9 September and 18 October 2017 after the hurricane. The UAS data was processed using Agisoft Photoscan Pro Software to generate super high resolution dataset including orthomosaic, DSM (Digital Surface Model), and 3D point cloud. We compared the processed dataset with an airborne image considerable as before-hurricane data, which was acquired on January 2016. Building damage and recovery levels were determined by height and color change. The result will show that UAS data is useful to assess building damage and recovery for affected area by the natural disaster such as Harvey.

  12. Assessing Pine Processionary Moth Defoliation Using Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrián Cardil

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Pine processionary moth (PPM is one of the most destructive insect defoliators in the Mediterranean for many conifers, causing losses of growth, vitality and eventually the death of trees during outbreaks. There is a growing need for cost-effective monitoring of the temporal and spatial impacts of PPM in forest ecology to better assess outbreak spread patterns and provide guidance on the development of measures targeting the negative impacts of the species on forests, industry and human health. Remote sensing technology mounted on unmanned aerial systems (UASs with high-resolution image processing has been proposed to assess insect outbreak impacts at local and forest stand levels. Here, we used UAS-acquired RGB imagery in two pine sites to quantify defoliation at the tree-level and to verify the accuracy of the estimates. Our results allowed the identification of healthy, infested and completely defoliated trees and suggested that pine defoliation estimates using UASs are robust and allow high-accuracy (79% field-based infestation indexes to be derived that are comparable to those used by forest technicians. When compared to current field-based methods, our approach provides PPM impact assessments with an efficient data acquisition method in terms of time and staff, allowing the quantitative estimation of defoliation at tree-level scale. Furthermore, our method could be expanded to a number of situations and scaled up in combination with satellite remote sensing imagery or citizen science approaches.

  13. Unmanned aerial vehicles in construction and worker safety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, John; Murashov, Vladimir; Branche, Christine M

    2018-01-01

    Applications of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for military, recreational, public, and commercial uses have expanded significantly in recent years. In the construction industry, UAVs are used primarily for monitoring of construction workflow and job site logistics, inspecting construction sites to assess structural integrity, and for maintenance assessments. As is the case with other emerging technologies, occupational safety assessments of UAVs lag behind technological advancements. UAVs may create new workplace hazards that need to be evaluated and managed to ensure their safe operation around human workers. At the same time, UAVs can perform dangerous tasks, thereby improving workplace safety. This paper describes the four major uses of UAVs, including their use in construction, the potential risks of their use to workers, approaches for risk mitigation, and the important role that safety and health professionals can play in ensuring safe approaches to the their use in the workplace. Published 2017. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  14. Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) to Modeling Tornado Impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, M.; Doe, R. K.

    2017-12-01

    Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) to assess storm damage is a useful research tool. Benefits include their ability to access remote or impassable areas post-storm, identify unknown damages and assist with more detailed site investigations and rescue efforts. Technological advancement of UAVs mean that they can capture high resolution images often at an affordable price. These images can be used to create 3D environments to better interpret and delineate damages from large areas that would have been difficult in ground surveys. This research presents the results of a rapid response site investigation of the 29 April 2017 Canton, Texas, USA, tornado using low cost UAVs. This was a multiple, high impact tornado event measuring EF4 at maximum. Rural farmland was chosen as a challenging location to test both equipment and methodology. Such locations provide multiple impacts at a variety of scales including structural and vegetation damage and even animal fatalities. The 3D impact models allow for a more comprehensive study prior to clean-up. The results show previously unseen damages and better quantify damage impacts at the local level. 3D digital track swaths were created allowing for a more accurate track width determination. These results demonstrate how effective the use of low cost UAVs can be for rapid response storm damage assessments, the high quality of data they can achieve, and how they can help us better visualize tornado site investigations.

  15. Water Plume Temperature Measurements by an Unmanned Aerial System (UAS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeMario, Anthony; Lopez, Pete; Plewka, Eli; Wix, Ryan; Xia, Hai; Zamora, Emily; Gessler, Dan; Yalin, Azer P

    2017-02-07

    We report on the development and testing of a proof of principle water temperature measurement system deployed on an unmanned aerial system (UAS), for field measurements of thermal discharges into water. The primary elements of the system include a quad-copter UAS to which has been integrated, for the first time, both a thermal imaging infrared (IR) camera and an immersible probe that can be dipped below the water surface to obtain vertical water temperature profiles. The IR camera is used to take images of the overall water surface to geo-locate the plume, while the immersible probe provides quantitative temperature depth profiles at specific locations. The full system has been tested including the navigation of the UAS, its ability to safely carry the sensor payload, and the performance of both the IR camera and the temperature probe. Finally, the UAS sensor system was successfully deployed in a pilot field study at a coal burning power plant, and obtained images and temperature profiles of the thermal effluent.

  16. Application of Artificial Intelligence Techniques in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Flight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Frank H. (Technical Monitor); Dufrene, Warren R., Jr.

    2003-01-01

    This paper describes the development of an application of Artificial Intelligence for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) control. The project was done as part of the requirements for a class in Artificial Intelligence (AI) at Nova southeastern University and as an adjunct to a project at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center's Wallops Flight Facility for a resilient, robust, and intelligent UAV flight control system. A method is outlined which allows a base level application for applying an AI method, Fuzzy Logic, to aspects of Control Logic for UAV flight. One element of UAV flight, automated altitude hold, has been implemented and preliminary results displayed. A low cost approach was taken using freeware, gnu, software, and demo programs. The focus of this research has been to outline some of the AI techniques used for UAV flight control and discuss some of the tools used to apply AI techniques. The intent is to succeed with the implementation of applying AI techniques to actually control different aspects of the flight of an UAV.

  17. Unmanned aerial vehicle trajectory planning with direct methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geiger, Brian

    A real-time method for trajectory optimization to maximize surveillance time of a fixed or moving ground target by one or more unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) is presented. The method accounts for performance limits of the aircraft, intrinsic properties of the camera, and external disturbances such as wind. Direct collocation with nonlinear programming is used to implement the method in simulation and onboard the Penn State/Applied Research Lab's testbed UAV. Flight test results compare well with simulation. Both stationary targets and moving targets, such as a low flying UAV, were successfully tracked in flight test. In addition, a new method using a neural network approximation is presented that removes the need for collocation and numerical derivative calculation. Neural networks are used to approximate the objective and dynamics functions in the optimization problem which allows for reduced computation requirements. The approximation reduces the size of the resulting nonlinear programming problem compared to direct collocation or pseudospectral methods. This method is shown to be faster than direct collocation and psuedospectral methods using numerical or automatic derivative techniques. The neural network approximation is also shown to be faster than analytical derivatives but by a lesser factor. Comparative results are presented showing similar accuracy for all methods. The method is modular and enables application to problems of the same class without network retraining.

  18. Trace Gas Quantification with Small Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuyler, T. J.; Guzman, M. I.; Bailey, S.; Jacob, J.

    2017-12-01

    Measurements of atmospheric composition are generally performed with advanced instrumentation from ground stations using tall towers and weather balloons or with manned aircraft. Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) are a promising technology for atmospheric monitoring of trace atmospheric gases as they can bridge the gap between the regions of the atmospheric boundary layer measured by ground stations and aircraft. However, in general, the sophisticated instrumentation required for these measurements are heavy, preventing its deployment with small UAS. In order to successfully detect and quantify these gases, sensor packages aboard UAS must be lightweight, have low-power consumption, and possess limits of detection on the ppm scale or below with reasonably fast response times. Thus, a new generation of portable instrument is being developed in this work to meet these requirements employing new sensing packages. The cross sensitivity of these sensors to several gases is examined through laboratory testing of the instrument under variable environmental conditions prior to performing field measurements. Datasets include timestamps with position, temperature, relative humidity, pressure, along with variable mixing ratio values of important greenhouse gases. The work will present an analysis of the results gathered during authorized flights performed during the second CLOUD-MAP§ field campaign held in June 2017. §CLOUD-MAP: Collaboration Leading Operational UAS Development for Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics, a 4-year NSF funded effort.

  19. Unmanned Aerial System Aids Dry-season Stream Temperature Sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, M.; Detweiler, C.; Higgins, J.; Ore, J. P.; Dralle, D.; Thompson, S. E.

    2016-12-01

    In freshwater ecosystems, temperature affects biogeochemistry and ecology, and is thus a primary physical determinant of habitat quality. Measuring temperatures in spatially heterogeneous water bodies poses a serious challenge to researchers due to constraints associated with currently available methods: in situ loggers record temporally continuous temperature measurements but are limited to discrete spatial locations, while distributed temperature and remote sensing provide fine-resolution spatial measurements that are restricted to only two-dimensions (i.e. streambed and surface, respectively). Using a commercially available quadcopter equipped with a 6m cable and temperature-pressure sensor system, we measured stream temperatures at two confluences at the South Fork Eel River, where cold water inputs from the tributary to the mainstem create thermal refugia for juvenile salmonids during the dry season. As a mobile sensing platform, unmanned aerial systems (UAS) can facilitate quick and repeated sampling with minimal disturbance to the ecosystem, and their datasets can be interpolated to create a three-dimensional thermal map of a water body. The UAS-derived data was compared to data from in situ data loggers to evaluate whether the UAS is better able to capture fine-scale temperature dynamics at each confluence. The UAS has inherent limitations defined by battery life and flight times, as well as operational constraints related to maneuverability under wind and streamflow conditions. However, the platform is able to serve as an additional field tool for researchers to capture complex thermal structures in water bodies.

  20. Thermal soaring flight of birds and unmanned aerial vehicles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akos, Zsuzsa; Nagy, Mate; Vicsek, Tamas; Leven, Severin

    2010-01-01

    Thermal soaring saves much energy, but flying large distances in this form represents a great challenge for birds, people and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). The solution is to make use of the so-called thermals, which are localized, warmer regions in the atmosphere moving upward with a speed exceeding the descent rate of birds and planes. Saving energy by exploiting the environment more efficiently is an important possibility for autonomous UAVs as well. Successful control strategies have been developed recently for UAVs in simulations and in real applications. This paper first presents an overview of our knowledge of the soaring flight and strategy of birds, followed by a discussion of control strategies that have been developed for soaring UAVs both in simulations and applications on real platforms. To improve the accuracy of the simulation of thermal exploitation strategies we propose a method to take into account the effect of turbulence. Finally, we propose a new GPS-independent control strategy for exploiting thermal updrafts.

  1. The unmanned aerial vehicles in international trade and their regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iveta Cerna

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective to review the current situation in production and distribution of unmanned aerial vehicles further ndash UAVs in developed countries as well as the legal regulation issues. Methods abstractlogic summarizing and observation comparative analysis. Results The analysis of international trade in UAVs revealed the leading countries dominating the market Israel the USA and Canada. The leading importers are India UK and France. China and Russian Federation are important producers but are just marginally involved in international trade having rather protectionist trade policies. The characters of national regulatory frameworks vary significantly from country to country while the Czech Republic belongs to the rather liberal group of EU members. Scientific novelty So far the journal publications in regard of UAVs have addressed uniquely technical issues and economic issues have been unattended. This paper clarifies the terminology mess analyses trade policy issues trade and production statistics and regulatory concerns linked to this steeply growing segment that is subject to doubleuse items regulations. Practical value Given a lack of relevant publications focused on international trade in UAVs in particular the paper provides a complex overview of current state of play in terms of this promising yet very controversial subject.

  2. A Shape Memory Alloy Application for Compact Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvatore Ameduri

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Shape memory alloys materials, SMA, offer several advantages that designers can rely on such as the possibility of transmitting large forces and deformations, compactness, and the intrinsic capability to absorb loads. Their use as monolithic actuators, moreover, can lead to potential simplifications of the system, through a reduction of number of parts and the removal of many free play gaps among mechanics. For these reasons, technological aerospace research is focusing on this kind of technology more and more, even though fatigue life, performance degradation, and other issues are still open. In the work at hand, landing gear for unmanned aerial vehicles, UAV, is presented, integrated with shape memory alloys springs as actuation devices. A conceptual prototype has been realized to verify the system ability in satisfying specs, in terms of deployment and retraction capability. Starting from the proposed device working principle and the main design parameters identification, the design phase is faced, setting those parameters to meet weight, deployment angle, energy consumption, and available room requirements. Then, system modeling and performance prediction is performed and finally a correlation between numerical and experimental results is presented.

  3. An Improved SIFT Algorithm for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Imagery

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, J M; Yan, D M; Wang, G; Zhang, L

    2014-01-01

    The Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) platform has the benefits of low cost and convenience compared with satellites. Recently, UAVs have shown a wide range of applications such as land use change, mineral resources management and local topographic mapping. Because of the instability of the UAV air gesture, an image matching method is necessary to match different images of an object or scene. Scale Invariant Feature Transform (SIFT) features are invariant to image scaling, rotation and translation. However, the main drawback of a SIFT algorithm is its significant memory consumption and low computational speed, particularly in the case of high-resolution imagery. In this study, in order to overcome these drawbacks, we have analysed the construction of the scale-space in the SIFT algorithm and selected new parameters to construct the SIFT scale-space to improve the memory consumption and computational speed for the processing of UAV imagery. Here, we propose a restriction on the number of octaves and levels for Gaussian image pyramids. Our experiment shows that the proposed algorithm effectively reduces memory consumption and significantly improves the operational efficiency of the feature point extraction and matching under the premise of maintaining the precision of the extracted feature points

  4. Crack identification for rigid pavements using unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahaddin Ersoz, Ahmet; Pekcan, Onur; Teke, Turker

    2017-09-01

    Pavement condition assessment is an essential piece of modern pavement management systems as rehabilitation strategies are planned based upon its outcomes. For proper evaluation of existing pavements, they must be continuously and effectively monitored using practical means. Conventionally, truck-based pavement monitoring systems have been in-use in assessing the remaining life of in-service pavements. Although such systems produce accurate results, their use can be expensive and data processing can be time consuming, which make them infeasible considering the demand for quick pavement evaluation. To overcome such problems, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) can be used as an alternative as they are relatively cheaper and easier-to-use. In this study, we propose a UAV based pavement crack identification system for monitoring rigid pavements’ existing conditions. The system consists of recently introduced image processing algorithms used together with conventional machine learning techniques, both of which are used to perform detection of cracks on rigid pavements’ surface and their classification. Through image processing, the distinct features of labelled crack bodies are first obtained from the UAV based images and then used for training of a Support Vector Machine (SVM) model. The performance of the developed SVM model was assessed with a field study performed along a rigid pavement exposed to low traffic and serious temperature changes. Available cracks were classified using the UAV based system and obtained results indicate it ensures a good alternative solution for pavement monitoring applications.

  5. Rancang Bangun Prototype Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV dengan Tiga Rotor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darmawan Rasyid Hadi Saputra

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned Aerial Vehicle atau yang biasa dikenal dengan istilah UAV  merupakan sebuah sistem penerbangan/ pesawat tanpa pilot yang berada di dalam pesawat tersebut. UAV dapat dikendalikan dengan menggunakan remote dari jarak jauh, diprogram dengan perintah tertentu, atau bahkan dengan sistem pengendalian otomatis yang lebih kompleks. Aplikasi dari teknologi UAV pun beragam mulai dari tugas militer hingga pengamatan udara. Dalam penelitian ini, sebuah UAV akan dikembangkan dengan tiga buah rotor dan satu buah motor servo di bagian belakang UAV. Perancangan model menggunakan software CATIA dengan batasan dimensi (panjang × lebar maksimum 75 × 75 cm dan massa < 2 kg. Analisis struktur rangka dilakukan untuk menguji kekuatan rangka ketika terbang dan membawa beban, dengan menggunakan metode elemen hingga dan kriteria kegagalan Von-Misses. Dalam proses pengerjaan, rancangan dari CATIA dan analisis yang telah dilakukan dalam perancangan tersebut akan digunakan. Hasil yang didapat berupa UAV yang memiliki struktur rangka dengan defleksi maksimum 3,67 mm pada rangka tengah yang berbahan acrylic. Dalam pengujian di lapangan, UAV dapat melakukan gerak roll, pitch, dan yaw yang dikendalikan melalui remote control. Waktu operasi maksimum yang dapat dilakukan adalah selama 7 menit 43 detik.

  6. Volumetric calculation using low cost unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahman, A. A. Ab; Maulud, K. N. Abdul; Mohd, F. A.; Jaafar, O.; Tahar, K. N.

    2017-12-01

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) technology has evolved dramatically in the 21st century. It is used by both military and general public for recreational purposes and mapping work. Operating cost for UAV is much cheaper compared to that of normal aircraft and it does not require a large work space. The UAV systems have similar functions with the LIDAR and satellite images technologies. These systems require a huge cost, labour and time consumption to produce elevation and dimension data. Measurement of difficult objects such as water tank can also be done by using UAV. The purpose of this paper is to show the capability of UAV to compute the volume of water tank based on a different number of images and control points. The results were compared with the actual volume of the tank to validate the measurement. In this study, the image acquisition was done using Phantom 3 Professional, which is a low cost UAV. The analysis in this study is based on different volume computations using two and four control points with variety set of UAV images. The results show that more images will provide a better quality measurement. With 95 images and four GCP, the error percentage to the actual volume is about 5%. Four controls are enough to get good results but more images are needed, estimated about 115 until 220 images. All in all, it can be concluded that the low cost UAV has a potential to be used for volume of water and dimension measurement.

  7. Vision-Based SLAM System for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Munguía

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The present paper describes a vision-based simultaneous localization and mapping system to be applied to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs. The main contribution of this work is to propose a novel estimator relying on an Extended Kalman Filter. The estimator is designed in order to fuse the measurements obtained from: (i an orientation sensor (AHRS; (ii a position sensor (GPS; and (iii a monocular camera. The estimated state consists of the full state of the vehicle: position and orientation and their first derivatives, as well as the location of the landmarks observed by the camera. The position sensor will be used only during the initialization period in order to recover the metric scale of the world. Afterwards, the estimated map of landmarks will be used to perform a fully vision-based navigation when the position sensor is not available. Experimental results obtained with simulations and real data show the benefits of the inclusion of camera measurements into the system. In this sense the estimation of the trajectory of the vehicle is considerably improved, compared with the estimates obtained using only the measurements from the position sensor, which are commonly low-rated and highly noisy.

  8. Vision-Based SLAM System for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munguía, Rodrigo; Urzua, Sarquis; Bolea, Yolanda; Grau, Antoni

    2016-03-15

    The present paper describes a vision-based simultaneous localization and mapping system to be applied to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). The main contribution of this work is to propose a novel estimator relying on an Extended Kalman Filter. The estimator is designed in order to fuse the measurements obtained from: (i) an orientation sensor (AHRS); (ii) a position sensor (GPS); and (iii) a monocular camera. The estimated state consists of the full state of the vehicle: position and orientation and their first derivatives, as well as the location of the landmarks observed by the camera. The position sensor will be used only during the initialization period in order to recover the metric scale of the world. Afterwards, the estimated map of landmarks will be used to perform a fully vision-based navigation when the position sensor is not available. Experimental results obtained with simulations and real data show the benefits of the inclusion of camera measurements into the system. In this sense the estimation of the trajectory of the vehicle is considerably improved, compared with the estimates obtained using only the measurements from the position sensor, which are commonly low-rated and highly noisy.

  9. Model identification of a flapping wing micro aerial vehicle

    OpenAIRE

    Aguiar Vieira Caetano, J.V.

    2016-01-01

    Different flapping wing micro aerial vehicles (FWMAV) have been developed for academic (Harvard’s RoboBee), military (Israel Aerospace Industries’ Butterfly) and technology demonstration (Aerovironment’s NanoHummingBird) purposes. Among these, theDelFly II is recognized as one of themost successful configurations of FWMAV, with a broad flight envelope, that spans fromhover to fast forward flight, revealing autonomous capabilities in the form of automatic flight and obstacle avoidance. Despite...

  10. Performance modeling of unmanned aerial vehicles with on-board energy harvesting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anton, Steven R.; Inman, Daniel J.

    2011-03-01

    The concept of energy harvesting in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) has received much attention in recent years. Solar powered flight of small aircraft dates back to the 1970s when the first fully solar flight of an unmanned aircraft took place. Currently, research has begun to investigate harvesting ambient vibration energy during the flight of UAVs. The authors have recently developed multifunctional piezoelectric self-charging structures in which piezoelectric devices are combined with thin-film lithium batteries and a substrate layer in order to simultaneously harvest energy, store energy, and carry structural load. When integrated into mass and volume critical applications, such as unmanned aircraft, multifunctional devices can provide great benefit over conventional harvesting systems. A critical aspect of integrating any energy harvesting system into a UAV, however, is the potential effect that the additional system has on the performance of the aircraft. Added mass and increased drag can significantly degrade the flight performance of an aircraft, therefore, it is important to ensure that the addition of an energy harvesting system does not adversely affect the efficiency of a host aircraft. In this work, a system level approach is taken to examine the effects of adding both solar and piezoelectric vibration harvesting to a UAV test platform. A formulation recently presented in the literature is applied to describe the changes to the flight endurance of a UAV based on the power available from added harvesters and the mass of the harvesters. Details of the derivation of the flight endurance model are reviewed and the formulation is applied to an EasyGlider remote control foam hobbyist airplane, which is selected as the test platform for this study. A theoretical study is performed in which the normalized change in flight endurance is calculated based on the addition of flexible thin-film solar panels to the upper surface of the wings, as well as the addition

  11. LOW COST SURVEYING USING AN UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Pérez

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Traditional manned airborne surveys are usually expensive and the resolution of the acquired images is often limited. The main advantage of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV system acting as a photogrammetric sensor platform over more traditional manned airborne system is the high flexibility that allows image acquisition from unconventional viewpoints, the low cost in comparison with classical aerial photogrammetry and the high resolution images obtained. Nowadays there is a necessity for surveying small areas and in these cases, it is not economical the use of normal large format aerial or metric cameras to acquire aerial photos, therefore, the use of UAV platforms can be very suitable. Also the large availability of digital cameras has strongly enhanced the capabilities of UAVs. The use of digital non metric cameras together with the UAV could be used for multiple applications such as aerial surveys, GIS, wildfire mapping, stability of landslides, crop monitoring, etc. The aim of this work was to develop a low cost and accurate methodology in the production of orthophotos and Digital Elevation Models (DEM. The study was conducted in the province of Almeria, south of Spain. The photogrammetric flight had an altitude of 50 m over ground, covering an area of 5.000 m2 approximately. The UAV used in this work was the md4-200, which is an electronic battery powered quadrocopter UAV developed by Microdrones GmbH, Germany. It had on-board a Pextax Optio A40 digital non metric camera with 12 Megapixels. It features a 3x optical zoom lens with a focal range covering angles of view equivalent to those of 37–111 mm lens in 35 mm format. The quadrocopter can be programmed to follow a route defined by several waypoints and actions and it has the ability for vertical take off and landing. Proper flight geometry during image acquisition is essential in order to minimize the number of photographs, avoid areas without a good coverage and make the overlaps

  12. Challenges in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Photogrammetry for Archaeological Mapping at High Elevations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, J. A.; Wernke, S.

    2015-12-01

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), especially multi-rotor vehicles, are becoming ubiquitous and their appeal for generating photogrammetry-based maps has grown. The options are many and costs have plummeted in last five years; however, many challenges persist with their deployment. We mapped the archaeological site Maw­chu Llacta, a settlement in the southern highlands of Peru (Figure 1). Mawchu Llacta is a planned colonial town built over a major Inka-era center in the high-elevation grasslands at ~4,000m asl. The "general resettlement of Indians" was a massive forced resettlement program, for which very little local-level documentation exists. Mawachu Llacta's excellently preserved architecture includes >500 buildings and hundreds of walls spread across ~13h posed significant mapping challenges. Many environmental factors impact UAV deployment. The air pressure at 4,100 m asl is dramatically lower than at sea level. The dry season diurnal temperature differentials can vary from 7°C to 22°C daily. High and hot conditions frequently occur from late morning to early afternoon. Reaching Mawchu Llacta requires hiking 4km with 400m of vertical gain over steep and rocky terrain. There is also no on-site power or secure storage. Thus, the UAV must be packable. FAA regulations govern US UAV deployments, but regulations were less stringent in Peru. However, ITAR exemptions and Peruvian customs requirements were required. The Peruvian government has established an importation and approval process that entails leaving the UAV at customs, while obtaining the necessary government approvals, both of which can be problematic. We have deployed the Aurora Flight Sciences Skate fixed wing ßUAV, an in-house fixed wing UAV based on the Skywalker X-5 flying wing, and a tethered 9 m3 capacity latex meteorological weather balloon. Development of an autonomous blimp/balloon has been ruled-out. A 3DR Solo is being assessed for excavation mapping.

  13. Damage prognosis of adhesively-bonded joints in laminated composite structural components of unmanned aerial vehicles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Farrar, Charles R [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Gobbato, Maurizio [UCSD; Conte, Joel [UCSD; Kosmatke, John [UCSD; Oliver, Joseph A [UCSD

    2009-01-01

    The extensive use of lightweight advanced composite materials in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) drastically increases the sensitivity to both fatigue- and impact-induced damage of their critical structural components (e.g., wings and tail stabilizers) during service life. The spar-to-skin adhesive joints are considered one of the most fatigue sensitive subcomponents of a lightweight UAV composite wing with damage progressively evolving from the wing root. This paper presents a comprehensive probabilistic methodology for predicting the remaining service life of adhesively-bonded joints in laminated composite structural components of UAVs. Non-destructive evaluation techniques and Bayesian inference are used to (i) assess the current state of damage of the system and, (ii) update the probability distribution of the damage extent at various locations. A probabilistic model for future loads and a mechanics-based damage model are then used to stochastically propagate damage through the joint. Combined local (e.g., exceedance of a critical damage size) and global (e.g.. flutter instability) failure criteria are finally used to compute the probability of component failure at future times. The applicability and the partial validation of the proposed methodology are then briefly discussed by analyzing the debonding propagation, along a pre-defined adhesive interface, in a simply supported laminated composite beam with solid rectangular cross section, subjected to a concentrated load applied at mid-span. A specially developed Eliler-Bernoulli beam finite element with interlaminar slip along the damageable interface is used in combination with a cohesive zone model to study the fatigue-induced degradation in the adhesive material. The preliminary numerical results presented are promising for the future validation of the methodology.

  14. The Use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle for Geothermal Exploitation Monitoring: Khankala Field Example

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergey V. Cherkasov

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The article is devoted to the use of unmanned aerial vehicle for geothermal waters exploitation monitoring. Development of a geothermal reservoir usually requires a system of wells, pipelines and pumping equipment and control of such a system is quite complicated. In this regard, use of unmanned aerial vehicle is relevant. Two test unmanned aerial vehicle based infrared surveys have been conducted at the Khankala field (Chechen Republic with the Khankala geothermal plant operating at different regimes: during the first survey – with, and the second – without reinjection of used geothermal fluid. Unmanned aerial vehicle Geoscan 201 equipped with digital (Sony DSX-RX1 and thermal imaging (Thermoframe-MX-TTX cameras was used. Besides different images of the geothermal plant obtained by the surveys, 13 thermal anomalies have been identified. Analysis of the shape and temperature facilitated determination of their different sources: fire, heating systems, etc., which was confirmed by a ground reconnaissance. Results of the study demonstrate a high potential of unmanned aerial vehicle based thermal imagery use for environmental and technological monitoring of geothermal fields under operation.

  15. The remote characterization of vegetation using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle photography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rango, A.; Laliberte, A.; Winters, C.; Maxwell, C.; Steele, C.

    2008-12-01

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) can fly in place of piloted aircraft to gather remote sensing information on vegetation characteristics. The type of sensors flown depends on the instrument payload capacity available, so that, depending on the specific UAV, it is possible to obtain video, aerial photographic, multispectral and hyperspectral radiometric, LIDAR, and radar data. The characteristics of several small UAVs less than 55lbs (25kg)) along with some payload instruments will be reviewed. Common types of remote sensing coverage available from a small, limited-payload UAV are video and hyperspatial, digital photography. From evaluation of these simple types of remote sensing data, we conclude that UAVs can play an important role in measuring and monitoring vegetation health and structure of the vegetation/soil complex in rangelands. If we fly our MLB Bat-3 at an altitude of 700ft (213m), we can obtain a digital photographic resolution of 6cm. The digital images acquired cover an area of approximately 29,350sq m. Video imaging is usually only useful for monitoring the flight path of the UAV in real time. In our experiments with the 6cm resolution data, we have been able to measure vegetation patch size, crown width, gap sizes between vegetation, percent vegetation and bare soil cover, and type of vegetation. The UAV system is also being tested to acquire height of the vegetation canopy using shadow measurements and a digital elevation model obtained with stereo images. Evaluation of combining the UAV digital photography with LIDAR data of the Jornada Experimental Range in south central New Mexico is ongoing. The use of UAVs is increasing and is becoming a very promising tool for vegetation assessment and change, but there are several operational components to flying UAVs that users need to consider. These include cost, a whole set of, as yet, undefined regulations regarding flying in the National Air Space(NAS), procedures to gain approval for flying in the NAS

  16. Digital Counts of Maize Plants by Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Friederike Gnädinger

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Precision phenotyping, especially the use of image analysis, allows researchers to gain information on plant properties and plant health. Aerial image detection with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs provides new opportunities in precision farming and precision phenotyping. Precision farming has created a critical need for spatial data on plant density. The plant number reflects not only the final field emergence but also allows a more precise assessment of the final yield parameters. The aim of this work is to advance UAV use and image analysis as a possible high-throughput phenotyping technique. In this study, four different maize cultivars were planted in plots with different seeding systems (in rows and equidistantly spaced and different nitrogen fertilization levels (applied at 50, 150 and 250 kg N/ha. The experimental field, encompassing 96 plots, was overflown at a 50-m height with an octocopter equipped with a 10-megapixel camera taking a picture every 5 s. Images were recorded between BBCH 13–15 (it is a scale to identify the phenological development stage of a plant which is here the 3- to 5-leaves development stage when the color of young leaves differs from older leaves. Close correlations up to R2 = 0.89 were found between in situ and image-based counted plants adapting a decorrelation stretch contrast enhancement procedure, which enhanced color differences in the images. On average, the error between visually and digitally counted plants was ≤5%. Ground cover, as determined by analyzing green pixels, ranged between 76% and 83% at these stages. However, the correlation between ground cover and digitally counted plants was very low. The presence of weeds and blurry effects on the images represent possible errors in counting plants. In conclusion, the final field emergence of maize can rapidly be assessed and allows more precise assessment of the final yield parameters. The use of UAVs and image processing has the potential to

  17. Drogue pose estimation for unmanned aerial vehicle autonomous aerial refueling system based on infrared vision sensor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Shanjun; Duan, Haibin; Deng, Yimin; Li, Cong; Zhao, Guozhi; Xu, Yan

    2017-12-01

    Autonomous aerial refueling is a significant technology that can significantly extend the endurance of unmanned aerial vehicles. A reliable method that can accurately estimate the position and attitude of the probe relative to the drogue is the key to such a capability. A drogue pose estimation method based on infrared vision sensor is introduced with the general goal of yielding an accurate and reliable drogue state estimate. First, by employing direct least squares ellipse fitting and convex hull in OpenCV, a feature point matching and interference point elimination method is proposed. In addition, considering the conditions that some infrared LEDs are damaged or occluded, a missing point estimation method based on perspective transformation and affine transformation is designed. Finally, an accurate and robust pose estimation algorithm improved by the runner-root algorithm is proposed. The feasibility of the designed visual measurement system is demonstrated by flight test, and the results indicate that our proposed method enables precise and reliable pose estimation of the probe relative to the drogue, even in some poor conditions.

  18. On the Use of Unmanned Aerial Systems for Environmental Monitoring

    KAUST Repository

    Manfreda, Salvatore; McCabe, Matthew; Miller, Pauline; Lucas, Richard; Pajuelo Madrigal, Victor; Mallinis, Giorgos; Ben Dor, Eyal; Helman, David; Estes, Lyndon; Ciraolo, Giuseppe; Mü llerová , Jana; Tauro, Flavia; De Lima, M. Isabel; De Lima, Joao L.M.P.; Frances, Felix; Caylor, Kelly; Kohv, Marko; Maltese, Antonino; Perks, Matthew; Ruiz-Pé rez, Guiomar; Su, Zhongbo; Vico, Giulia; Toth, Brigitta

    2018-01-01

    Environmental monitoring plays a central role in diagnosing climate and management impacts on natural and agricultural systems, enhancing the understanding hydrological processes, optimizing the allocation and distribution of water resources, and assessing, forecasting and even preventing natural disasters. Nowadays, most monitoring and data collection systems are based upon a combination of ground-based measurements, manned airborne sensors or satellite observations. These data are utilized in describing both small and large scale processes, but have spatiotemporal constraints inherent to each respective collection system. Bridging the unique spatial and temporal divides that limit current monitoring platforms is key to improving our understanding of environmental systems. In this context, Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) have considerable potential to radically evolve environmental monitoring. UAS-mounted sensors offer an extraordinary opportunity to bridge the existing gap between field observations and traditional air- and space-borne remote sensing, by providing not just high spatial detail over relatively large areas in a cost-effective way, but as importantly providing an entirely new capacity for enhanced temporal retrieval. As well as showcasing recent advances in the field, there is also a need to identify and understand the potential limitations of UAS technology. For these platforms to reach their monitoring potential, a wide spectrum of unresolved issues and applications specific challenges require focused community attention. Indeed, to leverage the full potential of UAS-based approaches, sensing technologies, measurement protocols, post-processing techniques, retrieval algorithms and evaluations techniques need to be harmonized. The aim of this paper is to provide a comprehensive general overview of the existing research on studies and applications of UAS in environmental monitoring in order to suggest users and researchers on future research directions

  19. Photovoltaic electric power applied to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geis, Jack; Arnold, Jack H.

    1994-01-01

    Photovoltaic electric-powered flight is receiving a great deal of attention in the context of the United States' Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) program. This paper addresses some of the enabling technical areas and their potential solutions. Of particular interest are the long-duration, high-altitude class of UAV's whose mission it is to achieve altitudes between 60,000 and 100,000 feet, and to remain at those altitudes for prolonged periods performing various mapping and surveillance activities. Addressed herein are studies which reveal the need for extremely light-weight and efficient solar cells, high-efficiency electric motor-driven propeller modules, and power management and distribution control elements. Since the potential payloads vary dramatically in their power consumption and duty cycles, a typical load profile has been selected to provide commonality for the propulsion power comparisons. Since missions vary widely with respect to ground coverage requirements, from repeated orbiting over a localized target to long-distance routes over irregular terrain, we have also averaged the power requirements for on-board guidance and control power, as well as ground control and communication link utilization. In the context of the national technology reinvestment program, wherever possible we modeled components and materials which have been qualified for space and defense applications, yet are compatible with civilian UAV activities. These include, but are not limited to, solar cell developments, electric storage technology for diurnal operation, local and ground communications, power management and distribution, and control servo design. And finally, the results of tests conducted by Wright Laboratory on ultralight, highly efficient MOCVD GaAs solar cells purchased from EPI Materials Ltd. (EML) of the UK are presented. These cells were also used for modeling the flight characteristics of UAV aircraft.

  20. Developing Collective Training for Small Unmanned Aerial Systems Employment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durlach, Paula J.; Priest, Heather; Martin, Glenn A.; Saffold, Jay

    2010-01-01

    The projected use of small unmanned aerial systems (SUAS) in military operations will produce training requirements which go beyond current capabilities. The paper describes the development of prototype training procedures and accompanying research simulations to address this need. We initially constructed a testbed to develop simulation-based training for an SUAS operator equipped with a simulated vertical-lift and land SUAS. However, the required training will go beyond merely training an operator how to pilot an SUAS. In addition to tactics, techniques, and procedures for employment of SUASs, collective training methods must be trained. Moreover, the leader of a unit equipped with SUAS will need to learn how to plan missions which incorporate the SUAS, and take into account air space and frequency management considerations. The demands of the task require the leader to allocate personnel to the SUAS mission, communicate and coordinate with those personnel during the mission, and make use of the information provided. To help address these training issues, we expanded our research testbed to include a command and control node (C2 node), to enable communications between a leader and the SUAS operator. In addition, we added a virtual environment in which dismounted infantry missions can be conducted. This virtual environment provides the opportunity for interactions among human-controlled avatars and non-player characters (NPCs), plus authoring tools to construct scenarios. Using these NPCs, a collective exercise involving friendly, enemy, and civilian personnel can be conducted without the need for a human role-player for every entity. We will describe the results of our first experiment, which examined the ability of players to negotiate use of the C2 node and the virtual environment at the same time, in order to see if this is a feasible combination of tools for training development.

  1. Photovoltaic electric power applied to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geis, Jack; Arnold, Jack H.

    1994-09-01

    Photovoltaic electric-powered flight is receiving a great deal of attention in the context of the United States' Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) program. This paper addresses some of the enabling technical areas and their potential solutions. Of particular interest are the long-duration, high-altitude class of UAV's whose mission it is to achieve altitudes between 60,000 and 100,000 feet, and to remain at those altitudes for prolonged periods performing various mapping and surveillance activities. Addressed herein are studies which reveal the need for extremely light-weight and efficient solar cells, high-efficiency electric motor-driven propeller modules, and power management and distribution control elements. Since the potential payloads vary dramatically in their power consumption and duty cycles, a typical load profile has been selected to provide commonality for the propulsion power comparisons. Since missions vary widely with respect to ground coverage requirements, from repeated orbiting over a localized target to long-distance routes over irregular terrain, we have also averaged the power requirements for on-board guidance and control power, as well as ground control and communication link utilization. In the context of the national technology reinvestment program, wherever possible we modeled components and materials which have been qualified for space and defense applications, yet are compatible with civilian UAV activities. These include, but are not limited to, solar cell developments, electric storage technology for diurnal operation, local and ground communications, power management and distribution, and control servo design. And finally, the results of tests conducted by Wright Laboratory on ultralight, highly efficient MOCVD GaAs solar cells purchased from EPI Materials Ltd. (EML) of the UK are presented. These cells were also used for modeling the flight characteristics of UAV aircraft.

  2. Fast mission reliability prediction for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andrews, J.D.; Poole, J.; Chen, W.H.

    2013-01-01

    There is currently a significant interest in the use of autonomous vehicles in many industrial sectors. One such example is the ever increasing use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), particularly in military operations. This enables dangerous missions to be accomplished without risk to a pilot. UAVs also have potential civil applications which would require their certification and the demonstration that they are able to respond safety to any potential circumstances. The aircraft would therefore need to be capable of responding safely to the occurrence of component failures, the emergence of threats such as other aircraft in the neighboring airspace, and changing weather conditions. The likelihood that an aircraft will successfully complete any mission can be predicted using phased mission analysis techniques. The predicted mission unreliability can be updated in response to changing circumstances. In the event that the likelihood of mission failure becomes too high then changes have to be made to the mission plan. If these calculations could be carried out fast enough then the quantification procedure could be used to establish an acceptable response to any new conditions. With a view to using the methodology in the context described above, this paper investigates ways in which phased mission analysis can be improved to reduce the calculation time. The methodology improves the processing capability for a UAV phased mission analysis by taking into account the specific characteristics of the fault tree structures which provide the causes of phase failure for a UAV mission. It also carries out as much of the quantification as possible in advance of the mission plan being formulated

  3. On the Use of Unmanned Aerial Systems for Environmental Monitoring

    KAUST Repository

    Manfreda, Salvatore

    2018-03-16

    Environmental monitoring plays a central role in diagnosing climate and management impacts on natural and agricultural systems, enhancing the understanding hydrological processes, optimizing the allocation and distribution of water resources, and assessing, forecasting and even preventing natural disasters. Nowadays, most monitoring and data collection systems are based upon a combination of ground-based measurements, manned airborne sensors or satellite observations. These data are utilized in describing both small and large scale processes, but have spatiotemporal constraints inherent to each respective collection system. Bridging the unique spatial and temporal divides that limit current monitoring platforms is key to improving our understanding of environmental systems. In this context, Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) have considerable potential to radically evolve environmental monitoring. UAS-mounted sensors offer an extraordinary opportunity to bridge the existing gap between field observations and traditional air- and space-borne remote sensing, by providing not just high spatial detail over relatively large areas in a cost-effective way, but as importantly providing an entirely new capacity for enhanced temporal retrieval. As well as showcasing recent advances in the field, there is also a need to identify and understand the potential limitations of UAS technology. For these platforms to reach their monitoring potential, a wide spectrum of unresolved issues and applications specific challenges require focused community attention. Indeed, to leverage the full potential of UAS-based approaches, sensing technologies, measurement protocols, post-processing techniques, retrieval algorithms and evaluations techniques need to be harmonized. The aim of this paper is to provide a comprehensive general overview of the existing research on studies and applications of UAS in environmental monitoring in order to suggest users and researchers on future research directions

  4. Unmanned Aerial Technologies for Observations at Active Volcanoes: Advances and Prospects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pieri, D. C.; Diaz, J. A.; Bland, G.; Fladeland, M.; Makel, D.; Schwandner, F. M.; Buongiorno, M. F.; Elston, J. S.

    2017-12-01

    Modern application of unmanned aerial systems' (UASs) technology allow us to conduct in situ measurements in volcanic plumes and drifting volcanic clouds that were impossible to make in the past. Thus, we are now able to explore proximal airspace near and within eruption columns and or other active vents, at very high and at very low altitudes—risk to human investigators is vastly reduced (although not eliminated). We are now on the cusp of being able to make in situ measurements and conduct sampling at altitudes of 5000-6000 meters relatively routinely. We also are developing heat tolerant electronics and sensors that will deployed on, around, and over active lava lakes and lava flows at terrestrial volcanoes, but with a view toward developing planetary applications, for instance on the surface of Venus. We report on our 2012-present systematic UAS-based observations of light gases (e.g., SO2 CO2, H2S) at Turrialba Volcano in Costa Rica, at Italian volcanic sites (e.g., Isole Vulcano; La Solfatara), and most recently at Kilauea Volcano, Hawaii in collaboration with USGS and NPS colleagues. Other deployments for Fall 2017 and Winter 2018 are in planning stages for the Salton Sea Basin and Costa Rica, which will include an airborne miniature mass spectrometer onboard several different types of UAVs. In addition, under development is the first purpose-built-for-volcanology small unmanned aircraft. We discuss strategies for acquiring airborne data from proximal ash/gas plumes during restless periods and during eruptions, from distal drifting ash/gas clouds from eruptions, and from diffuse emissions (e.g., CO2) at very low altitudes, utilizing UASs (e.g., fixed wing, multi-rotor, aerostat), especially regarding inputs for source flux reverse models. This work was carried out, in part, at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of the California Institute of Technology under contract to NASA.

  5. Evaluating the accuracy of vehicle tracking data obtained from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Guido

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a methodology for tracking moving vehicles that integrates Unmanned Aerial Vehicles with video processing techniques. The authors investigated the usefulness of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to capture reliable individual vehicle data by using GPS technology as a benchmark. A video processing algorithm for vehicles trajectory acquisition is introduced. The algorithm is based on OpenCV libraries. In order to assess the accuracy of the proposed video processing algorithm an instrumented vehicle was equipped with a high precision GPS. The video capture experiments were performed in two case studies. From the field, about 24,000 positioning data were acquired for the analysis. The results of these experiments highlight the versatility of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles technology combined with video processing technique in monitoring real traffic data.

  6. 1:500 Scale Aerial Triangulation Test with Unmanned Airship in Hubei Province

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feifei, Xie; Zongjian, Lin; Dezhu, Gui

    2014-01-01

    A new UAVS (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle System) for low altitude aerial photogrammetry is introduced for fine surveying and mapping, including the platform airship, sensor system four-combined wide-angle camera and photogrammetry software MAP-AT. It is demonstrated that this low-altitude aerial photogrammetric system meets the precision requirements of 1:500 scale aerial triangulation based on the test of this system in Hubei province, including the working condition of the airship, the quality of image data and the data processing report. This work provides a possibility for fine surveying and mapping

  7. Educational Projects in Unmanned Aerial Systems at the NASA Ames Research Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahlgren, Robert P.

    2017-01-01

    Unmanned aerial systems (UAS), autonomy and robotics technology have been fertile ground for developing a wide variety of interdisciplinary student learning opportunities. In this talk, several projects will be described that leverage small fixed-wing UAS that have been modified to carry science payloads. These aircraft provide a unique hands-on experience for a wide range of students from college juniors to graduate students pursuing degrees in electrical engineering, aeronautical engineering, mechanical engineering, applied mathematics, physics, structural engineering and other majors. By combining rapid prototyping, design reuse and open-source philosophies, a sustainable educational program has been organized structured as full-time internships during the summer, part-time internships during the school year, short details for military cadets, and paid positions. As part of this program, every summer one or more UAS is developed from concept through design, build and test phases using the tools and facilities at the NASA Ames Research Center, ultimately obtaining statements of airworthiness and flight release from the Agency before test flights are performed. In 2016 and 2017 student projects focused on the theme of 3D printed modular airframes that may be optimized for a given mission and payload. Now in its fifth year this program has served over 35 students, and has provided a rich learning experience as they learn to rapidly develop new aircraft concepts in a highly regulated environment, on systems that will support principal investigators at university, NASA, and other US federal agencies.

  8. Autonomous Wireless Self-Charging for Multi-Rotor Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Bin Junaid

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Rotary-wing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs have the ability to operate in confined spaces and to hover over point of interest, but they have limited flight time and endurance. Conventional contact-based charging system for UAVs has been used, but it requires high landing accuracy for proper docking. Instead of the conventional system, autonomous wireless battery charging system for UAVs in outdoor conditions is proposed in this paper. UAVs can be wirelessly charged using the proposed charging system, regardless of yaw angle between UAVs and wireless charging pad, which can further reduce their control complexity for autonomous landing. The increased overall mission time eventually relaxes the limitations on payload and flight time. In this paper, a cost effective automatic recharging solution for UAVs in outdoor environments is proposed using wireless power transfer (WPT. This research proposes a global positioning system (GPS and vision-based closed-loop target detection and a tracking system for precise landing of quadcopters in outdoor environments. The system uses the onboard camera to detect the shape, color and position of the defined target in image frame. Based on the offset of the target from the center of the image frame, control commands are generated to track and maintain the center position. Commercially available AR.Drone. was used to demonstrate the proposed concept which is equppied with bottom camera and GPS. Experiments and analyses showed good performance, and about 75% average WPT efficiency was achieved in this research.

  9. Autonomous soaring and surveillance in wind fields with an unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Chen

    Small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) play an active role in developing a low-cost, low-altitude autonomous aerial surveillance platform. The success of the applications needs to address the challenge of limited on-board power plant that limits the endurance performance in surveillance mission. This thesis studies the mechanics of soaring flight, observed in nature where birds utilize various wind patterns to stay airborne without flapping their wings, and investigates its application to small UAVs in their surveillance missions. In a proposed integrated framework of soaring and surveillance, a bird-mimicking soaring maneuver extracts energy from surrounding wind environment that improves surveillance performance in terms of flight endurance, while the surveillance task not only covers the target area, but also detects energy sources within the area to allow for potential soaring flight. The interaction of soaring and surveillance further enables novel energy based, coverage optimal path planning. Two soaring and associated surveillance strategies are explored. In a so-called static soaring surveillance, the UAV identifies spatially-distributed thermal updrafts for soaring, while incremental surveillance is achieved through gliding flight to visit concentric expanding regions. A Gaussian-process-regression-based algorithm is developed to achieve computationally-efficient and smooth updraft estimation. In a so-called dynamic soaring surveillance, the UAV performs one cycle of dynamic soaring to harvest energy from the horizontal wind gradient to complete one surveillance task by visiting from one target to the next one. A Dubins-path-based trajectory planning approach is proposed to maximize wind energy extraction and ensure smooth transition between surveillance tasks. Finally, a nonlinear trajectory tracking controller is designed for a full six-degree-of-freedom nonlinear UAV dynamics model and extensive simulations are carried to demonstrate the effectiveness of

  10. Automated Snow Extent Mapping Based on Orthophoto Images from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niedzielski, Tomasz; Spallek, Waldemar; Witek-Kasprzak, Matylda

    2018-04-01

    The paper presents the application of the k-means clustering in the process of automated snow extent mapping using orthophoto images generated using the Structure-from-Motion (SfM) algorithm from oblique aerial photographs taken by unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). A simple classification approach has been implemented to discriminate between snow-free and snow-covered terrain. The procedure uses the k-means clustering and classifies orthophoto images based on the three-dimensional space of red-green-blue (RGB) or near-infrared-red-green (NIRRG) or near-infrared-green-blue (NIRGB) bands. To test the method, several field experiments have been carried out, both in situations when snow cover was continuous and when it was patchy. The experiments have been conducted using three fixed-wing UAVs (swinglet CAM by senseFly, eBee by senseFly, and Birdie by FlyTech UAV) on 10/04/2015, 23/03/2016, and 16/03/2017 within three test sites in the Izerskie Mountains in southwestern Poland. The resulting snow extent maps, produced automatically using the classification method, have been validated against real snow extents delineated through a visual analysis and interpretation offered by human analysts. For the simplest classification setup, which assumes two classes in the k-means clustering, the extent of snow patches was estimated accurately, with areal underestimation of 4.6% (RGB) and overestimation of 5.5% (NIRGB). For continuous snow cover with sparse discontinuities at places where trees or bushes protruded from snow, the agreement between automatically produced snow extent maps and observations was better, i.e. 1.5% (underestimation with RGB) and 0.7-0.9% (overestimation, either with RGB or with NIRRG). Shadows on snow were found to be mainly responsible for the misclassification.

  11. Development of a Data Acquisition System for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) System Identification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lear, Donald Joseph

    Aircraft system identification techniques are developed for fixed wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV). The use of a designed flight experiment with measured system inputs/outputs can be used to derive aircraft stability derivatives. This project set out to develop a methodology to support an experiment to model pitch damping in the longitudinal short-period mode of a UAV. A Central Composite Response Surface Design was formed using angle of attack and power levels as factors to test for the pitching moment coefficient response induced by a multistep pitching maneuver. Selecting a high-quality data acquisition platform was critical to the success of the project. This system was designed to support fixed wing research through the addition of a custom air data vane capable of measuring angle of attack and sideslip, as well as an airspeed sensor. A Pixhawk autopilot system serves as the core and modification of the device firmware allowed for the integration of custom sensors and custom RC channels dedicated to performing system identification maneuvers. Tests were performed on all existing Pixhawk sensors to validate stated uncertainty values. The air data system was calibrated in a low speed wind tunnel and dynamic performance was verified. The assembled system was then installed in a commercially available UAV known as an Air Titan FPV in order to test the Pixhawk's automated flight maneuvers and determine the final performance of each sensor. Flight testing showed all the critical sensors produced acceptable data for further research. The Air Titan FPV airframe was found to be very flexible and did not lend itself well to accurate measurement of inertial properties. This realization prohibited the construction of the required math models for longitudinal dynamics. It is recommended that future projects using the developed methods choose an aircraft with a more rigid airframe.

  12. Motion coordination for VTOL unmanned aerial vehicles attitude synchronisation and formation control

    CERN Document Server

    Abdessameud, Abdelkader

    2013-01-01

    Motion Coordination for VTOL Unmanned Aerial Vehicles develops new control design techniques for the distributed coordination of a team of autonomous unmanned aerial vehicles. In particular, it provides new control design approaches for the attitude synchronization of a formation of rigid body systems. In addition, by integrating new control design techniques with some concepts from nonlinear control theory and multi-agent systems, it presents  a new theoretical framework for the formation control of a class of under-actuated aerial vehicles capable of vertical take-off and landing. Several practical problems related to the systems’ inputs, states measurements, and  restrictions on the interconnection  topology  between the aerial vehicles in the team  are addressed. Worked examples with sufficient details and simulation results are provided to illustrate the applicability and effectiveness of the theoretical results discussed in the book. The material presented is primarily intended for researchers an...

  13. Comparison of Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Performance Using Image Processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esteban Cano

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Precision agriculture is a farm management technology that involves sensing and then responding to the observed variability in the field. Remote sensing is one of the tools of precision agriculture. The emergence of small unmanned aerial vehicles (sUAV have paved the way to accessible remote sensing tools for farmers. This paper describes the development of an image processing approach to compare two popular off-the-shelf sUAVs: 3DR Iris+ and DJI Phantom 2. Both units are equipped with a camera gimbal attached with a GoPro camera. The comparison of the two sUAV involves a hovering test and a rectilinear motion test. In the hovering test, the sUAV was allowed to hover over a known object and images were taken every quarter of a second for two minutes. For the image processing evaluation, the position of the object in the images was measured and this was used to assess the stability of the sUAV while hovering. In the rectilinear test, the sUAV was allowed to follow a straight path and images of a lined track were acquired. The lines on the images were then measured on how accurate the sUAV followed the path. The hovering test results show that the 3DR Iris+ had a maximum position deviation of 0.64 m (0.126 m root mean square RMS displacement while the DJI Phantom 2 had a maximum deviation of 0.79 m (0.150 m RMS displacement. In the rectilinear motion test, the maximum displacement for the 3DR Iris+ and the DJI phantom 2 were 0.85 m (0.134 m RMS displacement and 0.73 m (0.372 m RMS displacement. These results demonstrated that the two sUAVs performed well in both the hovering test and the rectilinear motion test and thus demonstrated that both sUAVs can be used for civilian applications such as agricultural monitoring. The results also showed that the developed image processing approach can be used to evaluate performance of a sUAV and has the potential to be used as another feedback control parameter for autonomous navigation.

  14. Marginal Ice Zone Processes Observed from Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zappa, C. J.

    2015-12-01

    Recent years have seen extreme changes in the Arctic. Marginal ice zones (MIZ), or areas where the "ice-albedo feedback" driven by solar warming is highest and ice melt is extensive, may provide insights into the extent of these changes. Furthermore, MIZ play a central role in setting the air-sea CO2 balance making them a critical component of the global carbon cycle. Incomplete understanding of how the sea-ice modulates gas fluxes renders it difficult to estimate the carbon budget in MIZ. Here, we investigate the turbulent mechanisms driving mixing and gas exchange in leads, polynyas and in the presence of ice floes using both field and laboratory measurements. Measurements from unmanned aerial systems (UAS) in the marginal ice zone were made during 2 experiments: 1) North of Oliktok Point AK in the Beaufort Sea were made during the Marginal Ice Zone Ocean and Ice Observations and Processes EXperiment (MIZOPEX) in July-August 2013 and 2) Fram Strait and Greenland Sea northwest of Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard, Norway during the Air-Sea-Ice Physics and Biogeochemistry Experiment (ASIPBEX) April - May 2015. We developed a number of new payloads that include: i) hyperspectral imaging spectrometers to measure VNIR (400-1000 nm) and NIR (900-1700 nm) spectral radiance; ii) net longwave and net shortwave radiation for ice-ocean albedo studies; iii) air-sea-ice turbulent fluxes as well as wave height, ice freeboard, and surface roughness with a LIDAR; and iv) drone-deployed micro-drifters (DDµD) deployed from the UAS that telemeter temperature, pressure, and RH as it descends through the atmosphere and temperature and salinity of the upper meter of the ocean once it lands on the ocean's surface. Visible and IR imagery of melting ice floes clearly defines the scale of the ice floes. The IR imagery show distinct cooling of the skin sea surface temperature (SST) as well as an intricate circulation and mixing pattern that depends on the surface current, wind speed, and near

  15. Structural design and fabrication techniques of composite unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, Daniel Stephen

    Popularity of unmanned aerial vehicles has grown substantially in recent years both in the private sector, as well as for government functions. This growth can be attributed largely to the increased performance of the technology that controls these vehicles, as well as decreasing cost and size of this technology. What is sometimes forgotten though, is that the research and advancement of the airframes themselves are equally as important as what is done with them. With current computer-aided design programs, the limits of design optimization can be pushed further than ever before, resulting in lighter and faster airframes that can achieve longer endurances, higher altitudes, and more complex missions. However, realization of a paper design is still limited by the physical restrictions of the real world and the structural constraints associated with it. The purpose of this paper is to not only step through current design and manufacturing processes of composite UAVs at Oklahoma State University, but to also focus on composite spars, utilizing and relating both calculated and empirical data. Most of the experience gained for this thesis was from the Cessna Longitude project. The Longitude is a 1/8 scale, flying demonstrator Oklahoma State University constructed for Cessna. For the project, Cessna required dynamic flight data for their design process in order to make their 2017 release date. Oklahoma State University was privileged enough to assist Cessna with the mission of supporting the validation of design of their largest business jet to date. This paper will detail the steps of the fabrication process used in construction of the Longitude, as well as several other projects, beginning with structural design, machining, molding, skin layup, and ending with final assembly. Also, attention will be paid specifically towards spar design and testing in effort to ease the design phase. This document is intended to act not only as a further development of current

  16. Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for monitoring glacial moulins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santagata, Tommaso

    2016-04-01

    The exploration of cavities on glaciers has always represented a fascinating activity that attracts scientists and researchers since many decades. Several explorations performed by speleologists and scientists since 1985 on the Gorner Gletscher (Mount Rosa group, SW Switzerland) have allowed to survey more than 40 endoglacial caves and some marginal tunnels of this glacier, which is the most interesting in the Alps for its supraglacial and englacial pseudo-karst forms. In recent years, the study of these caves has led to the distinction of two morphological and genetic types: marginal tunnels, that generally forms at the contact between ice and lateral moraine, and swallow holes (moulins) which are vertical shafts where a supraglacial stream sinks into the ice. During the first International glacier-caving camp organized in October 2014 as part of the project "Inside the glaciers" which had the main objective to explore the cavities of this glacier and to study the cryo-karstic processes that lead to the formation of deep shafts, an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) equipped with camera and GPS system was used for the first time to perform photogrammetric surveys on three different areas. This technique allowed to derive detailed 3D models with very high resolution and accuracy of the entrance of the main moulins and other interesting parts of this glacier. Thanks to the acquisition of geo-referenced images and post-processing the acquired data (i.e. motion corrections), with the realized 3D point clouds and mesh models it was possible to obtain geo-referenced ortophoto and digital surface models which have been used to calculate contour lines and calculate the difference of position of the same moulins detected during the last years expeditions. Moreover, the data acquired have allowed to perform other different type of surface analysis and obtain an excellent photographic database that will surely be useful for further comparisons in future, proving the importance of

  17. Engineering of Fast and Robust Adaptive Control for Fixed-Wing Unmanned Aircraft

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-06-01

    evaluate the use of adaptive control on fixed-wing unmanned aircraft . The growing demand for unmanned systems will inherit the costs associated with...aerospace environment . 2.2 Classical Feedback vs Adaptive Control Control of a system can be categorized into two required elements; the requirement to...stabilize the system in the presence of: 1. disturbances that affect the controlled states and outputs (pitch rate perturbation caused by environmental

  18. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles: Background and Issues for Congress

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Geer, Harlan; Bolkcom, Christopher

    2005-01-01

    .... Furthermore, the military effectiveness of UAVs in recent conflicts such as Iraq (1990) and Kosovo (1999) opened the eyes of many to both the advantages and disadvantages provided by unmanned aircraft...

  19. Defining Handling Qualities of Unmanned Aerial Systems, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Unmanned Air Systems (UAS) are here to stay and operators are demanding access to the National Airspace System (NAS) for a wide variety of missions. This includes a...

  20. Defining Handling Qualities of Unmanned Aerial Systems, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Unmanned Air Systems (UAS) are no longer coming, they are here, and operators from first responders to commercial operators are demanding access to the National...

  1. Review of standard rotor configurations for a micro unmanned aerial system

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Steele, A

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Angus Steele1 and Johann Treurnicht2 Abstract The use of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) is on the rise with an array of industries finding use for them in a variety of applications. This review hopes to assist potential drone designers in selecting...

  2. Evolution of Unmanned Aerial Warfare: A Historical Look at Remote Airpower - A Case Study in Innovation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-10

    could deliver messages from headquarters to other locations without requiring runners . An advanced concept of Messenger was the “Messenger Aerial...North Vietnamese fighters. The unmanned aircraft also proved to be far more resilient than anyone expected. The anticipated life expectancy of a

  3. Unmanned aerial vehicles: The next big thing? The benefits and detriments of military and commercial UAVs

    OpenAIRE

    Hassan, L.

    2014-01-01

    With law enforcement agencies around the world investing in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs, also known as drones) and small commercial drone ventures popping up like weeds, the debate on the morality of drone usage has intensified in the recent months. What are the advantages of UAVs? Are they worth the disadvantages?

  4. Unmanned aerial vehicles : The next big thing? The benefits and detriments of military and commercial UAVs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hassan, L.

    2014-01-01

    With law enforcement agencies around the world investing in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs, also known as drones) and small commercial drone ventures popping up like weeds, the debate on the morality of drone usage has intensified in the recent months. What are the advantages of UAVs? Are they worth

  5. Conflict detection and resolution system architecture for unmanned aerial vehicles in civil airspace

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jenie, Y.I.; van Kampen, E.J.; Ellerbroek, J.; Hoekstra, J.M.

    2015-01-01

    A novel architecture for a general Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Conflict Detection and Resolution (CD&R) system, in the context of their integration into the civilian airspace, is proposed in this paper. The architecture consists of layers of safety approaches ,each representing a combination of

  6. Taxonomy of Conflict Detection and Resolution Approaches for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle in an Integrated Airspace

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jenie, Y.I.; van Kampen, E.; Ellerbroek, J.; Hoekstra, J.M.

    2016-01-01

    This paper proposes a taxonomy of Conflict Detection and Resolution (CD&R) approaches for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) operation in an integrated airspace. Possible approaches for UAVs are surveyed and broken down based on their types of surveillance, coordination, maneuver, and autonomy. The

  7. Unmanned Aerial Systems: Air Force and Army Should Improve Strategic Human Capital Planning for Pilot Workforces

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-01

    the best UAS pilot candidates, including by conducting additional research and testing a tool that measures multitasking ability, a competency...UNMANNED AERIAL SYSTEMS Air Force and Army Should Improve Strategic Human Capital Planning for Pilot Workforces...Should Improve Strategic Human Capital Planning for Pilot Workforces What GAO Found The Air Force and the Army have not fully applied four of the five

  8. Bilateral teleoperation of underactuated unmanned aerial vehicles: The virtual slave concept

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mersha, A.Y.; Stramigioli, Stefano; Carloni, Raffaella

    In this paper, we present haptic teleoperation of underactuated unmanned aerial vehicles by providing a multidimensional generalization of the virtual slave concept. The proposed control architecture is composed of high-level and low-level controllers. The high-level controller commands the vehicle

  9. Field determination of multipollutant, open area combustion source emission factors with a hexacopter unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    An emission sensor/sampler system was coupled to a NASA hexacopter unmanned aerial system (UAS) to characterize gases and particles in the plume emitted from open burning of military ordnance. The UAS/sampler was tested at two field sites resulting in 33 flights at Radford, VA a...

  10. STRUCTURE FROM MOTION (SfM) PROCESSING FOR UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE (UAV)

    KAUST Repository

    Smith, Neil G.

    2016-04-07

    A method of imaging an area using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) collects a plurality of images from a sensor mounted to the UAV. The plurality of images are processed to detect regions that require additional imaging and an updated flight plan and sensor gimbal position plan is created to capture portions of the area identified as requiring additional imaging.

  11. STRUCTURE FROM MOTION (SfM) PROCESSING FOR UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE (UAV)

    KAUST Repository

    Smith, Neil G.; Shalaby, Mohamed; Passone, Luca

    2016-01-01

    A method of imaging an area using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) collects a plurality of images from a sensor mounted to the UAV. The plurality of images are processed to detect regions that require additional imaging and an updated flight plan and sensor gimbal position plan is created to capture portions of the area identified as requiring additional imaging.

  12. Autonomous Conflict Detection and Resolution for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles : On integration into the Airspace System

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jenie, Y.I.

    2017-01-01

    In the last decade, the commercial values of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), defined as devices that are capable of sustainable flights in the atmosphere that do not require to have a human (pilot) on-board, become widely recognized thanks to the advancement of technology in materials, sensors,

  13. Scheduling System for Multiple Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Indoor Environments Using the CSP Approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Park, Youngsoo; Khosiawan, Yohanes; Moon, Ilkyeong

    2016-01-01

    In recent years there has been an increased demand in use of multiple unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for surveillance and material handling tasks in indoor environments. However, only a limited number of studies have been reported on UAV scheduling in an indoor 3D environment. This paper present...

  14. Multi-temporal high resolution monitoring of debris-covered glaciers using unmanned aerial vehicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kraaijenbrink, P.D.A.; Immerzeel, W.W.; de Jong, S.M.; Shea, Joseph M.; Pellicciotti, Francesca; Meijer, Sander W.; Shresta, A.B.

    Debris-covered glaciers in the Himalayas are relatively unstudied due to the difficulties in fieldwork caused by the inaccessible terrain and the presence of debris layers, which complicate in situ measurements. To overcome these difficulties an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has been deployed

  15. Aerial release of Rhinoncomimus latipes (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) to control Persicaria perfoliata (Polygonaceae) using an unmanned aerial system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Yong-Lak; Gururajan, Srikanth; Thistle, Harold; Chandran, Rakesh; Reardon, Richard

    2018-01-01

    Rhinoncomimus latipes (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) is a major biological control agent against the invasive plant Persicaria perfoliata. Release of R. latipes is challenging with the current visit-and-hand release approach because P. perfoliata shows a high degree of patchiness in the landscape, possesses recurved barbs on its stems, and often spreads into hard-to-access areas. This 3-year study developed and evaluated unmanned aerial systems (UAS) for precise aerial release of R. latipes to control P. perfoliata. We have developed two UAS (i.e. quad-rotor and tri-rotor) and an aerial release system to disseminate R. latipes. These include pods containing R. latipes and a dispenser to accommodate eight pods. Results of field tests to evaluate the systems showed no significant (P > 0.05) effects on survivorship and feeding ability of R. latipes after aerial release. Our study demonstrates the potential of UAS for precision aerial release of biological control agents to control invasive plants. The aerial deployment systems we have developed, including both pods and a dispenser, are low cost, logistically practical, and effective with no negative effects on aerially released R. latipes. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry.

  16. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs): a new tool in counterterrorism operations?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dörtbudak, Mehmet F.

    2015-05-01

    Terrorism is not a new phenomenon to the world, yet it remains difficult to define and counter. Countering terrorism requires several measures that must be taken simultaneously; however, counterterrorism strategies of many countries mostly depend on military measures. In the aftermath of the 2001 terrorist attack on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, the United States (U.S.) has started and led the campaign of Global War on Terrorism. They have invaded Afghanistan and Iraq and have encountered insurgencies run by terrorist organizations, such as al-Qaeda and its affiliates. The U.S. made the utilization of Air and Space Power very intensively during these operations. In order to implement operations; Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) assets were used to collect the necessary information. Before the successful insertion of a small number of U.S. Special Operation Force (SOF) teams into Afghanistan, the U.S. Air Force attacked al-Qaeda and Taliban's targets such as infrastructure, airfields, ground forces, command-control facilities etc. As soon as the U.S. troops got on the ground and started to marshal to Kabul, the Air Force supported them by attacking jointly determined targets. The Air Force continued to carry out the missions and played a significant role to achieve the objective of operation during all the time. This is not the only example of utilization of Air and Space Power in counterterrorism and counterinsurgency operations. All around the world, many countries have also made the utilization of Air Power in different missions ranging from ISR to attacking. Thinking that terrorism has a psychological dimension and losing a pilot during operations may result in decreasing the population support to operations, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) started to be used by practitioners and took priority over other assets. Although UAVs have been on the theatre for a long time used for ISR mission in conventional conflicts, with the advent

  17. Focused Lens on Unmanned Aerial Systems: An Evaluation of Department of Defense’s Unmanned Aerial Vision 2011

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-06-13

    Break Free of Regulations.” 69Barbara Opall -Rome, “ Israel Tackles The Last Frontier Of UAS Technology: Israel Moves Closer Toward Flying UASs In...with the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter once it comes online, or with helicopters aboard the Littoral Combat Ship. Unmanned mine hunters could operate...Office, 2002. ———. Unmanned Aircraft Systems Roadmap 2005-2030. Washington, DC: Government Publishing Office, 2005. Opall -Rome, Barbra. “Israel

  18. Aerodynamic study, design and construction of a Blended Wing Body (BWB) Unmanned Aircraft (UA)

    OpenAIRE

    De Toro Diaz, Aleix

    2015-01-01

    During this project a Blended Wing Body (BWB) UA (Unmanned Aircraft) model is built. BWBs are a combination of a common airplane with tail control surfaces and a flying wing. BWBs lack tail control surfaces, which makes its design to be very different and more complex regarding stability. To first start the BWB design, some research has been done about the basic parameters of the BWB designs. Moreover, different airfoils are considered to improve the stability of the UA. Two designs are creat...

  19. Avionics System Development for a Rotary Wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Greer, Daniel

    1998-01-01

    .... A helicopter with sufficient lift capability was selected and a lightweight aluminum structure was built to serve as both an avionics platform for the necessary equipment and also as a landing skid...

  20. Mapping Reflectance Anisotropy of a Potato Canopy Using Aerial Images Acquired with an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter P. J. Roosjen

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Viewing and illumination geometry has a strong influence on optical measurements of natural surfaces due to their anisotropic reflectance properties. Typically, cameras on-board unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs are affected by this because of their relatively large field of view (FOV and thus large range of viewing angles. In this study, we investigated the magnitude of reflectance anisotropy effects in the 500–900 nm range, captured by a frame camera mounted on a UAV during a standard mapping flight. After orthorectification and georeferencing of the images collected by the camera, we calculated the viewing geometry of all observations of each georeferenced ground pixel, forming a dataset with multi-angular observations. We performed UAV flights on two days during the summer of 2016 over an experimental potato field where different zones in the field received different nitrogen fertilization treatments. These fertilization levels caused variation in potato plant growth and thereby differences in structural properties such as leaf area index (LAI and canopy cover. We fitted the Rahman–Pinty–Verstraete (RPV model through the multi-angular observations of each ground pixel to quantify, interpret, and visualize the anisotropy patterns in our study area. The Θ parameter of the RPV model, which controls the proportion of forward and backward scattering, showed strong correlation with canopy cover, where in general an increase in canopy cover resulted in a reduction of backward scattering intensity, indicating that reflectance anisotropy contains information on canopy structure. In this paper, we demonstrated that anisotropy data can be extracted from measurements using a frame camera, collected during a typical UAV mapping flight. Future research will focus on how to use the anisotropy signal as a source of information for estimation of physical vegetation properties.

  1. Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to Assess Vegetative Cover in Sagebrush Steppe Ecosytstems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert P. Breckenridge

    2005-09-01

    The Idaho National Laboratory (INL), in conjunction with the University of Idaho, is evaluating novel approaches for using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as a quicker and safer method for monitoring biotic resources. Evaluating vegetative cover is an important factor in understanding the sustainability of many ecosystems. In assessing vegetative cover, methods that improve accuracy and cost efficiency could revolutionize how biotic resources are monitored on western federal lands. Sagebrush steppe ecosystems provide important habitat for a variety of species, some of which are important indicator species (e.g., sage grouse). Improved methods are needed to support monitoring these habitats because there are not enough resource specialists or funds available for comprehensive ground evaluation of these ecosystems. In this project, two types of UAV platforms (fixed wing and helicopter) were used to collect still-frame imagery to assess cover in sagebrush steppe ecosystems. This paper discusses the process for collecting and analyzing imagery from the UAVs to (1) estimate total percent cover, (2) estimate percent cover for six different types of vegetation, and (3) locate sage grouse based on representative decoys. The field plots were located on the INL site west of Idaho Falls, Idaho, in areas with varying amounts and types of vegetative cover. A software program called SamplePoint developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) was used to evaluate the imagery for percent cover for the six vegetation types (bare ground, litter, shrubs, dead shrubs, grasses, and forbs). Results were compared against standard field measurements to assess accuracy.

  2. Open-Source Processing and Analysis of Aerial Imagery Acquired with a Low-Cost Unmanned Aerial System to Support Invasive Plant Management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan R. K. Lehmann

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Remote sensing by Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS is a dynamic evolving technology. UAS are particularly useful in environmental monitoring and management because they have the capability to provide data at high temporal and spatial resolutions. Moreover, data acquisition costs are lower than those of conventional methods such as extensive ground sampling, manned airplanes, or satellites. Small fixed-wing UAS in particular offer further potential benefits as they extend the operational coverage of the area under study at lower operator risks and accelerate data deployment times. Taking these aspects into account, UAS might be an effective tool to support management of invasive plant based on early detection and regular monitoring. A straightforward UAS approach to map invasive plant species is presented in this study with the intention of providing ready-to-use field maps essential for action-oriented management. Our UAS utilizes low-cost sensors, free-of-charge software for mission planning and an affordable, commercial aerial platform to reduce operational costs, reducing expenses with personnel while increasing overall efficiency. We illustrate our approach using a real example of invasion by Acacia mangium in a Brazilian Savanna ecosystem. A. mangium was correctly identified with an overall accuracy of 82.7% from the analysis of imagery. This approach provides land management authorities and practitioners with new prospects for environmental restoration in areas where invasive plant species are present.

  3. Vicarious Radiometric Calibration of a Multispectral Camera on Board an Unmanned Aerial System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susana Del Pozo

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Combinations of unmanned aerial platforms and multispectral sensors are considered low-cost tools for detailed spatial and temporal studies addressing spectral signatures, opening a broad range of applications in remote sensing. Thus, a key step in this process is knowledge of multi-spectral sensor calibration parameters in order to identify the physical variables collected by the sensor. This paper discusses the radiometric calibration process by means of a vicarious method applied to a high-spatial resolution unmanned flight using low-cost artificial and natural covers as control and check surfaces, respectively.

  4. When Computers Fly, It Has to Be Right: Using SPARK for Flight Control of Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sward, Ricky E; Gerken, Mark; Casey, Dan

    2006-01-01

    .... For safety critical software programs such as Unmanned Aerial Vehicle flight control software, the risk of software failure demands high assurance that the software will perform its intended function...

  5. Search and Pursuit with Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Road Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-01

    landmark tracking, Andersen and Taylor [7] show that with a planar ground assumption, a homography-based visual odometry algorithm can be combined with...7] Evan D. Andersen and Clark N. Taylor. Improving MAV pose estimation using visual information. In IEEE International Conference on Intelligent...patrol and surveillance missions using multiple unmanned air vehicles. In IEEE Confer- ence on Decision and Control, 2004. [53] Arthur S. Goldstein

  6. Improving Rangeland Monitoring and Assessment: Integrating Remote Sensing, GIS, and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert Paul Breckenridge

    2007-05-01

    Creeping environmental changes are impacting some of the largest remaining intact parcels of sagebrush steppe ecosystems in the western United States, creating major problems for land managers. The Idaho National Laboratory (INL), located in southeastern Idaho, is part of the sagebrush steppe ecosystem, one of the largest ecosystems on the continent. Scientists at the INL and the University of Idaho have integrated existing field and remotely sensed data with geographic information systems technology to analyze how recent fires on the INL have influenced the current distribution of terrestrial vegetation. Three vegetation mapping and classification systems were used to evaluate the changes in vegetation caused by fires between 1994 and 2003. Approximately 24% of the sagebrush steppe community on the INL was altered by fire, mostly over a 5-year period. There were notable differences between methods, especially for juniper woodland and grasslands. The Anderson system (Anderson et al. 1996) was superior for representing the landscape because it includes playa/bare ground/disturbed area and sagebrush steppe on lava as vegetation categories. This study found that assessing existing data sets is useful for quantifying fire impacts and should be helpful in future fire and land use planning. The evaluation identified that data from remote sensing technologies is not currently of sufficient quality to assess the percentage of cover. To fill this need, an approach was designed using both helicopter and fixed wing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and image processing software to evaluate six cover types on field plots located on the INL. The helicopter UAV provided the best system compared against field sampling, but is more dangerous and has spatial coverage limitations. It was reasonably accurate for dead shrubs and was very good in assessing percentage of bare ground, litter and grasses; accuracy for litter and shrubs is questionable. The fixed wing system proved to be

  7. An Application of Computer Vision Systems to Solve the Problem of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aksenov Alexey Y.

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The paper considers an approach for application of computer vision systems to solve the problem of unmanned aerial vehicle control. The processing of images obtained through onboard camera is required for absolute positioning of aerial platform (automatic landing and take-off, hovering etc. used image processing on-board camera. The proposed method combines the advantages of existing systems and gives the ability to perform hovering over a given point, the exact take-off and landing. The limitations of implemented methods are determined and the algorithm is proposed to combine them in order to improve the efficiency.

  8. Optimisation of Lagrangian Flash Flood Microsensors Dropped by Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    KAUST Repository

    Abdulaal, Mohammed

    2014-05-01

    Abstract Physical Sciences and Engineering Division Mechanical Engineering Department Master of Science Optimisation of Lagrangian Flash Flood Microsensors Dropped by Unmanned Aerial Vehicle by Mohammed Abdulaal Floods are the most common natural disasters, causing thousands of casualties every year in the world. In particular, ash ood events are particularly deadly because of the short timescales on which they occur. Classical sensing solutions such as xed wireless sensor networks or satellite imagery are either too expensive or too inaccurate. Nevertheless, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles equipped with mobile microsensors could be capable of sensing ash oods in real time for a low overall cost, saving lives and greatly improving the e ciency of the emergency response. Using ood simulation data, we show that this system could be used to detect ash oods. We also present an ongoing implementation of this system using 3D printed sensors and sensor delivery systems on a UAV testbed as well as some preliminary results.

  9. State estimation and control for low-cost unmanned aerial vehicles

    CERN Document Server

    Hajiyev, Chingiz; Yenal Vural, Sıtkı

    2015-01-01

    This book discusses state estimation and control procedures for a low-cost unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). The authors consider the use of robust adaptive Kalman filter algorithms and demonstrate their advantages over the optimal Kalman filter in the context of the difficult and varied environments in which UAVs may be employed. Fault detection and isolation (FDI) and data fusion for UAV air-data systems are also investigated, and control algorithms, including the classical, optimal, and fuzzy controllers, are given for the UAV. The performance of different control methods is investigated and the results compared. State Estimation and Control of Low-Cost Unmanned Aerial Vehicles covers all the important issues for designing a guidance, navigation and control (GNC) system of a low-cost UAV. It proposes significant new approaches that can be exploited by GNC system designers in the future and also reviews the current literature. The state estimation, control and FDI methods are illustrated by examples and MATLAB...

  10. Near Space Hypersonic Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Dynamic Surface Backstepping Control Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinyong YU

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Compared with traditional aircraft, the near space hypersonic unmanned aerial vehicle control system design must deal with the extra prominent dynamics characters, which are differ from the traditional aircrafts control system design. A new robust adaptive control design method is proposed for one hypersonic unmanned aerial vehicle (HSUAV uncertain MIMO nonaffine block control system by using multilayer neural networks, feedback linearization technology, and dynamic surface backstepping. Multilayer neural networks are used to compensate the influence from the uncertain, which designs the robust terms to solve the problem from approach error. Adaptive backstepping is adopted designed to ensure control law, the dynamic surface control strategy to eliminate “the explosion of terms” by introducing a series of first order filters to obtain the differentiation of the virtual control inputs. Finally, nonlinear six-degree-of-freedom (6-DOF numerical simulation results for a HSUAV model are presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.

  11. Decentralized cooperative unmanned aerial vehicles conflict resolution by neural network-based tree search method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian Yang

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available In this article, a tree search algorithm is proposed to find the near optimal conflict avoidance solutions for unmanned aerial vehicles. In the dynamic environment, the unmodeled elements, such as wind, would make UAVs deviate from nominal traces. It brings about difficulties for conflict detection and resolution. The back propagation neural networks are utilized to approximate the unmodeled dynamics of the environment. To satisfy the online planning requirement, the search length of the tree search algorithm would be limited. Therefore, the algorithm may not be able to reach the goal states in search process. The midterm reward function for assessing each node is devised, with consideration given to two factors, namely, the safe separation requirement and the mission of each unmanned aerial vehicle. The simulation examples and the comparisons with previous approaches are provided to illustrate the smooth and convincing behaviours of the proposed algorithm.

  12. Teleoperated Visual Inspection and Surveillance with Unmanned Ground and Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viatcheslav Tretyakov

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper introduces our robotic system named UGAV (Unmanned Ground-Air Vehicle consisting of two semi-autonomous robot platforms, an Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV and an Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV. The paper focuses on three topics of the inspection with the combined UGV and UAV: (A teleoperated control by means of cell or smart phones with a new concept of automatic configuration of the smart phone based on a RKI-XML description of the vehicles control capabilities, (B the camera and vision system with the focus to real time feature extraction e.g. for the tracking of the UAV and (C the architecture and hardware of the UAV

  13. Preliminary analysis of the forest health state based on multispectral images acquired by Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Czapski Paweł

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The main purpose of this publication is to present the current progress of the work associated with the use of a lightweight unmanned platforms for various environmental studies. Current development in information technology, electronics and sensors miniaturisation allows mounting multispectral cameras and scanners on unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV that could only be used on board aircraft and satellites. Remote Sensing Division in the Institute of Aviation carries out innovative researches using multisensory platform and lightweight unmanned vehicle to evaluate the health state of forests in Wielkopolska province. In this paper, applicability of multispectral images analysis acquired several times during the growing season from low altitude (up to 800m is presented. We present remote sensing indicators computed by our software and common methods for assessing state of trees health. The correctness of applied methods is verified using analysis of satellite scenes acquired by Landsat 8 OLI instrument (Operational Land Imager.

  14. Homeland Security: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Border Surveillance

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-08

    outfit the Predator B with a synthetic aperture radar (SAR) system17 and a moving target indicator (MTI) radar. Adding SAR and MTI to the Predator B’s...Predator Squadrons,” Inside the Air Force, June 7, 2002. 17 For more information about Synthetic Aperture Radar, see http://www.sandia.gov/radar...contributed to the seizing of more than 22,000 pounds of marijuana and the apprehension of 5,000 illegal immigrants,” others disagree.24 “Unmanned aircraft

  15. Dhaksha, the Unmanned Aircraft System in its New Avatar-Automated Aerial Inspection of INDIA'S Tallest Tower

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, K. S.; Rasheed, A. Mohamed; Krishna Kumar, R.; Giridharan, M.; Ganesh

    2013-08-01

    DHAKSHA, the unmanned aircraft system (UAS), developed after several years of research by Division of Avionics, Department of Aerospace Engineering, MIT Campus of Anna University has recently proved its capabilities during May 2012 Technology demonstration called UAVforge organised by Defence Research Project Agency, Department of Defence, USA. Team Dhaksha with its most stable design outperformed all the other contestants competing against some of the best engineers from prestigi ous institutions across the globe like Middlesex University from UK, NTU and NUS from Singapore, Tudelft Technical University, Netherlands and other UAV industry participants in the world's toughest UAV challenge. This has opened up an opportunity for Indian UAVs making a presence in the international scenario as well. In furtherance to the above effort at Fort Stewart military base at Georgia,USA, with suitable payloads, the Dhaksha team deployed the UAV in a religious temple festival during November 2012 at Thiruvannamalai District for Tamil Nadu Police to avail the instant aerial imagery services over the crowd of 10 lakhs pilgrims and also about the investigation of the structural strength of the India's tallest structure, the 300 m RCC tower during January 2013. The developed system consists of a custom-built Rotary Wing model with on-board navigation, guidance and control systems (NGC) and ground control station (GCS), for mission planning, remote access, manual overrides and imagery related computations. The mission is to fulfill the competition requirements by using an UAS capable of providing complete solution for the stated problem. In this work the effort to produce multirotor unmanned aerial systems (UAS) for civilian applications at the MIT, Avionics Laboratory is presented

  16. DHAKSHA,THE UNMANNED AIRCRAFT SYSTEM IN ITS NEW AVATAR-AUTOMATED AERIAL INSPECTION OF INDIA'S TALLEST TOWER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. S. Kumar

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available DHAKSHA, the unmanned aircraft system (UAS, developed after several years of research by Division of Avionics, Department of Aerospace Engineering, MIT Campus of Anna University has recently proved its capabilities during May 2012 Technology demonstration called UAVforge organised by Defence Research Project Agency, Department of Defence, USA. Team Dhaksha with its most stable design outperformed all the other contestants competing against some of the best engineers from prestigi ous institutions across the globe like Middlesex University from UK, NTU and NUS from Singapore, Tudelft Technical University, Netherlands and other UAV industry participants in the world's toughest UAV challenge. This has opened up an opportunity for Indian UAVs making a presence in the international scenario as well. In furtherance to the above effort at Fort Stewart military base at Georgia,USA, with suitable payloads, the Dhaksha team deployed the UAV in a religious temple festival during November 2012 at Thiruvannamalai District for Tamil Nadu Police to avail the instant aerial imagery services over the crowd of 10 lakhs pilgrims and also about the investigation of the structural strength of the India's tallest structure, the 300 m RCC tower during January 2013. The developed system consists of a custom-built Rotary Wing model with on-board navigation, guidance and control systems (NGC and ground control station (GCS, for mission planning, remote access, manual overrides and imagery related computations. The mission is to fulfill the competition requirements by using an UAS capable of providing complete solution for the stated problem. In this work the effort to produce multirotor unmanned aerial systems (UAS for civilian applications at the MIT, Avionics Laboratory is presented

  17. System identification of a small low-cost unmanned aerial vehicle using flight data from low-cost sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffer, Nathan Von

    Remote sensing has traditionally been done with satellites and manned aircraft. While. these methods can yield useful scientificc data, satellites and manned aircraft have limitations in data frequency, process time, and real time re-tasking. Small low-cost unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) provide greater possibilities for personal scientic research than traditional remote sensing platforms. Precision aerial data requires an accurate vehicle dynamics model for controller development, robust flight characteristics, and fault tolerance. One method of developing a model is system identification (system ID). In this thesis system ID of a small low-cost fixed-wing T-tail UAV is conducted. The linerized longitudinal equations of motion are derived from first principles. Foundations of Recursive Least Squares (RLS) are presented along with RLS with an Error Filtering Online Learning scheme (EFOL). Sensors, data collection, data consistency checking, and data processing are described. Batch least squares (BLS) and BLS with EFOL are used to identify aerodynamic coecoefficients of the UAV. Results of these two methods with flight data are discussed.

  18. Autonomous Conflict Detection and Resolution for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles: On integration into the Airspace System

    OpenAIRE

    Jenie, Y.I.

    2017-01-01

    In the last decade, the commercial values of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), defined as devices that are capable of sustainable flights in the atmosphere that do not require to have a human (pilot) on-board, become widely recognized thanks to the advancement of technology in materials, sensors, computation, and telemetry. As UAVs are becoming cheaper and more user-friendly, many companies are motivated to incorporate them in their everyday business, such as for delivery services, journalisms,...

  19. Analysis of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Monitoring System for Resurveying of Shipping Routes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Urbahs Aleksandrs

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The paper gives brief description of the conventional and innovative hydrography survey methods and constraints connected with the realization. Proposed hydrographic survey system based on the use of Unmanned Aerial and Maritime systems provides functionality to conduct hydrographic measurements and environment monitoring. System can be easily adapted to fulfil marine safety and security operations, e.g. intrusion threat monitoring, hazardous pollutions monitoring and prevention operations, icing conditions monitoring.

  20. Exploration of the Use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles along with Other Assets to Enhance Border Protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-06-01

    Border Initiative SUAV Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicle SAR Synthetic Aperture Radar TTPs Tactics, Techniques, And Procedures TRVS Trailer Remote...2008). 4 3. Overview of Illegal Activities According to the CBP, 178,770 pounds of cocaine, 2,178 pounds of heroin, 2,471,931 pounds of marijuana ...Raytheon Company Web Site) Another component of Predator B is the high- resolution Lynx Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR). In their study, Tsunoda, et

  1. System Architecture of Small Unmanned Aerial System for Flight Beyond Visual Line-of-Sight

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-17

    International Conference on Mechatronic and Embedded Systems and Applications (MESA 2011), 28-31 (August 2011) Maddalon Jeffrey M., Kelly J... SYSTEM ARCHITECTURE OF SMALL UNMANNED AERIAL SYSTEM FOR FLIGHT BEYOND VISUAL LINE-OF-SIGHT THESIS...is declared a work of the U.S. Government and is not subject to copyright protection in the United States. AFIT-ENV-MS-15-S-047 SYSTEM

  2. Unmanned Carrier-Based Aircraft System: Debate over Systems Role Led to Focus on Aerial Refueling

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-03-24

    Unmanned Carrier-Based Aircraft System: Debate over System’s Role Led to Focus on Aerial Refueling Prior to February 2016, the Navy had planned to...Background In a May 2015 report, we found that the intended mission and required capabilities of UCLASS were under review as there was debate ...environments, or largely strike with limited surveillance capability operating in highly contested environments.2 This debate delayed the expected

  3. Development of Flight-Test Performance Estimation Techniques for Small Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCrink, Matthew Henry

    This dissertation provides a flight-testing framework for assessing the performance of fixed-wing, small-scale unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) by leveraging sub-system models of components unique to these vehicles. The development of the sub-system models, and their links to broader impacts on sUAS performance, is the key contribution of this work. The sub-system modeling and analysis focuses on the vehicle's propulsion, navigation and guidance, and airframe components. Quantification of the uncertainty in the vehicle's power available and control states is essential for assessing the validity of both the methods and results obtained from flight-tests. Therefore, detailed propulsion and navigation system analyses are presented to validate the flight testing methodology. Propulsion system analysis required the development of an analytic model of the propeller in order to predict the power available over a range of flight conditions. The model is based on the blade element momentum (BEM) method. Additional corrections are added to the basic model in order to capture the Reynolds-dependent scale effects unique to sUAS. The model was experimentally validated using a ground based testing apparatus. The BEM predictions and experimental analysis allow for a parameterized model relating the electrical power, measurable during flight, to the power available required for vehicle performance analysis. Navigation system details are presented with a specific focus on the sensors used for state estimation, and the resulting uncertainty in vehicle state. Uncertainty quantification is provided by detailed calibration techniques validated using quasi-static and hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) ground based testing. The HIL methods introduced use a soft real-time flight simulator to provide inertial quality data for assessing overall system performance. Using this tool, the uncertainty in vehicle state estimation based on a range of sensors, and vehicle operational environments is

  4. Prospective Architectures for Onboard vs Cloud-Based Decision Making for Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sankararaman, Shankar; Teubert, Christopher

    2017-01-01

    This paper investigates propsective architectures for decision-making in unmanned aerial systems. When these unmanned vehicles operate in urban environments, there are several sources of uncertainty that affect their behavior, and decision-making algorithms need to be robust to account for these different sources of uncertainty. It is important to account for several risk-factors that affect the flight of these unmanned systems, and facilitate decision-making by taking into consideration these various risk-factors. In addition, there are several technical challenges related to autonomous flight of unmanned aerial systems; these challenges include sensing, obstacle detection, path planning and navigation, trajectory generation and selection, etc. Many of these activities require significant computational power and in many situations, all of these activities need to be performed in real-time. In order to efficiently integrate these activities, it is important to develop a systematic architecture that can facilitate real-time decision-making. Four prospective architectures are discussed in this paper; on one end of the spectrum, the first architecture considers all activities/computations being performed onboard the vehicle whereas on the other end of the spectrum, the fourth and final architecture considers all activities/computations being performed in the cloud, using a new service known as Prognostics as a Service that is being developed at NASA Ames Research Center. The four different architectures are compared, their advantages and disadvantages are explained and conclusions are presented.

  5. Diagnostic Reasoning using Prognostic Information for Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumann, Johann; Roychoudhury, Indranil; Kulkarni, Chetan

    2015-01-01

    With increasing popularity of unmanned aircraft, continuous monitoring of their systems, software, and health status is becoming more and more important to ensure safe, correct, and efficient operation and fulfillment of missions. The paper presents integration of prognosis models and prognostic information with the R2U2 (REALIZABLE, RESPONSIVE, and UNOBTRUSIVE Unit) monitoring and diagnosis framework. This integration makes available statistically reliable health information predictions of the future at a much earlier time to enable autonomous decision making. The prognostic information can be used in the R2U2 model to improve diagnostic accuracy and enable decisions to be made at the present time to deal with events in the future. This will be an advancement over the current state of the art, where temporal logic observers can only do such valuation at the end of the time interval. Usefulness and effectiveness of this integrated diagnostics and prognostics framework was demonstrated using simulation experiments with the NASA Dragon Eye electric unmanned aircraft.

  6. Bird's-Eye View of Sampling Sites: Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to Make Chemistry Fieldwork Videos

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fung, Fun Man; Watts, Simon Francis

    2017-01-01

    Drones, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), usually helicopters or airplanes, are commonly used for warfare, aerial surveillance, and recreation. In recent years, drones have become more accessible to the public as a platform for photography. In this report, we explore the use of drones as a new technological filming tool to enhance student learning…

  7. Evaluation of unmanned aerial vehicle shape, flight path and camera type for waterfowl surveys: disturbance effects and species recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John F. McEvoy

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs for ecological research has grown rapidly in recent years, but few studies have assessed the disturbance impacts of these tools on focal subjects, particularly when observing easily disturbed species such as waterfowl. In this study we assessed the level of disturbance that a range of UAV shapes and sizes had on free-living, non-breeding waterfowl surveyed in two sites in eastern Australia between March and May 2015, as well as the capability of airborne digital imaging systems to provide adequate resolution for unambiguous species identification of these taxa. We found little or no obvious disturbance effects on wild, mixed-species flocks of waterfowl when UAVs were flown at least 60m above the water level (fixed wing models or 40m above individuals (multirotor models. Disturbance in the form of swimming away from the UAV through to leaving the water surface and flying away from the UAV was visible at lower altitudes and when fixed-wing UAVs either approached subjects directly or rapidly changed altitude and/or direction near animals. Using tangential approach flight paths that did not cause disturbance, commercially available onboard optical equipment was able to capture images of sufficient quality to identify waterfowl and even much smaller taxa such as swallows. Our results show that with proper planning of take-off and landing sites, flight paths and careful UAV model selection, UAVs can provide an excellent tool for accurately surveying wild waterfowl populations and provide archival data with fewer logistical issues than traditional methods such as manned aerial surveys.

  8. Small unmanned aerial vehicles (micro-UAVs, drones) in plant ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruzan, Mitchell B; Weinstein, Ben G; Grasty, Monica R; Kohrn, Brendan F; Hendrickson, Elizabeth C; Arredondo, Tina M; Thompson, Pamela G

    2016-09-01

    Low-elevation surveys with small aerial drones (micro-unmanned aerial vehicles [UAVs]) may be used for a wide variety of applications in plant ecology, including mapping vegetation over small- to medium-sized regions. We provide an overview of methods and procedures for conducting surveys and illustrate some of these applications. Aerial images were obtained by flying a small drone along transects over the area of interest. Images were used to create a composite image (orthomosaic) and a digital surface model (DSM). Vegetation classification was conducted manually and using an automated routine. Coverage of an individual species was estimated from aerial images. We created a vegetation map for the entire region from the orthomosaic and DSM, and mapped the density of one species. Comparison of our manual and automated habitat classification confirmed that our mapping methods were accurate. A species with high contrast to the background matrix allowed adequate estimate of its coverage. The example surveys demonstrate that small aerial drones are capable of gathering large amounts of information on the distribution of vegetation and individual species with minimal impact to sensitive habitats. Low-elevation aerial surveys have potential for a wide range of applications in plant ecology.

  9. Small unmanned aerial vehicles (micro-UAVs, drones) in plant ecology1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruzan, Mitchell B.; Weinstein, Ben G.; Grasty, Monica R.; Kohrn, Brendan F.; Hendrickson, Elizabeth C.; Arredondo, Tina M.; Thompson, Pamela G.

    2016-01-01

    Premise of the study: Low-elevation surveys with small aerial drones (micro–unmanned aerial vehicles [UAVs]) may be used for a wide variety of applications in plant ecology, including mapping vegetation over small- to medium-sized regions. We provide an overview of methods and procedures for conducting surveys and illustrate some of these applications. Methods: Aerial images were obtained by flying a small drone along transects over the area of interest. Images were used to create a composite image (orthomosaic) and a digital surface model (DSM). Vegetation classification was conducted manually and using an automated routine. Coverage of an individual species was estimated from aerial images. Results: We created a vegetation map for the entire region from the orthomosaic and DSM, and mapped the density of one species. Comparison of our manual and automated habitat classification confirmed that our mapping methods were accurate. A species with high contrast to the background matrix allowed adequate estimate of its coverage. Discussion: The example surveys demonstrate that small aerial drones are capable of gathering large amounts of information on the distribution of vegetation and individual species with minimal impact to sensitive habitats. Low-elevation aerial surveys have potential for a wide range of applications in plant ecology. PMID:27672518

  10. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Alien Plant Species Detection and Monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dvořák, P.; Müllerová, J.; Bartaloš, T.; Brůna, J.

    2015-08-01

    Invasive species spread rapidly and their eradication is difficult. New methods enabling fast and efficient monitoring are urgently needed for their successful control. Remote sensing can improve early detection of invading plants and make their management more efficient and less expensive. In an ongoing project in the Czech Republic, we aim at developing innovative methods of mapping invasive plant species (semi-automatic detection algorithms) by using purposely designed unmanned aircraft (UAV). We examine possibilities for detection of two tree and two herb invasive species. Our aim is to establish fast, repeatable and efficient computer-assisted method of timely monitoring, reducing the costs of extensive field campaigns. For finding the best detection algorithm we test various classification approaches (object-, pixel-based and hybrid). Thanks to its flexibility and low cost, UAV enables assessing the effect of phenological stage and spatial resolution, and is most suitable for monitoring the efficiency of eradication efforts. However, several challenges exist in UAV application, such as geometrical and radiometric distortions, high amount of data to be processed and legal constrains for the UAV flight missions over urban areas (often highly invaded). The newly proposed UAV approach shall serve invasive species researchers, management practitioners and policy makers.

  11. Power Management for Fuel Cell and Battery Hybrid Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Jared Robert

    As electric powered unmanned aerial vehicles enter a new age of commercial viability, market opportunities in the small UAV sector are expanding. Extending UAV flight time through a combination of fuel cell and battery technologies enhance the scope of potential applications. A brief survey of UAV history provides context and examples of modern day UAVs powered by fuel cells are given. Conventional hybrid power system management employs DC-to-DC converters to control the power split between battery and fuel cell. In this study, a transistor replaces the DC-to-DC converter which lowers weight and cost. Simulation models of a lithium ion battery and a proton exchange membrane fuel cell are developed and integrated into a UAV power system model. Flight simulations demonstrate the operation of the transistor-based power management scheme and quantify the amount of hydrogen consumed by a 5.5 kg fixed wing UAV during a six hour flight. Battery power assists the fuel cell during high throttle periods but may also augment fuel cell power during cruise flight. Simulations demonstrate a 60 liter reduction in hydrogen consumption when battery power assists the fuel cell during cruise flight. Over the full duration of the flight, averaged efficiency of the power system exceeds 98%. For scenarios where inflight battery recharge is desirable, a constant current battery charger is integrated into the UAV power system. Simulation of inflight battery recharge is performed. Design of UAV hybrid power systems must consider power system weight against potential flight time. Data from the flight simulations are used to identify a simple formula that predicts flight time as a function of energy stored onboard the modeled UAV. A small selection of commercially available batteries, fuel cells, and compressed air storage tanks are listed to characterize the weight of possible systems. The formula is then used in conjunction with the weight data to generate a graph of power system weight

  12. Navigation and Remote Sensing Payloads and Methods of the Sarvant Unmanned Aerial System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molina, P.; Fortuny, P.; Colomina, I.; Remy, M.; Macedo, K. A. C.; Zúnigo, Y. R. C.; Vaz, E.; Luebeck, D.; Moreira, J.; Blázquez, M.

    2013-08-01

    In a large number of scenarios and missions, the technical, operational and economical advantages of UAS-based photogrammetry and remote sensing over traditional airborne and satellite platforms are apparent. Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) or combined optical/SAR operation in remote areas might be a case of a typical "dull, dirty, dangerous" mission suitable for unmanned operation - in harsh environments such as for example rain forest areas in Brazil, topographic mapping of small to medium sparsely inhabited remote areas with UAS-based photogrammetry and remote sensing seems to be a reasonable paradigm. An example of such a system is the SARVANT platform, a fixed-wing aerial vehicle with a six-meter wingspan and a maximumtake- of-weight of 140 kilograms, able to carry a fifty-kilogram payload. SARVANT includes a multi-band (X and P) interferometric SAR payload, as the P-band enables the topographic mapping of densely tree-covered areas, providing terrain profile information. Moreover, the combination of X- and P-band measurements can be used to extract biomass estimations. Finally, long-term plan entails to incorporate surveying capabilities also at optical bands and deliver real-time imagery to a control station. This paper focuses on the remote-sensing concept in SARVANT, composed by the aforementioned SAR sensor and envisioning a double optical camera configuration to cover the visible and the near-infrared spectrum. The flexibility on the optical payload election, ranging from professional, medium-format cameras to mass-market, small-format cameras, is discussed as a driver in the SARVANT development. The paper also focuses on the navigation and orientation payloads, including the sensors (IMU and GNSS), the measurement acquisition system and the proposed navigation and orientation methods. The latter includes the Fast AT procedure, which performs close to traditional Integrated Sensor Orientation (ISO) and better than Direct Sensor Orientation (Di

  13. WETLAND ASSESSMENT USING UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE (UAV PHOTOGRAMMETRY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. A. Boon

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The use of Unmanned Arial Vehicle (UAV photogrammetry is a valuable tool to enhance our understanding of wetlands. Accurate planning derived from this technological advancement allows for more effective management and conservation of wetland areas. This paper presents results of a study that aimed at investigating the use of UAV photogrammetry as a tool to enhance the assessment of wetland ecosystems. The UAV images were collected during a single flight within 2½ hours over a 100 ha area at the Kameelzynkraal farm, Gauteng Province, South Africa. An AKS Y-6 MKII multi-rotor UAV and a digital camera on a motion compensated gimbal mount were utilised for the survey. Twenty ground control points (GCPs were surveyed using a Trimble GPS to achieve geometrical precision and georeferencing accuracy. Structure-from-Motion (SfM computer vision techniques were used to derive ultra-high resolution point clouds, orthophotos and 3D models from the multi-view photos. The geometric accuracy of the data based on the 20 GCP’s were 0.018 m for the overall, 0.0025 m for the vertical root mean squared error (RMSE and an over all root mean square reprojection error of 0.18 pixel. The UAV products were then edited and subsequently analysed, interpreted and key attributes extracted using a selection of tools/ software applications to enhance the wetland assessment. The results exceeded our expectations and provided a valuable and accurate enhancement to the wetland delineation, classification and health assessment which even with detailed field studies would have been difficult to achieve.

  14. Insect-Inspired Flight Control for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thakoor, Sarita; Stange, G.; Srinivasan, M.; Chahl, Javaan; Hine, Butler; Zornetzer, Steven

    2005-01-01

    Flight-control and navigation systems inspired by the structure and function of the visual system and brain of insects have been proposed for a class of developmental miniature robotic aircraft called "biomorphic flyers" described earlier in "Development of Biomorphic Flyers" (NPO-30554), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 28, No. 11 (November 2004), page 54. These form a subset of biomorphic explorers, which, as reported in several articles in past issues of NASA Tech Briefs ["Biomorphic Explorers" (NPO-20142), Vol. 22, No. 9 (September 1998), page 71; "Bio-Inspired Engineering of Exploration Systems" (NPO-21142), Vol. 27, No. 5 (May 2003), page 54; and "Cooperative Lander-Surface/Aerial Microflyer Missions for Mars Exploration" (NPO-30286), Vol. 28, No. 5 (May 2004), page 36], are proposed small robots, equipped with microsensors and communication systems, that would incorporate crucial functions of mobility, adaptability, and even cooperative behavior. These functions are inherent to biological organisms but are challenging frontiers for technical systems. Biomorphic flyers could be used on Earth or remote planets to explore otherwise difficult or impossible to reach sites. An example of an exploratory task of search/surveillance functions currently being tested is to obtain high-resolution aerial imagery, using a variety of miniaturized electronic cameras. The control functions to be implemented by the systems in development include holding altitude, avoiding hazards, following terrain, navigation by reference to recognizable terrain features, stabilization of flight, and smooth landing. Flying insects perform these and other functions remarkably well, even though insect brains contains fewer than 10(exp -4) as many neurons as does the human brain. Although most insects have immobile, fixed-focus eyes and lack stereoscopy (and hence cannot perceive depth directly), they utilize a number of ingenious strategies for perceiving, and navigating in, three dimensions. Despite

  15. Evaluating Unmanned Aerial Platforms for Cultural Heritage Large Scale Mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Georgopoulos, A.; Oikonomou, C.; Adamopoulos, E.; Stathopoulou, E. K.

    2016-06-01

    When it comes to large scale mapping of limited areas especially for cultural heritage sites, things become critical. Optical and non-optical sensors are developed to such sizes and weights that can be lifted by such platforms, like e.g. LiDAR units. At the same time there is an increase in emphasis on solutions that enable users to get access to 3D information faster and cheaper. Considering the multitude of platforms, cameras and the advancement of algorithms in conjunction with the increase of available computing power this challenge should and indeed is further investigated. In this paper a short review of the UAS technologies today is attempted. A discussion follows as to their applicability and advantages, depending on their specifications, which vary immensely. The on-board cameras available are also compared and evaluated for large scale mapping. Furthermore a thorough analysis, review and experimentation with different software implementations of Structure from Motion and Multiple View Stereo algorithms, able to process such dense and mostly unordered sequence of digital images is also conducted and presented. As test data set, we use a rich optical and thermal data set from both fixed wing and multi-rotor platforms over an archaeological excavation with adverse height variations and using different cameras. Dense 3D point clouds, digital terrain models and orthophotos have been produced and evaluated for their radiometric as well as metric qualities.

  16. Unmanned Aerial Systems and Spectroscopy for Remote Sensing Applications in Archaeology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Themistocleous, K.; Agapiou, A.; Cuca, B.; Hadjimitsis, D. G.

    2015-04-01

    Remote sensing has open up new dimensions in archaeological research. Although there has been significant progress in increasing the resolution of space/aerial sensors and image processing, the detection of the crop (and soil marks) formations, which relate to buried archaeological remains, are difficult to detect since these marks may not be visible in the images if observed over different period or at different spatial/spectral resolution. In order to support the improvement of earth observation remote sensing technologies specifically targeting archaeological research, a better understanding of the crop/soil marks formation needs to be studied in detail. In this paper the contribution of both Unmanned Aerial Systems as well ground spectroradiometers is discussed in a variety of examples applied in the eastern Mediterranean region (Cyprus and Greece) as well in Central Europe (Hungary). In- situ spectroradiometric campaigns can be applied for the removal of atmospheric impact to simultaneous satellite overpass images. In addition, as shown in this paper, the systematic collection of ground truth data prior to the satellite/aerial acquisition can be used to detect the optimum temporal and spectral resolution for the detection of stress vegetation related to buried archaeological remains. Moreover, phenological studies of the crops from the area of interest can be simulated to the potential sensors based on their Relative Response Filters and therefore prepare better the satellite-aerial campaigns. Ground data and the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) can provide an increased insight for studying the formation of crop and soil marks. New algorithms such as vegetation indices and linear orthogonal equations for the enhancement of crop marks can be developed based on the specific spectral characteristics of the area. As well, UAS can be used for remote sensing applications in order to document, survey and model cultural heritage and archaeological sites.

  17. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Photogrammetry: Analysis of Orthophoto Images over the Territory of Lithuania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Suziedelyte Visockiene

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available It has been recently observed that aircrafts tend to be replaced by light, simple structure unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV or mini unmanned aerial vehicles (MUAV with the purpose of updating the field of aerial photogrammetry. The built-in digital photo camera takes images of the Earth’s surface. To satisfy the photogrammetric requirements of the photographic images, it is necessary to carry out the terrestrial project planning of the flight path before the flight, to select the appropriate flying height, the time for acquiring images, the speed of the UAV, and other parameters. The paper presents the results of project calculations concerning the UAV flights and the analysis of the terrestrial images acquired during the field-testing flights. The experience carried out so far in the Lithuanian landscape is shown. The taken images have been processed by PhotoMod photogrammetric system. The paper presents the results of calculation of the project values of the UAV flights taking the images by digital camera Canon S100 and the analysis of the possibilities of the UAV orthophoto images’ mode.

  18. MODELLING OF DECISION MAKING OF UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE'S OPERATOR IN EMERGENCY SITUATIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Volodymyr Kharchenko

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: lack of recommendation action algorithm of UAV operator in emergency situations; decomposition of the process of decision making (DM by UAV’s Operator in emergency situations; development of the structure of distributed decision support system (DDSS for remotely piloted aircraft; development of a database of local decision support system (DSS operators Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS; working-out of models DM by UAV’s Operator. Methods: Algoritm of actions of UAV operator by Wald criterion, Laplace criterion, Hurwitz criterion. Results: The program "UAV_AS" that gives to UAV operator recommendations on how to act in case of emergency. Discussion: The article deals with the problem of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV flights for decision of different tasks in emergency situation. Based on statistical data it was analyzing the types of emergencies for unmanned aircraft. Defined sequence of actions UAV operator and in case of emergencies.

  19. METHODOLOGY AND RESULTS OF THE MAIN TECHNICAL OF PARAMETERS OF THE MANEUVERABLE UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE JUSTIFICATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The recent experience of creating an unmanned combat aerial vehicle indicates that the main problems do not con- cern the development of an unmanned fighter as an aerial vehicle. The greatest challenge lies in creating the algorithms, data sensors, control hardware, communications hardware, etc. necessary for utilization of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV. In this context it is important to highlight the problem of replacing the pilot as a sensor and a flight operator on board of the UAV. This problem can be partially solved by introducing remote control, but there are some flight stages where it can only be executed under a fully independent control and data support due to various reasons, such as tight time, short duration, lack of robust communication, etc. These stages include combat deployment (surface attack or air attack which make the highest demands on the fighter's design, that is why the promising UAV are currently considered to be "as autonomous as possible". It is obvious that the efficiency of an autonomous UAV will be determined mostly by the effec- tiveness of its automated control algorithms, and this dependence will increase together with the level of UAV autonomy. On the other hand, the optimal control algorithms can only be synthesized based on the control object characteristics. It means the development of UAV external design and the synthesis of its control algorithms should occur simultaneously and interdependently. This article presents the content and gives an example of the use of the method of maneuverable UAV external design, the distinctive feature of which lies in the interdependent processes of UAV external design develop- ing and the synthesizing of its automated control algorithms.

  20. FORMATION ALGORITHM OF DYNAMIC TURN FOR UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES ON APPROACH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor A. Chekhov

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Great interest in using unmanned aerial vehicles has recently been shown, both from economic entities, and from national security, defense and law enforcement agencies. However, for using UAV for the civil purposes there is now a number of problems which are connected with the use of airspace and without solving them it is impossible to use the UAV fully. It should be noted that the level of flight safety, both for regular aircraft, and for the UAV, has the primary value. It is necessary to use modern methods of data processing and to have an opportunity to quickly and effectively control the current flight safety level. For this purpose the fullest information on the current movement of aircraft and unmanned aerial vehicles, and also on the structure of the used airspace has to be used. The problem of procedures and maneuvers development that resolve potential traffic conflict including the UAV, is extremely important for air traffic safety especially in the vicinity of the destination or landing aerodrome. The possibility of creation of an algorithm of dynamic turn formation and the choice of a trajectory on approach of unmanned aerial vehicles is considered in this article. The technology of automatic dependent surveillance broadcast was used when collecting statistical data. Implementation of the landing algorithm is executed based on the criteria of ensuring efficiency and flight safety. The developed software provides the use only of open data on the aircraft movement in terminal airspace. The suggested algorithm can be adapted for air traffic management of the UAV in any selected airspace.

  1. A Vision-Based Method for Autonomous Landing of a Rotor-Craft Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Z. Yuan

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available This article introduces a real-time vision-based method for guided autonomous landing of a rotor-craft unmanned aerial vehicle. In the process of designing the pattern of landing target, we have fully considered how to make this easier for simplified identification and calibration. A linear algorithm was also applied using a three-dimensional structure estimation in real time. In addition, multiple-view vision technology is utilized to calibrate intrinsic parameters of camera online, so calibration prior to flight is unnecessary and the focus of camera can be changed freely in flight, thus upgrading the flexibility and practicality of the method.

  2. Use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles by the Islamic State: Nature of the Threat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Mrva

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The proliferation of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs on the battlefield does not exclude terrorist actors. Recently, there is an evident increase in the number of incidents when the so-called Islamic State has used UAVs. This article tries to describe this relatively new phenomenon and present an overview of main types of the potential Islamic State’s UAV employment in Europe. Despite the fact, that the UAV use by terrorist actors will probably not have the strategic impact by itself, it constitutes a new challenge for state security agencies.

  3. Contingency Estimation of States for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle using a Spherical Simplex Unscented Filter

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hahn, Tobias; Hansen, Søren; Blanke, Mogens

    2012-01-01

    Aiming at survival from contingency situations for unmanned aerial vehicles, a square root spherical simplex unscented Kalman filter is applied for state and parameter estimation and a rough model is used for state prediction when essential measurements are lost. Processing real flight data, rece...... efficient square root implementation of the filter algorithm. A case of loss of GPS signal demonstrates the use of the state estimates to obtain return of the UAV to close to it’s home base where safe recovery is possible....

  4. Experimental and rendering-based investigation of laser radar cross sections of small unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laurenzis, Martin; Bacher, Emmanuel; Christnacher, Frank

    2017-12-01

    Laser imaging systems are prominent candidates for detection and tracking of small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in current and future security scenarios. Laser reflection characteristics for laser imaging (e.g., laser gated viewing) of small UAVs are investigated to determine their laser radar cross section (LRCS) by analyzing the intensity distribution of laser reflection in high resolution images. For the first time, LRCSs are determined in a combined experimental and computational approaches by high resolution laser gated viewing and three-dimensional rendering. An optimized simple surface model is calculated taking into account diffuse and specular reflectance properties based on the Oren-Nayar and the Cook-Torrance reflectance models, respectively.

  5. On Board Data Acquisition System with Intelligent Transducers for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rochala, Zdzisław

    2012-02-01

    This report presents conclusions from research project no. ON50900363 conducted at the Mechatronics Department, Military University of Technology in the years 2007-2010. As the main object of the study involved the preparation of a concept and the implementation of an avionics data acquisition system intended for research during flight of unmanned aerial vehicles of the mini class, this article presents a design of an avionics system and describes equipment solutions of a distributed measurement system intended for data acquisition consisting of intelligent transducers. The data collected during a flight controlled by an operator confirmed proper operation of the individual components of the data acquisition system.

  6. Spectral broadening of acoustic tones generated by unmanned aerial vehicles in a turbulent atmosphere

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ostashev, Vladimir E.; Wilson, D. K.; Finn, Anthony

    2016-01-01

    The acoustic spectrum emitted by unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and other aircraft can be distorted by propagation through atmospheric turbulence. Since most UAVs are propeller-based, they generate a series of acoustic tones and harmonics. In this paper, spectral broadening of these tones due......, spectral broadening is calculated and analyzed for typical meteorological regimes of the atmospheric boundary layer and different flight trajectories of UAVs. Experimental results are presented and compared with theoretical predictions. Spectral broadening might also provide a means for remotely sensing...

  7. The Proliferation of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles: Terrorist Use, Capability, and Strategic Implications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ball, Ryan Jokl [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)

    2017-10-16

    There has been unparalleled proliferation and technological advancement of consumer unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) across the globe in the past several years. As witnessed over the course of insurgency tactics, it is difficult to restrict terrorists from using widely available technology they perceive as advantageous to their overall strategy. Through a review of the characteristics, consumer market landscape, tactics, and countertactics, as well as operational use of consumer-grade UAVs, this open-source report seeks to provide an introductory understanding of the terrorist-UAV landscape, as well as insights into present and future capabilities. The caveat is evaluating a developing technology haphazardly used by terrorists in asymmetric conflicts.

  8. A Survey on Open-Source Flight Control Platforms of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ebeid, Emad Samuel Malki; Skriver, Martin; Jin, Jie

    2017-01-01

    Recently, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), so-called drones, have gotten a lot of attention in academic research and commercial applications due to their simple structure, ease of operations and low-cost hardware components. Flight controller, embedded electronics component, represents the core part...... of the drone. It aims at performing the main operations of the drone (e.g., autonomous control and navigation). There are various types of flight controllers and each of them has its own characteristics and features. This paper presents an extensive survey on the publicly available open-source flight...

  9. Control techniques of tilt rotor unmanned aerial vehicle systems: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhong Liu

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The tilt rotor unmanned aerial vehicle (TRUAV exhibits special application value due to its unique rotor structure. However, varying dynamics and aerodynamic interference caused by tiltable rotors are great technical challenges and key issues for TRUAV’s high-powered flight controls, which have attracted the attention of many researchers. This paper outlines the concept of TRUAV and some typical TRUAV platforms while focusing on control techniques. TRUAV structural features, dynamics modeling, and flight control methods are discussed, and major challenges and corresponding developmental tendencies associated with TRUAV flight control are summarized.

  10. Counter Unmanned Aerial Systems Testing: Evaluation of VIS SWIR MWIR and LWIR passive imagers.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Birch, Gabriel Carlisle [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Woo, Bryana Lynn [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2017-01-01

    This report contains analysis of unmanned aerial systems as imaged by visible, short-wave infrared, mid-wave infrared, and long-wave infrared passive devices. Testing was conducted at the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) during the week of August 15, 2016. Target images in all spectral bands are shown and contrast versus background is reported. Calculations are performed to determine estimated pixels-on-target for detection and assessment levels, and the number of pixels needed to cover a hemisphere for detection or assessment at defined distances. Background clutter challenges are qualitatively discussed for different spectral bands, and low contrast scenarios are highlighted for long-wave infrared imagers.

  11. Falling with Style: Bats Perform Complex Aerial Rotations by Adjusting Wing Inertia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Attila J Bergou

    Full Text Available The remarkable maneuverability of flying animals results from precise movements of their highly specialized wings. Bats have evolved an impressive capacity to control their flight, in large part due to their ability to modulate wing shape, area, and angle of attack through many independently controlled joints. Bat wings, however, also contain many bones and relatively large muscles, and thus the ratio of bats' wing mass to their body mass is larger than it is for all other extant flyers. Although the inertia in bat wings would typically be associated with decreased aerial maneuverability, we show that bat maneuvers challenge this notion. We use a model-based tracking algorithm to measure the wing and body kinematics of bats performing complex aerial rotations. Using a minimal model of a bat with only six degrees of kinematic freedom, we show that bats can perform body rolls by selectively retracting one wing during the flapping cycle. We also show that this maneuver does not rely on aerodynamic forces, and furthermore that a fruit fly, with nearly massless wings, would not exhibit this effect. Similar results are shown for a pitching maneuver. Finally, we combine high-resolution kinematics of wing and body movements during landing and falling maneuvers with a 52-degree-of-freedom dynamical model of a bat to show that modulation of wing inertia plays the dominant role in reorienting the bat during landing and falling maneuvers, with minimal contribution from aerodynamic forces. Bats can, therefore, use their wings as multifunctional organs, capable of sophisticated aerodynamic and inertial dynamics not previously observed in other flying animals. This may also have implications for the control of aerial robotic vehicles.

  12. Comparing Manned Aerial Surveys to Unmanned Aerial Surveys for Cetacean Monitoring in the Arctic: Field Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    disadvantages of using UAS relative to manned aircraft to collect data for estimating marine mammal density. DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A: Approved...size, and detecting calves. Weatherproof UAS ( IFR capability, heated pitot tubes, wing/prop deicing capability) X X Would have been helpful for

  13. Methods for Evaluating the Temperature Structure-Function Parameter Using Unmanned Aerial Systems and Large-Eddy Simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wainwright, Charlotte E.; Bonin, Timothy A.; Chilson, Phillip B.; Gibbs, Jeremy A.; Fedorovich, Evgeni; Palmer, Robert D.

    2015-05-01

    Small-scale turbulent fluctuations of temperature are known to affect the propagation of both electromagnetic and acoustic waves. Within the inertial-subrange scale, where the turbulence is locally homogeneous and isotropic, these temperature perturbations can be described, in a statistical sense, using the structure-function parameter for temperature, . Here we investigate different methods of evaluating , using data from a numerical large-eddy simulation together with atmospheric observations collected by an unmanned aerial system and a sodar. An example case using data from a late afternoon unmanned aerial system flight on April 24 2013 and corresponding large-eddy simulation data is presented and discussed.

  14. Optimization of the choice of unmanned aerial vehicles used to monitor the implementation of selected construction projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skorupka, Dariusz; Duchaczek, Artur; Waniewska, Agnieszka; Kowacka, Magdalena

    2017-07-01

    Due to their properties unmanned aerial vehicles have huge number of possibilities for application in construction engineering. The nature and extent of construction works performedmakes the decision to purchase the right equipment significant for the possibility for its further use while monitoring the implementation of these works. Technical factors, such as the accuracy and quality of the applied measurement instruments are especially important when monitoring the realization of construction projects. The paper presents the optimization of the choice of unmanned aerial vehicles using the Bellinger method. The decision-making analysis takes into account criteria that are particularly crucial by virtue of the range of monitoring of ongoing construction works.

  15. Wake Characteristics of a Flapping Wing Optimized for both Aerial and Aquatic Flight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Izraelevitz, Jacob; Kotidis, Miranda; Triantafyllou, Michael

    2017-11-01

    Multiple aquatic bird species (including murres, puffins, and other auks) employ a single actuator to propel themselves in two different fluid media: both flying and swimming using primarily their flapping wings. This impressive design compromise could be adopted by engineered implementations of dual aerial/aquatic robotic platforms, as it offers an existence proof for favorable flow physics. We discuss one realization of a 3D flapping wing actuation system for use in both air and water. The wing oscillates by the root and employs an active in-line motion degree-of-freedom. An experiment-coupled optimization routine generates the wing trajectories, controlling the unsteady forces throughout each flapping cycle. We elucidate the wakes of these wing trajectories using dye visualization, correlating the wake vortex structures with simultaneous force measurements. After optimization, the wing generates the large force envelope necessary for propulsion in both fluid media, and furthermore, demonstrate improved control over the unsteady wake.

  16. The Potential of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle for Large Scale Mapping of Coastal Area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Darwin, N; Ahmad, A; Zainon, O

    2014-01-01

    Many countries in the tropical region are covered with cloud for most of the time, hence, it is difficult to get clear images especially from high resolution satellite imagery. Aerial photogrammetry can be used but most of the time the cloud problem still exists. Today, this problem could be solved using a system known as unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) where the aerial images can be acquired at low altitude and the system can fly under the cloud. The UAV system could be used in various applications including mapping coastal area. The UAV system is equipped with an autopilot system and automatic method known as autonomous flying that can be utilized for data acquisition. To achieve high resolution imagery, a compact digital camera of high resolution was used to acquire the aerial images at an altitude. In this study, the UAV system was employed to acquire aerial images of a coastal simulation model at low altitude. From the aerial images, photogrammetric image processing was executed to produce photogrammetric outputs such a digital elevation model (DEM), contour line and orthophoto. In this study, ground control point (GCP) and check point (CP) were established using conventional ground surveying method (i.e total station). The GCP is used for exterior orientation in photogrammetric processes and CP for accuracy assessment based on Root Mean Square Error (RMSE). From this study, it was found that the UAV system can be used for large scale mapping of coastal simulation model with accuracy at millimeter level. It is anticipated that the same system could be used for large scale mapping of real coastal area and produces good accuracy. Finally, the UAV system has great potential to be used for various applications that require accurate results or products at limited time and less man power

  17. Development of multi copter based autonomous unmanned aerial radiation monitoring system for the remote impact assessment of radiation emergencies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jose, Jis Romal; Gupta, Ashutosh; Bahadur, Shuchita; Chaudhury, Probal; Pradeepkumar, K.S.

    2016-01-01

    During any radiation emergency, the level and extent of radioactive contamination need to be monitored for the timely and effective implementation of countermeasures to reduce the radiation exposure to public. In such a scenario, radiation surveillance can be carried out using either ground based mobile monitoring techniques or aerial radiation monitoring. Aerial radiation monitoring is quick and capable of scanning the areas which are not easily accessible by the ground based mobile monitoring. Compact unmanned aerial vehicle based radiation surveillance system is ideal in above mentioned radiation emergency scenarios as it can be rapidly deployed in the affected area and radiation exposure to the monitoring personal can be totally avoided. This paper describes development of multi copter based autonomous unmanned aerial radiation monitoring system for the remote impact assessment of radiation emergencies

  18. SMA-Based System for Environmental Sensors Released from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorenzo Pellone

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In the work at hand, a shape memory alloy (SMA-based system is presented. The system, conceived for releasing environmental sensors from ground or small unmanned aerial vehicles, UAV (often named UAS, unmanned aerial system, is made of a door, integrated into the bottom of the fuselage, a device distributor, operated by a couple of antagonistic SMA springs, and a kinematic chain, to synchronize the deployment operation with the system movement. On the basis of the specifications (weight, available space, energy supply, sensors size, etc., the system design was addressed. After having identified the main system characteristics, a representative mock-up was manufactured, featuring the bottom part of the reference fuselage. Functionality tests were performed to prove the system capability to release the sensors; a detailed characterization was finally carried out, mainly finalized at correlating the kinematic chain displacement with the SMA spring temperature and the supplied electrical power. A comparison between theoretical predictions and experimental outcomes showed good agreement.

  19. A Summary of NASA Research Exploring the Acoustics of Small Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zawodny, Nikolas S.; Christian, Andrew; Cabell, Randolph

    2018-01-01

    Proposed uses of small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) have the potential to expose large portions of communities to a new noise source. In order to understand the potential noise impact of sUAS, NASA initiated acoustics research as one component of the 3-year DELIVER project, with the goal of documenting the feasibility of using existing aircraft design tools and methods on this class of vehicles. This paper summarizes the acoustics research conducted within the DELIVER project. The research described here represents an initial study, and subsequent research building on the findings of this work has been proposed for other NASA projects. The paper summarizes acoustics research in four areas: measurements of noise generated by flyovers of small unmanned aerial vehicles, measurements in controlled test facilities to understand the noise generated by components of these vehicles, computational predictions of component and full vehicle noise, and psychoacoustic tests including auralizations conducted to assess human annoyance to the noise generated by these vehicles.

  20. The effective use of unmanned aerial vehicles for local law enforcement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gasque, Leighton

    This qualitative study was done to interview local law enforcement in Murfreesboro, Tennessee to determine if unmanned aerial vehicles could increase the safety of policy officers. Many police officers face dangerous scenarios on a daily basis; however, officers must also perform non-criminal related responsibilities that could put them in hazardous situations. UAVs have multiple capabilities that can decrease the number of hazards in an emergency situation whether it is environmental, traffic related, criminal activity, or investigations. Officers were interviewed to find whether or not unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) could be useful manpower on the police force. The study was also used to find whether or not officers foresee UAVs being used in law enforcement. The study revealed that UAVs could be used to add useful manpower to law enforcement based on the capabilities a UAV may have. Police officers cannot confirm whether or not they would be able to use a UAV until further research is conducted to examine the relation of costs to usage.

  1. PERANCANGAN SISTEM TRANSFER DAYA NIRKABEL UNTUK UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE (UAV MICRO JENIS QUADCOPTER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Setyawan Wahyu Pratomo

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Dalam Unmanned Aerial Vehicle ( UAV jenis Quadcopter, sumber catu daya berupa baterai yang hanya mampu bekerja 10-15 menit di udara merupakan permasalahan tersendiri bagi performa Quadcopter. Sedangkan perfomansi dari Quadcopter pada ketinggian yang susah dijangkau, diharapkan peran operator yang selama ini harus mengkoneksikan secara manual kabel charging ke baterai bisa digantikan oleh sistem secara otomatis ketika baterai akan habis. Untuk itu dalam paper ini membahas suatu perancangan sistem transfer daya nirkabel untuk Quadcopter mengisi ulang baterai tanpa bantuan operator dan tidak harus dilakukan pendaratan di atas tanah. Proses isi ulang ( charging baterai bisa dilakukan di atas gedung maupun di landasan yang telah terpasang transfer daya nirkabel. Tujuannya adalah meningkatkan performansi kerja Quadcopter di udara sesuai dengan kegunaanya. Dari perancangan sistem transfer daya nirkabel untuk Unmanned Aerial Vehicle ( UAV jenis Quadcopter mengisi ulang ( charging baterai, diperoleh hasil efisiensi transfer daya terbaik sebesar 62,24% dengan jarak efektif 10 cm. Frekuensi sistem transfer daya nirkabel diperoleh dari rangkaian Colpitss Oscillator sebesar 333,1 KHz dengan menerapkan prinsip induksi elektromagnetik.

  2. 3D unmanned aerial vehicle radiation mapping for assessing contaminant distribution and mobility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, P. G.; Kwong, S.; Smith, N. T.; Yamashiki, Y.; Payton, O. D.; Russell-Pavier, F. S.; Fardoulis, J. S.; Richards, D. A.; Scott, T. B.

    2016-10-01

    Following the events of March 2011 at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, significant quantities of radioactive material were released into the local and wider global environment. At five years since the incident, much expense is being currently devoted to the remediation of a large portion of eastern Japan contaminated primarily by radiocesium, yet further significant expenditure will be required over the succeeding decades to complete this clean-up. People displaced from their homes by the incident are now increasingly keen to return, making it more important than ever to provide accurate quantification and representation of any residual radiological contamination. Presented here is the use of an unmanned aerial vehicle equipped with a laser rangefinder unit to generate a three dimensional point-cloud of an area onto which a radiation contamination map, also obtained concurrently via the unmanned aerial platform, can be rendered. An exemplar site of an un-remediated farm consisting of multiple stepped rice paddy fields with a dedicated irrigation system was used for this work. The results obtained show that heightened radiological contamination exists around the site within the drainage network where material is observed to have collected, having been transported by transient water runoff events. These results obtained in May 2014 suggest that a proportion of the fallout material is highly mobile within the natural environment and is likely to be transported further through the system over the succeeding years.

  3. USAGE OF UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES IN GENERAL AVIATION: CURRENT SITUATION AND PROSPECTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The article aims at analyzing the current and future trends in usage of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV in gen- eral aviation (branches of economy. The main goal of the analysis is to determine the branches of economy, in which the usage of UAVs would be the most beneficial in the near- to mid-term future. The main requirements and restrictions of usage of the aircraft in general aviation were used as a basis for determining the types of operations, in which the usage of UAVs will be the most rational and effective. The effectiveness evaluation was based on the developed method, involving evaluation of the following factors such as: advantages of usage of manned aircraft, advantages of usage of unmanned air- craft, problems associated with the usage of manned aircraft, problems associated with the usage of unmanned aircraft. After evaluation of the mentioned aspects above the safety, operational productivity and ecological indicators were evaluat- ed. These qualitative assessments allowed identifying the branches of economy, where the usage of UAVs could potentially be the most advantageous. The article also discusses the possible strategies of UAVs development for general aviation. The so-called “mixed” strategy of UAV development is identified as the best in the current situation. This strategy combines the conversion of the existing military UAVs with the purpose of fitting them in to civilian use with the parallel development of brand new UAVs, which would be designed for operation in branches of economy right from the beginning (from scratch.

  4. Development of Bird-like Micro Aerial Vehicle with Flapping and Feathering Wing Motions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maglasang, Jonathan; Goto, Norihiro; Isogai, Koji

    To investigate the feasibility of a highly efficient flapping system capable of avian maneuvers, such as rapid takeoff, hover and gliding, a full scale bird-like (ornithopter) flapping-wing micro aerial vehicle (MAV) shaped and patterned after a typical pigeon (Columba livia) has been designed and constructed. Both numerical and experimental methods have been used in the development of this vehicle. This flapping-wing micro aerial vehicle utilizes both the flapping and feathering motions of an avian wing by employing a novel flapping-feathering mechanism, which has been synthesized and constructed so as to best describe the properly coordinated flapping and feathering wing motions at phase angle difference of 90° in a horizontal steady level flight condition. This design allows high flapping and feathering amplitudes and is configurable for asymmetric wing motions which are desirable in high-speed flapping flight and maneuvering. The preliminary results indicate its viability as a practical and an efficient flapping-wing micro aerial vehicle.

  5. Wing configuration on Wind Tunnel Testing of an Unmanned Aircraft Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daryanto, Yanto; Purwono, Joko; Subagyo

    2018-04-01

    Control surface of an Unmanned Aircraft Vehicle (UAV) consists of flap, aileron, spoiler, rudder, and elevator. Every control surface has its own special functionality. Some particular configurations in the flight mission often depend on the wing configuration. Configuration wing within flap deflection for takeoff setting deflection of flap 20° but during landing deflection of flap set on the value 40°. The aim of this research is to get the ultimate CLmax for take-off flap deflection setting. It is shown from Wind Tunnel Testing result that the 20° flap deflection gives optimum CLmax with moderate drag coefficient. The results of Wind Tunnel Testing representing by graphic plots show good performance as well as the stability of UAV.

  6. Use of an unmanned aerial vehicle-mounted video camera to assess feeding behavior of Raramuri Criollo cows

    Science.gov (United States)

    We determined the feasibility of using unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) video monitoring to predict intake of discrete food items of rangeland-raised Raramuri Criollo non-nursing beef cows. Thirty-five cows were released into a 405-m2 rectangular dry lot, either in pairs (pilot tests) or individually (...

  7. Real-Time Implementation of an Asynchronous Vision-Based Target Tracking System for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-06-01

    Chin Khoon Quek. “Vision Based Control and Target Range Estimation for Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicle.” Master’s Thesis, Naval Postgraduate School...December 2005. [6] Kwee Chye Yap. “Incorporating Target Mensuration System for Target Motion Estimation Along a Road Using Asynchronous Filter

  8. Mapping of a river using close range photogrammetry technique and unmanned aerial vehicle system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Room, M H M; Ahmad, A

    2014-01-01

    Photogrammetry is a technique that can be used to record the information of any feature without direct contact. Nowadays, a combination of photogrammetry and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) systems is widely used for various applications, especially for large scale mapping. UAV systems offer several advantages in terms of cost and image resolution compared to terrestrial photogrammetry and remote sensing system. Therefore, a combination of photogrammetry and UAV created a new term which is UAV photogrammetry. The aim of this study is to investigate the ability of a UAV system to map a river at very close distance. A digital camera is attached to the Hexacopter UAV and it is flown at 2 m above the ground surface to produce aerial photos. Then, the aerial photos are processed to create two photogrammetric products as output. These are mosaicked orthophoto and digital image. Both products are assessed (RSME). The RSME of X and Y coordinates are ±0.009 m and ±0.033 m respectively. As a conclusion, photogrammetry and the UAV system offer a reliable accuracy for mapping a river model and advantages in term of cost-efficient, high ground resolution and rapid data acquisition

  9. Topographic data acquisition in tsunami-prone coastal area using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marfai, M. A.; Sunarto; Khakim, N.; Cahyadi, A.; Rosaji, F. S. C.; Fatchurohman, H.; Wibowo, Y. A.

    2018-04-01

    The southern coastal area of Java Island is one of the nine seismic gaps prone to tsunamis. The entire coastline in one of the regencies, Gunungkidul, is exposed to the subduction zone in the Indian Ocean. Also, the growing tourism industries in the regency increase its vulnerability, which places most of its areas at high risk of tsunamis. The same case applies to Kukup, i.e., one of the most well-known beaches in Gunungkidul. Structurally shaped cliffs that surround it experience intensive wave erosion process, but it has very minimum access for evacuation routes. Since tsunami modeling is a very advanced analysis, it requires an accurate topographic data. Therefore, the research aimed to generate the topographic data of Kukup Beach as the baseline in tsunami risk reduction analysis and disaster management. It used aerial photograph data, which was acquired using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). The results showed that the aerial photographs captured by drone had accurate elevation and spatial resolution. Therefore, they are applicable for tsunami modeling and disaster management.

  10. Unmanned aerial survey of fallen trees in a deciduous broadleaved forest in eastern Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inoue, Tomoharu; Nagai, Shin; Yamashita, Satoshi; Fadaei, Hadi; Ishii, Reiichiro; Okabe, Kimiko; Taki, Hisatomo; Honda, Yoshiaki; Kajiwara, Koji; Suzuki, Rikie

    2014-01-01

    Since fallen trees are a key factor in biodiversity and biogeochemical cycling, information about their spatial distribution is of use in determining species distribution and nutrient and carbon cycling in forest ecosystems. Ground-based surveys are both time consuming and labour intensive. Remote-sensing technology can reduce these costs. Here, we used high-spatial-resolution aerial photographs (0.5-1.0 cm per pixel) taken from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to survey fallen trees in a deciduous broadleaved forest in eastern Japan. In nine sub-plots we found a total of 44 fallen trees by ground survey. From the aerial photographs, we identified 80% to 90% of fallen trees that were >30 cm in diameter or >10 m in length, but missed many that were narrower or shorter. This failure may be due to the similarity of fallen trees to trunks and branches of standing trees or masking by standing trees. Views of the same point from different angles may improve the detection rate because they would provide more opportunity to detect fallen trees hidden by standing trees. Our results suggest that UAV surveys will make it possible to monitor the spatial and temporal variations in forest structure and function at lower cost.

  11. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs for surveying marine fauna: a dugong case study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda Hodgson

    Full Text Available Aerial surveys of marine mammals are routinely conducted to assess and monitor species' habitat use and population status. In Australia, dugongs (Dugong dugon are regularly surveyed and long-term datasets have formed the basis for defining habitat of high conservation value and risk assessments of human impacts. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs may facilitate more accurate, human-risk free, and cheaper aerial surveys. We undertook the first Australian UAV survey trial in Shark Bay, western Australia. We conducted seven flights of the ScanEagle UAV, mounted with a digital SLR camera payload. During each flight, ten transects covering a 1.3 km(2 area frequently used by dugongs, were flown at 500, 750 and 1000 ft. Image (photograph capture was controlled via the Ground Control Station and the capture rate was scheduled to achieve a prescribed 10% overlap between images along transect lines. Images were manually reviewed post hoc for animals and scored according to sun glitter, Beaufort Sea state and turbidity. We captured 6243 images, 627 containing dugongs. We also identified whales, dolphins, turtles and a range of other fauna. Of all possible dugong sightings, 95% (CI = 90%, 98% were subjectively classed as 'certain' (unmistakably dugongs. Neither our dugong sighting rate, nor our ability to identify dugongs with certainty, were affected by UAV altitude. Turbidity was the only environmental variable significantly affecting the dugong sighting rate. Our results suggest that UAV systems may not be limited by sea state conditions in the same manner as sightings from manned surveys. The overlap between images proved valuable for detecting animals that were masked by sun glitter in the corners of images, and identifying animals initially captured at awkward body angles. This initial trial of a basic camera system has successfully demonstrated that the ScanEagle UAV has great potential as a tool for marine mammal aerial surveys.

  12. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for surveying marine fauna: a dugong case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodgson, Amanda; Kelly, Natalie; Peel, David

    2013-01-01

    Aerial surveys of marine mammals are routinely conducted to assess and monitor species' habitat use and population status. In Australia, dugongs (Dugong dugon) are regularly surveyed and long-term datasets have formed the basis for defining habitat of high conservation value and risk assessments of human impacts. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) may facilitate more accurate, human-risk free, and cheaper aerial surveys. We undertook the first Australian UAV survey trial in Shark Bay, western Australia. We conducted seven flights of the ScanEagle UAV, mounted with a digital SLR camera payload. During each flight, ten transects covering a 1.3 km(2) area frequently used by dugongs, were flown at 500, 750 and 1000 ft. Image (photograph) capture was controlled via the Ground Control Station and the capture rate was scheduled to achieve a prescribed 10% overlap between images along transect lines. Images were manually reviewed post hoc for animals and scored according to sun glitter, Beaufort Sea state and turbidity. We captured 6243 images, 627 containing dugongs. We also identified whales, dolphins, turtles and a range of other fauna. Of all possible dugong sightings, 95% (CI = 90%, 98%) were subjectively classed as 'certain' (unmistakably dugongs). Neither our dugong sighting rate, nor our ability to identify dugongs with certainty, were affected by UAV altitude. Turbidity was the only environmental variable significantly affecting the dugong sighting rate. Our results suggest that UAV systems may not be limited by sea state conditions in the same manner as sightings from manned surveys. The overlap between images proved valuable for detecting animals that were masked by sun glitter in the corners of images, and identifying animals initially captured at awkward body angles. This initial trial of a basic camera system has successfully demonstrated that the ScanEagle UAV has great potential as a tool for marine mammal aerial surveys.

  13. Measuring water level in rivers and lakes from lightweight Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bandini, Filippo; Jakobsen, Jakob; Olesen, Daniel Haugård

    2017-01-01

    The assessment of hydrologic dynamics in rivers, lakes, reservoirs and wetlands requires measurements of water level, its temporal and spatial derivatives, and the extent and dynamics of open water surfaces. Motivated by the declining number of ground-based measurement stations, research efforts...... complex water dynamics. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) can fill the gap between spaceborne and ground-based observations, and provide high spatial resolution and dense temporal coverage data, in quick turn-around time, using flexible payload design. This study focused on categorizing and testing sensors......, which comply with the weight constraint of small UAVs (around 1.5 kg), capable of measuring the range to water surface. Subtracting the measured range from the vertical position retrieved by the onboard Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receiver, we can determine the water level (orthometric...

  14. R2U2: Monitoring and Diagnosis of Security Threats for Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumann, Johann; Moosbruger, Patrick; Rozier, Kristin Y.

    2015-01-01

    We present R2U2, a novel framework for runtime monitoring of security properties and diagnosing of security threats on-board Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS). R2U2, implemented in FPGA hardware, is a real-time, REALIZABLE, RESPONSIVE, UNOBTRUSIVE Unit for security threat detection. R2U2 is designed to continuously monitor inputs from the GPS and the ground control station, sensor readings, actuator outputs, and flight software status. By simultaneously monitoring and performing statistical reasoning, attack patterns and post-attack discrepancies in the UAS behavior can be detected. R2U2 uses runtime observer pairs for linear and metric temporal logics for property monitoring and Bayesian networks for diagnosis of security threats. We discuss the design and implementation that now enables R2U2 to handle security threats and present simulation results of several attack scenarios on the NASA DragonEye UAS.

  15. An arm wearable haptic interface for impact sensing on unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Yunshil; Hong, Seung-Chan; Lee, Jung-Ryul

    2017-04-01

    In this paper, an impact monitoring system using fiber Bragg grating (FBG) sensors and vibro-haptic actuators has been introduced. The system is suggested for structural health monitoring (SHM) for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), by making a decision with human-robot interaction. The system is composed with two major subsystems; an on-board system equipped on UAV and an arm-wearable interface for ground pilot. The on-board system acquires impact-induced wavelength changes and performs localization process, which was developed based on arrival time calculation. The arm-wearable interface helps ground pilots to make decision about impact location themselves by stimulating their tactile-sense with motor vibration.

  16. A meta-analysis of human-system interfaces in unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) swarm management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hocraffer, Amy; Nam, Chang S

    2017-01-01

    A meta-analysis was conducted to systematically evaluate the current state of research on human-system interfaces for users controlling semi-autonomous swarms composed of groups of drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). UAV swarms pose several human factors challenges, such as high cognitive demands, non-intuitive behavior, and serious consequences for errors. This article presents findings from a meta-analysis of 27 UAV swarm management papers focused on the human-system interface and human factors concerns, providing an overview of the advantages, challenges, and limitations of current UAV management interfaces, as well as information on how these interfaces are currently evaluated. In general allowing user and mission-specific customization to user interfaces and raising the swarm's level of autonomy to reduce operator cognitive workload are beneficial and improve situation awareness (SA). It is clear more research is needed in this rapidly evolving field. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Traffic Management (UTM): Enabling Low-Altitude Airspace and UAS Operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopardekar, Parimal H.

    2014-01-01

    Many civilian applications of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) have been imagined ranging from remote to congested urban areas, including goods delivery, infrastructure surveillance, agricultural support, and medical services delivery. Further, these UAS will have different equipage and capabilities based on considerations such as affordability, and mission needs applications. Such heterogeneous UAS mix, along with operations such as general aviation, helicopters, gliders must be safely accommodated at lower altitudes. However, key infrastructure to enable and safely manage widespread use of low-altitude airspace and UAS operations therein does not exist. Therefore, NASA is exploring functional design, concept and technology development, and a prototype UAS Traffic Management (UTM) system. UTM will support safe and efficient UAS operations for the delivery of goods and services

  18. Measurement of greenhouse gases in UAE by using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abou-Elnour, Ali; Odeh, Mohamed; Abdelrhman, Mohammed; Balkis, Ahmed; Amira, Abdelraouf

    2017-04-01

    In the present work, a reliable and low cost system has been designed and implemented to measure greenhouse gases (GHG) in United Arab Emirates (UAE) by using unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). A set of accurate gas, temperature, pressure, humidity sensors are integrated together with a wireless communication system on a microcontroller based platform to continuously measure the required data. The system instantaneously sends the measured data to a center monitoring unit via the wireless communication system. In addition, the proposed system has the features that all measurements are recorded directly in a storage device to allow effective monitoring in regions with weak or no wireless coverage. The obtained data will be used in all further sophisticated calculations for environmental research and monitoring purposes.

  19. A Review of Deep Learning Methods and Applications for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrian Carrio

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Deep learning is recently showing outstanding results for solving a wide variety of robotic tasks in the areas of perception, planning, localization, and control. Its excellent capabilities for learning representations from the complex data acquired in real environments make it extremely suitable for many kinds of autonomous robotic applications. In parallel, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs are currently being extensively applied for several types of civilian tasks in applications going from security, surveillance, and disaster rescue to parcel delivery or warehouse management. In this paper, a thorough review has been performed on recent reported uses and applications of deep learning for UAVs, including the most relevant developments as well as their performances and limitations. In addition, a detailed explanation of the main deep learning techniques is provided. We conclude with a description of the main challenges for the application of deep learning for UAV-based solutions.

  20. Mathematical model of unmanned aerial vehicle used for endurance autonomous monitoring

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chelaru, Teodor-Viorel, E-mail: teodor.chelaru@upb.ro [University POLITEHNICA of Bucharest - Research Center for Aeronautics and Space, Str. Gheorghe Polizu, no. 1, PC 011061, Sector 1, Bucharest (Romania); Chelaru, Adrian, E-mail: achelaru@incas.ro [INCAS -National Institute for Aerospace Research Elie Carafoli, B-dul Iuliu Maniu 220, 061126, Sector 6, Bucharest (Romania)

    2014-12-10

    The paper purpose is to present some aspects regarding the control system of unmanned aerial vehicle - UAV, used to local observations, surveillance and monitoring interest area. The calculus methodology allows a numerical simulation of UAV evolution in bad atmospheric conditions by using nonlinear model, as well as a linear one for obtaining guidance command. The UAV model which will be presented has six DOF (degrees of freedom), and autonomous control system. This theoretical development allows us to build stability matrix, command matrix and control matrix and finally to analyse the stability of autonomous UAV flight. A robust guidance system, based on uncoupled state will be evaluated for different fly conditions and the results will be presented. The flight parameters and guidance will be analysed.

  1. Mathematical model of unmanned aerial vehicle used for endurance autonomous monitoring

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chelaru, Teodor-Viorel; Chelaru, Adrian

    2014-01-01

    The paper purpose is to present some aspects regarding the control system of unmanned aerial vehicle - UAV, used to local observations, surveillance and monitoring interest area. The calculus methodology allows a numerical simulation of UAV evolution in bad atmospheric conditions by using nonlinear model, as well as a linear one for obtaining guidance command. The UAV model which will be presented has six DOF (degrees of freedom), and autonomous control system. This theoretical development allows us to build stability matrix, command matrix and control matrix and finally to analyse the stability of autonomous UAV flight. A robust guidance system, based on uncoupled state will be evaluated for different fly conditions and the results will be presented. The flight parameters and guidance will be analysed

  2. Information Fusion-Based Optimal Attitude Control for an Alterable Thrust Direction Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ziyang Zhen

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Attitude control is the inner-loop and the most important part of the automatic flight control system of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV. The information fusion-based optimal control method is applied in a UAV flight control system in this work. Firstly, a nonlinear model of alterable thrust direction UAV (ATD-UAV is established and linearized for controller design. The longitudinal controller and lateral controller are respectively designed based on information fusion-based optimal control, and then the information fusion flight control system is built up. Finally, the simulation of a nonlinear model described as ATD-UAV is carried out, the results of which show the superiority of the information fusion-based control strategy when compared to the single-loop design method. We also show that the ATD technique improves the anti-disturbance capacity of the UAV.

  3. Adaptive compensation control for attitude adjustment of quad-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Zhankui; Sun, Kaibiao

    2017-07-01

    A compensation control strategy based on adaptive back-stepping technique is presented to address the problem of attitude adjustment for a quad-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle (QR- UAV) with inertia parameter uncertainties, the limited airflow disturbance and the partial loss of rotation speed effectiveness. In the design process of control system, adaptive estimation technique is introduced into the closed loop system in order to compensate the lumped disturbance term. More specifically, the designed controller utilizes "prescribed performance bounds" method, and therefore guarantees the transient performance of tracking errors, even in the presence of the lumped disturbance. Adaptive compensation algorithms under the proposed closed loop system structure are derived in the sense of Lyapunov stability analysis such that the attitude tracking error converge to a small neighborhood of equilibrium point. Finally, the simulation results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed controller. Copyright © 2017 ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Adaptive vision-based control of an unmanned aerial vehicle without linear velocity measurements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jabbari Asl, Hamed; Yoon, Jungwon

    2016-11-01

    In this paper, an image-based visual servo controller is designed for an unmanned aerial vehicle. The main objective is to use flow of image features as the velocity cue to compensate for the low quality of linear velocity information obtained from accelerometers. Nonlinear observers are designed to estimate this flow. The proposed controller is bounded, which can help to keep the target points in the field of view of the camera. The main advantages over the previous full dynamic observer-based methods are that, the controller is robust with respect to unknown image depth, and also no yaw information is required. The complete stability analysis is presented and asymptotic convergence of the error signals is guaranteed. Simulation results show the effectiveness of the proposed approach. Copyright © 2016 ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Comparisons of feature extraction algorithm based on unmanned aerial vehicle image

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xi Wenfei

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Feature point extraction technology has become a research hotspot in the photogrammetry and computer vision. The commonly used point feature extraction operators are SIFT operator, Forstner operator, Harris operator and Moravec operator, etc. With the high spatial resolution characteristics, UAV image is different from the traditional aviation image. Based on these characteristics of the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV, this paper uses several operators referred above to extract feature points from the building images, grassland images, shrubbery images, and vegetable greenhouses images. Through the practical case analysis, the performance, advantages, disadvantages and adaptability of each algorithm are compared and analyzed by considering their speed and accuracy. Finally, the suggestions of how to adapt different algorithms in diverse environment are proposed.

  6. Performance Analysis of Mobile Ad Hoc Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Communication Networks with Directional Antennas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdel Ilah Alshbatat

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs have the potential of creating an ad hoc communication network in the air. Most UAVs used in communication networks are equipped with wireless transceivers using omnidirectional antennas. In this paper, we consider a collection of UAVs that communicate through wireless links as a mobile ad-hoc network using directional antennas. The network design goal is to maximize the throughput and minimize the end-to-end delay. In this respect, we propose a new medium access control protocol for a network of UAVs with directional antennas. We analyze the communication channel between the UAVs and the effect of aircraft attitude on the network performance. Using the optimized network engineering tool (OPNET, we compare our protocol with the IEEE 802.11 protocol for omnidirectional antennas. The simulation results show performance improvement in end-to-end delay as well as throughput.

  7. A Framework for Diagnosis of Critical Faults in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Søren; Blanke, Mogens; Adrian, Jens

    2014-01-01

    , and based on a large number of data logged during flights, diagnostic methods are employed to diagnose faults and the performance of these fault detectors are evaluated against light data. The paper demonstrates a significant potential for reducing the risk of unplanned loss of remotely piloted vehicles......Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) need a large degree of tolerance towards faults. If not diagnosed and handled in time, many types of faults can have catastrophic consequences if they occur during flight. Prognosis of faults is also valuable and so is the ability to distinguish the severity...... of the different faults in terms of both consequences and the frequency with which they appear. In this paper flight data from a fleet of UAVs is analysed with respect to certain faults and their frequency of appearance. Data is taken from a group of UAV's of the same type but with small differences in weight...

  8. Unmanned Aerial Aircraft Systems for transportation engineering: Current practice and future challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanouil N. Barmpounakis

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Acquiring and processing video streams from static cameras has been proposed as one of the most efficient tools for visualizing and gathering traffic information. With the latest advances in technology and visual media, combined with the increased needs in dealing with congestion more effectively and directly, the use of Unmanned Aerial Aircraft Systems (UAS has emerged in the field of traffic engineering. In this paper, we review studies and applications that incorporate UAS in transportation research and practice with the aim to set the grounds from the proper understanding and implementation of UAS related surveillance systems in transportation and traffic engineering. The studies reviewed are categorized in different transportation engineering areas. Additional significant applications from other research fields are also referenced to identify other promising applications. Finally, issues and emerging challenges in both a conceptual and methodological level are revealed and discussed.

  9. Acquisition of Bidirectional Reflectance Factor Dataset Using a Micro Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and a Consumer Camera

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jouni I. Peltoniemi

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes a method for retrieving the bidirectional reflectance factor (BRF of land-surface areas, using a small consumer camera on board an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV and introducing an advanced calibration routine. Images with varying view directions were taken of snow cover using the UAV. The vignetting effect was corrected from the images, and reflectance factor images were calculated using a calibrated white target as a reference. After spatial registration of the images using a corresponding point method, the target surface was divided into a grid, and a BRF was generated for each grid element. Lastly a model was fitted to the BRF dataset for data interpretation. The retrieved BRF were compared to parallel ground measurements. Comparison showed similar BRF and reflectance factor characteristics, which suggests that accurate measurements can be taken with cheap consumer cameras, if enough attention is paid to calibration of the images.

  10. Design of a high altitude long endurance flying-wing solar-powered unmanned air vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alsahlani, A. A.; Johnston, L. J.; Atcliffe, P. A.

    2017-06-01

    The low-Reynolds number environment of high-altitude §ight places severe demands on the aerodynamic design and stability and control of a high altitude, long endurance (HALE) unmanned air vehicle (UAV). The aerodynamic efficiency of a §ying-wing configuration makes it an attractive design option for such an application and is investigated in the present work. The proposed configuration has a high-aspect ratio, swept-wing planform, the wing sweep being necessary to provide an adequate moment arm for outboard longitudinal and lateral control surfaces. A design optimization framework is developed under a MATLAB environment, combining aerodynamic, structural, and stability analysis. Low-order analysis tools are employed to facilitate efficient computations, which is important when there are multiple optimization loops for the various engineering analyses. In particular, a vortex-lattice method is used to compute the wing planform aerodynamics, coupled to a twodimensional (2D) panel method to derive aerofoil sectional characteristics. Integral boundary-layer methods are coupled to the panel method in order to predict §ow separation boundaries during the design iterations. A quasi-analytical method is adapted for application to flyingwing con¦gurations to predict the wing weight and a linear finite-beam element approach is used for structural analysis of the wing-box. Stability is a particular concern in the low-density environment of high-altitude flight for flying-wing aircraft and so provision of adequate directional stability and control power forms part of the optimization process. At present, a modified Genetic Algorithm is used in all of the optimization loops. Each of the low-order engineering analysis tools is validated using higher-order methods to provide con¦dence in the use of these computationally-efficient tools in the present design-optimization framework. This paper includes the results of employing the present optimization tools in the design of a

  11. The Proposed Use of Unmanned Aerial System Surrogate Research Aircraft for National Airspace System Integration Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, Charles T., III

    2011-01-01

    Research is needed to determine what procedures, aircraft sensors and other systems will be required to allow Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) to safely operate with manned aircraft in the National Airspace System (NAS). This paper explores the use of Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Surrogate research aircraft to serve as platforms for UAS systems research, development, and flight testing. These aircraft would be manned with safety pilots and researchers that would allow for flight operations almost anywhere in the NAS without the need for a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Certificate of Authorization (COA). With pilot override capability, these UAS Surrogate aircraft would be controlled from ground stations like true UAS s. It would be possible to file and fly these UAS Surrogate aircraft in the NAS with normal traffic and they would be better platforms for real world UAS research and development over existing vehicles flying in restricted ranges or other sterilized airspace. These UAS surrogate aircraft could be outfitted with research systems as required such as computers, state sensors, video recording, data acquisition, data link, telemetry, instrumentation, and Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B). These surrogate aircraft could also be linked to onboard or ground based simulation facilities to further extend UAS research capabilities. Potential areas for UAS Surrogate research include the development, flight test and evaluation of sensors to aide in the process of air traffic "see-and-avoid". These and other sensors could be evaluated in real-time and compared with onboard human evaluation pilots. This paper examines the feasibility of using UAS Surrogate research aircraft as test platforms for a variety of UAS related research.

  12. An autonomous unmanned aerial vehicle sensing system for structural health monitoring of bridges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reagan, Daniel; Sabato, Alessandro; Niezrecki, Christopher; Yu, Tzuyang; Wilson, Richard

    2016-04-01

    As civil infrastructure (i.e. bridges, railways, and tunnels) continues to age; the frequency and need to perform inspection more quickly on a broader scale increases. Traditional inspection and monitoring techniques (e.g., visual inspection, mechanical sounding, rebound hammer, cover meter, electrical potential measurements, ultrasound, and ground penetrating radar) may produce inconsistent results, require lane closure, are labor intensive and time-consuming. Therefore, new structural health monitoring systems must be developed that are automated, highly accurate, minimally invasive, and cost effective. Three-dimensional (3D) digital image correlation (DIC) systems have the merits of extracting full-field strain, deformation, and geometry profiles. These profiles can then be stitched together to generate a complete integrity map of the area of interest. Concurrently, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have emerged as valuable resources for positioning sensing equipment where it is either difficult to measure or poses a risk to human safety. UAVs have the capability to expedite the optical-based measurement process, offer increased accessibility, and reduce interference with local traffic. Within this work, an autonomous unmanned aerial vehicle in conjunction with 3D DIC was developed for monitoring bridges. The capabilities of the proposed system are demonstrated in both laboratory measurements and data collected from bridges currently in service. Potential measurement influences from platform instability, rotor vibration and positioning inaccuracy are also studied in a controlled environment. The results of these experiments show that the combination of autonomous flight with 3D DIC and other non-contact measurement systems provides a valuable and effective civil inspection platform.

  13. Approach for Autonomous Control of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Using Intelligent Agents for Knowledge Creation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dufrene, Warren R., Jr.

    2004-01-01

    This paper describes the development of a planned approach for Autonomous operation of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). A Hybrid approach will seek to provide Knowledge Generation through the application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Intelligent Agents (IA) for UAV control. The applications of several different types of AI techniques for flight are explored during this research effort. The research concentration is directed to the application of different AI methods within the UAV arena. By evaluating AI and biological system approaches. which include Expert Systems, Neural Networks. Intelligent Agents, Fuzzy Logic, and Complex Adaptive Systems, a new insight may be gained into the benefits of AI and CAS techniques applied to achieving true autonomous operation of these systems. Although flight systems were explored, the benefits should apply to many Unmanned Vehicles such as: Rovers. Ocean Explorers, Robots, and autonomous operation systems. A portion of the flight system is broken down into control agents that represent the intelligent agent approach used in AI. After the completion of a successful approach, a framework for applying an intelligent agent is presented. The initial results from simulation of a security agent for communication are presented.

  14. New development thoughts on the bio-inspired intelligence based control for unmanned combat aerial vehicle

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2010-01-01

    Bio-inspired intelligence is in the spotlight in the field of international artificial intelligence,and unmanned combat aerial vehicle(UCAV),owing to its potential to perform dangerous,repetitive tasks in remote and hazardous,is very promising for the technological leadership of the nation and essential for improving the security of society.On the basis of introduction of bioinspired intelligence and UCAV,a series of new development thoughts on UCAV control are proposed,including artificial brain based high-level autonomous control for UCAV,swarm intelligence based cooperative control for multiple UCAVs,hy-brid swarm intelligence and Bayesian network based situation assessment under complicated combating environments, bio-inspired hardware based high-level autonomous control for UCAV,and meta-heuristic intelligence based heterogeneous cooperative control for multiple UCAVs and unmanned combat ground vehicles(UCGVs).The exact realization of the proposed new development thoughts can enhance the effectiveness of combat,while provide a series of novel breakthroughs for the intelligence,integration and advancement of future UCAV systems.

  15. Approach for Autonomous Control of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Using Intelligent Agents for Knowledge Creation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dufrene, Warren R., Jr.

    2004-01-01

    This paper describes the development of a planned approach for Autonomous operation of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). A Hybrid approach will seek to provide Knowledge Generation thru the application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Intelligent Agents (IA) for UAV control. The application of many different types of AI techniques for flight will be explored during this research effort. The research concentration will be directed to the application of different AI methods within the UAV arena. By evaluating AI approaches, which will include Expert Systems, Neural Networks, Intelligent Agents, Fuzzy Logic, and Complex Adaptive Systems, a new insight may be gained into the benefits of AI techniques applied to achieving true autonomous operation of these systems thus providing new intellectual merit to this research field. The major area of discussion will be limited to the UAV. The systems of interest include small aircraft, insects, and miniature aircraft. Although flight systems will be explored, the benefits should apply to many Unmanned Vehicles such as: Rovers, Ocean Explorers, Robots, and autonomous operation systems. The flight system will be broken down into control agents that will represent the intelligent agent approach used in AI. After the completion of a successful approach, a framework of applying a Security Overseer will be added in an attempt to address errors, emergencies, failures, damage, or over dynamic environment. The chosen control problem was the landing phase of UAV operation. The initial results from simulation in FlightGear are presented.

  16. Towards routine measurements of meteorological and aerosol parameters using small unmanned aerial and tethered balloon systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mei, F.; Dexheimer, D.; Hubbe, J. M.; deBoer, G.; Schmid, B.; Ivey, M.; Longbottom, C.; Carroll, P.

    2017-12-01

    The Inaugural Campaigns for ARM Research using Unmanned Systems (ICARUS) had been launched in 2016 and then the effort has been continued in 2017. ICARUS centered on Oliktok Point, Alaska focusses on developing routine operations of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) and Tethered Balloon Systems (TBS). The operation routine practiced during ICARUS 2016 provided valuable guidance for the ICARUS 2017 deployment. During two intensive operation periods in 2017, a small DataHawk II UAS has been deployed to collect data for two weeks each in May and August. Coordinated with DataHawk flights, the TBS has been launched with meteorology sensors such as iMet and Tethersondes, therefore vertical profiles of the basic atmospheric state (temperature, humidity, and horizontal wind) were observed simultaneously by UAS and TBS. In addition, an aerosol payload was attached and launched with 2 TBS flights in April and 7 TBS flights in May, which include a condensation particle counter (CPC, TSI 3007) and two printed optical particle spectrometers (POPS, Handix TBS version). The two POPS were operated at different inlet temperatures. This approach provided potential measurements for aerosol optical closure in future. Measured aerosol properties include total particle number concentrations, particle size distribution, at different ambient temperature and relative humidity. Vertical profiles of atmospheric state and aerosol properties will be discussed based on the coordinated flights. Monthly variation will be assessed with data from the upcoming August flights.

  17. Multispectral and DSLR sensors for assessing crop stress in corn and cotton using fixed-wing unmanned air systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valasek, John; Henrickson, James V.; Bowden, Ezekiel; Shi, Yeyin; Morgan, Cristine L. S.; Neely, Haly L.

    2016-05-01

    As small unmanned aircraft systems become increasingly affordable, reliable, and formally recognized under federal regulation, they become increasingly attractive as novel platforms for civil applications. This paper details the development and demonstration of fixed-wing unmanned aircraft systems for precision agriculture tasks. Tasks such as soil moisture content and high throughput phenotyping are considered. Rationale for sensor, vehicle, and ground equipment selections are provided, in addition to developed flight operation procedures for minimal numbers of crew. Preliminary imagery results are presented and analyzed, and these results demonstrate that fixed-wing unmanned aircraft systems modified to carry non-traditional sensors at extended endurance durations can provide high quality data that is usable for serious scientific analysis.

  18. Multitemporal Accuracy and Precision Assessment of Unmanned Aerial System Photogrammetry for Slope-Scale Snow Depth Maps in Alpine Terrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Marc S.; Bühler, Yves; Fromm, Reinhard

    2017-12-01

    Reliable and timely information on the spatio-temporal distribution of snow in alpine terrain plays an important role for a wide range of applications. Unmanned aerial system (UAS) photogrammetry is increasingly applied to cost-efficiently map the snow depth at very high resolution with flexible applicability. However, crucial questions regarding quality and repeatability of this technique are still under discussion. Here we present a multitemporal accuracy and precision assessment of UAS photogrammetry for snow depth mapping on the slope-scale. We mapped a 0.12 km2 large snow-covered study site, located in a high-alpine valley in Western Austria. 12 UAS flights were performed to acquire imagery at 0.05 m ground sampling distance in visible (VIS) and near-infrared (NIR) wavelengths with a modified commercial, off-the-shelf sensor mounted on a custom-built fixed-wing UAS. The imagery was processed with structure-from-motion photogrammetry software to generate orthophotos, digital surface models (DSMs) and snow depth maps (SDMs). Accuracy of DSMs and SDMs were assessed with terrestrial laser scanning and manual snow depth probing, respectively. The results show that under good illumination conditions (study site in full sunlight), the DSMs and SDMs were acquired with an accuracy of ≤ 0.25 and ≤ 0.29 m (both at 1σ), respectively. In case of poorly illuminated snow surfaces (study site shadowed), the NIR imagery provided higher accuracy (0.19 m; 0.23 m) than VIS imagery (0.49 m; 0.37 m). The precision of the UASSDMs was 0.04 m for a small, stable area and below 0.33 m for the whole study site (both at 1σ).

  19. Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to Assess Vegetative Cover and Identify Biotic Resources in Sagebrush Steppe Ecosystems: Preliminary Evaluation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert P. Breckenridge

    2006-04-01

    The Idaho National Laboratory (INL), in conjunction with the University of Idaho, is evaluating novel approaches for using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as a quicker and safer method for monitoring biotic resources. Evaluating vegetative cover is an important factor in understanding the sustainability of many ecosystems. In assessing vegetative cover, methods that improve accuracy and cost efficiency could revolutionize how biotic resources are monitored on western federal lands. Sagebrush steppe ecosystems provide important habitat for a variety of species, some of which are important indicator species (e.g., sage grouse). Improved methods are needed to support monitoring these habitats because there are not enough resource specialists or funds available for comprehensive ground evaluation of these ecosystems. In this project, two types of UAV platforms (fixed wing and helicopter) were used to collect still-frame imagery to assess cover in sagebrush steppe ecosystems. This paper discusses the process for collecting and analyzing imagery from the UAVs to (1) estimate total percent cover, (2) estimate percent cover for six different types of vegetation, and (3) locate sage grouse based on representative decoys. The field plots were located on the INL site west of Idaho Falls, Idaho, in areas with varying amounts and types of vegetative cover. A software program called SamplePoint developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service was used to evaluate the imagery for percent cover for the six vegetation types (bare ground, litter, shrubs, dead shrubs, grasses, and forbs). Results were compared against standard field measurements to assess accuracy.

  20. Monitoring Inflation and Emplacement During the 2014-2015 Kilauea Lava Flow With an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perroy, R. L.; Turner, N.; Hon, K. A.; Rasgado, V.

    2015-12-01

    Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) provide a powerful new tool for collecting high resolution on-demand spatial data over volcanic eruptions and other active geomorphic processes. These data can be used to improve hazard forecasts and emergency response efforts, and also allow users to economically and safely observe and quantify lava flow inflation and emplacement on spatially and temporally useful scales. We used a small fixed-wing UAV with a modified point-and-shoot camera to repeatedly map the active front of the 2014-2015 Kīlauea lava flow over a one-month period in late 2014, at times with a two-hour repeat interval. An additional subsequent flight was added in July, 2015. We used the imagery from these flights to generate a time-series of 5-cm resolution RGB and near-infrared orthoimagery mosaics and associated digital surface models using structure from motion. Survey-grade positional control was provided by ground control points with differential GPS. Two topographic transects were repeatedly surveyed across the flow surface, contemporaneously with UAV flights, to independently confirm topographic changes observed in the UAV-derived surface models. Vertical errors were generally 10 cm. Inside our 50 hectare study site, the flow advanced at a rate of 0.47 hectares/day during the first three weeks of observations before abruptly stalling out 4 m. New outbreak areas, both on the existing flow surface and along the flow margins, were readily mapped across the study area. We detected sinuous growing inflation ridges within the flow surface that correlated with subsequent outbreaks of new lava, suggesting that repeat UAV flights can provide a means of better predicting pahoehoe lava flow behavior over flat or uneven topography. Our results show that UAVs can generate accurate and digital surface models quickly and inexpensively over rapidly changing active pahoehoe lava flows.

  1. Pigeons produce aerodynamic torques through changes in wing trajectory during low speed aerial turns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ros, Ivo G; Badger, Marc A; Pierson, Alyssa N; Bassman, Lori C; Biewener, Andrew A

    2015-02-01

    The complexity of low speed maneuvering flight is apparent from the combination of two critical aspects of this behavior: high power and precise control. To understand how such control is achieved, we examined the underlying kinematics and resulting aerodynamic mechanisms of low speed turning flight in the pigeon (Columba livia). Three birds were trained to perform 90 deg level turns in a stereotypical fashion and detailed three-dimensional (3D) kinematics were recorded at high speeds. Applying the angular momentum principle, we used mechanical modeling based on time-varying 3D inertia properties of individual sections of the pigeon's body to separate angular accelerations of the torso based on aerodynamics from those based on inertial effects. Directly measured angular accelerations of the torso were predicted by aerodynamic torques, justifying inferences of aerodynamic torque generation based on inside wing versus outside wing kinematics. Surprisingly, contralateral asymmetries in wing speed did not appear to underlie the 90 deg aerial turns, nor did contralateral differences in wing area, angle of attack, wingbeat amplitude or timing. Instead, torso angular accelerations into the turn were associated with the outside wing sweeping more anteriorly compared with a more laterally directed inside wing. In addition to moving through a relatively more retracted path, the inside wing was also more strongly pronated about its long axis compared with the outside wing, offsetting any difference in aerodynamic angle of attack that might arise from the observed asymmetry in wing trajectories. Therefore, to generate roll and pitch torques into the turn, pigeons simply reorient their wing trajectories toward the desired flight direction. As a result, by acting above the center of mass, the net aerodynamic force produced by the wings is directed inward, generating the necessary torques for turning. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  2. Flapping Wings of an Inclined Stroke Angle: Experiments and Reduced-Order Models in Dual Aerial/Aquatic Flight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Izraelevitz, Jacob; Triantafyllou, Michael

    2016-11-01

    Flapping wings in nature demonstrate a large force actuation envelope, with capabilities beyond the limits of static airfoil section coefficients. Puffins, guillemots, and other auks particularly showcase this mechanism, as they are able to both generate both enough thrust to swim and lift to fly, using the same wing, by changing the wing motion trajectory. The wing trajectory is therefore an additional design criterion to be optimized along with traditional aircraft parameters, and could possibly enable dual aerial/aquatic flight. We showcase finite aspect-ratio flapping wing experiments, dynamic similarity arguments, and reduced-order models for predicting the performance of flapping wings that carry out complex motion trajectories.

  3. Monocular Vision System for Fixed Altitude Flight of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuo-Lung Huang

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The fastest and most economical method of acquiring terrain images is aerial photography. The use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs has been investigated for this task. However, UAVs present a range of challenges such as flight altitude maintenance. This paper reports a method that combines skyline detection with a stereo vision algorithm to enable the flight altitude of UAVs to be maintained. A monocular camera is mounted on the downside of the aircraft’s nose to collect continuous ground images, and the relative altitude is obtained via a stereo vision algorithm from the velocity of the UAV. Image detection is used to obtain terrain images, and to measure the relative altitude from the ground to the UAV. The UAV flight system can be set to fly at a fixed and relatively low altitude to obtain the same resolution of ground images. A forward-looking camera is mounted on the upside of the aircraft’s nose. In combination with the skyline detection algorithm, this helps the aircraft to maintain a stable flight pattern. Experimental results show that the proposed system enables UAVs to obtain terrain images at constant resolution, and to detect the relative altitude along the flight path.

  4. Mapping of Rill Erosion of Arable Soils Based on Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kashtanov, A. N.; Vernyuk, Yu. I.; Savin, I. Yu.; Shchepot'ev, V. V.; Dokukin, P. A.; Sharychev, D. V.; Li, K. A.

    2018-04-01

    Possibilities of using data obtained from unmanned aerial vehicles for detection and mapping of rill erosion on arable lands are analyzed. Identification and mapping of rill erosion was performed on a key plot with a predominance of arable gray forest soils (Greyzemic Phaeozems) under winter wheat in Tula oblast. This plot was surveyed from different heights and in different periods to determine the reliability of identification of rill erosion on the basis of automated procedures in a GIS. It was found that, despite changes in the pattern of rills during the warm season, only one survey during this season is sufficient for adequate assessment of the area of eroded soils. According to our data, the most reliable identification of rill erosion is based on the aerial survey from the height of 50 m above the soil surface. When the height of the flight is more than 200 m, erosional rills virtually escape identification. The efficiency of identification depends on the type of crops, their status, and time of the survey. The surveys of bare soil surface in periods with maximum possible interval from the previous rain or snowmelt season are most efficient. The results of our study can be used in the systems of remote sensing monitoring of erosional processes on arable fields. Application of multiand hyperspectral cameras can improve the efficiency of monitoring.

  5. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle-Based Automobile License Plate Recognition System for Institutional Parking Lots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julian Dasilva

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, also known as drones have many applications and they are a current trend across many industries. They can be used for delivery, sports, surveillance, professional photography, cinematography, military combat, natural disaster assistance, security, and the list grows every day. Programming opens an avenue to automate many processes of daily life and with the drone as aerial programmable eyes, security and surveillance can become more efficient and cost effective. At Barry University, parking is becoming an issue as the number of people visiting the school greatly outnumbers the convenient parking locations. This has caused a multitude of hazards in parking lots due to people illegally parking, as well as unregistered vehicles parking in reserved areas. In this paper, we explain how automated drone surveillance is utilized to detect unauthorized parking at Barry University. The automated process is incorporated into Java application and completed in three steps: collecting visual data, processing data automatically, and sending automated responses and queues to the operator of the system.

  6. Human factors considerations for the integration of unmanned aerial vehicles in the National Airspace System : an analysis of reports submitted to the Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-06-06

    Successful integration of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) operations into the National Airspace System requires the identification and mitigation of operational risks. This report reviews human factors issues that have been identified in operational as...

  7. Locating chimpanzee nests and identifying fruiting trees with an unmanned aerial vehicle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Andel, Alexander C; Wich, Serge A; Boesch, Christophe; Koh, Lian Pin; Robbins, Martha M; Kelly, Joseph; Kuehl, Hjalmar S

    2015-10-01

    Monitoring of animal populations is essential for conservation management. Various techniques are available to assess spatiotemporal patterns of species distribution and abundance. Nest surveys are often used for monitoring great apes. Quickly developing technologies, including unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) can be used to complement these ground-based surveys, especially for covering large areas rapidly. Aerial surveys have been used successfully to detect the nests of orang-utans. It is unknown if such an approach is practical for African apes, which usually build their nests at lower heights, where they might be obscured by forest canopy. In this 2-month study, UAV-derived aerial imagery was used for two distinct purposes: testing the detectability of chimpanzee nests and identifying fruiting trees used by chimpanzees in Loango National Park (Gabon). Chimpanzee nest data were collected through two approaches: we located nests on the ground and then tried to detect them in UAV photos and vice versa. Ground surveys were conducted using line transects, reconnaissance trails, and opportunistic sampling during which we detected 116 individual nests in 28 nest groups. In complementary UAV images we detected 48% of the individual nests (68% of nest groups) in open coastal forests and 8% of individual nests (33% of nest groups) in closed canopy inland forests. The key factor for nest detectability in UAV imagery was canopy openness. Data on fruiting trees were collected from five line transects. In 122 UAV images 14 species of trees (N = 433) were identified, alongside 37 tree species (N = 205) in complementary ground surveys. Relative abundance of common tree species correlated between ground and UAV surveys. We conclude that UAVs have great potential as a rapid assessment tool for detecting chimpanzee presence in forest with open canopy and assessing fruit tree availability. UAVs may have limited applicability for nest detection in closed canopy forest.

  8. Overview of solutions and analysis of the ability to evaluate the performance parameters of unmanned aerial vehicles propulsion systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karpiński Dominik

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of aircraft engines development is the propulsion which is characterized by high power-to-mass ratio. Therefore, the alternative solutions that provide the required power by the low weight propulsion are sought after. The main advantage of these solutions is improvement of environmental and economic properties. This paper presents the overview of solutions and studies conducted for the unmanned aerial vehicles propulsion. For the purposes of studies a test bench was prepared. Its enables the comparison of the propulsion operating parameters taking into account changes in the values of thrust and propulsion power. The summary includes a proposal to improve the environmental indicators of propulsion systems for unmanned aerial vehicles.

  9. Real-time Accurate Surface Reconstruction Pipeline for Vision Guided Planetary Exploration Using Unmanned Ground and Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Eduardo DeBrito

    2012-01-01

    This report discusses work completed over the summer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), California Institute of Technology. A system is presented to guide ground or aerial unmanned robots using computer vision. The system performs accurate camera calibration, camera pose refinement and surface extraction from images collected by a camera mounted on the vehicle. The application motivating the research is planetary exploration and the vehicles are typically rovers or unmanned aerial vehicles. The information extracted from imagery is used primarily for navigation, as robot location is the same as the camera location and the surfaces represent the terrain that rovers traverse. The processed information must be very accurate and acquired very fast in order to be useful in practice. The main challenge being addressed by this project is to achieve high estimation accuracy and high computation speed simultaneously, a difficult task due to many technical reasons.

  10. Innovation from the Sea: A Net Assessment of the Development of U.S. Navy Unmanned Aerial System Policy

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-10

    Armstrong, 135. 132 William E. Burrows , By Any Means Necessary: America’s Secret Air War in the Cold War (New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2001...216 Captain Larry Seaquist, USN (Ret.) interview by Thomas P. Ehrhard, 25 May 1999, quoted in Ehrhard, 359. 217 Lehman, 339...D. Unmanned Aerial Systems: A Historical Perspective. Ft. Leavenworth, KS: Combat Studies Institute Press, September 2010. Burrows , William E. By

  11. An Early Survey of Best Practices for the Use of Small Unmanned Aerial Systems by the Electric Utility Industry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lusk, Rick M. [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Monday, William [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)

    2017-02-01

    This technical manual is about doing things safely. It isn’t so much a how-to guide as it is a collection of best practices from unmanned aerial system (UAS) operators from all over the world. The desired end state is to provide a touchstone for utility businesses, directors, managers, and operators that will inform them as they begin to strategize, plan, and incorporate this technology into day-to-day operations.

  12. Trajectory Optimization for a Cruising Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Attacking a Target at Back Slope While Subjected to a Wind Gradient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tieying Jiang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The trajectory of a tubular launched cruising unmanned aerial vehicle is optimized using the modified direct collocation method for attacking a target at back slope under a wind gradient. A mathematical model of the cruising unmanned aerial vehicle is established based on its operational and motion features under a wind gradient to optimize the trajectory. The motion characteristics of  “altitude adjustment” and “suicide attack” are taken into full account under the combat circumstance of back slope time key targets. By introducing a discrete time function, the trajectory optimization is converted into a nonlinear programming problem and the SNPOT software is applied to solve for the optimal trajectory of the missile under different wind loads. The simulation results show that, for optimized trajectories, the average attack time decreased by up to 29.1% and the energy consumption is reduced by up to 25.9% under specified wind gradient conditions. A, ωdire, and Wmax have an influence on the flight trajectories of cruising unmanned aerial vehicle. This verifies that the application of modified direct collocation method is reasonable and feasible in an effort to achieve more efficient missile trajectories.

  13. Design Of An Aerodynamic Measurement System For Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Airfoils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Velázquez-Araque

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the design and validation of a measurement system for aerodynamic characteristics of unmanned aerial vehicles. An aerodynamic balance was designed in order to measure the lift, drag forces and pitching moment for different airfoils. During the design process, several aspects were analyzed in order to produce an efficient design, for instance the range of changes of the angle of attack with and a small increment and the versatility of being adapted to different type of airfoils, since it is a wire balance it was aligned and calibrated as well. Wind tunnel tests of a two dimensional NACA four digits family airfoil and four different modifications of this airfoil were performed to validate the aerodynamic measurement system. The modification of this airfoil was made in order to create a blowing outlet with the shape of a step on the suction surface. Therefore, four different locations along the cord line for this blowing outlet were analyzed. This analysis involved the aerodynamic performance which meant obtaining lift, drag and pitching moment coefficients curves as a function of the angle of attack experimentally for the situation where the engine of the aerial vehicle is turned off, called the no blowing condition, by means of wind tunnel tests. The experiments were performed in a closed circuit wind tunnel with an open test section. Finally, results of the wind tunnel tests were compared with numerical results obtained by means of computational fluid dynamics as well as with other experimental references and found to be in good agreement.

  14. Prospective use of unmanned aerial vehicles for military medical evacuation in future conflicts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Handford, Charles; Reeves, F; Parker, P

    2018-03-09

    In order to continue to deliver outstanding medical care on the battlefield, the UK Defence Medical Services must continue to adapt, overcome and actively embrace change. One potential area is the rapid proliferation and sophistication of automated and remote systems such as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). UAVs are already used to deliver blood to remote military locations in Afghanistan and defibrillators to those that need them in the USA and Sweden. An area of future opportunity would be to facilitate rapid evacuation of wounded personnel from high intensity, high threat, remote and austere areas directly to specialist care. Such a capability would reduce threat to human life while allowing rapid extraction of casualties from high risk or inaccessible environments straight back to Role 3 care, all of which in these situations is either not possible or carries too much risk using conventional aerial assets. The article aims to highlight a potential future capability, stimulate debate and reflection, all of which is essential for innovation and future organisational development. The potential uses and benefits of UAVs are highlighted including both the challenges and rewards of utilising UAVs for casualty evacuation. Key benefits are reduced risk to human life, cost, ability to insert into areas conventional aircraft cannot and the rapidity of transfer. Challenges are likely to be airspace management, decisions on appropriate level of care to deliver during transit and ultimately user acceptability. The article also highlights that in order to maximise our ability to exploit new technologies, all arms and trades within the military must be involved in collective research and development. Furthermore, sensible corroboration with private companies will further enhance our ability to acquire products that best serve our needs. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2018. All rights reserved. No commercial use

  15. Assessing the spatial distribution of coral bleaching using small unmanned aerial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Joshua; Hunter, Cynthia; Lukacazyk, Trent; Franklin, Erik C.

    2018-06-01

    Small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) are an affordable, effective complement to existing coral reef monitoring and assessment tools. sUAS provide repeatable low-altitude, high-resolution photogrammetry to address fundamental questions of spatial ecology and community dynamics for shallow coral reef ecosystems. Here, we qualitatively describe the use of sUAS to survey the spatial characteristics of coral cover and the distribution of coral bleaching across patch reefs in Kānéohe Bay, Hawaii, and address limitations and anticipated technology advancements within the field of UAS. Overlapping sub-decimeter low-altitude aerial reef imagery collected during the 2015 coral bleaching event was used to construct high-resolution reef image mosaics of coral bleaching responses on four Kānéohe Bay patch reefs, totaling 60,000 m2. Using sUAS imagery, we determined that paled, bleached and healthy corals on all four reefs were spatially clustered. Comparative analyses of data from sUAS imagery and in situ diver surveys found as much as 14% difference in coral cover values between survey methods, depending on the size of the reef and area surveyed. When comparing the abundance of unhealthy coral (paled and bleached) between sUAS and in situ diver surveys, we found differences in cover from 1 to 49%, depending on the depth of in situ surveys, the percent of reef area covered with sUAS surveys and patchiness of the bleaching response. This study demonstrates the effective use of sUAS surveys for assessing the spatial dynamics of coral bleaching at colony-scale resolutions across entire patch reefs and evaluates the complementarity of data from both sUAS and in situ diver surveys to more accurately characterize the spatial ecology of coral communities on reef flats and slopes.

  16. Vision-Based Detection and Distance Estimation of Micro Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatih Gökçe

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Detection and distance estimation of micro unmanned aerial vehicles (mUAVs is crucial for (i the detection of intruder mUAVs in protected environments; (ii sense and avoid purposes on mUAVs or on other aerial vehicles and (iii multi-mUAV control scenarios, such as environmental monitoring, surveillance and exploration. In this article, we evaluate vision algorithms as alternatives for detection and distance estimation of mUAVs, since other sensing modalities entail certain limitations on the environment or on the distance. For this purpose, we test Haar-like features, histogram of gradients (HOG and local binary patterns (LBP using cascades of boosted classifiers. Cascaded boosted classifiers allow fast processing by performing detection tests at multiple stages, where only candidates passing earlier simple stages are processed at the preceding more complex stages. We also integrate a distance estimation method with our system utilizing geometric cues with support vector regressors. We evaluated each method on indoor and outdoor videos that are collected in a systematic way and also on videos having motion blur. Our experiments show that, using boosted cascaded classifiers with LBP, near real-time detection and distance estimation of mUAVs are possible in about 60 ms indoors (1032 × 778 resolution and 150 ms outdoors (1280 × 720 resolution per frame, with a detection rate of 0.96 F-score. However, the cascaded classifiers using Haar-like features lead to better distance estimation since they can position the bounding boxes on mUAVs more accurately. On the other hand, our time analysis yields that the cascaded classifiers using HOG train and run faster than the other algorithms.

  17. Configuration and specifications of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) for early site specific weed management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Sánchez, Jorge; López-Granados, Francisca; De Castro, Ana Isabel; Peña-Barragán, José Manuel

    2013-01-01

    A new aerial platform has risen recently for image acquisition, the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). This article describes the technical specifications and configuration of a UAV used to capture remote images for early season site- specific weed management (ESSWM). Image spatial and spectral properties required for weed seedling discrimination were also evaluated. Two different sensors, a still visible camera and a six-band multispectral camera, and three flight altitudes (30, 60 and 100 m) were tested over a naturally infested sunflower field. The main phases of the UAV workflow were the following: 1) mission planning, 2) UAV flight and image acquisition, and 3) image pre-processing. Three different aspects were needed to plan the route: flight area, camera specifications and UAV tasks. The pre-processing phase included the correct alignment of the six bands of the multispectral imagery and the orthorectification and mosaicking of the individual images captured in each flight. The image pixel size, area covered by each image and flight timing were very sensitive to flight altitude. At a lower altitude, the UAV captured images of finer spatial resolution, although the number of images needed to cover the whole field may be a limiting factor due to the energy required for a greater flight length and computational requirements for the further mosaicking process. Spectral differences between weeds, crop and bare soil were significant in the vegetation indices studied (Excess Green Index, Normalised Green-Red Difference Index and Normalised Difference Vegetation Index), mainly at a 30 m altitude. However, greater spectral separability was obtained between vegetation and bare soil with the index NDVI. These results suggest that an agreement among spectral and spatial resolutions is needed to optimise the flight mission according to every agronomical objective as affected by the size of the smaller object to be discriminated (weed plants or weed patches).

  18. Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV to Quantify Spatial Gap Patterns in Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephan Getzin

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Gap distributions in forests reflect the spatial impact of man-made tree harvesting or naturally-induced patterns of tree death being caused by windthrow, inter-tree competition, disease or senescence. Gap sizes can vary from large (>100 m2 to small (<10 m2, and they may have contrasting spatial patterns, such as being aggregated or regularly distributed. However, very small gaps cannot easily be recorded with conventional aerial or satellite images, which calls for new and cost-effective methodologies of forest monitoring. Here, we used an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV and very high-resolution images to record the gaps in 10 temperate managed and unmanaged forests in two regions of Germany. All gaps were extracted for 1-ha study plots and subsequently analyzed with spatially-explicit statistics, such as the conventional pair correlation function (PCF, the polygon-based PCF and the mark correlation function. Gap-size frequency was dominated by small gaps of an area <5 m2, which were particularly frequent in unmanaged forests. We found that gap distances showed a variety of patterns. However, the polygon-based PCF was a better descriptor of patterns than the conventional PCF, because it showed randomness or aggregation for cases when the conventional PCF showed small-scale regularity; albeit, the latter was only a mathematical artifact. The mark correlation function revealed that gap areas were in half of the cases negatively correlated and in the other half independent. Negative size correlations may likely be the result of single-tree harvesting or of repeated gap formation, which both lead to nearby small gaps. Here, we emphasize the usefulness of UAV to record forest gaps of a very small size. These small gaps may originate from repeated gap-creating disturbances, and their spatial patterns should be monitored with spatially-explicit statistics at recurring intervals in order to further insights into forest dynamics.

  19. Configuration and specifications of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV for early site specific weed management.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Torres-Sánchez

    Full Text Available A new aerial platform has risen recently for image acquisition, the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV. This article describes the technical specifications and configuration of a UAV used to capture remote images for early season site- specific weed management (ESSWM. Image spatial and spectral properties required for weed seedling discrimination were also evaluated. Two different sensors, a still visible camera and a six-band multispectral camera, and three flight altitudes (30, 60 and 100 m were tested over a naturally infested sunflower field. The main phases of the UAV workflow were the following: 1 mission planning, 2 UAV flight and image acquisition, and 3 image pre-processing. Three different aspects were needed to plan the route: flight area, camera specifications and UAV tasks. The pre-processing phase included the correct alignment of the six bands of the multispectral imagery and the orthorectification and mosaicking of the individual images captured in each flight. The image pixel size, area covered by each image and flight timing were very sensitive to flight altitude. At a lower altitude, the UAV captured images of finer spatial resolution, although the number of images needed to cover the whole field may be a limiting factor due to the energy required for a greater flight length and computational requirements for the further mosaicking process. Spectral differences between weeds, crop and bare soil were significant in the vegetation indices studied (Excess Green Index, Normalised Green-Red Difference Index and Normalised Difference Vegetation Index, mainly at a 30 m altitude. However, greater spectral separability was obtained between vegetation and bare soil with the index NDVI. These results suggest that an agreement among spectral and spatial resolutions is needed to optimise the flight mission according to every agronomical objective as affected by the size of the smaller object to be discriminated (weed plants or weed patches.

  20. Development of a prototype radiation surveillance equipment for a mid-sized unmanned aerial vehicle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smolander, P.; Kurvinen, K.; Poellaenen, R.; Kettunen, M.; Lyytinen, J.

    2003-01-01

    A prototype radiation surveillance equipment has been developed to be used in a mid-sized Ranger unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) acquired by the Finnish Defence Forces. A multi-detector assembly was designed for the acquisition of dose rate and radionuclide concentration in the release plume. Detector assembly includes a GM-tube based dose rate meter, an inorganic scintillator detector and a semiconductor detector operating at room temperature. A sampling unit was designed for the collection of an aerosol sample of the plume for a detailed analysis in a ground based laboratory. The measurement data from all three detectors and several environmental parameters are collected by the onboard data acquisition computer. Real-time data dissemination is implemented with a TETRA based radio network. Test flights have been carried out with target drones and a small manned airplane. The Northrop KD2R-5 target drones have been used to simulate the high-G launch and vibration environment of the Ranger aerial vehicle. Target drones have been used because their air vehicle classification allows small test packages to be installed without tedious air safety protocols. Stability and survivability of the detectors, GPS navigation and radio frequency communication have been studied with the target drone test flights. Ground station software was developed to visualise the measurement data and to track the position of the air vehicle on a digital map. Test flights with the small manned airplane have been used to study the operational aspects of the detectors with greater detail. The housing for the instruments has been designed and constructed based on the experiences gained with the test flights and the laboratory measurements. The housing satisfies the aviation authority standards. Special attention has been paid to the high modularity, quick installation and ease of use. (orig.)

  1. Development of a prototype radiation surveillance equipment for a mid-sized unmanned aerial vehicle

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smolander, P.; Kurvinen, K.; Poellaenen, R. [Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority, Helsinki (Finland); Kettunen, M. [Forces Research Institute of Technology, Lakiala (Finland); Lyytinen, J. [Helsinki University of Technology, Laboratory of Lightweight Structures, Otaniemi (Finland)

    2003-06-01

    A prototype radiation surveillance equipment has been developed to be used in a mid-sized Ranger unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) acquired by the Finnish Defence Forces. A multi-detector assembly was designed for the acquisition of dose rate and radionuclide concentration in the release plume. Detector assembly includes a GM-tube based dose rate meter, an inorganic scintillator detector and a semiconductor detector operating at room temperature. A sampling unit was designed for the collection of an aerosol sample of the plume for a detailed analysis in a ground based laboratory. The measurement data from all three detectors and several environmental parameters are collected by the onboard data acquisition computer. Real-time data dissemination is implemented with a TETRA based radio network. Test flights have been carried out with target drones and a small manned airplane. The Northrop KD2R-5 target drones have been used to simulate the high-G launch and vibration environment of the Ranger aerial vehicle. Target drones have been used because their air vehicle classification allows small test packages to be installed without tedious air safety protocols. Stability and survivability of the detectors, GPS navigation and radio frequency communication have been studied with the target drone test flights. Ground station software was developed to visualise the measurement data and to track the position of the air vehicle on a digital map. Test flights with the small manned airplane have been used to study the operational aspects of the detectors with greater detail. The housing for the instruments has been designed and constructed based on the experiences gained with the test flights and the laboratory measurements. The housing satisfies the aviation authority standards. Special attention has been paid to the high modularity, quick installation and ease of use. (orig.)

  2. Thermal/structural/optical integrated design for optical sensor mounted on unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Gaopeng; Yang, Hongtao; Mei, Chao; Wu, Dengshan; Shi, Kui

    2016-01-01

    With the rapid development of science and technology and the promotion of many local wars in the world, altitude optical sensor mounted on unmanned aerial vehicle is more widely applied in the airborne remote sensing, measurement and detection. In order to obtain high quality image of the aero optical remote sensor, it is important to analysis its thermal-optical performance on the condition of high speed and high altitude. Especially for the key imaging assembly, such as optical window, the temperature variation and temperature gradient can result in defocus and aberrations in optical system, which will lead to the poor quality image. In order to improve the optical performance of a high speed aerial camera optical window, the thermal/structural/optical integrated design method is developed. Firstly, the flight environment of optical window is analyzed. Based on the theory of aerodynamics and heat transfer, the convection heat transfer coefficient is calculated. The temperature distributing of optical window is simulated by the finite element analysis software. The maximum difference in temperature of the inside and outside of optical window is obtained. Then the deformation of optical window under the boundary condition of the maximum difference in temperature is calculated. The optical window surface deformation is fitted in Zernike polynomial as the interface, the calculated Zernike fitting coefficients is brought in and analyzed by CodeV Optical Software. At last, the transfer function diagrams of the optical system on temperature field are comparatively analyzed. By comparing and analyzing the result, it can be obtained that the optical path difference caused by thermal deformation of the optical window is 138.2 nm, which is under PV ≤1 4λ . The above study can be used as an important reference for other optical window designs.

  3. Fusion of pixel and object-based features for weed mapping using unmanned aerial vehicle imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Junfeng; Liao, Wenzhi; Nuyttens, David; Lootens, Peter; Vangeyte, Jürgen; Pižurica, Aleksandra; He, Yong; Pieters, Jan G.

    2018-05-01

    The developments in the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and advanced imaging sensors provide new opportunities for ultra-high resolution (e.g., less than a 10 cm ground sampling distance (GSD)) crop field monitoring and mapping in precision agriculture applications. In this study, we developed a strategy for inter- and intra-row weed detection in early season maize fields from aerial visual imagery. More specifically, the Hough transform algorithm (HT) was applied to the orthomosaicked images for inter-row weed detection. A semi-automatic Object-Based Image Analysis (OBIA) procedure was developed with Random Forests (RF) combined with feature selection techniques to classify soil, weeds and maize. Furthermore, the two binary weed masks generated from HT and OBIA were fused for accurate binary weed image. The developed RF classifier was evaluated by 5-fold cross validation, and it obtained an overall accuracy of 0.945, and Kappa value of 0.912. Finally, the relationship of detected weeds and their ground truth densities was quantified by a fitted linear model with a coefficient of determination of 0.895 and a root mean square error of 0.026. Besides, the importance of input features was evaluated, and it was found that the ratio of vegetation length and width was the most significant feature for the classification model. Overall, our approach can yield a satisfactory weed map, and we expect that the obtained accurate and timely weed map from UAV imagery will be applicable to realize site-specific weed management (SSWM) in early season crop fields for reducing spraying non-selective herbicides and costs.

  4. A critical evaluation of the use of an inexpensive camera mounted on a recreational unmanned aerial vehicle as a tool for landslide research

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Balek, Jan; Blahůt, Jan

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 14, č. 3 (2017), s. 1217-1224 ISSN 1612-510X R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LM2015079 Institutional support: RVO:67985891 Keywords : aerial photogrammetry * surface characterisation * 3D models * unmanned aerial vehicles * landslide monitoring Subject RIV: DE - Earth Magnetism, Geodesy, Geography OBOR OECD: Physical geography Impact factor: 3.657, year: 2016

  5. Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) application to the structural health assessment of large civil engineering structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castiglioni, Carlo A.; Rabuffetti, Angelo S.; Chiarelli, Gian P.; Brambilla, Giovanni; Georgi, Julia

    2017-09-01

    This paper summarizes the experience gained in the structural assessment of an existing Thermal Power Plant (TPP) located near Pristina, focusing on the cooling tower and the flue gas stack, which are the main structures of the TPP. Scope of the work was the evaluation of the actual conditions of the structures and to identify the eventual repair measures in order to guarantee a safe and reliable operation of the TPP in view of the extension of its operational lifetime for the next 30 years. With this aim, a sequence of different activities was performed, like: a topographic survey to compare the actual geometrical configuration with the design one, an investigation of the material properties, an in depth visual inspection in order to detect any visible existing damage. Due to the very high elevations of the constructions and to the lack of appropriate structures aimed to their inspections and maintenance, this activity could not be performed without using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). This resulted the safest, most economical and less time-consuming solution identified to map the surface damage in the reinforced concrete elements of these large structures including zones that could not be inspected because out of reach by other means.

  6. Cost and effectiveness analysis on unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) use at border security

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yilmaz, Bahadır.

    2013-06-01

    Drones and Remotely Piloted Vehicles are types of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. UAVs began to be used with the war of Vietnam, they had a great interest when Israel used them in Bekaa Valley Operations of 1982. UAVs have been used by different countries with different aims with the help of emerging technology and investments. In this article, in the context of areas of UAV usage in national security, benefits and disadvantages of UAVs are put forward. Particularly, it has been evaluated on the basis of cost-effectiveness by focusing the use of UAV in the border security. UAVs have been studied by taking cost analysis, procurement and operational costs into consideration. Analysis of effectiveness has been done with illegal passages of people and drugs from flight times of UAVs. Although the procurement cost of the medium-level UAVs is low, its operational costs are high. For this reason, the idea of less costly alternative systems have been revealed for the border security. As the costs are reduced to acceptable level involving national security and border security in future with high-technology products in their structure, it will continue to be used in an increasing proportion.

  7. PARCEL DELIVERY IN AN URBAN ENVIRONMENT USING UNMANNED AERIAL SYSTEMS: A VISION PAPER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Anbaroğlu

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available This vision paper addresses the challenges and explores the avenue of solutions regarding the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS for transporting parcels in urban areas. We have already witnessed companies’ delivering parcels using UAS in rural areas, but the challenge of utilizing them for an urban environment is eminent. Nevertheless, the increasing research on the various aspects of UAS, including their battery life, resistance to harsh weather conditions and sensing its environment foresee their common usage in the logistics industry, especially in an urban environment. In addition, the increasing trend on 3D city modelling offer new directions regarding realistic as well as light 3D city models that are easy to modify and distribute. Utilizing UAS for transporting parcels in an urban environment would be a disruptive technological achievement as our roads will be less congested which would lead to less air pollution as well as wasted money and time. In addition, parcels could potentially be delivered much faster. This paper argues, with the support of the state-of-the-art research, that UASs will be used for transporting parcels in an urban environment in the coming decades.

  8. Design of a reconfigurable liquid hydrogen fuel tank for use in the Genii unmanned aerial vehicle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adam, Patrick; Leachman, Jacob

    2014-01-01

    Long endurance flight, on the order of days, is a leading flight performance characteristic for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). Liquid hydrogen (LH2) is well suited to providing multi-day flight times with a specific energy 2.8 times that of conventional kerosene based fuels. However, no such system of LH2 storage, delivery, and use is currently available for commercial UAVs. In this paper, we develop a light weight LH2 dewar for integration and testing in the proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell powered, student designed and constructed, Genii UAV. The fuel tank design is general for scaling to suit various UAV platforms. A cylindrical vacuum-jacketed design with removable end caps was chosen to incorporate various fuel level gauging, pressurizing, and slosh mitigation systems. Heat and mechanical loadings were modeled to compare with experimental results. Mass performance of the fuel tank is characterized by the fraction of liquid hydrogen to full tank mass, and the insulation performance was characterized by effective thermal conductivity and boil-off rate

  9. Design of a reconfigurable liquid hydrogen fuel tank for use in the Genii unmanned aerial vehicle

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adam, Patrick; Leachman, Jacob [HYdrogen Properties for Energy Research (HYPER) Laboratory, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164-2920 (United States)

    2014-01-29

    Long endurance flight, on the order of days, is a leading flight performance characteristic for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). Liquid hydrogen (LH2) is well suited to providing multi-day flight times with a specific energy 2.8 times that of conventional kerosene based fuels. However, no such system of LH2 storage, delivery, and use is currently available for commercial UAVs. In this paper, we develop a light weight LH2 dewar for integration and testing in the proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell powered, student designed and constructed, Genii UAV. The fuel tank design is general for scaling to suit various UAV platforms. A cylindrical vacuum-jacketed design with removable end caps was chosen to incorporate various fuel level gauging, pressurizing, and slosh mitigation systems. Heat and mechanical loadings were modeled to compare with experimental results. Mass performance of the fuel tank is characterized by the fraction of liquid hydrogen to full tank mass, and the insulation performance was characterized by effective thermal conductivity and boil-off rate.

  10. 3D Tree Dimensionality Assessment Using Photogrammetry and Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gatziolis, Demetrios; Lienard, Jean F; Vogs, Andre; Strigul, Nikolay S

    2015-01-01

    Detailed, precise, three-dimensional (3D) representations of individual trees are a prerequisite for an accurate assessment of tree competition, growth, and morphological plasticity. Until recently, our ability to measure the dimensionality, spatial arrangement, shape of trees, and shape of tree components with precision has been constrained by technological and logistical limitations and cost. Traditional methods of forest biometrics provide only partial measurements and are labor intensive. Active remote technologies such as LiDAR operated from airborne platforms provide only partial crown reconstructions. The use of terrestrial LiDAR is laborious, has portability limitations and high cost. In this work we capitalized on recent improvements in the capabilities and availability of small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), light and inexpensive cameras, and developed an affordable method for obtaining precise and comprehensive 3D models of trees and small groups of trees. The method employs slow-moving UAVs that acquire images along predefined trajectories near and around targeted trees, and computer vision-based approaches that process the images to obtain detailed tree reconstructions. After we confirmed the potential of the methodology via simulation we evaluated several UAV platforms, strategies for image acquisition, and image processing algorithms. We present an original, step-by-step workflow which utilizes open source programs and original software. We anticipate that future development and applications of our method will improve our understanding of forest self-organization emerging from the competition among trees, and will lead to a refined generation of individual-tree-based forest models.

  11. Towards the Use of Unmanned Aerial Systems for Providing Sustainable Services in Smart Cities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enrique Moguel

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Sustainability is at the heart of many application fields where the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS is becoming more and more important (e.g., agriculture, fire detection and prediction, environmental surveillance, mapping, etc.. However, their usage and evolution are highly conditioned by the specific application field they are designed for, and thus, they cannot be easily reused among different application fields. From this point of view, being that they are not multipurpose, we can say that they are not fully sustainable. Bearing this in mind, the objective of this paper is two-fold: on the one hand, to identify the whole set of features that must be provided by a UAS to be considered sustainable and to show that there is no UAS satisfying all these features; on the other hand, to present an open and sustainable UAS architecture that may be used to build UAS on demand to provide the features needed in each application field. Since this architecture is mainly based on software and hardware adaptability, it contributes to the technical sustainability of cities.

  12. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Based Wireless Sensor Network for Marine-Coastal Environment Monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trasviña-Moreno, Carlos A; Blasco, Rubén; Marco, Álvaro; Casas, Roberto; Trasviña-Castro, Armando

    2017-02-24

    Marine environments are delicate ecosystems which directly influence local climates, flora, fauna, and human activities. Their monitorization plays a key role in their preservation, which is most commonly done through the use of environmental sensing buoy networks. These devices transmit data by means of satellite communications or close-range base stations, which present several limitations and elevated infrastructure costs. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) are another alternative for remote environmental monitoring which provide new types of data and ease of use. These aircraft are mainly used in video capture related applications, in its various light spectrums, and do not provide the same data as sensing buoys, nor can they be used for such extended periods of time. The aim of this research is to provide a flexible, easy to deploy and cost-effective Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) for monitoring marine environments. This proposal uses a UAV as a mobile data collector, low-power long-range communications and sensing buoys as part of a single WSN. A complete description of the design, development, and implementation of the various parts of this system is presented, as well as its validation in a real-world scenario.

  13. Comparison and application of wind retrieval algorithms for small unmanned aerial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonin, T. A.; Chilson, P. B.; Zielke, B. S.; Klein, P. M.; Leeman, J. R.

    2013-07-01

    Recently, there has been an increase in use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UASs) as platforms for conducting fundamental and applied research in the lower atmosphere due to their relatively low cost and ability to collect samples with high spatial and temporal resolution. Concurrent with this development comes the need for accurate instrumentation and measurement methods suitable for small meteorological UASs. Moreover, the instrumentation to be integrated into such platforms must be small and lightweight. Whereas thermodynamic variables can be easily measured using well-aspirated sensors onboard, it is much more challenging to accurately measure the wind with a UAS. Several algorithms have been developed that incorporate GPS observations as a means of estimating the horizontal wind vector, with each algorithm exhibiting its own particular strengths and weaknesses. In the present study, the performance of three such GPS-based wind-retrieval algorithms has been investigated and compared with wind estimates from rawinsonde and sodar observations. Each of the algorithms considered agreed well with the wind measurements from sounding and sodar data. Through the integration of UAS-retrieved profiles of thermodynamic and kinematic parameters, one can investigate the static and dynamic stability of the atmosphere and relate them to the state of the boundary layer across a variety of times and locations, which might be difficult to access using conventional instrumentation.

  14. Observations of the Early Evening Boundary-Layer Transition Using a Small Unmanned Aerial System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonin, Timothy; Chilson, Phillip; Zielke, Brett; Fedorovich, Evgeni

    2013-01-01

    The evolution of the lower portion of the planetary boundary layer is investigated using the Small Multifunction Research and Teaching Sonde (SMARTSonde), an unmanned aerial vehicle developed at the University of Oklahoma. The study focuses on the lowest 200 m of the atmosphere, where the most noticeable thermodynamic changes occur during the day. Between October 2010 and February 2011, a series of flights was conducted during the evening hours on several days to examine the vertical structure of the lower boundary layer. Data from a nearby Oklahoma Mesonet tower was used to supplement the vertical profiles of temperature, humidity, and pressure, which were collected approximately every 30 min, starting 2 h before sunset and continuing until dusk. From the profiles, sensible and latent heat fluxes were estimated. These fluxes were used to diagnose the portion of the boundary layer that was most affected by the early evening transition. During the transition period, a shallow cool and moist layer near the ground was formed, and as the evening progressed the cooling affected an increasingly shallower layer just above the surface.

  15. Development and comparisons of wind retrieval algorithms for small unmanned aerial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonin, T. A.; Chilson, P. B.; Zielke, B. S.; Klein, P. M.; Leeman, J. R.

    2012-12-01

    Recently, there has been an increase in use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UASs) as platforms for conducting fundamental and applied research in the lower atmosphere due to their relatively low cost and ability to collect samples with high spatial and temporal resolution. Concurrent with this development comes the need for accurate instrumentation and measurement methods suitable for small meteorological UASs. Moreover, the instrumentation to be integrated into such platforms must be small and lightweight. Whereas thermodynamic variables can be easily measured using well aspirated sensors onboard, it is much more challenging to accurately measure the wind with a UAS. Several algorithms have been developed that incorporate GPS observations as a means of estimating the horizontal wind vector, with each algorithm exhibiting its own particular strengths and weaknesses. In the present study, the performance of three such GPS-based wind-retrieval algorithms has been investigated and compared with wind estimates from rawinsonde and sodar observations. Each of the algorithms considered agreed well with the wind measurements from sounding and sodar data. Through the integration of UAS-retrieved profiles of thermodynamic and kinematic parameters, one can investigate the static and dynamic stability of the atmosphere and relate them to the state of the boundary layer across a variety of times and locations, which might be difficult to access using conventional instrumentation.

  16. Employing Multiple Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Co-Operative Path Planning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Durdana Habib

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In this paper, we work to develop a path planning solution for a group of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs using a Mixed Integer Linear Programming (MILP approach. Co-operation among team members not only helps reduce mission time, it makes the execution more robust in dynamic environments. However, the problem becomes more challenging as it requires optimal resource allocation and is NP-hard. Since UAVs may be lost or may suffer significant damage during the course of the mission, plans may need to be modified in real-time as the mission proceeds. Therefore, multiple UAVs have a better chance of completing a mission in the face of failures. Such military operations can be treated as a variant of the Multiple Depot Vehicle Routing Problem (MDVRP. The proposed solution must be such that m UAVs start from multiple source locations to visit n targets and return to a set of destination locations such that (1 each target is visited exactly by one of the chosen UAVs (2 the total distance travelled by the group is minimized and (3 the number of targets that each UAV visits may not be less than K or greater than L.

  17. Modeling and Robust Trajectory Tracking Control for a Novel Six-Rotor Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chengshun Yang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Modeling and trajectory tracking control of a novel six-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV is concerned to solve problems such as smaller payload capacity and lack of both hardware redundancy and anticrosswind capability for quad-rotor. The mathematical modeling for the six-rotor UAV is developed on the basis of the Newton-Euler formalism, and a second-order sliding-mode disturbance observer (SOSMDO is proposed to reconstruct the disturbances of the rotational dynamics. In consideration of the under-actuated and strong coupling properties of the six-rotor UAV, a nested double loops trajectory tracking control strategy is adopted. In the outer loop, a position error PID controller is designed, of which the task is to compare the desired trajectory with real position of the six-rotor UAV and export the desired attitude angles to the inner loop. In the inner loop, a rapid-convergent nonlinear differentiator (RCND is proposed to calculate the derivatives of the virtual control signal, instead of using the analytical differentiation, to avoid “differential expansion” in the procedure of the attitude controller design. Finally, the validity and effectiveness of the proposed technique are demonstrated by the simulation results.

  18. Unmanned aerial vehicle-based structure from motion biomass inventory estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bedell, Emily; Leslie, Monique; Fankhauser, Katie; Burnett, Jonathan; Wing, Michael G.; Thomas, Evan A.

    2017-04-01

    Riparian vegetation restoration efforts require cost-effective, accurate, and replicable impact assessments. We present a method to use an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) equipped with a GoPro digital camera to collect photogrammetric data of a 0.8-ha riparian restoration. A three-dimensional point cloud was created from the photos using "structure from motion" techniques. The point cloud was analyzed and compared to traditional, ground-based monitoring techniques. Ground-truth data were collected on 6.3% of the study site and averaged across the entire site to report stem heights in stems/ha in three height classes. The project site was divided into four analysis sections, one for derivation of parameters used in the UAV data analysis and the remaining three sections reserved for method validation. Comparing the ground-truth data to the UAV generated data produced an overall error of 21.6% and indicated an R2 value of 0.98. A Bland-Altman analysis indicated a 95% probability that the UAV stems/section result will be within 61 stems/section of the ground-truth data. The ground-truth data are reported with an 80% confidence interval of ±1032 stems/ha thus, the UAV was able to estimate stems well within this confidence interval.

  19. Method of transmission of dynamic multibit digital images from micro-unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrov, E. P.; Kharina, N. L.

    2018-01-01

    In connection with successful usage of nanotechnologies in remote sensing great attention is paid to the systems in micro-unmanned aerial vehicles (MUAVs) capable to provide high spatial resolution of dynamic multibit digital images (MDI). Limited energy resources on board the MUAV do not allow transferring a large amount of video information in the shortest possible time. It keeps back the broad development of MUAV. The search for methods to shorten the transmission time of dynamic MDIs from MUAV over the radio channel leads to the methods of MDI compression without computational operations onboard the MUAV. The known compression codecs of video information can not be applied because of the limited energy resources. In this paper we propose a method for reducing the transmission time of dynamic MDIs without computational operations and distortions onboard the MUAV. To develop the method a mathematical apparatus of the theory of conditional Markov processes with discrete arguments was used. On its basis a mathematical model for the transformation of the MDI represented by binary images (BI) in the MDI, consisting of groups of neighboring BIs (GBI) transmitted by multiphase (MP) signals, is constructed. The algorithm for multidimensional nonlinear filtering of MP signals is synthesized, realizing the statistical redundancy of the MDI to compensate for the noise stability losses caused by the use of MP signals.

  20. Concept and realization of unmanned aerial system with different modes of operation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Czyba, Roman; Szafrański, Grzegorz; Janusz, Wojciech; Niezabitowski, Michał; Czornik, Adam; Błachuta, Marian [Silesian University of Technology, Akademicka 2A, 44-100 Gliwice (Poland)

    2014-12-10

    In this paper we describe the development process of unmanned aerial system, its mechanical components, electronics and software solutions. During the stage of design, we have formulated some necessary requirements for the multirotor vehicle and ground control station in order to build an optimal system which can be used for the reconnaissance missions. Platform is controlled by use of the ground control station (GCS) and has possibility of accomplishing video based observation tasks. In order to fulfill this requirement the on-board payload consists of mechanically stabilized camera augmented with machine vision algorithms to enable object tracking tasks. Novelty of the system are four modes of flight, which give full functionality of the developed UAV system. Designed ground control station is consisted not only of the application itself, but also a built-in dedicated components located inside the chassis, which together creates an advanced UAV system supporting the control and management of the flight. Mechanical part of quadrotor is designed to ensure its robustness while meeting objectives of minimizing weight of the platform. Finally the designed electronics allows for implementation of control and estimation algorithms without the needs for their excessive computational optimization.

  1. Health monitoring of unmanned aerial vehicle based on optical fiber sensor array

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Yuxiang; Shen, Jingshi; Shao, Fei; Guo, Chunhui; Yang, Ning; Zhang, Jiande

    2017-10-01

    The unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) in flight needs to face the complicated environment, especially to withstand harsh weather conditions, such as the temperature and pressure. Compared with conventional sensors, fiber Bragg grating (FBG) sensor has the advantages of small size, light weight, high reliability, high precision, anti-electromagnetic interference, long lift-span, moistureproof and good resistance to causticity. It's easy to be embedded in composite structural components of UAVs. In the paper, over 1000 FBG sensors distribute regularly on a wide range of UAVs body, combining wavelength division multiplexing (WDM), time division multiplexing (TDM) and multichannel parallel architecture. WDM has the advantage of high spatial resolution. TDM has the advantage of large capacity and wide range. It is worthful to constitute a sensor network by different technologies. For the signal demodulation of FBG sensor array, WDM works by means of wavelength scanning light sources and F-P etalon. TDM adopts the technology of optical time-domain reflectometry. In order to demodulate efficiently, the most proper sensor multiplex number with some reflectivity is given by the curves fitting. Due to the regular array arrangement of FBG sensors on the UAVs, we can acquire the health state of UAVs in the form of 3D visualization. It is helpful to master the information of health status rapidly and give a real-time health evaluation.

  2. Remote Estimation of Vegetation Fraction and Yield in Oilseed Rape with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Y.; Fang, S.; Liu, K.; Gong, Y.

    2017-12-01

    This study developed an approach for remote estimation of Vegetation Fraction (VF) and yield in oilseed rape, which is a crop species with conspicuous flowers during reproduction. Canopy reflectance in green, red, red edge and NIR bands was obtained by a camera system mounted on an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) when oilseed rape was in the vegetative growth and flowering stage. The relationship of several widely-used Vegetation Indices (VI) vs. VF was tested and found to be different in different phenology stages. At the same VF when oilseed rape was flowering, canopy reflectance increased in all bands, and the tested VI decreased. Therefore, two algorithms to estimate VF were calibrated respectively, one for samples during vegetative growth and the other for samples during flowering stage. During the flowering season, we also explored the potential of using canopy reflectance or VIs to estimate Flower Fraction (FF) in oilseed rape. Based on FF estimates, rape yield can be estimated using canopy reflectance data. Our model was validated in oilseed rape planted under different nitrogen fertilization applications and in different phenology stages. The results showed that it was able to predict VF and FF accurately in oilseed rape with estimation error below 6% and predict yield with estimation error below 20%.

  3. Reinforcement Learning with Autonomous Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Cluttered Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Loc; Cross, Charles; Montague, Gilbert; Motter, Mark; Neilan, James; Qualls, Garry; Rothhaar, Paul; Trujillo, Anna; Allen, B. Danette

    2015-01-01

    We present ongoing work in the Autonomy Incubator at NASA Langley Research Center (LaRC) exploring the efficacy of a data set aggregation approach to reinforcement learning for small unmanned aerial vehicle (sUAV) flight in dense and cluttered environments with reactive obstacle avoidance. The goal is to learn an autonomous flight model using training experiences from a human piloting a sUAV around static obstacles. The training approach uses video data from a forward-facing camera that records the human pilot's flight. Various computer vision based features are extracted from the video relating to edge and gradient information. The recorded human-controlled inputs are used to train an autonomous control model that correlates the extracted feature vector to a yaw command. As part of the reinforcement learning approach, the autonomous control model is iteratively updated with feedback from a human agent who corrects undesired model output. This data driven approach to autonomous obstacle avoidance is explored for simulated forest environments furthering autonomous flight under the tree canopy research. This enables flight in previously inaccessible environments which are of interest to NASA researchers in Earth and Atmospheric sciences.

  4. A Smart Irrigation Approach Aided by Monitoring Surface Soil Moisture using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wienhold, K. J.; Li, D.; Fang, N. Z.

    2017-12-01

    Soil moisture is a critical component in the optimization of irrigation scheduling in water resources management. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) equipped with multispectral sensors represent an emerging technology capable of detecting and estimating soil moisture for irrigation and crop management. This study demonstrates a method of using a UAV as an optical and thermal remote sensing platform combined with genetic programming to derive high-resolution, surface soil moisture (SSM) estimates. The objective is to evaluate the feasibility of spatially-variable irrigation management for a golf course (about 50 acres) in North Central Texas. Multispectral data is collected over the course of one month in the visible, near infrared and longwave infrared spectrums using a UAV capable of rapid and safe deployment for daily estimates. The accuracy of the model predictions is quantified using a time domain reflectometry (TDR) soil moisture sensor and a holdout validation test set. The model produces reasonable estimates for SSM with an average coefficient of correlation (r) = 0.87 and coefficient of determination of (R2) = 0.76. The study suggests that the derived SSM estimates be used to better inform irrigation scheduling decisions for lightly vegetated areas such as the turf or native roughs found on golf courses.

  5. Low Power Greenhouse Gas Sensors for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David J. Lary

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available We demonstrate compact, low power, lightweight laser-based sensors for measuring trace gas species in the atmosphere designed specifically for electronic unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV platforms. The sensors utilize non-intrusive optical sensing techniques to measure atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations with unprecedented vertical and horizontal resolution (~1 m within the planetary boundary layer. The sensors are developed to measure greenhouse gas species including carbon dioxide, water vapor and methane in the atmosphere. Key innovations are the coupling of very low power vertical cavity surface emitting lasers (VCSELs to low power drive electronics and sensitive multi-harmonic wavelength modulation spectroscopic techniques. The overall mass of each sensor is between 1–2 kg including batteries and each one consumes less than 2 W of electrical power. In the initial field testing, the sensors flew successfully onboard a T-Rex Align 700E robotic helicopter and showed a precision of 1% or less for all three trace gas species. The sensors are battery operated and capable of fully automated operation for long periods of time in diverse sensing environments. Laser-based trace gas sensors for UAVs allow for high spatial mapping of local greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmospheric boundary layer where land/atmosphere fluxes occur. The high-precision sensors, coupled to the ease-of-deployment and cost effectiveness of UAVs, provide unprecedented measurement capabilities that are not possible with existing satellite-based and suborbital aircraft platforms.

  6. Exergy analysis of a turbofan engine for an unmanned aerial vehicle during a surveillance mission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Şöhret, Yasin; Dinç, Ali; Karakoç, T. Hikmet

    2015-01-01

    In this study, an exergy analysis of a turbofan engine, being the main power unit of an UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) over the course of a surveillance mission flight, is presented. In this framework, an engine model is firstly developed, based upon engine design parameters and conditions using a genuine code. Next, the exergy analysis is performed according to thermodynamic laws. At the end of the study, the combustion chamber is identified as the most irreversible component of the engine, while the high pressure turbine and compressor are identified as the most efficient components throughout the flight. The minimum exergy efficiency is 58.24% for the combustion chamber at the end of the ingress flight phase, while the maximum exergy efficiency is found to be 99.09% for the high pressure turbine at the start of the ingress flight phase and landing loiter. The highest exergy destruction within the engine occurs at landing loiter, take-off and start of climb, with rates of 16998.768 kW, 16820.317 kW and 16564.378 kW respectively. - Highlights: • This study reveals the exergy parameters of a turbofan engine for an UAV. • Exergy analysis is conducted for a complete surveillance mission flight. • Variation of exergy parameters of engine components during the flight is presented. • The impact of the environment conditions on exergy parameters is proven.

  7. REAL-TIME MONITORING SYSTEM USING UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE INTEGRATED WITH SENSOR OBSERVATION SERVICE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Witayangkurn

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV is an emerging technology being adapted for a wide range of applications. Real-time monitoring is essential to enhance the effectiveness of UAV applications. Sensor networks are networks constructed from various sensor nodes. International standard such as OGC's SOS (Sensor Observation Service makes it possible to share sensor data with other systems as well as to provide accessibility to globally distributed users. In this paper, we propose a system combining UAV technology and sensor network technology to use an UAV as a mobile node of sensor network so that the sensor data from UAV is published and shared real-time. A UAV can extend the observation range of a sensor network to remote areas where it is usually difficult to access such as disaster area. We constructed a UAV system using remote-controlled helicopter and various sensors such as GPS, gyrocompass, laser range finder, Digital camera and Thermometer. Furthermore, we extended the Sensor Observation Service (SOS and Sensor Service Grid (SSG to support mobile sensor nodes. Then, we conducted experiments of flying the helicopter over an area of the interest. During the flight, the system measured environmental data using its sensors and captured images of the ground. The data was sent to a SOS node as the ground station via Wi-Fi which was published using SSG to give real- time access to globally distributed users.

  8. Towards the Use of Unmanned Aerial Systems for Providing Sustainable Services in Smart Cities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moguel, Enrique; Conejero, José M; Sánchez-Figueroa, Fernando; Hernández, Juan; Preciado, Juan C; Rodríguez-Echeverría, Roberto

    2017-12-27

    Sustainability is at the heart of many application fields where the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) is becoming more and more important (e.g., agriculture, fire detection and prediction, environmental surveillance, mapping, etc.). However, their usage and evolution are highly conditioned by the specific application field they are designed for, and thus, they cannot be easily reused among different application fields. From this point of view, being that they are not multipurpose, we can say that they are not fully sustainable. Bearing this in mind, the objective of this paper is two-fold: on the one hand, to identify the whole set of features that must be provided by a UAS to be considered sustainable and to show that there is no UAS satisfying all these features; on the other hand, to present an open and sustainable UAS architecture that may be used to build UAS on demand to provide the features needed in each application field. Since this architecture is mainly based on software and hardware adaptability, it contributes to the technical sustainability of cities.

  9. Concept and realization of unmanned aerial system with different modes of operation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Czyba, Roman; Szafrański, Grzegorz; Janusz, Wojciech; Niezabitowski, Michał; Czornik, Adam; Błachuta, Marian

    2014-01-01

    In this paper we describe the development process of unmanned aerial system, its mechanical components, electronics and software solutions. During the stage of design, we have formulated some necessary requirements for the multirotor vehicle and ground control station in order to build an optimal system which can be used for the reconnaissance missions. Platform is controlled by use of the ground control station (GCS) and has possibility of accomplishing video based observation tasks. In order to fulfill this requirement the on-board payload consists of mechanically stabilized camera augmented with machine vision algorithms to enable object tracking tasks. Novelty of the system are four modes of flight, which give full functionality of the developed UAV system. Designed ground control station is consisted not only of the application itself, but also a built-in dedicated components located inside the chassis, which together creates an advanced UAV system supporting the control and management of the flight. Mechanical part of quadrotor is designed to ensure its robustness while meeting objectives of minimizing weight of the platform. Finally the designed electronics allows for implementation of control and estimation algorithms without the needs for their excessive computational optimization

  10. A fully convolutional network for weed mapping of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) imagery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Huasheng; Deng, Jizhong; Lan, Yubin; Yang, Aqing; Deng, Xiaoling; Zhang, Lei

    2018-01-01

    Appropriate Site Specific Weed Management (SSWM) is crucial to ensure the crop yields. Within SSWM of large-scale area, remote sensing is a key technology to provide accurate weed distribution information. Compared with satellite and piloted aircraft remote sensing, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) is capable of capturing high spatial resolution imagery, which will provide more detailed information for weed mapping. The objective of this paper is to generate an accurate weed cover map based on UAV imagery. The UAV RGB imagery was collected in 2017 October over the rice field located in South China. The Fully Convolutional Network (FCN) method was proposed for weed mapping of the collected imagery. Transfer learning was used to improve generalization capability, and skip architecture was applied to increase the prediction accuracy. After that, the performance of FCN architecture was compared with Patch_based CNN algorithm and Pixel_based CNN method. Experimental results showed that our FCN method outperformed others, both in terms of accuracy and efficiency. The overall accuracy of the FCN approach was up to 0.935 and the accuracy for weed recognition was 0.883, which means that this algorithm is capable of generating accurate weed cover maps for the evaluated UAV imagery.

  11. Deep convolutional neural network for classifying Fusarium wilt of radish from unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ha, Jin Gwan; Moon, Hyeonjoon; Kwak, Jin Tae; Hassan, Syed Ibrahim; Dang, Minh; Lee, O. New; Park, Han Yong

    2017-10-01

    Recently, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have gained much attention. In particular, there is a growing interest in utilizing UAVs for agricultural applications such as crop monitoring and management. We propose a computerized system that is capable of detecting Fusarium wilt of radish with high accuracy. The system adopts computer vision and machine learning techniques, including deep learning, to process the images captured by UAVs at low altitudes and to identify the infected radish. The whole radish field is first segmented into three distinctive regions (radish, bare ground, and mulching film) via a softmax classifier and K-means clustering. Then, the identified radish regions are further classified into healthy radish and Fusarium wilt of radish using a deep convolutional neural network (CNN). In identifying radish, bare ground, and mulching film from a radish field, we achieved an accuracy of ≥97.4%. In detecting Fusarium wilt of radish, the CNN obtained an accuracy of 93.3%. It also outperformed the standard machine learning algorithm, obtaining 82.9% accuracy. Therefore, UAVs equipped with computational techniques are promising tools for improving the quality and efficiency of agriculture today.

  12. High Throughput Phenotyping of Blueberry Bush Morphological Traits Using Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron Patrick

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Phenotyping morphological traits of blueberry bushes in the field is important for selecting genotypes that are easily harvested by mechanical harvesters. Morphological data can also be used to assess the effects of crop treatments such as plant growth regulators, fertilizers, and environmental conditions. This paper investigates the feasibility and accuracy of an inexpensive unmanned aerial system in determining the morphological characteristics of blueberry bushes. Color images collected by a quadcopter are processed into three-dimensional point clouds via structure from motion algorithms. Bush height, extents, canopy area, and volume, in addition to crown diameter and width, are derived and referenced to ground truth. In an experimental farm, twenty-five bushes were imaged by a quadcopter. Height and width dimensions achieved a mean absolute error of 9.85 cm before and 5.82 cm after systematic under-estimation correction. Strong correlation was found between manual and image derived bush volumes and their traditional growth indices. Hedgerows of three Southern Highbush varieties were imaged at a commercial farm to extract five morphological features (base angle, blockiness, crown percent height, crown ratio, and vegetation ratio associated with cultivation and machine harvestability. The bushes were found to be partially separable by multivariate analysis. The methodology developed from this study is not only valuable for plant breeders to screen genotypes with bush morphological traits that are suitable for machine harvest, but can also aid producers in crop management such as pruning and plot layout organization.

  13. Low altitude unmanned aerial vehicle for characterising remediation effectiveness following the FDNPP accident

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martin, P.G.; Payton, O.D.; Fardoulis, J.S.; Richards, D.A.; Yamashiki, Y.; Scott, T.B.

    2016-01-01

    On the 12th of March 2011, The Great Tōhoku Earthquake occurred 70 km off the eastern coast of Japan, generating a large 14 m high tsunami. The ensuing catalogue of events over the succeeding 12 d resulted in the release of considerable quantities of radioactive material into the environment. Important to the large-scale remediation of the affected areas is the accurate and high spatial resolution characterisation of contamination, including the verification of decontaminated areas. To enable this, a low altitude unmanned aerial vehicle equipped with a lightweight gamma-spectrometer and height normalisation system was used to produce sub-meter resolution maps of contamination. This system provided a valuable method to examine both contaminated and remediated areas rapidly, whilst greatly reducing the dose received by the operator, typically in localities formerly inaccessible to ground-based survey methods. The characterisation of three sites within Fukushima Prefecture is presented; one remediated (and a site of much previous attention), one un-remediated and a third having been subjected to an alternative method to reduce emitted radiation dose. - Highlights: • Contamination near FDNPP was mapped with a UAV. • Effectiveness of remediation is observed. • Sub-meter resolution mapping is achieved. • Isotopic nature of radiation is determined.

  14. Improving a DSM Obtained by Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Flood Modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mourato, Sandra; Fernandez, Paulo; Pereira, Luísa; Moreira, Madalena

    2017-12-01

    According to the EU flood risks directive, flood hazard map must be used to assess the flood risk. These maps can be developed with hydraulic modelling tools using a Digital Surface Runoff Model (DSRM). During the last decade, important evolutions of the spatial data processing has been developed which will certainly improve the hydraulic models results. Currently, images acquired with Red/Green/Blue (RGB) camera transported by Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) are seen as a good alternative data sources to represent the terrain surface with a high level of resolution and precision. The question is if the digital surface model obtain with this data is adequate enough for a good representation of the hydraulics flood characteristics. For this purpose, the hydraulic model HEC-RAS was run with 4 different DSRM for an 8.5 km reach of the Lis River in Portugal. The computational performance of the 4 modelling implementations is evaluated. Two hydrometric stations water level records were used as boundary conditions of the hydraulic model. The records from a third hydrometric station were used to validate the optimal DSRM. The HEC-RAS results had the best performance during the validation step were the ones where the DSRM with integration of the two altimetry data sources.

  15. Self-Contained Avionics Sensing and Flight Control System for Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shams, Qamar A. (Inventor); Logan, Michael J. (Inventor); Fox, Robert L. (Inventor); Fox, legal representative, Christopher L. (Inventor); Fox, legal representative, Melanie L. (Inventor); Ingham, John C. (Inventor); Laughter, Sean A. (Inventor); Kuhn, III, Theodore R. (Inventor); Adams, James K. (Inventor); Babel, III, Walter C. (Inventor)

    2011-01-01

    A self-contained avionics sensing and flight control system is provided for an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). The system includes sensors for sensing flight control parameters and surveillance parameters, and a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver. Flight control parameters and location signals are processed to generate flight control signals. A Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) is configured to provide a look-up table storing sets of values with each set being associated with a servo mechanism mounted on the UAV and with each value in each set indicating a unique duty cycle for the servo mechanism associated therewith. Each value in each set is further indexed to a bit position indicative of a unique percentage of a maximum duty cycle for the servo mechanism associated therewith. The FPGA is further configured to provide a plurality of pulse width modulation (PWM) generators coupled to the look-up table. Each PWM generator is associated with and adapted to be coupled to one of the servo mechanisms.

  16. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs and Artificial Intelligence Revolutionizing Wildlife Monitoring and Conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis F. Gonzalez

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Surveying threatened and invasive species to obtain accurate population estimates is an important but challenging task that requires a considerable investment in time and resources. Estimates using existing ground-based monitoring techniques, such as camera traps and surveys performed on foot, are known to be resource intensive, potentially inaccurate and imprecise, and difficult to validate. Recent developments in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV, artificial intelligence and miniaturized thermal imaging systems represent a new opportunity for wildlife experts to inexpensively survey relatively large areas. The system presented in this paper includes thermal image acquisition as well as a video processing pipeline to perform object detection, classification and tracking of wildlife in forest or open areas. The system is tested on thermal video data from ground based and test flight footage, and is found to be able to detect all the target wildlife located in the surveyed area. The system is flexible in that the user can readily define the types of objects to classify and the object characteristics that should be considered during classification.

  17. Explicit Nonlinear Model Predictive Control for a Saucer-Shaped Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhihui Xing

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A lifting body unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV generates lift by its body and shows many significant advantages due to the particular shape, such as huge loading space, small wetted area, high-strength fuselage structure, and large lifting area. However, designing the control law for a lifting body UAV is quite challenging because it has strong nonlinearity and coupling, and usually lacks it rudders. In this paper, an explicit nonlinear model predictive control (ENMPC strategy is employed to design a control law for a saucer-shaped UAV which can be adequately modeled with a rigid 6-degrees-of-freedom (DOF representation. In the ENMPC, control signal is calculated by approximation of the tracking error in the receding horizon by its Taylor-series expansion to any specified order. It enhances the advantages of the nonlinear model predictive control and eliminates the time-consuming online optimization. The simulation results show that ENMPC is a propriety strategy for controlling lifting body UAVs and can compensate the insufficient control surface area.

  18. Metadata-Assisted Global Motion Estimation for Medium-Altitude Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Video Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongguang Li

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Global motion estimation (GME is a key technology in unmanned aerial vehicle remote sensing (UAVRS. However, when a UAV’s motion and behavior change significantly or the image information is not rich, traditional image-based methods for GME often perform poorly. Introducing bottom metadata can improve precision in a large-scale motion condition and reduce the dependence on unreliable image information. GME is divided into coarse and residual GME through coordinate transformation and based on the study hypotheses. In coarse GME, an auxiliary image is built to convert image matching from a wide baseline condition to a narrow baseline one. In residual GME, a novel information and contrast feature detection algorithm is proposed for big-block matching to maximize the use of reliable image information and ensure that the contents of interest are well estimated. Additionally, an image motion monitor is designed to select the appropriate processing strategy by monitoring the motion scales of translation, rotation, and zoom. A medium-altitude UAV is employed to collect three types of large-scale motion datasets. Peak signal to noise ratio (PSNR and motion scale are computed. This study’s result is encouraging and applicable to other medium- or high-altitude UAVs with a similar system structure.

  19. Proposed tethered unmanned aerial system for the detection of pollution entering the Chesapeake Bay area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, J.; McKay, J.; Evans, W.; Gadsden, S. Andrew

    2016-05-01

    This paper is based on a proposed unmanned aerial system platform that is to be outfitted with high-resolution sensors. The proposed system is to be tethered to a moveable ground station, which may be a research vessel or some form of ground vehicle (e.g., car, truck, or rover). The sensors include, at a minimum: camera, infrared sensor, thermal, normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) camera, global positioning system (GPS), and a light-based radar (LIDAR). The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of existing methods for pollution detection of failing septic systems, and to introduce the proposed system. Future work will look at the high-resolution data from the sensors and integrating the data through a process called information fusion. Typically, this process is done using the popular and well-published Kalman filter (or its nonlinear formulations, such as the extended Kalman filter). However, future work will look at using a new type of strategy based on variable structure estimation for the information fusion portion of the data processing. It is hypothesized that fusing data from the thermal and NDVI sensors will be more accurate and reliable for a multitude of applications, including the detection of pollution entering the Chesapeake Bay area.

  20. Cross-Correlation-Based Structural System Identification Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyungchul Yoon

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Computer vision techniques have been employed to characterize dynamic properties of structures, as well as to capture structural motion for system identification purposes. All of these methods leverage image-processing techniques using a stationary camera. This requirement makes finding an effective location for camera installation difficult, because civil infrastructure (i.e., bridges, buildings, etc. are often difficult to access, being constructed over rivers, roads, or other obstacles. This paper seeks to use video from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs to address this problem. As opposed to the traditional way of using stationary cameras, the use of UAVs brings the issue of the camera itself moving; thus, the displacements of the structure obtained by processing UAV video are relative to the UAV camera. Some efforts have been reported to compensate for the camera motion, but they require certain assumptions that may be difficult to satisfy. This paper proposes a new method for structural system identification using the UAV video directly. Several challenges are addressed, including: (1 estimation of an appropriate scale factor; and (2 compensation for the rolling shutter effect. Experimental validation is carried out to validate the proposed approach. The experimental results demonstrate the efficacy and significant potential of the proposed approach.

  1. Vibration control of a camera mount system for an unmanned aerial vehicle using piezostack actuators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oh, Jong-Seok; Choi, Seung-Bok; Han, Young-Min

    2011-01-01

    This work proposes an active mount for the camera systems of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) in order to control unwanted vibrations. An active actuator of the proposed mount is devised as an inertial type, in which a piezostack actuator is directly connected to the inertial mass. After evaluating the actuating force of the actuator, it is combined with the rubber element of the mount, whose natural frequency is determined based on the measured vibration characteristics of UAV. Based on the governing equations of motion of the active camera mount, a robust sliding mode controller (SMC) is then formulated with consideration of parameter uncertainties and hysteresis behavior of the actuator. Subsequently, vibration control performances of the proposed active mount are experimentally evaluated in the time and frequency domains. In addition, a full camera mount system of UAVs that is supported by four active mounts is considered and its vibration control performance is evaluated in the frequency domain using a hardware-in-the-loop simulation (HILS) method

  2. Drift Correction of Lightweight Microbolometer Thermal Sensors On-Board Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco-Javier Mesas-Carrascosa

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The development of lightweight sensors compatible with mini unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs has expanded the agronomical applications of remote sensing. Of particular interest in this paper are thermal sensors based on lightweight microbolometer technology. These are mainly used to assess crop water stress with thermal images where an accuracy greater than 1 °C is necessary. However, these sensors lack precise temperature control, resulting in thermal drift during image acquisition that requires correction. Currently, there are several strategies to manage thermal drift effect. However, these strategies reduce useful flight time over crops due to the additional in-flight calibration operations. This study presents a drift correction methodology for microbolometer sensors based on redundant information from multiple overlapping images. An empirical study was performed in an orchard of high-density hedgerow olive trees with flights at different times of the day. Six mathematical drift correction models were developed and assessed to explain and correct drift effect on thermal images. Using the proposed methodology, the resulting thermally corrected orthomosaics yielded a rate of error lower than 1° C compared to those where no drift correction was applied.

  3. Efficient Forest Fire Detection Index for Application in Unmanned Aerial Systems (UASs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henry Cruz

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This article proposes a novel method for detecting forest fires, through the use of a new color index, called the Forest Fire Detection Index (FFDI, developed by the authors. The index is based on methods for vegetation classification and has been adapted to detect the tonalities of flames and smoke; the latter could be included adaptively into the Regions of Interest (RoIs with the help of a variable factor. Multiple tests have been performed upon database imagery and present promising results: a detection precision of 96.82% has been achieved for image sizes of 960 × 540 pixels at a processing time of 0.0447 seconds. This achievement would lead to a performance of 22 f/s, for smaller images, while up to 54 f/s could be reached by maintaining a similar detection precision. Additional tests have been performed on fires in their early stages, achieving a precision rate of p = 96.62%. The method could be used in real-time in Unmanned Aerial Systems (UASs, with the aim of monitoring a wider area than through fixed surveillance systems. Thus, it would result in more cost-effective outcomes than conventional systems implemented in helicopters or satellites. UASs could also reach inaccessible locations without jeopardizing people’s safety. On-going work includes implementation into a commercially available drone.

  4. The application of the unmanned aerial vehicle remote sensing technology in the FAST project construction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Boqin

    2015-08-01

    The purpose of using unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) remote sensing application in Five-hundred-meter aperture spherical telescope (FAST) project is to dynamically record the construction process with high resolution image, monitor the environmental impact, and provide services for local environmental protection and the reserve immigrants. This paper introduces the use of UAV remote sensing system and the course design and implementation for the FAST site. Through the analysis of the time series data, we found that: (1) since the year 2012, the project has been widely carried out; (2) till 2013, the internal project begun to take shape;(3) engineering excavation scope was kept stable in 2014, and the initial scale of the FAST engineering construction has emerged as in the meantime, the vegetation recovery went well on the bare soil area; (4) in 2015, none environmental problems caused by engineering construction and other engineering geological disaster were found in the work area through the image interpretation of UAV images. This paper also suggested that the UAV technology need some improvements to fulfill the requirements of surveying and mapping specification., including a new data acquisition and processing measures assigned with the background of highly diverse elevation, usage of telephoto camera, hierarchical photography with different flying height, and adjustment with terrain using the joint empty three settlement method.

  5. Spatio-temporal evaluation of plant height in corn via unmanned aerial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varela, Sebastian; Assefa, Yared; Vara Prasad, P. V.; Peralta, Nahuel R.; Griffin, Terry W.; Sharda, Ajay; Ferguson, Allison; Ciampitti, Ignacio A.

    2017-07-01

    Detailed spatial and temporal data on plant growth are critical to guide crop management. Conventional methods to determine field plant traits are intensive, time-consuming, expensive, and limited to small areas. The objective of this study was to examine the integration of data collected via unmanned aerial systems (UAS) at critical corn (Zea mays L.) developmental stages for plant height and its relation to plant biomass. The main steps followed in this research were (1) workflow development for an ultrahigh resolution crop surface model (CSM) with the goal of determining plant height (CSM-estimated plant height) using data gathered from the UAS missions; (2) validation of CSM-estimated plant height with ground-truthing plant height (measured plant height); and (3) final estimation of plant biomass via integration of CSM-estimated plant height with ground-truthing stem diameter data. Results indicated a correlation between CSM-estimated plant height and ground-truthing plant height data at two weeks prior to flowering and at flowering stage, but high predictability at the later growth stage. Log-log analysis on the temporal data confirmed that these relationships are stable, presenting equal slopes for both crop stages evaluated. Concluding, data collected from low-altitude and with a low-cost sensor could be useful in estimating plant height.

  6. High-Fidelity Computational Aerodynamics of Multi-Rotor Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ventura Diaz, Patricia; Yoon, Seokkwan

    2018-01-01

    High-fidelity Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations have been carried out for several multi-rotor Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). Three vehicles have been studied: the classic quadcopter DJI Phantom 3, an unconventional quadcopter specialized for forward flight, the SUI Endurance, and an innovative concept for Urban Air Mobility (UAM), the Elytron 4S UAV. The three-dimensional unsteady Navier-Stokes equations are solved on overset grids using high-order accurate schemes, dual-time stepping, and a hybrid turbulence model. The DJI Phantom 3 is simulated with different rotors and with both a simplified airframe and the real airframe including landing gear and a camera. The effects of weather are studied for the DJI Phantom 3 quadcopter in hover. The SUI En- durance original design is compared in forward flight to a new configuration conceived by the authors, the hybrid configuration, which gives a large improvement in forward thrust. The Elytron 4S UAV is simulated in helicopter mode and in airplane mode. Understanding the complex flows in multi-rotor vehicles will help design quieter, safer, and more efficient future drones and UAM vehicles.

  7. Object Based Building Extraction and Building Period Estimation from Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comert, Resul; Kaplan, Onur

    2018-04-01

    The aim of this study is to examine whether it is possible to estimate the building periods with respect to the building heights in the urban scale seismic performance assessment studies by using the building height retrieved from the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) data. For this purpose, a small area, which includes eight residential reinforced concrete buildings, was selected in Eskisehir (Turkey) city center. In this paper, the possibilities of obtaining the building heights that are used in the estimation of building periods from UAV based data, have been investigated. The investigations were carried out in 3 stages; (i) Building boundary extraction with Object Based Image Analysis (OBIA), (ii) height calculation for buildings of interest from nDSM and accuracy assessment with the terrestrial survey. (iii) Estimation of building period using height information. The average difference between the periods estimated according to the heights obtained from field measurements and from the UAV data is 2.86 % and the maximum difference is 13.2 %. Results of this study have shown that the building heights retrieved from the UAV data can be used in the building period estimation in the urban scale vulnerability assessments.

  8. Employing unmanned aerial vehicle to monitor the health condition of wind turbines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yishuo; Chiang, Chih-Hung; Hsu, Keng-Tsang; Cheng, Chia-Chi

    2018-04-01

    Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) can gather the spatial information of huge structures, such as wind turbines, that can be difficult to obtain with traditional approaches. In this paper, the UAV used in the experiments is equipped with high resolution camera and thermal infrared camera. The high resolution camera can provide a series of images with resolution up to 10 Megapixels. Those images can be used to form the 3D model using the digital photogrammetry technique. By comparing the 3D scenes of the same wind turbine at different times, possible displacement of the supporting tower of the wind turbine, caused by ground movement or foundation deterioration may be determined. The recorded thermal images are analyzed by applying the image segmentation methods to the surface temperature distribution. A series of sub-regions are separated by the differences of the surface temperature. The high-resolution optical image and the segmented thermal image are fused such that the surface anomalies are more easily identified for wind turbines.

  9. Modeling Aboveground Biomass in Hulunber Grassland Ecosystem by Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Discrete Lidar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Dongliang; Xin, Xiaoping; Shao, Quanqin; Brolly, Matthew; Zhu, Zhiliang; Chen, Jin

    2017-01-19

    Accurate canopy structure datasets, including canopy height and fractional cover, are required to monitor aboveground biomass as well as to provide validation data for satellite remote sensing products. In this study, the ability of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) discrete light detection and ranging (lidar) was investigated for modeling both the canopy height and fractional cover in Hulunber grassland ecosystem. The extracted mean canopy height, maximum canopy height, and fractional cover were used to estimate the aboveground biomass. The influences of flight height on lidar estimates were also analyzed. The main findings are: (1) the lidar-derived mean canopy height is the most reasonable predictor of aboveground biomass ( R ² = 0.340, root-mean-square error (RMSE) = 81.89 g·m -2 , and relative error of 14.1%). The improvement of multiple regressions to the R ² and RMSE values is unobvious when adding fractional cover in the regression since the correlation between mean canopy height and fractional cover is high; (2) Flight height has a pronounced effect on the derived fractional cover and details of the lidar data, but the effect is insignificant on the derived canopy height when the flight height is within the range (lidar returns.

  10. Multi-temporal high resolution monitoring of debris-covered glaciers using unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraaijenbrink, Philip; Immerzeel, Walter; de Jong, Steven; Shea, Joseph; Pellicciotti, Francesca; Meijer, Sander; Shresta, Arun

    2016-04-01

    Debris-covered glaciers in the Himalayas are relatively unstudied due to the difficulties in fieldwork caused by the inaccessible terrain and the presence of debris layers, which complicate in situ measurements. To overcome these difficulties an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has been deployed multiple times over two debris covered glaciers in the Langtang catchment, located in the Nepalese Himalayas. Using differential GPS measurements and the Structure for Motion algorithm the UAV imagery was processed into accurate high-resolution digital elevation models and orthomosaics for both pre- and post-monsoon periods. These data were successfully used to estimate seasonal surface flow and mass wasting by using cross-correlation feature tracking and DEM differencing techniques. The results reveal large heterogeneity in mass loss and surface flow over the glacier surfaces, which are primarily caused by the presence of surface features such as ice cliffs and supra-glacial lakes. Accordingly, we systematically analyze those features using an object-based approach and relate their characteristics to the observed dynamics. We show that ice cliffs and supra-glacial lakes are contributing to a significant portion of the melt water of debris covered glaciers and we conclude that UAVs have great potential in understanding the key surface processes that remain largely undetected by using satellite remote sensing.

  11. DETERMINING GEOMETRIC PARAMETERS OF AGRICULTURAL TREES FROM LASER SCANNING DATA OBTAINED WITH UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Hadas

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The estimation of dendrometric parameters has become an important issue for agriculture planning and for the efficient management of orchards. Airborne Laser Scanning (ALS data is widely used in forestry and many algorithms for automatic estimation of dendrometric parameters of individual forest trees were developed. Unfortunately, due to significant differences between forest and fruit trees, some contradictions exist against adopting the achievements of forestry science to agricultural studies indiscriminately. In this study we present the methodology to identify individual trees in apple orchard and estimate heights of individual trees, using high-density LiDAR data (3200 points/m2 obtained with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV equipped with Velodyne HDL32-E sensor. The processing strategy combines the alpha-shape algorithm, principal component analysis (PCA and detection of local minima. The alpha-shape algorithm is used to separate tree rows. In order to separate trees in a single row, we detect local minima on the canopy profile and slice polygons from alpha-shape results. We successfully separated 92 % of trees in the test area. 6 % of trees in orchard were not separated from each other and 2 % were sliced into two polygons. The RMSE of tree heights determined from the point clouds compared to field measurements was equal to 0.09 m, and the correlation coefficient was equal to 0.96. The results confirm the usefulness of LiDAR data from UAV platform in orchard inventory.

  12. Determining Geometric Parameters of Agricultural Trees from Laser Scanning Data Obtained with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadas, E.; Jozkow, G.; Walicka, A.; Borkowski, A.

    2018-05-01

    The estimation of dendrometric parameters has become an important issue for agriculture planning and for the efficient management of orchards. Airborne Laser Scanning (ALS) data is widely used in forestry and many algorithms for automatic estimation of dendrometric parameters of individual forest trees were developed. Unfortunately, due to significant differences between forest and fruit trees, some contradictions exist against adopting the achievements of forestry science to agricultural studies indiscriminately. In this study we present the methodology to identify individual trees in apple orchard and estimate heights of individual trees, using high-density LiDAR data (3200 points/m2) obtained with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) equipped with Velodyne HDL32-E sensor. The processing strategy combines the alpha-shape algorithm, principal component analysis (PCA) and detection of local minima. The alpha-shape algorithm is used to separate tree rows. In order to separate trees in a single row, we detect local minima on the canopy profile and slice polygons from alpha-shape results. We successfully separated 92 % of trees in the test area. 6 % of trees in orchard were not separated from each other and 2 % were sliced into two polygons. The RMSE of tree heights determined from the point clouds compared to field measurements was equal to 0.09 m, and the correlation coefficient was equal to 0.96. The results confirm the usefulness of LiDAR data from UAV platform in orchard inventory.

  13. Spatial Quality Evaluation of Resampled Unmanned Aerial Vehicle-Imagery for Weed Mapping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borra-Serrano, Irene; Peña, José Manuel; Torres-Sánchez, Jorge; Mesas-Carrascosa, Francisco Javier; López-Granados, Francisca

    2015-08-12

    Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) combined with different spectral range sensors are an emerging technology for providing early weed maps for optimizing herbicide applications. Considering that weeds, at very early phenological stages, are similar spectrally and in appearance, three major components are relevant: spatial resolution, type of sensor and classification algorithm. Resampling is a technique to create a new version of an image with a different width and/or height in pixels, and it has been used in satellite imagery with different spatial and temporal resolutions. In this paper, the efficiency of resampled-images (RS-images) created from real UAV-images (UAV-images; the UAVs were equipped with two types of sensors, i.e., visible and visible plus near-infrared spectra) captured at different altitudes is examined to test the quality of the RS-image output. The performance of the object-based-image-analysis (OBIA) implemented for the early weed mapping using different weed thresholds was also evaluated. Our results showed that resampling accurately extracted the spectral values from high spatial resolution UAV-images at an altitude of 30 m and the RS-image data at altitudes of 60 and 100 m, was able to provide accurate weed cover and herbicide application maps compared with UAV-images from real flights.

  14. Real-Time Multi-Target Localization from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

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    Xuan Wang

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available In order to improve the reconnaissance efficiency of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV electro-optical stabilized imaging systems, a real-time multi-target localization scheme based on an UAV electro-optical stabilized imaging system is proposed. First, a target location model is studied. Then, the geodetic coordinates of multi-targets are calculated using the homogeneous coordinate transformation. On the basis of this, two methods which can improve the accuracy of the multi-target localization are proposed: (1 the real-time zoom lens distortion correction method; (2 a recursive least squares (RLS filtering method based on UAV dead reckoning. The multi-target localization error model is established using Monte Carlo theory. In an actual flight, the UAV flight altitude is 1140 m. The multi-target localization results are within the range of allowable error. After we use a lens distortion correction method in a single image, the circular error probability (CEP of the multi-target localization is reduced by 7%, and 50 targets can be located at the same time. The RLS algorithm can adaptively estimate the location data based on multiple images. Compared with multi-target localization based on a single image, CEP of the multi-target localization using RLS is reduced by 25%. The proposed method can be implemented on a small circuit board to operate in real time. This research is expected to significantly benefit small UAVs which need multi-target geo-location functions.

  15. Development of Design Methodology for a Small Solar-Powered Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

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    Parvathy Rajendran

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Existing mathematical design models for small solar-powered electric unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs only focus on mass, performance, and aerodynamic analyses. Presently, UAV designs have low endurance. The current study aims to improve the shortcomings of existing UAV design models. Three new design aspects (i.e., electric propulsion, sensitivity, and trend analysis, three improved design properties (i.e., mass, aerodynamics, and mission profile, and a design feature (i.e., solar irradiance are incorporated to enhance the existing small solar UAV design model. A design validation experiment established that the use of the proposed mathematical design model may at least improve power consumption-to-take-off mass ratio by 25% than that of previously designed UAVs. UAVs powered by solar (solar and battery and nonsolar (battery-only energy were also compared, showing that nonsolar UAVs can generally carry more payloads at a particular time and place than solar UAVs with sufficient endurance requirement. The investigation also identified that the payload results in the highest effect on the maximum take-off weight, followed by the battery, structure, and propulsion weight with the three new design aspects (i.e., electric propulsion, sensitivity, and trend analysis for sizing consideration to optimize UAV designs.

  16. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and Artificial Intelligence Revolutionizing Wildlife Monitoring and Conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez, Luis F; Montes, Glen A; Puig, Eduard; Johnson, Sandra; Mengersen, Kerrie; Gaston, Kevin J

    2016-01-14

    Surveying threatened and invasive species to obtain accurate population estimates is an important but challenging task that requires a considerable investment in time and resources. Estimates using existing ground-based monitoring techniques, such as camera traps and surveys performed on foot, are known to be resource intensive, potentially inaccurate and imprecise, and difficult to validate. Recent developments in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), artificial intelligence and miniaturized thermal imaging systems represent a new opportunity for wildlife experts to inexpensively survey relatively large areas. The system presented in this paper includes thermal image acquisition as well as a video processing pipeline to perform object detection, classification and tracking of wildlife in forest or open areas. The system is tested on thermal video data from ground based and test flight footage, and is found to be able to detect all the target wildlife located in the surveyed area. The system is flexible in that the user can readily define the types of objects to classify and the object characteristics that should be considered during classification.

  17. High-resolution sensing for precision agriculture: from Earth-observing satellites to unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCabe, Matthew F.; Houborg, Rasmus; Lucieer, Arko

    2016-10-01

    With global population projected to approach 9 billion by 2050, it has been estimated that a 40% increase in cereal production will be required to satisfy the worlds growing nutritional demands. Any such increases in agricultural productivity are likely to occur within a system that has limited room for growth and in a world with a climate that is different from that of today. Fundamental to achieving food and water security, is the capacity to monitor the health and condition of agricultural systems. While space-agency based satellites have provided the backbone for earth observation over the last few decades, many developments in the field of high-resolution earth observation have been advanced by the commercial sector. These advances relate not just to technological developments in the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), but also the advent of nano-satellite constellations that offer a radical shift in the way earth observations are now being retrieved. Such technologies present opportunities for improving our description of the water, energy and carbon cycles. Efforts towards developing new observational techniques and interpretative frameworks are required to provide the tools and information needed to improve the management and security of agricultural and related sectors. These developments are one of the surest ways to better manage, protect and preserve national food and water resources. Here we review the capabilities of recently deployed satellite systems and UAVs and examine their potential for application in precision agriculture.

  18. Use of Model-Based Design Methods for Enhancing Resiliency Analysis of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knox, Lenora A.

    The most common traditional non-functional requirement analysis is reliability. With systems becoming more complex, networked, and adaptive to environmental uncertainties, system resiliency has recently become the non-functional requirement analysis of choice. Analysis of system resiliency has challenges; which include, defining resilience for domain areas, identifying resilience metrics, determining resilience modeling strategies, and understanding how to best integrate the concepts of risk and reliability into resiliency. Formal methods that integrate all of these concepts do not currently exist in specific domain areas. Leveraging RAMSoS, a model-based reliability analysis methodology for Systems of Systems (SoS), we propose an extension that accounts for resiliency analysis through evaluation of mission performance, risk, and cost using multi-criteria decision-making (MCDM) modeling and design trade study variability modeling evaluation techniques. This proposed methodology, coined RAMSoS-RESIL, is applied to a case study in the multi-agent unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) domain to investigate the potential benefits of a mission architecture where functionality to complete a mission is disseminated across multiple UAVs (distributed) opposed to being contained in a single UAV (monolithic). The case study based research demonstrates proof of concept for the proposed model-based technique and provides sufficient preliminary evidence to conclude which architectural design (distributed vs. monolithic) is most resilient based on insight into mission resilience performance, risk, and cost in addition to the traditional analysis of reliability.

  19. High-resolution sensing for precision agriculture: from Earth-observing satellites to unmanned aerial vehicles

    KAUST Repository

    McCabe, Matthew

    2016-10-25

    With global population projected to approach 9 billion by 2050, it has been estimated that a 40% increase in cereal production will be required to satisfy the worlds growing nutritional demands. Any such increases in agricultural productivity are likely to occur within a system that has limited room for growth and in a world with a climate that is different from that of today. Fundamental to achieving food and water security, is the capacity to monitor the health and condition of agricultural systems. While space-Agency based satellites have provided the backbone for earth observation over the last few decades, many developments in the field of high-resolution earth observation have been advanced by the commercial sector. These advances relate not just to technological developments in the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), but also the advent of nano-satellite constellations that offer a radical shift in the way earth observations are now being retrieved. Such technologies present opportunities for improving our description of the water, energy and carbon cycles. Efforts towards developing new observational techniques and interpretative frameworks are required to provide the tools and information needed to improve the management and security of agricultural and related sectors. These developments are one of the surest ways to better manage, protect and preserve national food and water resources. Here we review the capabilities of recently deployed satellite systems and UAVs and examine their potential for application in precision agriculture.

  20. Parcel Delivery in AN Urban Environment Using Unmanned Aerial Systems: a Vision Paper

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anbaroğlu, B.

    2017-11-01

    This vision paper addresses the challenges and explores the avenue of solutions regarding the use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) for transporting parcels in urban areas. We have already witnessed companies' delivering parcels using UAS in rural areas, but the challenge of utilizing them for an urban environment is eminent. Nevertheless, the increasing research on the various aspects of UAS, including their battery life, resistance to harsh weather conditions and sensing its environment foresee their common usage in the logistics industry, especially in an urban environment. In addition, the increasing trend on 3D city modelling offer new directions regarding realistic as well as light 3D city models that are easy to modify and distribute. Utilizing UAS for transporting parcels in an urban environment would be a disruptive technological achievement as our roads will be less congested which would lead to less air pollution as well as wasted money and time. In addition, parcels could potentially be delivered much faster. This paper argues, with the support of the state-of-the-art research, that UASs will be used for transporting parcels in an urban environment in the coming decades.

  1. ON MODERN APPROACH TO AIRPLANE-TYPE UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES DESIGN WITH SHORT TAKEOFF AND LANDING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oleg P. Minin

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available This publication opens a series of review papers devoted to the current design problems of the next generation unmanned airplanes that are expected to appear in the period from 2025 to 2035. The series of papers considers airplanes with vertical take-off and landing, air launch of small satellites into the orbit, cargo transportation tasks, issues related to new aerodynamic forms, as well as hybrid, combined and distributed power units. The first paper of the cycle is devoted to the conceptual aerodynamic design of the airplanes with a short take-off and landing, and with technical and economic characteristics on cruise flight conditions no worse than for traditional airplane based on aerodrome with long airstrip. We consider traditional linear methods for aerodynamic scheme analysis and weight analysis, as well. The main relationships and references to the works enabling the parametric analysis of the aerodynamic configuration are given. It is concluded that one of the most promising areas in the field of airplanes with a short take-off and landing is the development of aerodynamic circuits constructed as a "flying wing" of small aspect ratio and large structural height.

  2. Analysis of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) hyperspectral remote sensing monitoring key technology in coastal wetland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Yi; Zhang, Jie; Zhang, Jingyu

    2016-01-01

    The coastal wetland, a transitional zone between terrestrial ecosystems and marine ecosystems, is the type of great value to ecosystem services. For the recent 3 decades, area of the coastal wetland is decreasing and the ecological function is gradually degraded with the rapid development of economy, which restricts the sustainable development of economy and society in the coastal areas of China in turn. It is a major demand of the national reality to carry out the monitoring of coastal wetlands, to master the distribution and dynamic change. UAV, namely unmanned aerial vehicle, is a new platform for remote sensing. Compared with the traditional satellite and manned aerial remote sensing, it has the advantage of flexible implementation, no cloud cover, strong initiative and low cost. Image-spectrum merging is one character of high spectral remote sensing. At the same time of imaging, the spectral curve of each pixel is obtained, which is suitable for quantitative remote sensing, fine classification and target detection. Aimed at the frontier and hotspot of remote sensing monitoring technology, and faced the demand of the coastal wetland monitoring, this paper used UAV and the new remote sensor of high spectral imaging instrument to carry out the analysis of the key technologies of monitoring coastal wetlands by UAV on the basis of the current situation in overseas and domestic and the analysis of developing trend. According to the characteristic of airborne hyperspectral data on UAV, that is "three high and one many", the key technology research that should develop are promoted as follows: 1) the atmosphere correction of the UAV hyperspectral in coastal wetlands under the circumstance of complex underlying surface and variable geometry, 2) the best observation scale and scale transformation method of the UAV platform while monitoring the coastal wetland features, 3) the classification and detection method of typical features with high precision from multi scale

  3. Aeromagnetic and aerial photographic survey in the South Shetland Islands,Antarctica, conducted by a small unmanned aerial vehicle (Ant-Plane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minoru Funaki

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Two small unmanned aerial vehicles, Ant-Plane 6 and Ant-Plane 3, were assembled using parts and technologies developed for model airplanes. The aerial vehicles were scheduled to conduct aero magnetic and photographic surveys of the Brans?eld Basin, from a takeoff runway at Marsh Air?eld on the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica, during January 2011. However, the scheduled surveys were not conducted on account of poor weather. Research was later conducted on a glacier, using a takeoff runway at St. Kliment Ohridski Base, Livingston Island, during December 2011. A ?ight from St. Kliment Ohridski Base to Deception Island yielded satisfactory results; the total distance of 302.4 km was traversed in 3 h 7 min (3:07. On this ?ight, aeromagnetic and aerial photographic data were obtained from an altitude of 780 m for a 9×18 km area on the northern half of Deception Island. Aerial photographs of Deception Island and South Bay showed the distributions of glaciers and their crevasses. The Ant-Plane ?ew over the Antarctic horizon and surveyed above Deception Island. That was the successful venture of this kind, demonstrating that airborne surveys by Ant-Planes are useful for Antarctic research investigations. Airborne surveys provide a safe and economical approach to data acquisition as compared with manned aerial operations.

  4. An investigation of the accuracy of empirical aircraft design for the development of an unmanned aerial vehicle intended for liquid hydrogen fuel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaney, Christopher Scott

    A study was conducted to assess the accuracy of empirical techniques used for the calculation of flight performance for unmanned aerial vehicles. This was achieved by quantifying the error between a mathematical model developed with these techniques and experimental test data taken using an unmanned aircraft. The vehicle utilized for this study was developed at Washington State University for the purpose of flying using power derived from hydrogen stored as a cryogenic liquid. The vehicle has a mass of 32.8 kg loaded and performed a total of 14 flights under battery power for 3.58 total flight hours. Over these flights, the design proved it is capable of sustaining level flight from the power available from a PEM fuel cell propulsion system. The empirical techniques used by the model are explicitly outlined within. These yield several performance metrics that are compared to measurements taken during flight testing. Calculations of required thrust for steady flight over all airspeeds and rates of climb modeled are found to have a mean percent error of 3.2%+/-7.0% and a mean absolute percent error of 34.6%+/-5.1%. Comparison of the calculated and measured takeoff distance are made and the calculated thrust required to perform a level turn at a given rate is compared to flight test data. A section of a test flight is analyzed, over which the vehicle proves it can sustain level flight under 875 watts of electrical power. The aircraft's design is presented including the wing and tail, propulsion system, and build technique. The software and equipment used for the collection and analysis of flight data are given. Documentation and validation is provided of a unique test rig for the characterization of propeller performance using a car. The aircraft remains operational to assist with research of alternative energy propulsion systems and novel fuel storage techniques. The results from the comparison of the mathematical model and flight test data can be utilized to assist

  5. Genetic Fuzzy Trees for Intelligent Control of Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernest, Nicholas D.

    Fuzzy Logic Control is a powerful tool that has found great success in a variety of applications. This technique relies less on complex mathematics and more "expert knowledge" of a system to bring about high-performance, resilient, and efficient control through linguistic classification of inputs and outputs and if-then rules. Genetic Fuzzy Systems (GFSs) remove the need of this expert knowledge and instead rely on a Genetic Algorithm (GA) and have similarly found great success. However, the combination of these methods suffer severely from scalability; the number of rules required to control the system increases exponentially with the number of states the inputs and outputs can take. Therefor GFSs have thus far not been applicable to complex, artificial intelligence type problems. The novel Genetic Fuzzy Tree (GFT) method breaks down complex problems hierarchically, makes sub-decisions when possible, and thus greatly reduces the burden on the GA. This development significantly changes the field of possible applications for GFSs. Within this study, this is demonstrated through applying this technique to a difficult air combat problem. Looking forward to an autonomous Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle (UCAV) in the 2030 time-frame, it becomes apparent that the mission, flight, and ground controls will utilize the emerging paradigm of Intelligent Systems (IS); namely, the ability to learn, adapt, exhibit robustness in uncertain situations, make sense of the data collected in real-time and extrapolate when faced with scenarios significantly different from those used in training. LETHA (Learning Enhanced Tactical Handling Algorithm) was created to develop intelligent controllers for these advanced unmanned craft as the first GFT. A simulation space referred to as HADES (Hoplological Autonomous Defend and Engage Simulation) was created in which LETHA can train the UCAVs. Equipped with advanced sensors, a limited supply of Self-Defense Missiles (SDMs), and a recharging

  6. Acoustic Characterization and Prediction of Representative, Small-Scale Rotary-Wing Unmanned Aircraft System Components

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zawodny, Nikolas S.; Boyd, D. Douglas, Jr.; Burley, Casey L.

    2016-01-01

    In this study, hover performance and acoustic measurements are taken on two different isolated rotors representative of small-scale rotary-wing unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for a range of rotation rates. Each rotor system consists of two fixed-pitch blades powered by a brushless motor. For nearly the same thrust condition, significant differences in overall sound pressure level (OASPL), up to 8 dB, and directivity were observed between the two rotor systems. Differences are shown to be in part attributed to different rotor tip speeds, along with increased broadband and motor noise levels. In addition to acoustic measurements, aeroacoustic predictions were implemented in order to better understand the noise content of the rotor systems. Numerical aerodynamic predictions were computed using the unsteady Reynoldsaveraged Navier Stokes code OVERFLOW2 on one of the isolated rotors, while analytical predictions were computed using the Propeller Analysis System of the Aircraft NOise Prediction Program (ANOPP-PAS) on the two rotor configurations. Preliminary semi-empirical frequency domain broadband noise predictions were also carried out based on airfoil self-noise theory in a rotational reference frame. The prediction techniques further supported trends identified in the experimental data analysis. The brushless motors were observed to be important noise contributors and warrant further investigation. It is believed that UAS acoustic prediction capabilities must consider both rotor and motor components as part of a combined noise-generating system.

  7. Optimal Path Planning and Control of Quadrotor Unmanned Aerial Vehicle for Area Coverage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Jiankun

    An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) is an aircraft without a human pilot on board. Its flight is controlled either autonomously by computers onboard the vehicle, or remotely by a pilot on the ground, or by another vehicle. In recent years, UAVs have been used more commonly than prior years. The example includes areo-camera where a high speed camera was attached to a UAV which can be used as an airborne camera to obtain aerial video. It also could be used for detecting events on ground for tasks such as surveillance and monitoring which is a common task during wars. Similarly UAVs can be used for relaying communication signal during scenarios when regular communication infrastructure is destroyed. The objective of this thesis is motivated from such civilian operations such as search and rescue or wildfire detection and monitoring. One scenario is that of search and rescue where UAV's objective is to geo-locate a person in a given area. The task is carried out with the help of a camera whose live feed is provided to search and rescue personnel. For this objective, the UAV needs to carry out scanning of the entire area in the shortest time. The aim of this thesis to develop algorithms to enable a UAV to scan an area in optimal time, a problem referred to as "Coverage Control" in literature. The thesis focuses on a special kind of UAVs called "quadrotor" that is propelled with the help of four rotors. The overall objective of this thesis is achieved via solving two problems. The first problem is to develop a dynamic control model of quadrtor. In this thesis, a proportional-integral-derivative controller (PID) based feedback control system is developed and implemented on MATLAB's Simulink. The PID controller helps track any given trajectory. The second problem is to design a trajectory that will fulfill the mission. The planed trajectory should make sure the quadrotor will scan the whole area without missing any part to make sure that the quadrotor will find the lost

  8. The application of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) in geophysical investigations of geothermal systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glen, J. M.; Egger, A. E.; Ippolito, C.; Phelps, G. A.; Berthold, R.; Lee, R.; Spritzer, J. M.; Tchernychev, M.

    2012-12-01

    Investigations of geothermal systems typically involve ground-based geological and geophysical studies in order to map structures that control and facilitate fluid flow. The spatial extent of ground-based investigations can be limited, however, by surficial hot springs, dense foliage, and roadless or private lands. This can result in data gaps in key areas, particularly around active hydrothermal springs. Manned aircraft can provide access to these areas and can yield broad and uniform data coverage, but high-resolution surveys are costly and relatively inflexible to changes in the survey specifications that may arise as data are collected. Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) are well suited for conducting these surveys, but until recently, various factors (scientific instrumentation requirements, platform limitations, and size of the survey area) have required the use of large UAS platforms, rendering unmanned aerial surveys unsuitable for most investigations. We have developed and tested a new cesium magnetometer system to collect magnetic data using two different small-platform UAS that overcomes many of the challenges described above. We are deploying this new system in Surprise Valley, CA, to study the area's active geothermal field. Surprise Valley is ideally suited to testing UAS due to its low population density, accessible airspace, and broad playa that provides ample opportunity to safely land the aircraft. In combination with gravity and topographic data, magnetic data are particularly useful for identifying buried, intra-basin structures, especially in areas such as Surprise Valley where highly magnetic, dense mafic volcanic rocks are interbedded with and faulted against less magnetic, less dense sedimentary rock. While high-resolution gravity data must be collected at point locations on the ground, high-resolution magnetic data can be obtained by UAS that provide continuous coverage. Once acquired, the magnetic data obtained by the UAS will be combined with

  9. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Remote Sensing for Field-Based Crop Phenotyping: Current Status and Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guijun Yang

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Phenotyping plays an important role in crop science research; the accurate and rapid acquisition of phenotypic information of plants or cells in different environments is helpful for exploring the inheritance and expression patterns of the genome to determine the association of genomic and phenotypic information to increase the crop yield. Traditional methods for acquiring crop traits, such as plant height, leaf color, leaf area index (LAI, chlorophyll content, biomass and yield, rely on manual sampling, which is time-consuming and laborious. Unmanned aerial vehicle remote sensing platforms (UAV-RSPs equipped with different sensors have recently become an important approach for fast and non-destructive high throughput phenotyping and have the advantage of flexible and convenient operation, on-demand access to data and high spatial resolution. UAV-RSPs are a powerful tool for studying phenomics and genomics. As the methods and applications for field phenotyping using UAVs to users who willing to derive phenotypic parameters from large fields and tests with the minimum effort on field work and getting highly reliable results are necessary, the current status and perspectives on the topic of UAV-RSPs for field-based phenotyping were reviewed based on the literature survey of crop phenotyping using UAV-RSPs in the Web of Science™ Core Collection database and cases study by NERCITA. The reference for the selection of UAV platforms and remote sensing sensors, the commonly adopted methods and typical applications for analyzing phenotypic traits by UAV-RSPs, and the challenge for crop phenotyping by UAV-RSPs were considered. The review can provide theoretical and technical support to promote the applications of UAV-RSPs for crop phenotyping.

  10. Remote Estimation of Vegetation Fraction and Flower Fraction in Oilseed Rape with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shenghui Fang

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available This study developed an approach for remote estimation of Vegetation Fraction (VF and Flower Fraction (FF in oilseed rape, which is a crop species with conspicuous flowers during reproduction. Canopy reflectance in green, red, red edge and NIR bands was obtained by a camera system mounted on an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV when oilseed rape was in the vegetative growth and flowering stage. The relationship of several widely-used Vegetation Indices (VI vs. VF was tested and found to be different in different phenology stages. At the same VF when oilseed rape was flowering, canopy reflectance increased in all bands, and the tested VI decreased. Therefore, two algorithms to estimate VF were calibrated respectively, one for samples during vegetative growth and the other for samples during flowering stage. The results showed that the Visible Atmospherically Resistant Index (VARIgreen worked most accurately for estimating VF in flower-free samples with an Root Mean Square Error (RMSE of 3.56%, while the Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI2 was the best in flower-containing samples with an RMSE of 5.65%. Based on reflectance in green and NIR bands, a technique was developed to identify whether a sample contained flowers and then to choose automatically the appropriate algorithm for its VF estimation. During the flowering season, we also explored the potential of using canopy reflectance or VIs to estimate FF in oilseed rape. No significant correlation was observed between VI and FF when soil was visible in the sensor’s field of view. Reflectance at 550 nm worked well for FF estimation with coefficient of determination (R2 above 0.6. Our model was validated in oilseed rape planted under different nitrogen fertilization applications and in different phenology stages. The results showed that it was able to predict VF and FF accurately in oilseed rape with RMSE below 6%.

  11. Auditory decision aiding in supervisory control of multiple unmanned aerial vehicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donmez, Birsen; Cummings, M L; Graham, Hudson D

    2009-10-01

    This article is an investigation of the effectiveness of sonifications, which are continuous auditory alerts mapped to the state of a monitored task, in supporting unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) supervisory control. UAV supervisory control requires monitoring a UAV across multiple tasks (e.g., course maintenance) via a predominantly visual display, which currently is supported with discrete auditory alerts. Sonification has been shown to enhance monitoring performance in domains such as anesthesiology by allowing an operator to immediately determine an entity's (e.g., patient) current and projected states, and is a promising alternative to discrete alerts in UAV control. However, minimal research compares sonification to discrete alerts, and no research assesses the effectiveness of sonification for monitoring multiple entities (e.g., multiple UAVs). The authors conducted an experiment with 39 military personnel, using a simulated setup. Participants controlled single and multiple UAVs and received sonifications or discrete alerts based on UAV course deviations and late target arrivals. Regardless of the number of UAVs supervised, the course deviation sonification resulted in reactions to course deviations that were 1.9 s faster, a 19% enhancement, compared with discrete alerts. However, course deviation sonifications interfered with the effectiveness of discrete late arrival alerts in general and with operator responses to late arrivals when supervising multiple vehicles. Sonifications can outperform discrete alerts when designed to aid operators to predict future states of monitored tasks. However, sonifications may mask other auditory alerts and interfere with other monitoring tasks that require divided attention. This research has implications for supervisory control display design.

  12. Integrating unmanned aerial systems and LSPIV for rapid, cost-effective stream gauging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Quinn W.; Lindroth, Evan M.; Rhoads, Bruce L.

    2018-05-01

    Quantifying flow in rivers is fundamental to assessments of water supply, water quality, ecological conditions, hydrological responses to storm events, and geomorphological processes. Image-based surface velocity measurements have shown promise in extending the range of discharge conditions that can be measured in the field. The use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) in image-based measurements of surface velocities has the potential to expand applications of this method. Thus far, few investigations have assessed this potential by evaluating the accuracy and repeatability of discharge measurements using surface velocities obtained from UAS. This study uses large-scale particle image velocimetry (LSPIV) derived from videos captured by cameras on a UAS and a fixed tripod to obtain discharge measurements at ten different stream locations in Illinois, USA. Discharge values are compared to reference values measured by an acoustic Doppler current profiler, a propeller meter, and established stream gauges. The results demonstrate the effects of UAS flight height, camera steadiness and leveling accuracy, video sampling frequency, and LSPIV interrogation area size on surface velocities, and show that the mean difference between fixed and UAS cameras is less than 10%. Differences between LSPIV-derived and reference discharge values are generally less than 20%, not systematically low or high, and not related to site parameters like channel width or depth, indicating that results are relatively insensitive to camera setup and image processing parameters typically required of LSPIV. The results also show that standard velocity indices (between 0.85 and 0.9) recommended for converting surface velocities to depth-averaged velocities yield reasonable discharge estimates, but are best calibrated at specific sites. The study recommends a basic methodology for LSPIV discharge measurements using UAS that is rapid, cost-efficient, and does not require major preparatory work at a

  13. Investigation of Natural Gas Fugitive Leak Detection Using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, S.; Talbot, R. W.; Frish, M. B.; Golston, L.; Aubut, N. F.; Zondlo, M. A.

    2017-12-01

    The U.S is now the world's largest natural gas producer, of which methane (CH4) is the main component. About 2% of the CH4 is lost through fugitive leaks. This research is under the DOE Methane Observation Networks with Innovative Technology to Obtain Reductions (MONITOR) program of ARPA-E. Our sentry measurement system is composed of four state-of-the-art technologies centered around the RMLDTM (Remote Methane Leak Detector). An open path RMLDTM measures column-integrated CH4 concentration that incorporates fluctuations in the vertical CH4 distribution. Based on Backscatter Tunable Diode Laser Absorption Spectroscopy and Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, the sentry system can autonomously, consistently and cost-effectively monitor and quantify CH4 leakage from sites associated with natural gas production. This system provides an advanced capability in detecting leaks at hard-to-access sites (e.g., wellheads) compared to traditional manual methods. Automated leak detecting and reporting algorithms combined with wireless data link implement real-time leak information reporting. Early data were gathered to set up and test the prototype system, and to optimize the leak localization and calculation strategies. The flight pattern is based on a raster scan which can generate interpolated CH4 concentration maps. The localization and quantification algorithms can be derived from the plume images combined with wind vectors. Currently, the accuracy of localization algorithm can reach 2 m and the calculation algorithm has a factor of 2 accuracy. This study places particular emphasis on flux quantification. The data collected at Colorado and Houston test fields were processed, and the correlation between flux and other parameters analyzed. Higher wind speeds and lower wind variation are preferred to optimize flux estimation. Eventually, this system will supply an enhanced detection capability to significantly reduce fugitive CH4 emissions in the natural gas industry.

  14. Field determination of multipollutant, open area combustion source emission factors with a hexacopter unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aurell, J.; Mitchell, W.; Chirayath, V.; Jonsson, J.; Tabor, D.; Gullett, B.

    2017-10-01

    An emission sensor/sampler system was coupled to a National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) hexacopter unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to characterize gases and particles in the plumes emitted from open burning of military ordnance. The UAV/sampler was tested at two field sites with test and sampling flights spanning over 16 h of flight time. The battery-operated UAV was remotely maneuvered into the plumes at distances from the pilot of over 600 m and at altitudes of up to 122 m above ground level. While the flight duration could be affected by sampler payload (3.2-4.6 kg) and meteorological conditions, the 57 sampling flights, ranging from 4 to 12 min, were typically terminated when the plume concentrations of CO2 were diluted to near ambient levels. Two sensor/sampler systems, termed ;Kolibri,; were variously configured to measure particulate matter, metals, chloride, perchlorate, volatile organic compounds, chlorinated dioxins/furans, and nitrogen-based organics for determination of emission factors. Gas sensors were selected based on their applicable concentration range, light weight, freedom from interferents, and response/recovery times. Samplers were designed, constructed, and operated based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) methods and quality control criteria. Results show agreement with published emission factors and good reproducibility (e.g., 26% relative standard deviation for PM2.5). The UAV/Kolibri represents a significant advance in multipollutant emission characterization capabilities for open area sources, safely and effectively making measurements heretofore deemed too hazardous for personnel or beyond the reach of land-based samplers.

  15. Implementation of an IMU Aided Image Stacking Algorithm in a Digital Camera for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Audi, Ahmad; Pierrot-Deseilligny, Marc; Meynard, Christophe; Thom, Christian

    2017-07-18

    Images acquired with a long exposure time using a camera embedded on UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) exhibit motion blur due to the erratic movements of the UAV. The aim of the present work is to be able to acquire several images with a short exposure time and use an image processing algorithm to produce a stacked image with an equivalent long exposure time. Our method is based on the feature point image registration technique. The algorithm is implemented on the light-weight IGN (Institut national de l'information géographique) camera, which has an IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) sensor and an SoC (System on Chip)/FPGA (Field-Programmable Gate Array). To obtain the correct parameters for the resampling of the images, the proposed method accurately estimates the geometrical transformation between the first and the N -th images. Feature points are detected in the first image using the FAST (Features from Accelerated Segment Test) detector, then homologous points on other images are obtained by template matching using an initial position benefiting greatly from the presence of the IMU sensor. The SoC/FPGA in the camera is used to speed up some parts of the algorithm in order to achieve real-time performance as our ultimate objective is to exclusively write the resulting image to save bandwidth on the storage device. The paper includes a detailed description of the implemented algorithm, resource usage summary, resulting processing time, resulting images and block diagrams of the described architecture. The resulting stacked image obtained for real surveys does not seem visually impaired. An interesting by-product of this algorithm is the 3D rotation estimated by a photogrammetric method between poses, which can be used to recalibrate in real time the gyrometers of the IMU. Timing results demonstrate that the image resampling part of this algorithm is the most demanding processing task and should also be accelerated in the FPGA in future work.

  16. Detecting Surface Changes from an Underground Explosion in Granite Using Unmanned Aerial System Photogrammetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz-Fellenz, Emily S.; Coppersmith, Ryan T.; Sussman, Aviva J.; Swanson, Erika M.; Cooley, James A.

    2017-08-01

    Efficient detection and high-fidelity quantification of surface changes resulting from underground activities are important national and global security efforts. In this investigation, a team performed field-based topographic characterization by gathering high-quality photographs at very low altitudes from an unmanned aerial system (UAS)-borne camera platform. The data collection occurred shortly before and after a controlled underground chemical explosion as part of the United States Department of Energy's Source Physics Experiments (SPE-5) series. The high-resolution overlapping photographs were used to create 3D photogrammetric models of the site, which then served to map changes in the landscape down to 1-cm-scale. Separate models were created for two areas, herein referred to as the test table grid region and the nearfield grid region. The test table grid includes the region within 40 m from surface ground zero, with photographs collected at a flight altitude of 8.5 m above ground level (AGL). The near-field grid area covered a broader area, 90-130 m from surface ground zero, and collected at a flight altitude of 22 m AGL. The photographs, processed using Agisoft Photoscan® in conjunction with 125 surveyed ground control point targets, yielded a 6-mm pixel-size digital elevation model (DEM) for the test table grid region. This provided the ≤3 cm resolution in the topographic data to map in fine detail a suite of features related to the underground explosion: uplift, subsidence, surface fractures, and morphological change detection. The near-field grid region data collection resulted in a 2-cm pixel-size DEM, enabling mapping of a broader range of features related to the explosion, including: uplift and subsidence, rock fall, and slope sloughing. This study represents one of the first works to constrain, both temporally and spatially, explosion-related surface damage using a UAS photogrammetric platform; these data will help to advance the science of

  17. Annual low-cost monitoring of a coastal site in Greece by an unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffmeister, Dirk; Bareth, Georg

    2016-04-01

    Coastal areas are under permanent change and are also the result of past processes. These processes are for example sediment transport, accumulation and erosion by normal and extreme waves (storms or tsunamis). As about 23% of the World's population lives within a 100 km distance of coasts, knowledge about coastal processes is important, in particular for possible changes in the nearby future. The past devastating tsunami events demonstrated profoundly the high vulnerability of coastal areas. In order to estimate the different effects, coastal monitoring approaches are of interest. Several different methods exist in order to determine changes in the sedimentary budget and coastline configuration. In order to estimate constant annual changes, we have applied terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) in an annual monitoring approach (2009-2011). In 2014, we changed to an approach based on dense imaging and structure-from-motion, applying an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) in order to conduct an annual monitoring of a coastal site in western Greece. Therefore, a GoPro Hero 3+ and a Canon PowerShot S110 mounted on a DJI-Phantom 2 were used. All surveys were conducted in a manually structured image acquisition with a huge overlap. Ground control points (GCP) were measured by tachymetric surveying. This successful approach was repeated again in 2015 with the Canon camera. The measurements of 2014 were controlled by an additional TLS survey, which revealed the high accuracy and more suitable coverage for the UAV-based data. Likewise, the large picture datasets were artificially reduced in order to estimate the most efficient number of images for dense point cloud processing. In addition, also the number of GCPs was decreased for one dataset. Overall, high-resolution digital elevation models with a ground resolution of 10 mm and an equal accuracy were achieved with this low-cost equipment. The data reveals the slight changes on this selected site.

  18. Implementation of an unmanned aerial vehicle for new generation Peterbilt trucks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasan K, Venkatesh

    As science and technology continue to advance, innovative developments in transportation can enhance product safety and security for the benefit and welfare of society. The federal government requires every commercial truck to be inspected before each trip. This pre-trip inspection ensures the safe mechanical condition of each vehicle before it is used. An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) could be used to provide an automated inspection, thus reducing driver workload, inspection costs and time while increasing inspection accuracy. This thesis develops a primary component of the algorithm that is required to implement UAV pre-trip inspections for commercial trucks using an android-based application. Specifically, this thesis provides foundational work of providing stable height control in an outdoor environment using a laser sensor and an android flight control application that includes take-off, landing, throttle control, and real-time video transmission. The height algorithm developed is the core of this thesis project. Phantom 2 Vision+ uses a pressure sensor to calculate the altitude of the drone for height stabilization. However, these altitude readings do not provide the precision required for this project. Rather, the goal of autonomously controlling height with great precision necessitated the use of a laser rangefinder sensor in the development of the height control algorithm. Another major contribution from this thesis research is to extend the limited capabilities of the DJI software development kit in order to provide more sophisticated control goals without modifying the drone dynamics. The results of this project are also directly applicable to a number of additional uses of drones in the transportation industry.

  19. Implementation of an IMU Aided Image Stacking Algorithm in a Digital Camera for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmad Audi

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Images acquired with a long exposure time using a camera embedded on UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles exhibit motion blur due to the erratic movements of the UAV. The aim of the present work is to be able to acquire several images with a short exposure time and use an image processing algorithm to produce a stacked image with an equivalent long exposure time. Our method is based on the feature point image registration technique. The algorithm is implemented on the light-weight IGN (Institut national de l’information géographique camera, which has an IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit sensor and an SoC (System on Chip/FPGA (Field-Programmable Gate Array. To obtain the correct parameters for the resampling of the images, the proposed method accurately estimates the geometrical transformation between the first and the N-th images. Feature points are detected in the first image using the FAST (Features from Accelerated Segment Test detector, then homologous points on other images are obtained by template matching using an initial position benefiting greatly from the presence of the IMU sensor. The SoC/FPGA in the camera is used to speed up some parts of the algorithm in order to achieve real-time performance as our ultimate objective is to exclusively write the resulting image to save bandwidth on the storage device. The paper includes a detailed description of the implemented algorithm, resource usage summary, resulting processing time, resulting images and block diagrams of the described architecture. The resulting stacked image obtained for real surveys does not seem visually impaired. An interesting by-product of this algorithm is the 3D rotation estimated by a photogrammetric method between poses, which can be used to recalibrate in real time the gyrometers of the IMU. Timing results demonstrate that the image resampling part of this algorithm is the most demanding processing task and should also be accelerated in the FPGA in future work.

  20. Rapid Assessments of Amazon Forest Structure and Biomass Using Small Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Max Messinger

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs can provide new ways to measure forests and supplement expensive or labor-intensive inventory methods. Forest carbon, a key uncertainty in the global carbon cycle and also important for carbon conservation programs, is typically monitored using manned aircraft or extensive forest plot networks to estimate aboveground carbon density (ACD. Manned aircraft are only cost-effective when applied to large areas (>100,000 ha, while plot networks are most effective for total C stock estimation across large areas, not for quantifying spatially-explicit variation. We sought to develop an effective method for frequent and accurate ACD estimation at intermediate scales (100–100,000 ha that would be sensitive to small-scale disturbance. Using small UAVs, we collected imagery of 516 ha of lowland forest in the Peruvian Amazon. We then used a structure-from-motion (SFM approach to create a 3D model of forest canopy. Comparing SFM- and airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR-derived estimates of canopy height and ACD, we found that SFM estimates of top-of-canopy height (TCH and ACD were highly correlated with previous LiDAR estimates (r = 0.86–0.93 and r = 0.73–0.94 for TCH and ACD, respectively, at 0.1–4 ha grain sizes, with r = 0.92 for ACD determination at the 1 ha scale, despite SFM and LiDAR measurements being separated by two years in a dynamic forest. SFM and LiDAR estimates of mean TCH and mean ACD were highly similar, differing by only 0.4% and 0.04%, respectively, within mature forest. The technique allows inexpensive, near-real-time monitoring of ACD for ecological studies, payment for ecosystem services (PES ventures, such as reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+, forestry enterprises, and governance.

  1. THE GENERATION OF BUILDING FLOOR PLANS USING PORTABLE AND UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE MAPPING SYSTEMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. J. Tsai

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Indoor navigation or positioning systems have been widely developed for Location-Based Services (LBS applications and they come along with a keen demand of indoor floor plans for displaying results even improving the positioning performance. Generally, the floor plans produced by robot mapping focus on perceiving the environment to avoid obstacles and using the feature landmarks to update the robot position in the relative coordinate frame. These maps are not accurate enough to incorporate to the indoor positioning system. This study aims at developing Indoor Mobile Mapping System (Indoor MMS and concentrates on generating the highly accurate floor plans based on the robot mapping technique using the portable, robot and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV platform. The proposed portable mapping system prototype can be used in the chest package and the handheld approach. In order to evaluate and correct the generated floor plans from robot mapping techniques, this study builds the testing and calibration field using the outdoor control survey method implemented in the indoor environments. Based on control points and check points from control survey, this study presents the map rectification method that uses the affine transformation to solve the scale and deformation problems and also transfer the local coordinate system into world standard coordinate system. The preliminary results illustrate that the final version of the building floor plan reach 1 meter absolute positioning accuracy using the proposed mapping systems that combines with the novel map rectification approach proposed. These maps are well geo-referenced with world coordinate system thus it can be applied for future seamless navigation applications including indoor and outdoor scenarios.

  2. LiPo battery energy studies for improved flight performance of unmanned aerial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, K.; Rammos, P.; Wilkerson, S. A.; Bundy, M.; Gadsden, S. Andrew

    2016-05-01

    Energy storage is one of the most important determinants of how long and far a small electric powered unmanned aerial system (UAS) can fly. For years, most hobby and experimentalists used heavy fuels to power small drone-like systems. Electric motors and battery storage prior to the turn of the century were either too heavy or too inefficient for flight times of any usable duration. However, with the availability of brushless electric motors and lithium-based batteries everything has changed. Systems like the Dragon Eye, Pointer, and Raven are in service performing reconnaissance, intelligence, surveillance, and target acquisition (RISTA) for more than an hour at a time. More recently, multi-rotor vehicles have expanded small UAS capabilities to include activities with hovering and persistent surveillance. Moreover, these systems coupled with the surge of small, low-cost electronics can perform autonomous and semi-autonomous missions not possible just ten years ago. This paper addresses flight time limitation issues by proposing an experimental method with procedures for system identification that may lead to modeling of energy storage in electric UAS'. Consequently, this will allow for energy storage to be used more effectively in planning autonomous missions. To achieve this, a set of baseline experiments were designed to measure the energy consumption of a mid-size UAS multi-rotor. Several different flight maneuvers were considered to include different lateral velocities, climbing, and hovering. Therefore, the goal of this paper is to create baseline flight data for each maneuver to be characterized with a certain rate of energy usage. Experimental results demonstrate the feasibility and robustness of the proposed approach. Future work will include the development of mission planning algorithms that provide realistic estimates of possible mission flight times and distances given specific mission parameters.

  3. Using small unmanned aerial vehicle for instream habitat evaluation and modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Astegiano, Luca; Vezza, Paolo; Comoglio, Claudio; Lingua, Andrea; Spairani, Michele

    2015-04-01

    Recent advances in digital image collection and processing have led to the increased use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) for river research and management. In this paper, we assess the capabilities of a small UAV to characterize physical habitat for fish in three river stretches of North-Western Italy. The main aim of the study was identifying the advantages and challenges of this technology for environmental river management, in the context of the increasing river exploitation for hydropower production. The UAV used to acquire overlapping images was a small quadcopter with a two different high-resolution (non-metric) cameras (Nikon J1™ and Go-Pro Hero 3 Black Edition™). The quadcopter was preprogrammed to fly set waypoints using a small tablet PC. With the acquired imagery, we constructed a 5-cm resolution orthomosaic image and a digital surface model (DSM). The two products were used to map the distribution of aquatic and riparian habitat features, i.e., wetted area, morphological unit distributions, bathymetry, water surface gradient, substrates and grain sizes, shelters and cover for fish. The study assessed the quality of collected data and used such information to identify key reach-scale metrics and important aspects of fluvial morphology and aquatic habitat. The potential and limitations of using UAV for physical habitat survey were evaluated and the collected data were used to initialize and run common habitat simulation tools (MesoHABSIM). Several advantages of using UAV-based imagery were found, including low cost procedures, high resolution and efficiency in data collection. However, some challenges were identified for bathymetry extraction (vegetation obstructions, white waters, turbidity) and grain size assessment (preprocessing of data and automatic object detection). The application domain and possible limitation for instream habitat mapping were defined and will be used as a reference for future studies. Ongoing activities include the

  4. A PRECISE POSITION AND ATTITUDE DETERMINATION SYSTEM FOR LIGHTWEIGHT UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Eling

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available In many unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV applications a direct georeferencing is required. The reason can be that the UAV flies autonomous and must be navigated precisely, or that the UAV performs a remote sensing operation, where the position of the camera has to be known at the moment of the recording. In our application, a project called Mapping on Demand, we are motivated by both of these reasons. The goal of this project is to develop a lightweight autonomously flying UAV that is able to identify and measure inaccessible three-dimensional objects by use of visual information. Due to payload and space limitations, precise position and attitude determination of micro- and mini-sized UAVs is very challenging. The limitations do not only affect the onboard computing capacity, but they are also noticeable when choosing the georeferencing sensors. In this article, we will present a new developed onboard direct georeferencing system which is real-time capable, applicable for lightweight UAVs and provides very precise results (position accuracy σ σ < 0.5 deg. In this system GPS, inertial sensors, magnetic field sensors, a barometer as well as stereo video cameras are used as georeferencing sensors. We will describe the hardware development and will go into details of the implemented software. In this context especially the RTK-GPS software and the concept of the attitude determination by use of inertial sensors, magnetic field sensors as well as an onboard GPS baseline will be highlighted. Finally, results of first field tests as well as an outlook on further developments will conclude this contribution.

  5. Improving Understanding of Spatial Heterogeneity in Mountain Ecohydrology with Multispectral Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wigmore, O.; Molotch, N. P.

    2017-12-01

    Mountain regions are a critical component of the hydrologic system. These regions are extremely heterogeneous, with dramatic topographic, climatic, ecologic and hydrologic variations occurring over very short distances. This heterogeneity makes understanding changes in these environments difficult. Commonly used satellite data are often too coarse to resolve processes at appropriate scales and point measurements are typically unrepresentative of the wider region. The rapid rise of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) offers a potential solution to the scale-related inadequacies of satellite and ground-based observing systems. Using UAS, spatially distributed datasets can be collected at high resolution (i.e. cm), on demand, and can therefore facilitate improved understanding of mountain ecohydrology. We deployed a custom built multispectral - visible (RGB), near infrared (NIR) and thermal infrared (TIR) - UAS at a weekly interval over the Niwot Ridge Long Term Ecological Research (NWT LTER) saddle catchment at 3500masl in the Colorado Rockies. This system was used to map surface water pathways, land cover and topography, and quantify ecohydrologic variables including, snow depth, vegetation productivity and surface soil moisture at 5-50cm resolution across an 80ha study area. This presentation will discuss the techniques, methods and merits of using UAS derived multispectral data for ecohydrologic research in mountain regions. We will also present preliminary findings from our survey time series at NWT LTER and a discussion of the potential insights that these datasets can provide. Key questions to be addressed are: 1) how does spatial variability in snow depth impact soil moisture and vegetation productivity, 2) how can UAS help us to identify ecohydrologic `hotspots' and `hot moments' across heterogeneous landscapes.

  6. Application of Unmanned Aerial System-based Photogrammetry to Monitor Landforms Evolution of Mudstone Badlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yichin

    2017-04-01

    Mudstone badlands are the area characteristized by its rapid erosion and steep, fractured, and barren landforms. Monitoring the topography changes in badland help improve our knowledge of the hillslope and river processing on landforms and develop susceptibility model for surface erosion hazards. Recently, advances in unmanned aerial system (UAS) and close-range photogrammetry technology have opened up the possibility of effectively measuring topography changes with high spatiotemporal resolutions. In this study, we used the UAS and close-range photogrammetry technology to monitor the topography changes in a rapidly eroded badland, south-western Taiwan. A small mudstone hillslope with area of 0.2 ha approximately and with slope gradient of 37 degrees was selected as the study site. A widely used and commercial quadcopter equipped non-metric camera was used to take images with ground sampling distance (GSD) 5 mm approximately. The Pix4DMapper, a commercial close-range photogrammetry software, was used to perform stereo matching, extract point clouds, generate digital surface models (DSMs) and orthoimage. To control model accuracy, a set of ground control points was surveyed by using eGPS. The monitoring was carried out after every significant rainfall event that may induced observable erosion in the badland site. The results show that DSMs have the GSDs of 4.0 5.4 mm and vertical accuracy of 61 116 mm. The accuracy largely depends on the quality of ground control points. The spatial averaged erosion rate during six months of monitoring was 328 mm, which is higher in the gully sides than in the ridges. The erosion rate is positively correlated with the slope gradient and drainage contributing area that implies the important role of surface gully erosion in mudstone badland erosion. This study shows that UAS and close-range photogrammetry technology can be used to monitor the topography change in badland areas effectively and can provide high spatiotemporal

  7. The Design of the Longitudinal Autopilot for the LSU-05 Unmanned Aerial Surveillance Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fajar, Muhammad; Arifianto, Ony

    2018-04-01

    Longitudinal autopilot design for the LAPAN Surveillance Vehicle LSU-05 will be described in this paper. The LSU-05 is the most recent Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) project of the Aeronautics Technology Center (Pusat Teknologi Penerbangan – Pustekbang), LAPAN. This UAV is expected to be able to carry 30 kg of payload, four surveillance purposes. The longitudinal autopilot described in this paper consists of four modes, those are Pitch damper, Pitch Attitude Hold, Altitude Hold, and Speed Hold. The Autopilot of the UAV will be designed at four operating speeds, namely 15 m/s, 20 m/s, 25 m/s, and 30 m/. The Athena Vortex Lattice software is used to generate the aerodynamic model of the LSU-05. Non-linear longitudinal aircraft dynamics model is then developed in MATLAB/SIMULINK environment. Linearization of the non-linear model is performed using the linearization tool of SIMULINK. The controller is designed, based on the linear model of the aircraft in the state space form. A Proportional-Integral-Derivative (PID) controller structure is chosen, using root locus method to determine mainly the proportional (P) gain. Integral (I) and derivative (D) gain will only be used if the proportional gain can not achieve the desired target or if an overshoot / undershoot reduction is required. The overshoot/undershoot should not exceed 5% and settling time is less than 20 seconds. The controller designed is simulated using MATLAB and SIMULINK. Preliminary analysis of the controller performance shows that the controller can be used to stabilize the aircraft and to automatize the speed and altitude control throughout the considered speed range.

  8. A continuous hyperspatial monitoring system of evapotranspiration and gross primary productivity from Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Sheng; Bandini, Filippo; Jakobsen, Jakob; Zarco-Tejada, Pablo J.; Köppl, Christian Josef; Haugård Olesen, Daniel; Ibrom, Andreas; Bauer-Gottwein, Peter; Garcia, Monica

    2017-04-01

    Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) can collect optical and thermal hyperspatial (challenges for an operational monitoring using UAS compared to satellites: the payload capacity of most commercial UAS is less than 2 kg, but miniaturized sensors have low signal to noise ratios and small field of view requires mosaicking hundreds of images and accurate orthorectification. In addition, wind gusts and lower platform stability require appropriate geometric and radiometric corrections. Finally, modeling fluxes on days without images is still an issue for both satellite and UAS applications. This study focuses on designing an operational UAS-based monitoring system including payload design, sensor calibration, based on routine collection of optical and thermal images in a Danish willow field to perform a joint monitoring of ET and GPP dynamics over continuous time at daily time steps. The payload (approach (Potter et al., 1993). Both models estimate ET and GPP under optimum potential conditions down-regulated by the same biophysical constraints dependent on remote sensing and atmospheric data to reflect multiple stresses. Vegetation indices were calculated from the multispectral data to assess vegetation conditions, while thermal infrared imagery was used to compute a thermal inertia index to infer soil moisture constraints. To interpolate radiometric temperature between flights, a prognostic Surface Energy Balance model (Margulis et al., 2001) based on the force-restore method was applied in a data assimilation scheme to obtain continuous ET and GPP fluxes. With this operational system, regular flight campaigns with a hexacopter (DJI S900) have been conducted in a Danish willow flux site (Risø) over the 2016 growing season. The observed energy, water and carbon fluxes from the Risø eddy covariance flux tower were used to validate the model simulation. This UAS monitoring system is suitable for agricultural management and land-atmosphere interaction studies.

  9. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for High-Throughput Phenotyping and Agronomic Research.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yeyin Shi

    Full Text Available Advances in automation and data science have led agriculturists to seek real-time, high-quality, high-volume crop data to accelerate crop improvement through breeding and to optimize agronomic practices. Breeders have recently gained massive data-collection capability in genome sequencing of plants. Faster phenotypic trait data collection and analysis relative to genetic data leads to faster and better selections in crop improvement. Furthermore, faster and higher-resolution crop data collection leads to greater capability for scientists and growers to improve precision-agriculture practices on increasingly larger farms; e.g., site-specific application of water and nutrients. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs have recently gained traction as agricultural data collection systems. Using UAVs for agricultural remote sensing is an innovative technology that differs from traditional remote sensing in more ways than strictly higher-resolution images; it provides many new and unique possibilities, as well as new and unique challenges. Herein we report on processes and lessons learned from year 1-the summer 2015 and winter 2016 growing seasons-of a large multidisciplinary project evaluating UAV images across a range of breeding and agronomic research trials on a large research farm. Included are team and project planning, UAV and sensor selection and integration, and data collection and analysis workflow. The study involved many crops and both breeding plots and agronomic fields. The project's goal was to develop methods for UAVs to collect high-quality, high-volume crop data with fast turnaround time to field scientists. The project included five teams: Administration, Flight Operations, Sensors, Data Management, and Field Research. Four case studies involving multiple crops in breeding and agronomic applications add practical descriptive detail. Lessons learned include critical information on sensors, air vehicles, and configuration parameters for both

  10. Technical Note: Advances in flash flood monitoring using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. T. Perks

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs have the potential to capture information about the earth's surface in dangerous and previously inaccessible locations. Through image acquisition of flash flood events and subsequent object-based analysis, highly dynamic and oft-immeasurable hydraulic phenomena may be quantified at previously unattainable spatial and temporal resolutions. The potential for this approach to provide valuable information about the hydraulic conditions present during dynamic, high-energy flash floods has until now not been explored. In this paper we adopt a novel approach, utilizing the Kande–Lucas–Tomasi (KLT algorithm to track features present on the water surface which are related to the free-surface velocity. Following the successful tracking of features, a method analogous to the vector correction method has enabled accurate geometric rectification of velocity vectors. Uncertainties associated with the rectification process induced by unsteady camera movements are subsequently explored. Geo-registration errors are relatively stable and occur as a result of persistent residual distortion effects following image correction. The apparent ground movement of immobile control points between measurement intervals ranges from 0.05 to 0.13 m. The application of this approach to assess the hydraulic conditions present in the Alyth Burn, Scotland, during a 1 : 200 year flash flood resulted in the generation of an average 4.2 at a rate of 508 measurements s−1. Analysis of these vectors provides a rare insight into the complexity of channel–overbank interactions during flash floods. The uncertainty attached to the calculated velocities is relatively low, with a spatial average across the area of ±0.15 m s−1. Little difference is observed in the uncertainty attached to out-of-bank velocities (±0.15 m s−1, and within-channel velocities (±0.16 m s−1, illustrating the consistency of the approach.

  11. Accuracy Assessment of Digital Surface Models from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles’ Imagery on Glaciers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saskia Gindraux

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV for photogrammetric surveying has recently gained enormous popularity. Images taken from UAVs are used for generating Digital Surface Models (DSMs and orthorectified images. In the glaciological context, these can serve for quantifying ice volume change or glacier motion. This study focuses on the accuracy of UAV-derived DSMs. In particular, we analyze the influence of the number and disposition of Ground Control Points (GCPs needed for georeferencing the derived products. A total of 1321 different DSMs were generated from eight surveys distributed on three glaciers in the Swiss Alps during winter, summer and autumn. The vertical and horizontal accuracy was assessed by cross-validation with thousands of validation points measured with a Global Positioning System. Our results show that the accuracy increases asymptotically with increasing number of GCPs until a certain density of GCPs is reached. We call this the optimal GCP density. The results indicate that DSMs built with this optimal GCP density have a vertical (horizontal accuracy ranging between 0.10 and 0.25 m (0.03 and 0.09 m across all datasets. In addition, the impact of the GCP distribution on the DSM accuracy was investigated. The local accuracy of a DSM decreases when increasing the distance to the closest GCP, typically at a rate of 0.09 m per 100-m distance. The impact of the glacier’s surface texture (ice or snow was also addressed. The results show that besides cases with a surface covered by fresh snow, the surface texture does not significantly influence the DSM accuracy.

  12. Robust Satisficing Decision Making for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Complex Missions under Severe Uncertainty.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoting Ji

    Full Text Available This paper presents a robust satisficing decision-making method for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs executing complex missions in an uncertain environment. Motivated by the info-gap decision theory, we formulate this problem as a novel robust satisficing optimization problem, of which the objective is to maximize the robustness while satisfying some desired mission requirements. Specifically, a new info-gap based Markov Decision Process (IMDP is constructed to abstract the uncertain UAV system and specify the complex mission requirements with the Linear Temporal Logic (LTL. A robust satisficing policy is obtained to maximize the robustness to the uncertain IMDP while ensuring a desired probability of satisfying the LTL specifications. To this end, we propose a two-stage robust satisficing solution strategy which consists of the construction of a product IMDP and the generation of a robust satisficing policy. In the first stage, a product IMDP is constructed by combining the IMDP with an automaton representing the LTL specifications. In the second, an algorithm based on robust dynamic programming is proposed to generate a robust satisficing policy, while an associated robustness evaluation algorithm is presented to evaluate the robustness. Finally, through Monte Carlo simulation, the effectiveness of our algorithms is demonstrated on an UAV search mission under severe uncertainty so that the resulting policy can maximize the robustness while reaching the desired performance level. Furthermore, by comparing the proposed method with other robust decision-making methods, it can be concluded that our policy can tolerate higher uncertainty so that the desired performance level can be guaranteed, which indicates that the proposed method is much more effective in real applications.

  13. Data Acquisition (DAQ) system dedicated for remote sensing applications on Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keleshis, C.; Ioannou, S.; Vrekoussis, M.; Levin, Z.; Lange, M. A.

    2014-08-01

    Continuous advances in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) and the increased complexity of their applications raise the demand for improved data acquisition systems (DAQ). These improvements may comprise low power consumption, low volume and weight, robustness, modularity and capability to interface with various sensors and peripherals while maintaining the high sampling rates and processing speeds. Such a system has been designed and developed and is currently integrated on the Autonomous Flying Platforms for Atmospheric and Earth Surface Observations (APAESO/NEA-YΠOΔOMH/NEKΠ/0308/09) however, it can be easily adapted to any UAV or any other mobile vehicle. The system consists of a single-board computer with a dual-core processor, rugged surface-mount memory and storage device, analog and digital input-output ports and many other peripherals that enhance its connectivity with various sensors, imagers and on-board devices. The system is powered by a high efficiency power supply board. Additional boards such as frame-grabbers, differential global positioning system (DGPS) satellite receivers, general packet radio service (3G-4G-GPRS) modems for communication redundancy have been interfaced to the core system and are used whenever there is a mission need. The onboard DAQ system can be preprogrammed for automatic data acquisition or it can be remotely operated during the flight from the ground control station (GCS) using a graphical user interface (GUI) which has been developed and will also be presented in this paper. The unique design of the GUI and the DAQ system enables the synchronized acquisition of a variety of scientific and UAV flight data in a single core location. The new DAQ system and the GUI have been successfully utilized in several scientific UAV missions. In conclusion, the novel DAQ system provides the UAV and the remote-sensing community with a new tool capable of reliably acquiring, processing, storing and transmitting data from any sensor integrated

  14. Pedestrian Detection and Tracking from Low-Resolution Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Thermal Imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yalong Ma

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Driven by the prominent thermal signature of humans and following the growing availability of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, more and more research efforts have been focusing on the detection and tracking of pedestrians using thermal infrared images recorded from UAVs. However, pedestrian detection and tracking from the thermal images obtained from UAVs pose many challenges due to the low-resolution of imagery, platform motion, image instability and the relatively small size of the objects. This research tackles these challenges by proposing a pedestrian detection and tracking system. A two-stage blob-based approach is first developed for pedestrian detection. This approach first extracts pedestrian blobs using the regional gradient feature and geometric constraints filtering and then classifies the detected blobs by using a linear Support Vector Machine (SVM with a hybrid descriptor, which sophisticatedly combines Histogram of Oriented Gradient (HOG and Discrete Cosine Transform (DCT features in order to achieve accurate detection. This research further proposes an approach for pedestrian tracking. This approach employs the feature tracker with the update of detected pedestrian location to track pedestrian objects from the registered videos and extracts the motion trajectory data. The proposed detection and tracking approaches have been evaluated by multiple different datasets, and the results illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed methods. This research is expected to significantly benefit many transportation applications, such as the multimodal traffic performance measure, pedestrian behavior study and pedestrian-vehicle crash analysis. Future work will focus on using fused thermal and visual images to further improve the detection efficiency and effectiveness.

  15. A generic approach for photogrammetric survey using a six-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tahar, K N; Mohd, W M N W; Ahmad, A; Akib, W A A W M

    2014-01-01

    This paper discusses a rapid production of slope mapping using multi-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). The objective of this study is to determine the accuracy of the photogrammetric results based on novel method of multi-rotor UAV images as well as to analyze the slope error distribution that are obtained from the UAV images. This study only concentrates on multi-rotor UAV which also known as Hexacopter. An operator can control the speed of multi-rotor UAV during flight mission. Several ground control points and checkpoints were established using Real Time Kinematic Global Positioning System (RTK- GPS) at the slope area. Ground control points were used in exterior orientation during image processing in sequence to transform image coordinates into local coordinate system. Checkpoints were established at the slope area for accuracy assessment. A digital camera, Sony NEX-5N was used for image acquisition of slope area from UAV platforms. The digital camera was mounted vertically at the bottom of UAV and captured the images at an altitude. All acquired images went through photogrammetric processing including interior orientation, exterior orientation and bundle adjustment using photogrammetric software. Photogrammetric results such as digital elevation model, and digital orthophoto including slope map were assessed. UAV is able to acquire data within short period of time with low budget compared to the previous methods such as satellite images and airborne laser scanner. Analysis on slope analysis and error distribution analysis are discussed in this paper to determine the quality of slope map in the area of interest. In summary, multi-rotor UAV is suited in slope mapping studies

  16. Unmanned aerial system nadir reflectance and MODIS nadir BRDF-adjusted surface reflectances intercompared over Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faulkner Burkhart, John; Kylling, Arve; Schaaf, Crystal B.; Wang, Zhuosen; Bogren, Wiley; Storvold, Rune; Solbø, Stian; Pedersen, Christina A.; Gerland, Sebastian

    2017-07-01

    Albedo is a fundamental parameter in earth sciences, and many analyses utilize the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF)/albedo (MCD43) algorithms. While derivative albedo products have been evaluated over Greenland, we present a novel, direct comparison with nadir surface reflectance collected from an unmanned aerial system (UAS). The UAS was flown from Summit, Greenland, on 210 km transects coincident with the MODIS sensor overpass on board the Aqua and Terra satellites on 5 and 6 August 2010. Clear-sky acquisitions were available from the overpasses within 2 h of the UAS flights. The UAS was equipped with upward- and downward-looking spectrometers (300-920 nm) with a spectral resolution of 10 nm, allowing for direct integration into the MODIS bands 1, 3, and 4. The data provide a unique opportunity to directly compare UAS nadir reflectance with the MODIS nadir BRDF-adjusted surface reflectance (NBAR) products. The data show UAS measurements are slightly higher than the MODIS NBARs for all bands but agree within their stated uncertainties. Differences in variability are observed as expected due to different footprints of the platforms. The UAS data demonstrate potentially large sub-pixel variability of MODIS reflectance products and the potential to explore this variability using the UAS as a platform. It is also found that, even at the low elevations flown typically by a UAS, reflectance measurements may be influenced by haze if present at and/or below the flight altitude of the UAS. This impact could explain some differences between data from the two platforms and should be considered in any use of airborne platforms.

  17. 3D Tree Dimensionality Assessment Using Photogrammetry and Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Demetrios Gatziolis

    Full Text Available Detailed, precise, three-dimensional (3D representations of individual trees are a prerequisite for an accurate assessment of tree competition, growth, and morphological plasticity. Until recently, our ability to measure the dimensionality, spatial arrangement, shape of trees, and shape of tree components with precision has been constrained by technological and logistical limitations and cost. Traditional methods of forest biometrics provide only partial measurements and are labor intensive. Active remote technologies such as LiDAR operated from airborne platforms provide only partial crown reconstructions. The use of terrestrial LiDAR is laborious, has portability limitations and high cost. In this work we capitalized on recent improvements in the capabilities and availability of small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, light and inexpensive cameras, and developed an affordable method for obtaining precise and comprehensive 3D models of trees and small groups of trees. The method employs slow-moving UAVs that acquire images along predefined trajectories near and around targeted trees, and computer vision-based approaches that process the images to obtain detailed tree reconstructions. After we confirmed the potential of the methodology via simulation we evaluated several UAV platforms, strategies for image acquisition, and image processing algorithms. We present an original, step-by-step workflow which utilizes open source programs and original software. We anticipate that future development and applications of our method will improve our understanding of forest self-organization emerging from the competition among trees, and will lead to a refined generation of individual-tree-based forest models.

  18. Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Photography: Exploring the Medieval City of Merv, on the Silk Roads of Central Asia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim Williams

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The Ancient Merv Project is a collaboration between the Turkmenistan Ministry of Culture, the Ancient Merv State Park and the UCL Institute of Archaeology. It aims to research, protect and conserve the remains of one of the great historic cities of the Silk Roads. This paper explores a new survey of the Islamic city using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle to take comprehensive and systematic vertical photographs to assist in the analysis of the medieval cityscape. The background to the research and the application of the technology are presented, together with our initial conclusions.

  19. U.S. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVS) and Network Centric Warfare (NCW) impacts on combat aviation tactics from Gulf War I through 2007 Iraq

    OpenAIRE

    Oveyik, Kaan.; Kurkcu, Coskun

    2008-01-01

    Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited Unmanned, aerial vehicles (UAVs) are an increasingly important element of many modern militaries. Their success on battlefields in Afghanistan, Iraq, and around the globe has driven demand for a variety of types of unmanned vehicles. Their proven value consists in low risk and low cost, and their capabilities include persistent surveillance, tactical and combat reconnaissance, resilience, and dynamic re-tasking. This research evaluat...

  20. Cooperative conflict detection and resolution of civil unmanned aerial vehicles in metropolis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian Yang

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned air vehicles have recently attracted attention of many researchers because of their potential civil applications. A systematic integration of unmanned air vehicles in non-segregated airspace is required that allows safe operation of unmanned air vehicles along with other manned aircrafts. One of the critical issues is conflict detection and resolution. This article proposes to solve unmanned air vehicles’ conflict detection and resolution problem in metropolis airspace. First, the structure of metropolis airspace in the coming future is studied, and the airspace conflict problem between different unmanned air vehicles is analyzed by velocity obstacle theory. Second, a conflict detection and resolution framework in metropolis is proposed, and factors that have influences on conflict-free solutions are discussed. Third, the multi-unmanned air vehicle conflict resolution problem is formalized as a nonlinear optimization problem with the aim of minimizing overall conflict resolution consumption. The safe separation constraint is further discussed to improve the computation efficiency. When the speeds of conflict-involved unmanned air vehicles are equal, the nonlinear safe separation constraint is transformed into linear constraints. The problem is solved by mixed integer convex programming. When unmanned air vehicles are with unequal speeds, we propose to solve the nonlinear optimization problem by stochastic parallel gradient descent–based method. Our approaches are demonstrated in computational examples.

  1. Aerial Object Following Using Visual Fuzzy Servoing

    OpenAIRE

    Olivares Méndez, Miguel Ángel; Mondragon Bernal, Ivan Fernando; Campoy Cervera, Pascual; Mejias Alvarez, Luis; Martínez Luna, Carol Viviana

    2011-01-01

    This article presents a visual servoing system to follow a 3D moving object by a Micro Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (MUAV). The presented control strategy is based only on the visual information given by an adaptive tracking method based on the color information. A visual fuzzy system has been developed for servoing the camera situated on a rotary wing MAUV, that also considers its own dynamics. This system is focused on continuously following of an aerial moving target object, maintai...

  2. International Conference on Intelligent Unmanned Systems (ICIUS)

    CERN Document Server

    Kartidjo, Muljowidodo; Yoon, Kwang-Joon; Budiyono, Agus; Autonomous Control Systems and Vehicles : Intelligent Unmanned Systems

    2013-01-01

    The International Conference on Intelligent Unmanned Systems 2011 was organized by the International Society of Intelligent Unmanned Systems and locally by the Center for Bio-Micro Robotics Research at Chiba University, Japan. The event was the 7th conference continuing from previous conferences held in Seoul, Korea (2005, 2006), Bali, Indonesia (2007), Nanjing, China (2008), Jeju, Korea (2009), and Bali, Indonesia (2010). ICIUS 2011 focused on both theory and application, primarily covering the topics of robotics, autonomous vehicles, intelligent unmanned technologies, and biomimetics. We invited seven keynote speakers who dealt with related state-of-the-art technologies including unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and micro air vehicles (MAVs), flapping wings (FWs), unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs), underwater vehicles (UVs), bio-inspired robotics, advanced control, and intelligent systems, among others. This book is a collection of excellent papers that were updated after presentation at ICIUS2011. All papers ...

  3. Investigating vertical distribution patterns of lower tropospheric PM2.5 using unmanned aerial vehicle measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiao-Bing; Wang, Dong-Sheng; Lu, Qing-Chang; Peng, Zhong-Ren; Wang, Zhan-Yong

    2018-01-01

    A lightweight unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) was outfitted with miniaturized sensors to investigate the vertical distribution patterns and sources of fine aerosol particles (PM2.5) within the 1 000 m lower troposphere. A total of 16 UAV flights were conducted in the Yangtze River Delta (YRD) region, China, from the summer to winter in 2014. The associated ground-level measurements from two environmental monitoring stations were also used for background analysis. The results show that ground-level PM2.5 concentrations demonstrated a decreasing trend from Feb. to Jul. and an increasing trend from Aug. to Jan. (the following year). Higher PM2.5 concentrations during the day were mainly observed in the morning (Local Time, LT 05-09) in the spring and summer. However, higher PM2.5 concentrations occurred mainly in the late afternoon and evening (LT 16-20) in the autumn and winter, excluding severe haze pollution days when higher PM2.5 concentrations were also observed during the morning periods. Lower tropospheric PM2.5 concentrations exhibited similar diurnal vertical distribution patterns from the summer to winter. The PM2.5 concentrations decreased with height in the morning, with significantly large vertical gradients from the summer to winter. By contrast, the aerosol particles were well mixed with PM2.5 concentrations of lower than 35 μg ṡm-3 in the early afternoon (LT 12-16) due to sufficient expansions of the planetary boundary layer. The mean vertical PM2.5 concentrations within the 1 000 m lower troposphere in the morning were much larger in the winter (∼87.5 μg ṡm-3) than in the summer and autumn (∼20 μg ṡm-3). However, subtle differences of ∼11 μg ṡm-3 in the mean vertical PM2.5 concentrations were observed in the early afternoon from the summer to winter. The vertical distribution patterns of black carbon and its relationships with PM2.5 indicated that the lower tropospheric aerosol particles might be mainly derived from fossil

  4. Monitoring Spatial Variability and Temporal Dynamics of Phragmites Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viktor R. Tóth

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Littoral zones of freshwater lakes are exposed to environmental impacts from both terrestrial and aquatic sides, while substantial anthropogenic pressure also affects the high spatial, and temporal variability of the ecotone. In this study, the possibility of monitoring seasonal and spatial changes in reed (Phragmites australis stands using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV based remote sensing technique was examined. Stands in eutrophic and mesotrophic parts of Lake Balaton including not deteriorating (stable and deteriorating (die-back patches, were tracked throughout the growing season using a UAV equipped with a Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI camera. Photophysiological parameters of P. australis were also measured with amplitude modulated fluorescence. Parameters characterizing the dynamics of seasonal changes in NDVI data were used for phenological comparison of eutrophic and mesotrophic, stable and die-back, terrestrial and aquatic, mowed and not-mowed patches of reed. It was shown that stable Phragmites plants from the eutrophic part of the lake reached specific phenological stages up to 3.5 days earlier than plants from the mesotrophic part of the lake. The phenological changes correlated with trophic (total and nitrate-nitrite nitrogen and physical (organic C and clay content properties of the sediment, while only minor relationships with air and water temperature were found. Phenological differences between the stable and die-back stands were even more pronounced, with ~34% higher rates of NDVI increase in stable than die-back patches, while the period of NDVI increase was 16 days longer. Aquatic and terrestrial parts of reed stands showed no phenological differences, although intermediate areas (shallow water parts of stands were found to be less vigorous. Winter mowing of dried Phragmites sped up sprouting and growth of reed in the spring. This study showed that remote sensing-derived photophysiological and phenological

  5. Application of unmanned aerial systems for high throughput phenotyping of large wheat breeding nurseries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haghighattalab, Atena; González Pérez, Lorena; Mondal, Suchismita; Singh, Daljit; Schinstock, Dale; Rutkoski, Jessica; Ortiz-Monasterio, Ivan; Singh, Ravi Prakash; Goodin, Douglas; Poland, Jesse

    2016-01-01

    Low cost unmanned aerial systems (UAS) have great potential for rapid proximal measurements of plants in agriculture. In the context of plant breeding and genetics, current approaches for phenotyping a large number of breeding lines under field conditions require substantial investments in time, cost, and labor. For field-based high-throughput phenotyping (HTP), UAS platforms can provide high-resolution measurements for small plot research, while enabling the rapid assessment of tens-of-thousands of field plots. The objective of this study was to complete a baseline assessment of the utility of UAS in assessment field trials as commonly implemented in wheat breeding programs. We developed a semi-automated image-processing pipeline to extract plot level data from UAS imagery. The image dataset was processed using a photogrammetric pipeline based on image orientation and radiometric calibration to produce orthomosaic images. We also examined the relationships between vegetation indices (VIs) extracted from high spatial resolution multispectral imagery collected with two different UAS systems (eBee Ag carrying MultiSpec 4C camera, and IRIS+ quadcopter carrying modified NIR Canon S100) and ground truth spectral data from hand-held spectroradiometer. We found good correlation between the VIs obtained from UAS platforms and ground-truth measurements and observed high broad-sense heritability for VIs. We determined radiometric calibration methods developed for satellite imagery significantly improved the precision of VIs from the UAS. We observed VIs extracted from calibrated images of Canon S100 had a significantly higher correlation to the spectroradiometer (r = 0.76) than VIs from the MultiSpec 4C camera (r = 0.64). Their correlation to spectroradiometer readings was as high as or higher than repeated measurements with the spectroradiometer per se. The approaches described here for UAS imaging and extraction of proximal sensing data enable collection of HTP

  6. Mapping surface temperature variability on a debris-covered glacier with an unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraaijenbrink, P. D. A.; Litt, M.; Shea, J. M.; Treichler, D.; Koch, I.; Immerzeel, W.

    2016-12-01

    Debris-covered glacier tongues cover about 12% of the glacier surface in high mountain Asia and much of the melt water is generated from those glaciers. A thin layer of supraglacial debris enhances ice melt by lowering the albedo, while thicker debris insulates the ice and reduces melt. Data on debris thickness is therefore an important input for energy balance modelling of these glaciers. Thermal infrared remote sensing can be used to estimate the debris thickness by using an inverse relation between debris surface temperature and thickness. To date this has only been performed using coarse spaceborne thermal imagery, which cannot reveal small scale variation in debris thickness and its influence on the heterogeneous melt patterns on debris-covered glaciers. We deployed an unmanned aerial vehicle mounted with a thermal infrared sensor over the debris-covered Lirung Glacier in Nepal three times in May 2016 to reveal the spatial and temporal variability of surface temperature in high detail. The UAV survey matched a Landsat 8 overpass to be able to make a comparison with spaceborne thermal imagery. The UAV-acquired data is processed using Structure from Motion photogrammetry and georeferenced using DGPS-measured ground control points. Different surface types were distinguished by using data acquired by an additional optical UAV survey in order to correct for differences in surface emissivity. In situ temperature measurements and incoming solar radiation data are used to calibrate the temperature calculations. Debris thicknesses derived are validated by thickness measurements of a ground penetrating radar. Preliminary analysis reveals a spatially highly heterogeneous pattern of surface temperature over Lirung Glacier with a range in temperature of over 40 K. At dawn the debris is relatively cold and its temperature is influenced strongly by the ice underneath. Exposed to the high solar radiation at the high altitude the debris layer heats up very rapidly as sunrise

  7. The development and validation of an unmanned aerial system (UAS) for the measurement of methane flux

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, G.; Shah, A.; Williams, P. I.; Ricketts, H.; Hollingsworth, P.; Kabbabe, K.; Bourn, M.; Pitt, J. R.; Helmore, J.; Lowry, D.; Robinson, R. A.; Finlayson, A.

    2017-12-01

    Emission controls for CH4are a part of the Paris Agreement and other national emissions strategies. This work represents a new method for precise quantification of point-source and facility-level methane emissions flux rates to inform both the climate science community and policymakers. In this paper, we describe the development of an integrated Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) for the measurement of high-precision in-situ CH4 concentrations. We also describe the development of a mass balance flux calculation model tailored to UAS plume sampling downwind; and the validation of this method using a known emission flux from a controlled release facility. A validation field trial was conducted at the UK Met Office site in Cardington, UK, between 31 Oct and 4 Nov 2016 using the UK National Physical Laboratory's Controlled Release Facility (CRF). A modified DJI-S900 hexrotor UAS was tethered via an inlet to a ground-based Los Gatos Ultraportable Greenhouse Gas Analyser to record geospatially-referenced methane (and carbon dioxide) concentrations. Methane fluxes from the CRF were emitted at 5 kg/hr and 10 kg/hr in a series of blind trials (fluxes were not reported to the team prior to the calculation of UAS-derived flux) for a total of 7 UAS flights, which sampled 200 m downwind of source(s), each lasting around 20 minutes. The flux calculation method was adapted for sampling considerations downwind of an emission source that has not had sufficient time to develop a Gaussian morphology. The UAS-measured methane fluxes, and representative flux uncertainty (derived from an error propagation model), were found to compare well with the controlled CH4 emission rate. For the 7 experiments, the standard error between the measured and emitted CH4 flux was found to be +/-6% with a mean bias of +0.4 kg/hr. Limits of flux sensitivity (to within 25% uncertainty) were found to extend to as little as 0.12 kg/h. Further improvements to the accuracy of flux calculation could be made by

  8. Intra- and interspecific variation in tropical tree and liana phenology derived from Unmanned Aerial Vehicle images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohlman, S.; Park, J.; Muller-Landau, H. C.; Rifai, S. W.; Dandois, J. P.

    2017-12-01

    Phenology is a critical driver of ecosystem processes. There is strong evidence that phenology is shifting in temperate ecosystems in response to climate change, but tropical tree and liana phenology remains poorly quantified and understood. A key challenge is that tropical forests contain hundreds of plant species with a wide variety of phenological patterns. Satellite-based observations, an important source of phenology data in northern latitudes, are hindered by frequent cloud cover in the tropics. To quantify phenology over a large number of individuals and species, we collected bi-weekly images from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in the well-studied 50-ha forest inventory plot on Barro Colorado Island, Panama. Between October 2014 and December 2015 and again in May 2015, we collected a total of 35 sets of UAV images, each with continuous coverage of the 50-ha plot, where every tree ≥ 1 cm DBH is mapped. Spectral, texture, and image information was extracted from the UAV images for individual tree crowns, which was then used as inputs for a machine learning algorithm to predict percent leaf and branch cover. We obtained the species identities of 2000 crowns in the images via field mapping. The objectives of this study are to (1) determined if machine learning algorithms, applied to UAV images, can effectively quantify changes in leaf cover, which we term "deciduousness; (2) determine how liana cover effects deciduousness and (3) test how well UAV-derived deciduousness patterns match satellite-derived temporal patterns. Machine learning algorithms trained on a variety of image parameters could effectively determine leaf cover, despite variation in lighting and viewing angles. Crowns with higher liana cover have less overall deciduousness (tree + liana together) than crowns with lower liana cover. Individual crown deciduousness, summed over all crowns measured in the 50-ha plot, showed a similar seasonal pattern as MODIS EVI composited over 10 years. However

  9. Unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) in out-of-hospital-cardiac-arrest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Claesson, A; Fredman, D; Svensson, L; Ringh, M; Hollenberg, J; Nordberg, P; Rosenqvist, M; Djarv, T; Österberg, S; Lennartsson, J; Ban, Y

    2016-10-12

    The use of an automated external defibrillator (AED) prior to EMS arrival can increase 30-day survival in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) significantly. Drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) can fly with high velocity and potentially transport devices such as AEDs to the site of OHCAs. The aim of this explorative study was to investigate the feasibility of a drone system in decreasing response time and delivering an AED. Data of Global Positioning System (GPS) coordinates from historical OHCA in Stockholm County was used in a model using a Geographic Information System (GIS) to find suitable placements and visualize response times for the use of an AED equipped drone. Two different geographical models, urban and rural, were calculated using a multi-criteria evaluation (MCE) model. Test-flights with an AED were performed on these locations in rural areas. In total, based on 3,165 retrospective OHCAs in Stockholm County between 2006-2013, twenty locations were identified for the potential placement of a drone. In a GIS-simulated model of urban OHCA, the drone arrived before EMS in 32 % of cases, and the mean amount of time saved was 1.5 min. In rural OHCA the drone arrived before EMS in 93 % of cases with a mean amount of time saved of 19 min. In these rural locations during (n = 13) test flights, latch-release of the AED from low altitude (3-4 m) or landing the drone on flat ground were the safest ways to deliver an AED to the bystander and were superior to parachute release. The difference in response time for EMS between urban and rural areas is substantial, as is the possible amount of time saved using this UAV-system. However, yet another technical device needs to fit into the chain of survival. We know nothing of how productive or even counterproductive this system might be in clinical reality. To use drones in rural areas to deliver an AED in OHCA may be safe and feasible. Suitable placement of drone systems can be designed by using GIS models

  10. THE METHOD OF FORMING A RATIONAL ASPECT OF THE ONBOARD COMPLEX OF RADAR DEFENSE UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. B. Guseynov

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The urgency of the problem of increasing the efficiency by reducing the visibility of aircraft and installing radio interference on the radio-electronic systems of the air defense complex is substantiated. The main characteristics of the on-board electronic radio protection system of an unmanned aerial vehicle are determined. When designing a low-visibility aircraft, it is advisable to simultaneously solve three-level tasks – the formation of a technical task for the design of aircraft, technical proposals and design sketches. In solving the problems of the first level, operational-tactical, flight-technical characteristics of the aircraft are analyzed and requirements for indicators of visibility are justified, the second one – a matrix of alternative design solutions is formed and rational structural solutions for the airborne complex and aircraft appearance as a whole are determined, the third one determines optimal design -Ballistic, geometric design parameters of technical solutions and aircraft in general. The statement of the problem is formulated in the article. A block diagram of the analysis of design solutions for the placement of an active noise station on board an unmanned aerial vehicle and optimization of their parameters based on a complex "cost-effectiveness" criterion is given. At the same time, it is necessary to take into account the influence of alternative technical solutions on low visibility and their design parameters on geometric, aerodynamic, energy, ballistic, thermal characteristics, mass, cost, indicators of visibility and combat effectiveness. The structural and logical scheme for solving the problem for a given technical assignment for the design of an unmanned aerial vehicle includes the following steps: the formation of the initial information and the development of a "support" version of the aircraft structure; formation of a morphological matrix of design decisions on aircraft; compatibility assessment

  11. Developpement of an original aerial-based inventory method: first steps towards the use of mini Unmanned Areal Vehicle in elephant inventory

    OpenAIRE

    Lisein, Jonathan; Vermeulen, Cédric; Bouché, Philippe; Lejeune, Philippe

    2012-01-01

    This research aims at developping a new methodology for counting large mammals by means of an unmanned aerial vehicle. Test flights have been performed in the game ranch of Nazinga (Burkina Faso) during the month of february 2012. Aerial images shows that elephant detection is quite feasible. The systems still requires a lot of improvements in order to be able to cover bigger surfaces for a given pixels resolution. Nevertheless, this method seems very promissing and could advantageously repla...

  12. Development of an unmanned agricultural robotics system for measuring crop conditions for precision aerial application

    Science.gov (United States)

    An Unmanned Agricultural Robotics System (UARS) is acquired, rebuilt with desired hardware, and operated in both classrooms and field. The UARS includes crop height sensor, crop canopy analyzer, normalized difference vegetative index (NDVI) sensor, multispectral camera, and hyperspectral radiometer...

  13. The Integration of the Fire Scout Tactical Unmanned Aerial System into Littoral Combat Ship Missions

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Marsh, James J

    2007-01-01

    ...) is an effective mission multiplier for the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). The U.S. Navy relies heavily on unmanned systems, such as the Fire Scout UAS, to enable LCS to conduct several complex littoral missions...

  14. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in pest management: Progress in the development of a UAV-deployed mating disruption system for Wisconsin cranberries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) represent a powerful new tool for agriculture. Currently, UAVs are used almost exclusively as crop reconnaissance devices (“eyes in the sky”), not as pest control delivery systems. Research in Wisconsin cranberries is taking UAVs in a new direction. The Steffan and Lu...

  15. Assessment of a landfill methane emission screening method using an unmanned aerial vehicle mounted thermal infrared camera – A field study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fjelsted, Lotte; Christensen, A. G.; Larsen, J. E.

    2018-01-01

    An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)-mounted thermal infrared (TIR) camera’s ability to delineate landfill gas (LFG) emission hotspots was evaluated in a field test at two Danish landfills (Hedeland landfill and Audebo landfill). At both sites, a test area of 100 m2 was established and divided into a...

  16. Intercomparison of unmanned aerial vehicle and ground-based narrow band spectrometers applied to crop trait monitoring in organic potato production

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Domingues Franceschini, Marston; Bartholomeus, Harm; Apeldoorn, van Dirk; Suomalainen, Juha; Kooistra, Lammert

    2017-01-01

    Vegetation properties can be estimated using optical sensors, acquiring data on board of different platforms. For instance, ground-based and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)-borne spectrometers can measure reflectance in narrow spectral bands, while different modelling approaches, like regressions

  17. Adapting astronomical source detection software to help detect animals in thermal images obtained by unmanned aerial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longmore, S. N.; Collins, R. P.; Pfeifer, S.; Fox, S. E.; Mulero-Pazmany, M.; Bezombes, F.; Goodwind, A.; de Juan Ovelar, M.; Knapen, J. H.; Wich, S. A.

    2017-02-01

    In this paper we describe an unmanned aerial system equipped with a thermal-infrared camera and software pipeline that we have developed to monitor animal populations for conservation purposes. Taking a multi-disciplinary approach to tackle this problem, we use freely available astronomical source detection software and the associated expertise of astronomers, to efficiently and reliably detect humans and animals in aerial thermal-infrared footage. Combining this astronomical detection software with existing machine learning algorithms into a single, automated, end-to-end pipeline, we test the software using aerial video footage taken in a controlled, field-like environment. We demonstrate that the pipeline works reliably and describe how it can be used to estimate the completeness of different observational datasets to objects of a given type as a function of height, observing conditions etc. - a crucial step in converting video footage to scientifically useful information such as the spatial distribution and density of different animal species. Finally, having demonstrated the potential utility of the system, we describe the steps we are taking to adapt the system for work in the field, in particular systematic monitoring of endangered species at National Parks around the world.

  18. Quantifying the morphodynamics of river restoration schemes using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Richard; Byrne, Patrick; Gilles, Eric; Hart, John; Hoey, Trevor; Maniatis, George; Moir, Hamish; Reid, Helen; Ves, Nikolas

    2017-04-01

    River restoration schemes are particularly sensitive to morphological adjustment during the first set of high-flow events that they are subjected to. Quantifying elevation change associated with morphological adjustment can contribute to improved adaptive decision making to ensure river restoration scheme objectives are achieved. To date the relatively high cost, technical demands and challenging logistics associated with acquiring repeat, high-resolution topographic surveys has resulted in a significant barrier to monitoring the three-dimensional morphodynamics of river restoration schemes. The availability of low-cost, consumer grade Unmanned Aerial Vehicles that are capable of acquiring imagery for processing using Structure-from-Motion Multi-View Stereo (SfM MVS) photogrammetry has the potential to transform the survey the morphodynamics of river restoration schemes. Application guidance does, however, need to be developed to fully exploit the advances of UAV technology and SfM MVS processing techniques. In particular, there is a need to quantify the effect of the number and spatial distribution of ground targets on vertical error. This is particularly significant because vertical errors propagate when mapping morphological change, and thus determine the evidence that is available for decision making. This presentation presents results from a study that investigated how the number and spatial distribution of targets influenced vertical error, and then used the findings to determine survey protocols for a monitoring campaign that has quantified morphological change across a number of restoration schemes. At the Swindale river restoration scheme, Cumbria, England, 31 targets were distributed across a 700 m long reach and the centre of each target was surveyed using RTK-GPS. Using the targets as General Control Points (GCPs) or checkpoints, they were divided into three different spatial patterns (centre, edge and random) and used for processing images acquired

  19. THE USE OF MOBILE LASER SCANNING DATA AND UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE IMAGES FOR 3D MODEL RECONSTRUCTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Zhu

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The increasing availability in multiple data sources acquired by different sensor platforms has provided the great advantages for desired result achievement. This paper proposes the use of both mobile laser scanning (MLS data and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV images for 3D model reconstruction. Due to no available exterior orientation parameters for UAV images, the first task is to georeference these images to 3D points. In order to fast and accurate acquire 3D points which are also easy to be found the corresponding locations on UAV images, automated pole extraction from MLS was developed. After georeferencing UAV images, building roofs are acquired from those images and building walls are extracted from MLS data. The roofs and the walls are combined to achieve the complete building models.

  20. Multi-Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Cooperative Fault Detection Employing Differential Global Positioning (DGPS), Inertial and Vision Sensors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heredia, Guillermo; Caballero, Fernando; Maza, Iván; Merino, Luis; Viguria, Antidio; Ollero, Aníbal

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents a method to increase the reliability of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) sensor Fault Detection and Identification (FDI) in a multi-UAV context. Differential Global Positioning System (DGPS) and inertial sensors are used for sensor FDI in each UAV. The method uses additional position estimations that augment individual UAV FDI system. These additional estimations are obtained using images from the same planar scene taken from two different UAVs. Since accuracy and noise level of the estimation depends on several factors, dynamic replanning of the multi-UAV team can be used to obtain a better estimation in case of faults caused by slow growing errors of absolute position estimation that cannot be detected by using local FDI in the UAVs. Experimental results with data from two real UAVs are also presented.

  1. Three-Dimensional Digital Documentation of Heritage Sites Using Terrestrial Laser Scanning and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Photogrammetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jo, Y. H.; Kim, J. Y.

    2017-08-01

    Three-dimensional digital documentation is an important technique for the maintenance and monitoring of cultural heritage sites. This study focuses on the three-dimensional digital documentation of the Magoksa Temple, Republic of Korea, using a combination of terrestrial laser scanning and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) photogrammetry. Terrestrial laser scanning mostly acquired the vertical geometry of the buildings. In addition, the digital orthoimage produced by UAV photogrammetry had higher horizontal data acquisition rate than that produced by terrestrial laser scanning. Thus, the scanning and UAV photogrammetry were merged by matching 20 corresponding points and an absolute coordinate system was established using seven ground control points. The final, complete threedimensional shape had perfect horizontal and vertical geometries. This study demonstrates the potential of integrating terrestrial laser scanning and UAV photogrammetry for three-dimensional digital documentation. This new technique is expected to contribute to the three-dimensional digital documentation and spatial analysis of cultural heritage sites.

  2. Performance of an air sampler and a gamma-ray detector in a small unmanned aerial vehicle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roy Poellaenen; Harri Toivonen; Kari Peraejaervi; Tero Karhunen; Petri Smolander; Tarja Ilander; Kimmo Rintala; Tuure Katajainen; Jarkko Niemelae; Marko Juusela; Timo Palos

    2009-01-01

    The performance of an air sampler and a small gamma-ray spectrometer was tested in an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) able to carry payload with mass up to 0.5 kg. Operation of the sampler was investigated with the aid of radon progeny normally present in outdoor air. Detection limits for several transuranium nuclides in air are of the order of 0.3 Bq m -3 assuming 0.5 h sampling time and 1 h counting time in direct alpha spectrometry. Unshielded 137 Cs and 60 Co point sources at the ground level were used to test the CsI spectrometer. Detection limits are approximately 1 GBq or larger depending on the flying altitude. (author)

  3. Pre-harvest assessment of perennial weeds in cereals based on images from unmanned aerial systems (UAS)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Egilsson, Jon; Pedersen, Kim Steenstrup; Olsen, Søren Ingvor

    2015-01-01

    Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) are able to deliver images of agricultural fields of high spatial and temporal resolution. It is, however, not trivial to extract quantitative information about weed infestations from images. This study contributes to weed research by using state-of-the-art computer....... In order to provide ground truth prior to the modeling phase in Python, a subset of 600 images was annotated by experts with 16000 regions of weeds or crop. Following this, images were segmented into regions with weeds or crop by subdividing each image into 64 by 64 pixel patches and classifying each patch...... as either crop or weed. A collection of geo-referenced segmented images may subsequently be used to map weed occurrences in fields. To find a robust and fully automated assessment method both texture and color information was used to build a number of different competing weed-crop classifiers, including...

  4. Modeling and Inverse Controller Design for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Based on the Self-Organizing Map

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Jeongho; Principe, Jose C.; Erdogmus, Deniz; Motter, Mark A.

    2005-01-01

    The next generation of aircraft will have dynamics that vary considerably over the operating regime. A single controller will have difficulty to meet the design specifications. In this paper, a SOM-based local linear modeling scheme of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) is developed to design a set of inverse controllers. The SOM selects the operating regime depending only on the embedded output space information and avoids normalization of the input data. Each local linear model is associated with a linear controller, which is easy to design. Switching of the controllers is done synchronously with the active local linear model that tracks the different operating conditions. The proposed multiple modeling and control strategy has been successfully tested in a simulator that models the LoFLYTE UAV.

  5. An improved artificial bee colony algorithm based on balance-evolution strategy for unmanned combat aerial vehicle path planning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Bai; Gong, Li-gang; Yang, Wen-lun

    2014-01-01

    Unmanned combat aerial vehicles (UCAVs) have been of great interest to military organizations throughout the world due to their outstanding capabilities to operate in dangerous or hazardous environments. UCAV path planning aims to obtain an optimal flight route with the threats and constraints in the combat field well considered. In this work, a novel artificial bee colony (ABC) algorithm improved by a balance-evolution strategy (BES) is applied in this optimization scheme. In this new algorithm, convergence information during the iteration is fully utilized to manipulate the exploration/exploitation accuracy and to pursue a balance between local exploitation and global exploration capabilities. Simulation results confirm that BE-ABC algorithm is more competent for the UCAV path planning scheme than the conventional ABC algorithm and two other state-of-the-art modified ABC algorithms.

  6. An Improved Artificial Bee Colony Algorithm Based on Balance-Evolution Strategy for Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle Path Planning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bai Li

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned combat aerial vehicles (UCAVs have been of great interest to military organizations throughout the world due to their outstanding capabilities to operate in dangerous or hazardous environments. UCAV path planning aims to obtain an optimal flight route with the threats and constraints in the combat field well considered. In this work, a novel artificial bee colony (ABC algorithm improved by a balance-evolution strategy (BES is applied in this optimization scheme. In this new algorithm, convergence information during the iteration is fully utilized to manipulate the exploration/exploitation accuracy and to pursue a balance between local exploitation and global exploration capabilities. Simulation results confirm that BE-ABC algorithm is more competent for the UCAV path planning scheme than the conventional ABC algorithm and two other state-of-the-art modified ABC algorithms.

  7. Detection of rice sheath blight using an unmanned aerial system with high-resolution color and multispectral imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Dongyan; Zhou, Xingen; Zhang, Jian; Lan, Yubin; Xu, Chao; Liang, Dong

    2018-01-01

    Detection and monitoring are the first essential step for effective management of sheath blight (ShB), a major disease in rice worldwide. Unmanned aerial systems have a high potential of being utilized to improve this detection process since they can reduce the time needed for scouting for the disease at a field scale, and are affordable and user-friendly in operation. In this study, a commercialized quadrotor unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), equipped with digital and multispectral cameras, was used to capture imagery data of research plots with 67 rice cultivars and elite lines. Collected imagery data were then processed and analyzed to characterize the development of ShB and quantify different levels of the disease in the field. Through color features extraction and color space transformation of images, it was found that the color transformation could qualitatively detect the infected areas of ShB in the field plots. However, it was less effective to detect different levels of the disease. Five vegetation indices were then calculated from the multispectral images, and ground truths of disease severity and GreenSeeker measured NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) were collected. The results of relationship analyses indicate that there was a strong correlation between ground-measured NDVIs and image-extracted NDVIs with the R2 of 0.907 and the root mean square error (RMSE) of 0.0854, and a good correlation between image-extracted NDVIs and disease severity with the R2 of 0.627 and the RMSE of 0.0852. Use of image-based NDVIs extracted from multispectral images could quantify different levels of ShB in the field plots with an accuracy of 63%. These results demonstrate that a customer-grade UAV integrated with digital and multispectral cameras can be an effective tool to detect the ShB disease at a field scale.

  8. Unmanned Aerial Systems, Moored Balloons, and the U.S. Department of Energy ARM Facilities in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivey, Mark; Verlinde, Johannes

    2014-05-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), through its scientific user facility, the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility, provides scientific infrastructure and data to the international Arctic research community via its research sites located on the North Slope of Alaska. Facilities and infrastructure to support operations of unmanned aerial systems for science missions in the Arctic and North Slope of Alaska were established at Oliktok Point Alaska in 2013. Tethered instrumented balloons will be used in the near future to make measurements of clouds in the boundary layer including mixed-phase clouds. The DOE ARM Program has operated an atmospheric measurement facility in Barrow, Alaska, since 1998. Major upgrades to this facility, including scanning radars, were added in 2010. Arctic Observing Networks are essential to meet growing policy, social, commercial, and scientific needs. Calibrated, high-quality arctic geophysical datasets that span ten years or longer are especially important for climate studies, climate model initializations and validations, and for related climate policy activities. For example, atmospheric data and derived atmospheric forcing estimates are critical for sea-ice simulations. International requirements for well-coordinated, long-term, and sustained Arctic Observing Networks and easily-accessible data sets collected by those networks have been recognized by many high-level workshops and reports (Arctic Council Meetings and workshops, National Research Council reports, NSF workshops and others). The recent Sustaining Arctic Observation Network (SAON) initiative sponsored a series of workshops to "develop a set of recommendations on how to achieve long-term Arctic-wide observing activities that provide free, open, and timely access to high-quality data that will realize pan-Arctic and global value-added services and provide societal benefits." This poster will present information on opportunities for members of the

  9. Decentralized Control of Unmanned Aerial Robots for Wireless Airborne Communication Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deok-Jin Lee

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a cooperative control strategy for a team of aerial robotic vehicles to establish wireless airborne communication networks between distributed heterogeneous vehicles. Each aerial robot serves as a flying mobile sensor performing a reconfigurable communication relay node which enabls communication networks with static or slow-moving nodes on gorund or ocean. For distributed optimal deployment of the aerial vehicles for communication networks, an adaptive hill-climbing type decentralized control algorithm is developed to seek out local extremum for optimal localization of the vehicles. The sensor networks estabilished by the decentralized cooperative control approach can adopt its configuraiton in response to signal strength as the function of the relative distance between the autonomous aerial robots and distributed sensor nodes in the sensed environment. Simulation studies are conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed decentralized cooperative control technique for robust communication networks.

  10. Integrating Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) With Current Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) Doctrine

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Altieri, Jayson

    2003-01-01

    .... BACH-21 whipped his plane over into a left SAM break. As G-forces began to press against him, he felt his aircraft shake violently and continued to roll inverted as an SA-6 slammed into his right wing...

  11. Small Whiskbroom Imager for atmospheric compositioN monitorinG (SWING) from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV): Results from the 2014 AROMAT campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merlaud, Alexis; Tack, Frederik; Constantin, Daniel; Fayt, Caroline; Maes, Jeroen; Mingireanu, Florin; Mocanu, Ionut; Georgescu, Lucian; Van Roozendael, Michel

    2015-04-01

    The Small Whiskbroom Imager for atmospheric compositioN monitorinG (SWING) is an instrument dedicated to atmospheric trace gas retrieval from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). The payload is based on a compact visible spectrometer and a scanning mirror to collect scattered sunlight. Its weight, size, and power consumption are respectively 920 g, 27x12x12 cm3, and 6 W. The custom-built 2.5 m flying wing UAV is electrically powered, has a typical airspeed of 100 km/h, and can operate at a maximum altitude of 3 km. Both the payload and the UAV were developed in the framework of a collaboration between the Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA-IASB) and the Dunarea de Jos University of Galati, Romania. We present here SWING-UAV test flights dedicated to NO2 measurements and performed in Romania on 10 and 11 September 2014, during the Airborne ROmanian Measurements of Aerosols and Trace gases (AROMAT) campaign. The UAV performed 5 flights in the vicinity of the large thermal power station of Turceni (44.67° N, 23.4° E). The UAV was operated in visual range during the campaign, up to 900 m AGL , downwind of the plant and crossing its exhaust plume. The spectra recorded on flight are analyzed with the Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (DOAS) method. The retrieved NO2 Differential Slant Column Densities (DSCDs) are up to 1.5e17 molec/cm2 and reveal the horizontal gradients around the plant. The DSCDs are converted to vertical columns and compared with coincident car-based DOAS measurements. We also present the near-future perspective of the SWING-UAV observation system, which includes flights in 2015 above the Black Sea to quantify ship emissions, the addition of SO2 as a target species, and autopilot flights at higher altitudes to cover a typical satellite pixel extent (10x10 km2).

  12. The Small Whiskbroom Imager for atmospheric compositioN monitorinG (SWING) and its operations from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) during the AROMAT campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merlaud, Alexis; Tack, Frederik; Constantin, Daniel; Georgescu, Lucian; Maes, Jeroen; Fayt, Caroline; Mingireanu, Florin; Schuettemeyer, Dirk; Meier, Andreas Carlos; Schönardt, Anja; Ruhtz, Thomas; Bellegante, Livio; Nicolae, Doina; Den Hoed, Mirjam; Allaart, Marc; Van Roozendael, Michel

    2018-01-01

    The Small Whiskbroom Imager for atmospheric compositioN monitorinG (SWING) is a compact remote sensing instrument dedicated to mapping trace gases from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). SWING is based on a compact visible spectrometer and a scanning mirror to collect scattered sunlight. Its weight, size, and power consumption are respectively 920 g, 27 cm × 12 cm × 8 cm, and 6 W. SWING was developed in parallel with a 2.5 m flying-wing UAV. This unmanned aircraft is electrically powered, has a typical airspeed of 100 km h-1, and can operate at a maximum altitude of 3 km. We present SWING-UAV experiments performed in Romania on 11 September 2014 during the Airborne ROmanian Measurements of Aerosols and Trace gases (AROMAT) campaign, which was dedicated to test newly developed instruments in the context of air quality satellite validation. The UAV was operated up to 700 m above ground, in the vicinity of the large power plant of Turceni (44.67° N, 23.41° E; 116 m a. s. l. ). These SWING-UAV flights were coincident with another airborne experiment using the Airborne imaging differential optical absorption spectroscopy (DOAS) instrument for Measurements of Atmospheric Pollution (AirMAP), and with ground-based DOAS, lidar, and balloon-borne in situ observations. The spectra recorded during the SWING-UAV flights are analysed with the DOAS technique. This analysis reveals NO2 differential slant column densities (DSCDs) up to 13±0.6×1016 molec cm-2. These NO2 DSCDs are converted to vertical column densities (VCDs) by estimating air mass factors. The resulting NO2 VCDs are up to 4.7±0.4×1016 molec cm-2. The water vapour DSCD measurements, up to 8±0.15×1022 molec cm-2, are used to estimate a volume mixing ratio of water vapour in the boundary layer of 0.013±0.002 mol mol-1. These geophysical quantities are validated with the coincident measurements.

  13. The Small Whiskbroom Imager for atmospheric compositioN monitorinG (SWING and its operations from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV during the AROMAT campaign

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Merlaud

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The Small Whiskbroom Imager for atmospheric compositioN monitorinG (SWING is a compact remote sensing instrument dedicated to mapping trace gases from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV. SWING is based on a compact visible spectrometer and a scanning mirror to collect scattered sunlight. Its weight, size, and power consumption are respectively 920 g, 27 cm  ×  12 cm  ×  8 cm, and 6 W. SWING was developed in parallel with a 2.5 m flying-wing UAV. This unmanned aircraft is electrically powered, has a typical airspeed of 100 km h−1, and can operate at a maximum altitude of 3 km. We present SWING-UAV experiments performed in Romania on 11 September 2014 during the Airborne ROmanian Measurements of Aerosols and Trace gases (AROMAT campaign, which was dedicated to test newly developed instruments in the context of air quality satellite validation. The UAV was operated up to 700 m above ground, in the vicinity of the large power plant of Turceni (44.67° N, 23.41° E; 116 m a. s. l. . These SWING-UAV flights were coincident with another airborne experiment using the Airborne imaging differential optical absorption spectroscopy (DOAS instrument for Measurements of Atmospheric Pollution (AirMAP, and with ground-based DOAS, lidar, and balloon-borne in situ observations. The spectra recorded during the SWING-UAV flights are analysed with the DOAS technique. This analysis reveals NO2 differential slant column densities (DSCDs up to 13±0.6×1016 molec cm−2. These NO2 DSCDs are converted to vertical column densities (VCDs by estimating air mass factors. The resulting NO2 VCDs are up to 4.7±0.4×1016 molec cm−2. The water vapour DSCD measurements, up to 8±0.15×1022 molec cm−2, are used to estimate a volume mixing ratio of water vapour in the boundary layer of 0.013±0.002 mol mol−1. These geophysical quantities are validated with the coincident measurements.

  14. A Photogrammetric Workflow for the Creation of a Forest Canopy Height Model from Small Unmanned Aerial System Imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philippe Lejeune

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The recent development of operational small unmanned aerial systems (UASs opens the door for their extensive use in forest mapping, as both the spatial and temporal resolution of UAS imagery better suit local-scale investigation than traditional remote sensing tools. This article focuses on the use of combined photogrammetry and “Structure from Motion” approaches in order to model the forest canopy surface from low-altitude aerial images. An original workflow, using the open source and free photogrammetric toolbox, MICMAC (acronym for Multi Image Matches for Auto Correlation Methods, was set up to create a digital canopy surface model of deciduous stands. In combination with a co-registered light detection and ranging (LiDAR digital terrain model, the elevation of vegetation was determined, and the resulting hybrid photo/LiDAR canopy height model was compared to data from a LiDAR canopy height model and from forest inventory data. Linear regressions predicting dominant height and individual height from plot metrics and crown metrics showed that the photogrammetric canopy height model was of good quality for deciduous stands. Although photogrammetric reconstruction significantly smooths the canopy surface, the use of this workflow has the potential to take full advantage of the flexible revisit period of drones in order to refresh the LiDAR canopy height model and to collect dense multitemporal canopy height series.

  15. Development and integration of a solar powered unmanned aerial vehicle and a wireless sensor network to monitor greenhouse gases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malaver, Alexander; Motta, Nunzio; Corke, Peter; Gonzalez, Felipe

    2015-02-11

    Measuring gases for environmental monitoring is a demanding task that requires long periods of observation and large numbers of sensors. Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) currently represent the best alternative to monitor large, remote, and difficult access areas, as these technologies have the possibility of carrying specialized gas sensing systems. This paper presents the development and integration of a WSN and an UAV powered by solar energy in order to enhance their functionality and broader their applications. A gas sensing system implementing nanostructured metal oxide (MOX) and non-dispersive infrared sensors was developed to measure concentrations of CH4 and CO2. Laboratory, bench and field testing results demonstrate the capability of UAV to capture, analyze and geo-locate a gas sample during flight operations. The field testing integrated ground sensor nodes and the UAV to measure CO2 concentration at ground and low aerial altitudes, simultaneously. Data collected during the mission was transmitted in real time to a central node for analysis and 3D mapping of the target gas. The results highlights the accomplishment of the first flight mission of a solar powered UAV equipped with a CO2 sensing system integrated with a WSN. The system provides an effective 3D monitoring and can be used in a wide range of environmental applications such as agriculture, bushfires, mining studies, zoology and botanical studies using a ubiquitous low cost technology.

  16. Development and Integration of a Solar Powered Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and a Wireless Sensor Network to Monitor Greenhouse Gases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malaver, Alexander; Motta, Nunzio; Corke, Peter; Gonzalez, Felipe

    2015-01-01

    Measuring gases for environmental monitoring is a demanding task that requires long periods of observation and large numbers of sensors. Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) currently represent the best alternative to monitor large, remote, and difficult access areas, as these technologies have the possibility of carrying specialized gas sensing systems. This paper presents the development and integration of a WSN and an UAV powered by solar energy in order to enhance their functionality and broader their applications. A gas sensing system implementing nanostructured metal oxide (MOX) and non-dispersive infrared sensors was developed to measure concentrations of CH4 and CO2. Laboratory, bench and field testing results demonstrate the capability of UAV to capture, analyze and geo-locate a gas sample during flight operations. The field testing integrated ground sensor nodes and the UAV to measure CO2 concentration at ground and low aerial altitudes, simultaneously. Data collected during the mission was transmitted in real time to a central node for analysis and 3D mapping of the target gas. The results highlights the accomplishment of the first flight mission of a solar powered UAV equipped with a CO2 sensing system integrated with a WSN. The system provides an effective 3D monitoring and can be used in a wide range of environmental applications such as agriculture, bushfires, mining studies, zoology and botanical studies using a ubiquitous low cost technology. PMID:25679312

  17. Development and Integration of a Solar Powered Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and a Wireless Sensor Network to Monitor Greenhouse Gases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Malaver

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Measuring gases for environmental monitoring is a demanding task that requires long periods of observation and large numbers of sensors. Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs currently represent the best alternative to monitor large, remote, and difficult access areas, as these technologies have the possibility of carrying specialized gas sensing systems. This paper presents the development and integration of a WSN and an UAV powered by solar energy in order to enhance their functionality and broader their applications. A gas sensing system implementing nanostructured metal oxide (MOX and non-dispersive infrared sensors was developed to measure concentrations of CH4 and CO2. Laboratory, bench and field testing results demonstrate the capability of UAV to capture, analyze and geo-locate a gas sample during flight operations. The field testing integrated ground sensor nodes and the UAV to measure CO2 concentration at ground and low aerial altitudes, simultaneously. Data collected during the mission was transmitted in real time to a central node for analysis and 3D mapping of the target gas. The results highlights the accomplishment of the first flight mission of a solar powered UAV equipped with a CO2 sensing system integrated with a WSN. The system provides an effective 3D monitoring and can be used in a wide range of environmental applications such as agriculture, bushfires, mining studies, zoology and botanical studies using a ubiquitous low cost technology.

  18. Remote Sensing of Submerged Aquatic Vegetation in a Shallow Non-Turbid River Using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyle F. Flynn

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available A passive method for remote sensing of the nuisance green algae Cladophora glomerata in rivers is presented using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV. Included are methods for UAV operation, lens distortion correction, image georeferencing, and spectral analysis to support algal cover mapping. Eighteen aerial photography missions were conducted over the summer of 2013 using an off-the-shelf UAV and three-band, wide-angle, red, green, and blue (RGB digital camera sensor. Images were post-processed, mosaicked, and georeferenced so automated classification and mapping could be completed. An adaptive cosine estimator (ACE and spectral angle mapper (SAM algorithm were used to complete the algal identification. Digital analysis of optical imagery correctly identified filamentous algae and background coverage 90% and 92% of the time, and tau coefficients were 0.82 and 0.84 for ACE and SAM, respectively. Thereafter, algal cover was characterized for a one-kilometer channel segment during each of the 18 UAV flights. Percent cover ranged from <5% to >50%, and increased immediately after vernal freshet, peaked in midsummer, and declined in the fall. Results indicate that optical remote sensing with UAV holds promise for completing spatially precise, and multi-temporal measurements of algae or submerged aquatic vegetation in shallow rivers with low turbidity and good optical transmission.

  19. Assessing the Accuracy of Georeferenced Point Clouds Produced via Multi-View Stereopsis from Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV Imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arko Lucieer

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Sensor miniaturisation, improved battery technology and the availability of low-cost yet advanced Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV have provided new opportunities for environmental remote sensing. The UAV provides a platform for close-range aerial photography. Detailed imagery captured from micro-UAV can produce dense point clouds using multi-view stereopsis (MVS techniques combining photogrammetry and computer vision. This study applies MVS techniques to imagery acquired from a multi-rotor micro-UAV of a natural coastal site in southeastern Tasmania, Australia. A very dense point cloud ( < 1–3 cm point spacing is produced in an arbitrary coordinate system using full resolution imagery, whereas other studies usually downsample the original imagery. The point cloud is sparse in areas of complex vegetation and where surfaces have a homogeneous texture. Ground control points collected with Differential Global Positioning System (DGPS are identified and used for georeferencing via a Helmert transformation. This study compared georeferenced point clouds to a Total Station survey in order to assess and quantify their geometric accuracy. The results indicate that a georeferenced point cloud accurate to 25–40 mm can be obtained from imagery acquired from 50 m. UAV-based image capture provides the spatial and temporal resolution required to map and monitor natural landscapes. This paper assesses the accuracy of the generated point clouds based on field survey points. Based on our key findings we conclude that sub-decimetre terrain change (in this case coastal erosion can be monitored.

  20. Unsteady Aerodynamic Investigation of the Propeller-Wing Interaction for a Rocket Launched Unmanned Air Vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Q. Zhang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The aerodynamic characteristics of propeller-wing interaction for the rocket launched UAV have been investigated numerically by means of sliding mesh technology. The corresponding forces and moments have been collected for axial wing placements ranging from 0.056 to 0.5D and varied rotating speeds. The slipstream generated by the rotating propeller has little effects on the lift characteristics of the whole UAV. The drag can be seen to remain unchanged as the wing's location moves progressively closer to the propeller until 0.056D away from the propeller, where a nearly 20% increase occurred sharply. The propeller position has a negligible effect on the overall thrust and torque of the propeller. The efficiency affected by the installation angle of the propeller blade has also been analyzed. Based on the pressure cloud and streamlines, the vortices generated by propeller, propeller-wing interaction, and wing tip have also been captured and analyzed.

  1. A methodology for the validated design space exploration of fuel cell powered unmanned aerial vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moffitt, Blake Almy

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) are the most dynamic growth sector of the aerospace industry today. The need to provide persistent intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance for military operations is driving the planned acquisition of over 5,000 UAVs over the next five years. The most pressing need is for quiet, small UAVs with endurance beyond what is capable with advanced batteries or small internal combustion propulsion systems. Fuel cell systems demonstrate high efficiency, high specific energy, low noise, low temperature operation, modularity, and rapid refuelability making them a promising enabler of the small, quiet, and persistent UAVs that military planners are seeking. Despite the perceived benefits, the actual near-term performance of fuel cell powered UAVs is unknown. Until the auto industry began spending billions of dollars in research, fuel cell systems were too heavy for useful flight applications. However, the last decade has seen rapid development with fuel cell gravimetric and volumetric power density nearly doubling every 2--3 years. As a result, a few design studies and demonstrator aircraft have appeared, but overall the design methodology and vehicles are still in their infancy. The design of fuel cell aircraft poses many challenges. Fuel cells differ fundamentally from combustion based propulsion in how they generate power and interact with other aircraft subsystems. As a result, traditional multidisciplinary analysis (MDA) codes are inappropriate. Building new MDAs is difficult since fuel cells are rapidly changing in design, and various competitive architectures exist for balance of plant, hydrogen storage, and all electric aircraft subsystems. In addition, fuel cell design and performance data is closely protected which makes validation difficult and uncertainty significant. Finally, low specific power and high volumes compared to traditional combustion based propulsion result in more highly constrained design spaces that are

  2. ON MODERN APPROACH TO AIRPLANE-TYPE UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES DESIGN WITH SHORT TAKEOFF AND LANDING

    OpenAIRE

    Oleg P. Minin

    2017-01-01

    This publication opens a series of review papers devoted to the current design problems of the next generation unmanned airplanes that are expected to appear in the period from 2025 to 2035. The series of papers considers airplanes with vertical take-off and landing, air launch of small satellites into the orbit, cargo transportation tasks, issues related to new aerodynamic forms, as well as hybrid, combined and distributed power units. The first paper of the cycle is devoted to the conceptua...

  3. Monitoring tropical debris-covered glacier dynamics from high-resolution unmanned aerial vehicle photogrammetry, Cordillera Blanca, Peru

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. Wigmore

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The glaciers of the Cordillera Blanca, Peru, are rapidly retreating and thinning as a result of climate change, altering the timing, quantity and quality of water available to downstream users. Furthermore, increases in the number and size of proglacial lakes associated with these melting glaciers is increasing potential exposure to glacier lake outburst floods (GLOFs. Understanding how these glaciers are changing and their connection to proglacial lake systems is thus of critical importance. Most satellite data are too coarse for studying small mountain glaciers and are often affected by cloud cover, while traditional airborne photogrammetry and lidar are costly. Recent developments have made unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs a viable and potentially transformative method for studying glacier change at high spatial resolution, on demand and at relatively low cost.Using a custom designed hexacopter built for high-altitude (4000–6000 m a. s. l.  operation, we completed repeat aerial surveys (2014 and 2015 of the debris-covered Llaca Glacier tongue and proglacial lake system. High-resolution orthomosaics (5 cm and digital elevation models (DEMs (10 cm were produced and their accuracy assessed. Analysis of these datasets reveals highly heterogeneous patterns of glacier change. The most rapid areas of ice loss were associated with exposed ice cliffs and meltwater ponds on the glacier surface. Considerable subsidence and low surface velocities were also measured on the sediments within the pro-glacial lake, indicating the presence of extensive regions of buried ice and continued connection to the glacier tongue. Only limited horizontal retreat of the glacier tongue was observed, indicating that measurements of changes in aerial extent alone are inadequate for monitoring changes in glacier ice quantity.

  4. Real-time approaches to the estimation of local wind velocity for a fixed-wing unmanned air vehicle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chan, W L; Lee, C S; Hsiao, F B

    2011-01-01

    Three real-time approaches to estimating local wind velocity for a fixed-wing unmanned air vehicle are presented in this study. All three methods work around the navigation equations with added wind components. The first approach calculates the local wind speed by substituting the ground speed and ascent rate data given by the Global Positioning System (GPS) into the navigation equations. The second and third approaches utilize the extended Kalman filter (EKF) and the unscented Kalman filter (UKF), respectively. The results show that, despite the nonlinearity of the navigation equations, the EKF performance is proven to be on a par with the UKF. A time-varying noise estimation method based on the Wiener filter is also discussed. Results are compared with the average wind speed measured on the ground. All three approaches are proven to be reliable with stated advantages and disadvantages

  5. Real-time obstacle and collision avoidance system for fixed wing unmanned aerial systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esposito, Julien F.

    The first original contribution of this research is the Advanced Mapping and Waypoint Generator (AMWG), a piece of software which processes publicly available elevation data in order to only retain the information necessary for a given altitude-specific flight mission. The AMWG is what makes systematic offline trajectory possible. The AMWG first creates altitude groups in order to discard elevations points which are not relevant to a specific mission because of the altitude flown at. Those groups referred to as altitude layers can in turn be reused if the original layer becomes unsafe for the altitude range in use, and the other layers are used for altitude re-scheduling in order to update the current altitude layer to a safer layer. Each layer is bounded by a lower and higher altitude, within which terrain contours are considered constant according to a conservative approach involving the principle of natural erosion. The AMWG then proceeds to obstacle contours extraction using threshold and edge detection vision algorithms. A simplification of those obstacle contours and their corresponding free space zones counterparts is performed using a fixed -tolerance Douglas-Peucker algorithm. This simplification allows free space zones to be described by vectors instead of point clouds, which enables UAS point location. The final product of the AWMG is a network of connected free space trapezoidal cells with embedded connectivity information referred to as the Synthetic Terrain Avoidance (STA network). The walls of the trapezoidal cells are then extruded as the AWMG essentially approximates a three-dimensional world by considering it as a stratification of two-dimensional layers, but the real-time phase needs 3D support. Using the graph conceptual view and the depth first search algorithm, all the connected cell sequences joining the departure to the arrival cell can be listed, a capability which is used during aircraft rerouting. By connecting two adjacent cells' centroids to their common midpoint located on the shared edge, the resulting flying legs remain within the two cells. The next step for paths between two cells is to be converted into flyable paths, and the conversion uses main and fallback methods to achieve that. The preferred method is the closed-form Dubins paths method involving the design of sequences of arc circle-straight line-arc circle (CLC) in order to account for the minimum radius turn constrain of the UAS. An additional geometric transformation is developed and applied to the initial waypoints used in the Dubins method so the flying leg directions are respected which is not possible by using the Dubins method alone. The second original contribution of this research is the development and demonstration of the Double Dispersion reduction RRT (DDRRT), an algorithm which employs two new developed logic schemes respectively referred to as Punctual Dispersion Reduction (PDR), and Spatial Dispersion Reduction exploration (SDR). The DDRRT is employed during the real-time in-flight phase where it initially assumes a perfect terrain and no unpredictable threat, consequently following a 100% adaptive goal biasing toward the next waypoint in its list. When a threat such as an unpredicted obstacle is detected, the (PDR) acknowledges the fact that the DDRRT tree branches have met an obstacle and the its goal-biasing toward the next waypoint is decreased. If the PDR keeps decreasing, the DDRRT develops awareness of its surrounding obstacles by relaxing its PDR and switching to SDR which has the effect of increasing the dispersion of its branches, but keeping their extension bounded by the cell containing the last good position of the UAS, Csafe. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)

  6. Hyperspatial mapping of water, energy and carbon fluxes with Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Sheng; Köppl, Christian Josef; Bandini, Filippo

    regularly flew over the flux site. In the near future, a smart UAV platform combining rotary and fixed wing functionality will be used as platform. The imagery acquired by UAVs will be used to retrieve the vegetation indices and land surface temperature. These data used for land surface modeling to estimate...

  7. Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV for High-Resolution Reconstruction of Topography: The Structure from Motion Approach on Coastal Environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesco Mancini

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The availability of high-resolution Digital Surface Models of coastal environments is of increasing interest for scientists involved in the study of the coastal system processes. Among the range of terrestrial and aerial methods available to produce such a dataset, this study tests the utility of the Structure from Motion (SfM approach to low-altitude aerial imageries collected by Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV. The SfM image-based approach was selected whilst searching for a rapid, inexpensive, and highly automated method, able to produce 3D information from unstructured aerial images. In particular, it was used to generate a dense point cloud and successively a high-resolution Digital Surface Models (DSM of a beach dune system in Marina di Ravenna (Italy. The quality of the elevation dataset produced by the UAV-SfM was initially evaluated by comparison with point cloud generated by a Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS surveys. Such a comparison served to highlight an average difference in the vertical values of 0.05 m (RMS = 0.19 m. However, although the points cloud comparison is the best approach to investigate the absolute or relative correspondence between UAV and TLS methods, the assessment of geomorphic features is usually based on multi-temporal surfaces analysis, where an interpolation process is required. DSMs were therefore generated from UAV and TLS points clouds and vertical absolute accuracies assessed by comparison with a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS survey. The vertical comparison of UAV and TLS DSMs with respect to GNSS measurements pointed out an average distance at cm-level (RMS = 0.011 m. The successive point by point direct comparison between UAV and TLS elevations show a very small average distance, 0.015 m, with RMS = 0.220 m. Larger values are encountered in areas where sudden changes in topography are present. The UAV-based approach was demonstrated to be a straightforward one and accuracy of the vertical dataset

  8. The System Design of a Global Communications System for Military and Commercial use Utilizing High Altitude Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and Terrestrial Local Multipoint Distribution Service (LMDS) Sites

    OpenAIRE

    Banks, Bradley

    2000-01-01

    This thesis proposes the design of the UAV-LMDS communication system for military and commercial use. The UAV-LMDS system is a digital, wireless communication system that provides service using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) flying at 60,000 ft. acting as communication hubs. This thesis provides background information on UAV-LMDS system elements, a financial analysis, theory, link budgets, system component design and implementation issues. To begin the design, we develop link budgets t...

  9. High-Throughput Phenotyping of Plant Height: Comparing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Ground LiDAR Estimates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madec, Simon; Baret, Fred; de Solan, Benoît; Thomas, Samuel; Dutartre, Dan; Jezequel, Stéphane; Hemmerlé, Matthieu; Colombeau, Gallian; Comar, Alexis

    2017-01-01

    The capacity of LiDAR and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) to provide plant height estimates as a high-throughput plant phenotyping trait was explored. An experiment over wheat genotypes conducted under well watered and water stress modalities was conducted. Frequent LiDAR measurements were performed along the growth cycle using a phénomobile unmanned ground vehicle. UAV equipped with a high resolution RGB camera was flying the experiment several times to retrieve the digital surface model from structure from motion techniques. Both techniques provide a 3D dense point cloud from which the plant height can be estimated. Plant height first defined as the z -value for which 99.5% of the points of the dense cloud are below. This provides good consistency with manual measurements of plant height (RMSE = 3.5 cm) while minimizing the variability along each microplot. Results show that LiDAR and structure from motion plant height values are always consistent. However, a slight under-estimation is observed for structure from motion techniques, in relation with the coarser spatial resolution of UAV imagery and the limited penetration capacity of structure from motion as compared to LiDAR. Very high heritability values ( H 2 > 0.90) were found for both techniques when lodging was not present. The dynamics of plant height shows that it carries pertinent information regarding the period and magnitude of the plant stress. Further, the date when the maximum plant height is reached was found to be very heritable ( H 2 > 0.88) and a good proxy of the flowering stage. Finally, the capacity of plant height as a proxy for total above ground biomass and yield is discussed.

  10. Use of Unmanned Aerial Systems to Study Atmospheric Processes During Sea Ice Freeze Up

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Boer, G.; Lawrence, D.; Weibel, D.; Borenstein, S.; Bendure, A.; Solomon, A.; Intrieri, J. M.

    2017-12-01

    In October 2016, a team of scientists deployed to Oliktok Point, Alaska to make atmospheric measurements as part of the Evaluation of Routine Atmospheric Sounding measurements using Unmanned Systems (ERASMUS) and Inaugural Campaigns for ARM Research using Unmanned Systems (ICARUS) campaigns. The deployment included operations using the University of Colorado DataHawk2 UAS. The DataHawk2 was configured to make measurements of atmospheric thermodynamics, wind and surface temperature, providing information on lower tropospheric thermodynamic structure, turbulent surface fluxes, and surface temperature. During this campaign, the team experienced a variety of weather regimes and witnessed the development of near shore sea ice. In this presentation, we will give an overview of the measurements obtained during this time and how they were used to better understand freeze up processes in this coastal environment. Additionally, we will provide insight into how these platforms are being used for evaluation of a fully-coupled sea ice forecast model operated by NOAA's Physical Sciences Division.

  11. Neural network control of a parallel hybrid-electric propulsion system for a small unmanned aerial vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harmon, Frederick G.

    2005-11-01

    Parallel hybrid-electric propulsion systems would be beneficial for small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) used for military, homeland security, and disaster-monitoring missions. The benefits, due to the hybrid and electric-only modes, include increased time-on-station and greater range as compared to electric-powered UAVs and stealth modes not available with gasoline-powered UAVs. This dissertation contributes to the research fields of small unmanned aerial vehicles, hybrid-electric propulsion system control, and intelligent control. A conceptual design of a small UAV with a parallel hybrid-electric propulsion system is provided. The UAV is intended for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions. A conceptual design reveals the trade-offs that must be considered to take advantage of the hybrid-electric propulsion system. The resulting hybrid-electric propulsion system is a two-point design that includes an engine primarily sized for cruise speed and an electric motor and battery pack that are primarily sized for a slower endurance speed. The electric motor provides additional power for take-off, climbing, and acceleration and also serves as a generator during charge-sustaining operation or regeneration. The intelligent control of the hybrid-electric propulsion system is based on an instantaneous optimization algorithm that generates a hyper-plane from the nonlinear efficiency maps for the internal combustion engine, electric motor, and lithium-ion battery pack. The hyper-plane incorporates charge-depletion and charge-sustaining strategies. The optimization algorithm is flexible and allows the operator/user to assign relative importance between the use of gasoline, electricity, and recharging depending on the intended mission. A MATLAB/Simulink model was developed to test the control algorithms. The Cerebellar Model Arithmetic Computer (CMAC) associative memory neural network is applied to the control of the UAVs parallel hybrid

  12. Detection of Catchment-Scale Gully-Affected Areas Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai Liu

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The Chinese Loess Plateau suffers from serious gully erosion induced by natural and human causes. Gully-affected areas detection is the basic work in this region for gully erosion assessment and monitoring. For the first time, an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV was applied to extract gully features in this region. Two typical catchments in Changwu and Ansai were selected to represent loess tableland and loess hilly regions, respectively. A high-powered quadrocopter (md4-1000 equipped with a non-metric camera was used for image acquisition. InPho and MapMatrix were applied for semi-automatic workflow including aerial triangulation and model generation. Based on the stereo-imaging and the ground control points, the highly detailed digital elevation models (DEMs and ortho-mosaics were generated. Subsequently, an object-based approach combined with the random forest classifier was designed to detect gully-affected areas. Two experiments were conducted to investigate the influences of segmentation strategy and feature selection. Results showed that vertical and horizontal root-mean-square errors were below 0.5 and 0.2 m, respectively, which were ideal for the Loess Plateau region. The overall extraction accuracy in Changwu and Ansai achieved was 84.62% and 86.46%, respectively, which indicated the potential of the proposed workflow for extracting gully features. This study demonstrated that UAV can bridge the gap between field measurement and satellite-based remote sensing, obtaining a balance in resolution and efficiency for catchment-scale gully erosion research.

  13. The potential of unmanned aerial systems for sea turtle research and conservation: a review and future directions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rees, Alan F.; Avens, Larisa; Ballorain, Katia; Bevan, Elizabeth; Broderick, Annette C.; Carthy, Raymond R.; Christianen, Marjolijn J. A.; Duclos, Gwénaël; Heithaus, Michael R.; Johnston, David W.; Mangel, Jeffrey C.; Paladino, Frank V.; Pendoley, Kellie; Reina, Richard D.; Robinson, Nathan J.; Ryan, Robert; Sykora-Bodie, Seth T.; Tilley, Dominic; Varela, Miguel R.; Whitman, Elizabeth R.; Whittock, Paul A.; Wibbels, Thane; Godley, Brendan J.

    2018-01-01

    The use of satellite systems and manned aircraft surveys for remote data collection has been shown to be transformative for sea turtle conservation and research by enabling the collection of data on turtles and their habitats over larger areas than can be achieved by surveys on foot or by boat. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones are increasingly being adopted to gather data, at previously unprecedented spatial and temporal resolutions in diverse geographic locations. This easily accessible, low-cost tool is improving existing research methods and enabling novel approaches in marine turtle ecology and conservation. Here we review the diverse ways in which incorporating inexpensive UAVs may reduce costs and field time while improving safety and data quality and quantity over existing methods for studies on turtle nesting, at-sea distribution and behaviour surveys, as well as expanding into new avenues such as surveillance against illegal take. Furthermore, we highlight the impact that high-quality aerial imagery captured by UAVs can have for public outreach and engagement. This technology does not come without challenges. We discuss the potential constraints of these systems within the ethical and legal frameworks which researchers must operate and the difficulties that can result with regard to storage and analysis of large amounts of imagery. We then suggest areas where technological development could further expand the utility of UAVs as data-gathering tools; for example, functioning as downloading nodes for data collected by sensors placed on turtles. Development of methods for the use of UAVs in sea turtle research will serve as case studies for use with other marine and terrestrial taxa.

  14. Potential and Limitations of Low-Cost Unmanned Aerial Systems for Monitoring Altitudinal Vegetation Phenology in the Tropics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, T. S. F.; Torres, R. S.; Morellato, P.

    2017-12-01

    Vegetation phenology is a key component of ecosystem function and biogeochemical cycling, and highly susceptible to climatic change. Phenological knowledge in the tropics is limited by lack of monitoring, traditionally done by laborious direct observation. Ground-based digital cameras can automate daily observations, but also offer limited spatial coverage. Imaging by low-cost Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) combines the fine resolution of ground-based methods with and unprecedented capability for spatial coverage, but challenges remain in producing color-consistent multitemporal images. We evaluated the applicability of multitemporal UAS imaging to monitor phenology in tropical altitudinal grasslands and forests, answering: 1) Can very-high resolution aerial photography from conventional digital cameras be used to reliably monitor vegetative and reproductive phenology? 2) How is UAS monitoring affected by changes in illumination and by sensor physical limitations? We flew imaging missions monthly from Feb-16 to Feb-17, using a UAS equipped with an RGB Canon SX260 camera. Flights were carried between 10am and 4pm, at 120-150m a.g.l., yielding 5-10cm spatial resolution. To compensate illumination changes caused by time of day, season and cloud cover, calibration was attempted using reference targets and empirical models, as well as color space transformations. For vegetative phenological monitoring, multitemporal response was severely affected by changes in illumination conditions, strongly confounding the phenological signal. These variations could not be adequately corrected through calibration due to sensor limitations. For reproductive phenology, the very-high resolution of the acquired imagery allowed discrimination of individual reproductive structures for some species, and its stark colorimetric differences to vegetative structures allowed detection of the reproductive timing on the HSV color space, despite illumination effects. We conclude that reliable

  15. Aerial radiation monitoring around the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant using an unmanned helicopter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanada, Yukihisa; Torii, Tatsuo

    2015-01-01

    The Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011 generated a series of large tsunami that seriously damaged the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP), which resulted in the release of radioactive materials into the environment. To provide further details regarding the distribution of air dose rate and the distribution of radioactive cesium ((134)Cs and (137)Cs) deposition on the ground within a radius of approximately 5 km from the nuclear power plant, we carried out measurements using an unmanned helicopter equipped with a radiation detection system. The distribution of the air dose rate at a height of 1 m above the ground and the radioactive cesium deposition on the ground was calculated. Accordingly, the footprint of radioactive plumes that extended from the FDNPP was illustrated. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. GNSSim: An Open Source GNSS/GPS Framework for Unmanned Aerial Vehicular Network Simulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farha Jahan

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Unmanned systems are of great importance in accomplishing tasks where human lives are at risk. These systems are being deployed in tasks that are time-consuming, expensive or inconclusive if accomplished by human intervention. Design, development and testing of such vehicles using actual hardware could be quite costly and dangerous. Another issue is the limited outdoor usage permitted by Federal Aviation Administration regulations, which makes outdoor testing difficult. An optimal solution to this problem is to have a simulation environment where different operational scenarios, newly developed models, etc., can be studied. In this paper, we propose GNSSim, a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS simulation framework. We demonstrate its effectiveness by integrating it with UAVSim. This allows users to experiment easily by adjusting different satellite as well as UAV parameters. Related tests and evidence of the correctness of the implementation are presented.

  17. Autonomous Cargo Transport System for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, using Visual Servoing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noah Kuntz

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the design and testing of a system for autonomous tracking, pickup, and delivery of cargo via an unmanned helicopter. The tracking system uses a visual servoing algorithm and is tested using open loop velocity control of a six degree of freedom gantry system with a camera mounted via a pan-tilt unit on the end effecter. The pickup system uses vision to direct the camera pan tilt unit to track the target, and uses a hook attached to a second pan tilt unit to pick up the cargo. The ability of the pickup system to hook a target is tested by mounting it on the Systems Integrated Sensor Test Rig gantry system while recorded helicopter velocities are played back by the test rig.

  18. Diagnosis of Wing Icing Through Lift and Drag Coefficient Change Detection for Small Unmanned Aircraft

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Kim Lynge; Blanke, Mogens; Johansen, Tor Arne

    2015-01-01

    This paper address the issue of structural change, caused by ice accretion, on UAVs by utilising a Neyman Pearson (NP) based statistical change detection approach, for the identification of structural changes of fixed wing UAV airfoils. A structural analysis is performed on the nonlinear aircraft...

  19. Target tracking control and semi-physical simulation of Qball-X4 quad-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lu Liu

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In this article, a set of integrated ground target tracking flight system has been proposed based on the Qball-X4 quad-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle hardware platform and the QuaRC software platform. Both of the hardware and software platforms are developed by Quanser Company, Canada. The proposed tracking and positioning algorithm could be divided into several stages. First, a tracker is developed based on an optical flow method to track the target; and then, in order to improve the reliability of tracking algorithm and also help in retrieving the lost target, a cascade target detector is developed; meanwhile, a model updated scheme aiming at some possible errors in tracking and detecting process is presented based on Positive-Negative (P-N learning system; at last, a monocular visual positioning system is designed based on the corresponding navigation message. In addition, the effectiveness of the proposed flight control system is verified by both simulation and hardware-in-loop system results in several tracking flight tests.

  20. Monitoring the Invasion of Spartina alterniflora Using Very High Resolution Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Imagery in Beihai, Guangxi (China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huawei Wan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Spartina alterniflora was introduced to Beihai, Guangxi (China, for ecological engineering purposes in 1979. However, the exceptional adaptability and reproductive ability of this species have led to its extensive dispersal into other habitats, where it has had a negative impact on native species and threatens the local mangrove and mudflat ecosystems. To obtain the distribution and spread of Spartina alterniflora, we collected HJ-1 CCD imagery from 2009 and 2011 and very high resolution (VHR imagery from the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV. The invasion area of Spartina alterniflora was 357.2 ha in 2011, which increased by 19.07% compared with the area in 2009. A field survey was conducted for verification and the total accuracy was 94.0%. The results of this paper show that VHR imagery can provide details on distribution, progress, and early detection of Spartina alterniflora invasion. OBIA, object based image analysis for remote sensing (RS detection method, can enable control measures to be more effective, accurate, and less expensive than a field survey of the invasive population.

  1. Development of Hardware-in-the-Loop Simulation Based on Gazebo and Pixhawk for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Khoa Dang; Ha, Cheolkeun

    2018-04-01

    Hardware-in-the-loop simulation (HILS) is well known as an effective approach in the design of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) systems, enabling engineers to test the control algorithm on a hardware board with a UAV model on the software. Performance of HILS is determined by performances of the control algorithm, the developed model, and the signal transfer between the hardware and software. The result of HILS is degraded if any signal could not be transferred to the correct destination. Therefore, this paper aims to develop a middleware software to secure communications in HILS system for testing the operation of a quad-rotor UAV. In our HILS, the Gazebo software is used to generate a nonlinear six-degrees-of-freedom (6DOF) model, sensor model, and 3D visualization for the quad-rotor UAV. Meanwhile, the flight control algorithm is designed and implemented on the Pixhawk hardware. New middleware software, referred to as the control application software (CAS), is proposed to ensure the connection and data transfer between Gazebo and Pixhawk using the multithread structure in Qt Creator. The CAS provides a graphical user interface (GUI), allowing the user to monitor the status of packet transfer, and perform the flight control commands and the real-time tuning parameters for the quad-rotor UAV. Numerical implementations have been performed to prove the effectiveness of the middleware software CAS suggested in this paper.

  2. Algorithm for automatic image dodging of unmanned aerial vehicle images using two-dimensional radiometric spatial attributes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wenzhuo; Sun, Kaimin; Li, Deren; Bai, Ting

    2016-07-01

    Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) remote sensing technology has come into wide use in recent years. The poor stability of the UAV platform, however, produces more inconsistencies in hue and illumination among UAV images than other more stable platforms. Image dodging is a process used to reduce these inconsistencies caused by different imaging conditions. We propose an algorithm for automatic image dodging of UAV images using two-dimensional radiometric spatial attributes. We use object-level image smoothing to smooth foreground objects in images and acquire an overall reference background image by relative radiometric correction. We apply the Contourlet transform to separate high- and low-frequency sections for every single image, and replace the low-frequency section with the low-frequency section extracted from the corresponding region in the overall reference background image. We apply the inverse Contourlet transform to reconstruct the final dodged images. In this process, a single image must be split into reasonable block sizes with overlaps due to large pixel size. Experimental mosaic results show that our proposed method reduces the uneven distribution of hue and illumination. Moreover, it effectively eliminates dark-bright interstrip effects caused by shadows and vignetting in UAV images while maximally protecting image texture information.

  3. Measurements of the Temperature Structure-Function Parameters with a Small Unmanned Aerial System Compared with a Sodar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonin, Timothy A.; Goines, David C.; Scott, Aaron K.; Wainwright, Charlotte E.; Gibbs, Jeremy A.; Chilson, Phillip B.

    2015-06-01

    The structure function is often used to quantify the intensity of spatial inhomogeneities within turbulent flows. Here, the Small Multifunction Research and Teaching Sonde (SMARTSonde), an unmanned aerial system, is used to measure horizontal variations in temperature and to calculate the structure function of temperature at various heights for a range of separation distances. A method for correcting for the advection of turbulence in the calculation of the structure function is discussed. This advection correction improves the data quality, particularly when wind speeds are high. The temperature structure-function parameter can be calculated from the structure function of temperature. Two case studies from which the SMARTSonde was able to take measurements used to derive at several heights during multiple consecutive flights are discussed and compared with sodar measurements, from which is directly related to return power. Profiles of from both the sodar and SMARTSonde from an afternoon case exhibited generally good agreement. However, the profiles agreed poorly for a morning case. The discrepancies are partially attributed to different averaging times for the two instruments in a rapidly evolving environment, and the measurement errors associated with the SMARTSonde sampling within the stable boundary layer.

  4. High-Throughput 3-D Monitoring of Agricultural-Tree Plantations with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Sánchez, Jorge; López-Granados, Francisca; Serrano, Nicolás; Arquero, Octavio; Peña, José M.

    2015-01-01

    The geometric features of agricultural trees such as canopy area, tree height and crown volume provide useful information about plantation status and crop production. However, these variables are mostly estimated after a time-consuming and hard field work and applying equations that treat the trees as geometric solids, which produce inconsistent results. As an alternative, this work presents an innovative procedure for computing the 3-dimensional geometric features of individual trees and tree-rows by applying two consecutive phases: 1) generation of Digital Surface Models with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technology and 2) use of object-based image analysis techniques. Our UAV-based procedure produced successful results both in single-tree and in tree-row plantations, reporting up to 97% accuracy on area quantification and minimal deviations compared to in-field estimations of tree heights and crown volumes. The maps generated could be used to understand the linkages between tree grown and field-related factors or to optimize crop management operations in the context of precision agriculture with relevant agro-environmental implications. PMID:26107174

  5. Solid oxide fuel cell/gas turbine hybrid system analysis for high-altitude long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aguiar, P.; Brandon, N.P. [Department of Earth Science and Engineering, Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ (United Kingdom); Brett, D.J.L. [The Centre for CO{sub 2} Technology, University College London, London WC1E 7JE (United Kingdom)

    2008-12-15

    High-altitude long-endurance (HALE) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are ideally suited to provide surveillance, remote sensing and communication relay capabilities for both military and civilian applications. HALE UAVs typically cruise at an altitude between 15 km and 20 km, travelling at low speed and circling specific areas of interest. The work reported aims to investigate alternative power system architectures that enable an efficiency increase and consequent fuel consumption reduction to realise a one-week endurance target. Specifically, the application of a solid oxide fuel cell combined with a gas turbine is considered; with different system configurations modelled with a view to maximising overall efficiency. It is found that modularising the fuel cell capacity into a number of discrete stacks such that the fuel is distributed in parallel and air is fed in series results in an increased system efficiency compared with a single-stack design. An overall system efficiency of 66.3% (LHV) when operating on hydrogen is predicted for a three-stack system. (author)

  6. High-Throughput 3-D Monitoring of Agricultural-Tree Plantations with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Technology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Sánchez, Jorge; López-Granados, Francisca; Serrano, Nicolás; Arquero, Octavio; Peña, José M

    2015-01-01

    The geometric features of agricultural trees such as canopy area, tree height and crown volume provide useful information about plantation status and crop production. However, these variables are mostly estimated after a time-consuming and hard field work and applying equations that treat the trees as geometric solids, which produce inconsistent results. As an alternative, this work presents an innovative procedure for computing the 3-dimensional geometric features of individual trees and tree-rows by applying two consecutive phases: 1) generation of Digital Surface Models with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technology and 2) use of object-based image analysis techniques. Our UAV-based procedure produced successful results both in single-tree and in tree-row plantations, reporting up to 97% accuracy on area quantification and minimal deviations compared to in-field estimations of tree heights and crown volumes. The maps generated could be used to understand the linkages between tree grown and field-related factors or to optimize crop management operations in the context of precision agriculture with relevant agro-environmental implications.

  7. Monitoring of the Nirano Mud Volcanoes Regional Natural Reserve (North Italy using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Terrestrial Laser Scanning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tommaso Santagata

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available In the last years, measurement instruments and techniques for three-dimensional mapping as Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS and photogrammetry from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV are being increasingly used to monitor topographic changes on particular geological features such as volcanic areas. In addition, topographic instruments such as Total Station Theodolite (TST and GPS receivers can be used to obtain precise elevation and coordinate position data measuring fixed points both inside and outside the area interested by volcanic activity. In this study, the integration of these instruments has helped to obtain several types of data to monitor both the variations in heights of extrusive edifices within the mud volcano field of the Nirano Regional Natural Reserve (Northern Italy, as well as to study the mechanism of micro-fracturing and the evolution of mud flows and volcanic cones with very high accuracy by 3D point clouds surface analysis and digitization. The large amount of data detected were also analysed to derive morphological information about mud-cracks and surface roughness. This contribution is focused on methods and analysis performed using measurement instruments as TLS and UAV to study and monitoring the main volcanic complexes of the Nirano Natural Reserve as part of a research project, which also involves other studies addressing gases and acoustic measurements, mineralogical and paleontological analysis, organized by the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in collaboration with the Municipality of Fiorano Modenese.

  8. Nonlinear automatic landing control of unmanned aerial vehicles on moving platforms via a 3D laser radar

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hervas, Jaime Rubio; Tang, Hui [School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, 639798 (Singapore); Reyhanoglu, Mahmut [Physical Sciences Department, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, FL 32114 (United States)

    2014-12-10

    This paper presents a motion tracking and control system for automatically landing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) on an oscillating platform using Laser Radar (LADAR) observations. The system itself is assumed to be mounted on a ship deck. A full nonlinear mathematical model is first introduced for the UAV. The ship motion is characterized by a Fourier transform based method which includes a realistic characterization of the sea waves. LADAR observation models are introduced and an algorithm to process those observations for yielding the relative state between the vessel and the UAV is presented, from which the UAV's state relative to an inertial frame can be obtained and used for feedback purposes. A sliding mode control algorithm is derived for tracking a landing trajectory defined by a set of desired waypoints. An extended Kalman filter (EKF) is proposed to account for process and observation noises in the design of a state estimator. The effectiveness of the control algorithm is illustrated through a simulation example.

  9. The Development of an Open Hardware and Software System Onboard Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to Monitor Concentrated Solar Power Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesas-Carrascosa, Francisco Javier; Verdú Santano, Daniel; Pérez Porras, Fernando; Meroño-Larriva, José Emilio; García-Ferrer, Alfonso

    2017-06-08

    Concentrated solar power (CSP) plants are increasingly gaining interest as a source of renewable energy. These plants face several technical problems and the inspection of components such as absorber tubes in parabolic trough concentrators (PTC), which are widely deployed, is necessary to guarantee plant efficiency. This article presents a system for real-time industrial inspection of CSP plants using low-cost, open-source components in conjunction with a thermographic sensor and an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). The system, available in open-source hardware and software, is designed to be employed independently of the type of device used for inspection (laptop, smartphone, tablet or smartglasses) and its operating system. Several UAV flight missions were programmed as follows: flight altitudes at 20, 40, 60, 80, 100 and 120 m above ground level; and three cruising speeds: 5, 7 and 10 m/s. These settings were chosen and analyzed in order to optimize inspection time. The results indicate that it is possible to perform inspections by an UAV in real time at CSP plants as a means of detecting anomalous absorber tubes and improving the effectiveness of methodologies currently being utilized. Moreover, aside from thermographic sensors, this contribution can be applied to other sensors and can be used in a broad range of applications where real-time georeferenced data visualization is necessary.

  10. Towards Real-time, On-board, Hardware-Supported Sensor and Software Health Management for Unmanned Aerial Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumann, Johann; Rozier, Kristin Y.; Reinbacher, Thomas; Mengshoel, Ole J.; Mbaya, Timmy; Ippolito, Corey

    2013-01-01

    Unmanned aerial systems (UASs) can only be deployed if they can effectively complete their missions and respond to failures and uncertain environmental conditions while maintaining safety with respect to other aircraft as well as humans and property on the ground. In this paper, we design a real-time, on-board system health management (SHM) capability to continuously monitor sensors, software, and hardware components for detection and diagnosis of failures and violations of safety or performance rules during the flight of a UAS. Our approach to SHM is three-pronged, providing: (1) real-time monitoring of sensor and/or software signals; (2) signal analysis, preprocessing, and advanced on the- fly temporal and Bayesian probabilistic fault diagnosis; (3) an unobtrusive, lightweight, read-only, low-power realization using Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) that avoids overburdening limited computing resources or costly re-certification of flight software due to instrumentation. Our implementation provides a novel approach of combining modular building blocks, integrating responsive runtime monitoring of temporal logic system safety requirements with model-based diagnosis and Bayesian network-based probabilistic analysis. We demonstrate this approach using actual data from the NASA Swift UAS, an experimental all-electric aircraft.

  11. Nonlinear automatic landing control of unmanned aerial vehicles on moving platforms via a 3D laser radar

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hervas, Jaime Rubio; Tang, Hui; Reyhanoglu, Mahmut

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents a motion tracking and control system for automatically landing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) on an oscillating platform using Laser Radar (LADAR) observations. The system itself is assumed to be mounted on a ship deck. A full nonlinear mathematical model is first introduced for the UAV. The ship motion is characterized by a Fourier transform based method which includes a realistic characterization of the sea waves. LADAR observation models are introduced and an algorithm to process those observations for yielding the relative state between the vessel and the UAV is presented, from which the UAV's state relative to an inertial frame can be obtained and used for feedback purposes. A sliding mode control algorithm is derived for tracking a landing trajectory defined by a set of desired waypoints. An extended Kalman filter (EKF) is proposed to account for process and observation noises in the design of a state estimator. The effectiveness of the control algorithm is illustrated through a simulation example

  12. Land Surface Reflectance Retrieval from Hyperspectral Data Collected by an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle over the Baotou Test Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan, Si-Bo; Li, Zhao-Liang; Tang, Bo-Hui; Wu, Hua; Ma, Lingling; Zhao, Enyu; Li, Chuanrong

    2013-01-01

    To evaluate the in-flight performance of a new hyperspectral sensor onboard an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV-HYPER), a comprehensive field campaign was conducted over the Baotou test site in China on 3 September 2011. Several portable reference reflectance targets were deployed across the test site. The radiometric performance of the UAV-HYPER sensor was assessed in terms of signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and the calibration accuracy. The SNR of the different bands of the UAV-HYPER sensor was estimated to be between approximately 5 and 120 over the homogeneous targets, and the linear response of the apparent reflectance ranged from approximately 0.05 to 0.45. The uniform and non-uniform Lambertian land surface reflectance was retrieved and validated using in situ measurements, with root mean square error (RMSE) of approximately 0.01–0.07 and relative RMSE of approximately 5%–12%. There were small discrepancies between the retrieved uniform and non-uniform Lambertian land surface reflectance over the homogeneous targets and under low aerosol optical depth (AOD) conditions (AOD = 0.18). However, these discrepancies must be taken into account when adjacent pixels had large land surface reflectance contrast and under high AOD conditions (e.g. AOD = 1.0). PMID:23785513

  13. Analysis of Unmanned Aerial System-Based CIR Images in Forestry—A New Perspective to Monitor Pest Infestation Levels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Rudolf Karl Lehmann

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The detection of pest infestation is an important aspect of forest management. In the case of the oak splendour beetle (Agrilus biguttatus infestation, the affected oaks (Quercus sp. show high levels of defoliation and altered canopy reflection signature. These critical features can be identified in high-resolution colour infrared (CIR images of the tree crown and branches level captured by Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS. In this study, we used a small UAS equipped with a compact digital camera which has been calibrated and modified to record not only the visual but also the near infrared reflection (NIR of possibly infested oaks. The flight campaigns were realized in August 2013, covering two study sites which are located in a rural area in western Germany. Both locations represent small-scale, privately managed commercial forests in which oaks are economically valuable species. Our workflow includes the CIR/NIR image acquisition, mosaicking, georeferencing and pixel-based image enhancement followed by object-based image classification techniques. A modified Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVImod derived classification was used to distinguish between five vegetation health classes, i.e., infested, healthy or dead branches, other vegetation and canopy gaps. We achieved an overall Kappa Index of Agreement (KIA   of 0.81 and 0.77 for each study site, respectively. This approach offers a low-cost alternative to private forest owners who pursue a sustainable management strategy.

  14. Urban Flood Mapping Based on Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Remote Sensing and Random Forest Classifier—A Case of Yuyao, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quanlong Feng

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Flooding is a severe natural hazard, which poses a great threat to human life and property, especially in densely-populated urban areas. As one of the fastest developing fields in remote sensing applications, an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV can provide high-resolution data with a great potential for fast and accurate detection of inundated areas under complex urban landscapes. In this research, optical imagery was acquired by a mini-UAV to monitor the serious urban waterlogging in Yuyao, China. Texture features derived from gray-level co-occurrence matrix were included to increase the separability of different ground objects. A Random Forest classifier, consisting of 200 decision trees, was used to extract flooded areas in the spectral-textural feature space. Confusion matrix was used to assess the accuracy of the proposed method. Results indicated the following: (1 Random Forest showed good performance in urban flood mapping with an overall accuracy of 87.3% and a Kappa coefficient of 0.746; (2 the inclusion of texture features improved classification accuracy significantly; (3 Random Forest outperformed maximum likelihood and artificial neural network, and showed a similar performance to support vector machine. The results demonstrate that UAV can provide an ideal platform for urban flood monitoring and the proposed method shows great capability for the accurate extraction of inundated areas.

  15. Accuracy and Optimal Altitude for Physical Habitat Assessment (PHA of Stream Environments Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ângela Maria Klein Hentz

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Physical Habitat Assessments (PHA are useful to characterize and monitor stream and river habitat conditions, but can be costly and time-consuming. Alternative methods for data collection are getting attention, such as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV. The objective of this work was to evaluate the accuracy of UAV-based remote sensing techniques relative to ground-based PHA measurements, and to determine the influence of flight altitude on those accuracies. A UAV quadcopter equipped with an RGB camera was flown at the altitudes of 30.5 m, 61.0 m, 91.5 m and 122.0 m, and the metrics wetted width (Ww, bankfull width (Wbf and distance to water (Dw were compared to field PHA. The UAV-PHA method generated similar values to observed PHA values, but underestimated distance to water, and overestimated wetted width. Bankfull width provided the largest RMSE (25–28%. No systematic error patterns were observed considering the different flight altitudes, and results indicated that all flight altitudes investigated can be reliably used for PHA measurements. However, UAV flight at 61 m provided the most accurate results (CI = 0.05 considering all metrics. All UAV parameters over all altitudes showed significant correlation with observed PHA data, validating the use of UAV-based remote sensing for PHA.

  16. Quantifying Efficacy and Limits of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV Technology for Weed Seedling Detection as Affected by Sensor Resolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José M. Peña

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available In order to optimize the application of herbicides in weed-crop systems, accurate and timely weed maps of the crop-field are required. In this context, this investigation quantified the efficacy and limitations of remote images collected with an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV for early detection of weed seedlings. The ability to discriminate weeds was significantly affected by the imagery spectral (type of camera, spatial (flight altitude and temporal (the date of the study resolutions. The colour-infrared images captured at 40 m and 50 days after sowing (date 2, when plants had 5–6 true leaves, had the highest weed detection accuracy (up to 91%. At this flight altitude, the images captured before date 2 had slightly better results than the images captured later. However, this trend changed in the visible-light images captured at 60 m and higher, which had notably better results on date 3 (57 days after sowing because of the larger size of the weed plants. Our results showed the requirements on spectral and spatial resolutions needed to generate a suitable weed map early in the growing season, as well as the best moment for the UAV image acquisition, with the ultimate objective of applying site-specific weed management operations.

  17. Quantifying efficacy and limits of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology for weed seedling detection as affected by sensor resolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña, José M; Torres-Sánchez, Jorge; Serrano-Pérez, Angélica; de Castro, Ana I; López-Granados, Francisca

    2015-03-06

    In order to optimize the application of herbicides in weed-crop systems, accurate and timely weed maps of the crop-field are required. In this context, this investigation quantified the efficacy and limitations of remote images collected with an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) for early detection of weed seedlings. The ability to discriminate weeds was significantly affected by the imagery spectral (type of camera), spatial (flight altitude) and temporal (the date of the study) resolutions. The colour-infrared images captured at 40 m and 50 days after sowing (date 2), when plants had 5-6 true leaves, had the highest weed detection accuracy (up to 91%). At this flight altitude, the images captured before date 2 had slightly better results than the images captured later. However, this trend changed in the visible-light images captured at 60 m and higher, which had notably better results on date 3 (57 days after sowing) because of the larger size of the weed plants. Our results showed the requirements on spectral and spatial resolutions needed to generate a suitable weed map early in the growing season, as well as the best moment for the UAV image acquisition, with the ultimate objective of applying site-specific weed management operations.

  18. A Space-Time Network-Based Modeling Framework for Dynamic Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Routing in Traffic Incident Monitoring Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jisheng Zhang

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available It is essential for transportation management centers to equip and manage a network of fixed and mobile sensors in order to quickly detect traffic incidents and further monitor the related impact areas, especially for high-impact accidents with dramatic traffic congestion propagation. As emerging small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs start to have a more flexible regulation environment, it is critically important to fully explore the potential for of using UAVs for monitoring recurring and non-recurring traffic conditions and special events on transportation networks. This paper presents a space-time network- based modeling framework for integrated fixed and mobile sensor networks, in order to provide a rapid and systematic road traffic monitoring mechanism. By constructing a discretized space-time network to characterize not only the speed for UAVs but also the time-sensitive impact areas of traffic congestion, we formulate the problem as a linear integer programming model to minimize the detection delay cost and operational cost, subject to feasible flying route constraints. A Lagrangian relaxation solution framework is developed to decompose the original complex problem into a series of computationally efficient time-dependent and least cost path finding sub-problems. Several examples are used to demonstrate the results of proposed models in UAVs’ route planning for small and medium-scale networks.

  19. High-Throughput 3-D Monitoring of Agricultural-Tree Plantations with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV Technology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Torres-Sánchez

    Full Text Available The geometric features of agricultural trees such as canopy area, tree height and crown volume provide useful information about plantation status and crop production. However, these variables are mostly estimated after a time-consuming and hard field work and applying equations that treat the trees as geometric solids, which produce inconsistent results. As an alternative, this work presents an innovative procedure for computing the 3-dimensional geometric features of individual trees and tree-rows by applying two consecutive phases: 1 generation of Digital Surface Models with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV technology and 2 use of object-based image analysis techniques. Our UAV-based procedure produced successful results both in single-tree and in tree-row plantations, reporting up to 97% accuracy on area quantification and minimal deviations compared to in-field estimations of tree heights and crown volumes. The maps generated could be used to understand the linkages between tree grown and field-related factors or to optimize crop management operations in the context of precision agriculture with relevant agro-environmental implications.

  20. In-flight icing on unmanned aerial vehicle and its aerodynamic penalties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szilder, K.; Yuan, W.

    2017-06-01

    A numerical prediction of ice accretion on HQ309, SD7032, and SD7037 airfoils and its aerodynamic penalties is described. Ice accretion prediction on a three-dimensional (3D) swept wing is also presented. In addition to airflow and drop trajectory solvers, NRC's (National Research Council) original, 3D, morphogenetic icing modeling approach has been used. The analysis was performed for a wide range of icing conditions identi¦ed in the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) Appendix C icing envelope. They cover a range of drop sizes, air temperatures, and liquid water contents. For selected icing conditions, the resulting decrease in lift and increase in drag have been calculated.