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Navigation and Guidance System Architectures for Small Unmanned Aircraft Applications

Roberto Sabatini; Celia Bartel; Anish Kaharkar; Tesheen Shaid; Subramanian Ramasamy

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    "description": "<p>Two multisensor system architectures for navigation<br>\nand guidance of small Unmanned Aircraft (UA) are presented and<br>\ncompared. The main objective of our research is to design a compact,<br>\nlight and relatively inexpensive system capable of providing the<br>\nrequired navigation performance in all phases of flight of small UA,<br>\nwith a special focus on precision approach and landing, where Vision<br>\nBased Navigation (VBN) techniques can be fully exploited in a<br>\nmultisensor integrated architecture. Various existing techniques for<br>\nVBN are compared and the Appearance-Based Navigation (ABN)<br>\napproach is selected for implementation. Feature extraction and<br>\noptical flow techniques are employed to estimate flight parameters<br>\nsuch as roll angle, pitch angle, deviation from the runway centreline<br>\nand body rates. Additionally, we address the possible synergies of<br>\nVBN, Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) and MEMS-IMU<br>\n(Micro-Electromechanical System Inertial Measurement Unit)<br>\nsensors, and the use of Aircraft Dynamics Model (ADM) to provide<br>\nadditional information suitable to compensate for the shortcomings of<br>\nVBN and MEMS-IMU sensors in high-dynamics attitude<br>\ndetermination tasks. An Extended Kalman Filter (EKF) is developed<br>\nto fuse the information provided by the different sensors and to<br>\nprovide estimates of position, velocity and attitude of the UA<br>\nplatform in real-time. The key mathematical models describing the<br>\ntwo architectures i.e., VBN-IMU-GNSS (VIG) system and VIGADM<br>\n(VIGA) system are introduced. The first architecture uses VBN<br>\nand GNSS to augment the MEMS-IMU. The second mode also<br>\nincludes the ADM to provide augmentation of the attitude channel.<br>\nSimulation of these two modes is carried out and the performances of<br>\nthe two schemes are compared in a small UA integration scheme (i.e.,<br>\nAEROSONDE UA platform) exploring a representative cross-section<br>\nof this UA operational flight envelope, including high dynamics<br>\nmanoeuvres and CAT-I to CAT-III precision approach tasks.<br>\nSimulation of the first system architecture (i.e., VIG system) shows<br>\nthat the integrated system can reach position, velocity and attitude<br>\naccuracies compatible with the Required Navigation Performance<br>\n(RNP) requirements. Simulation of the VIGA system also shows<br>\npromising results since the achieved attitude accuracy is higher using<br>\nthe VBN-IMU-ADM than using VBN-IMU only. A comparison of<br>\nVIG and VIGA system is also performed and it shows that the<br>\nposition and attitude accuracy of the proposed VIG and VIGA<br>\nsystems are both compatible with the RNP specified in the various<br>\nUA flight phases, including precision approach down to CAT-II.</p>", 
    "language": "eng", 
    "title": "Navigation and Guidance System Architectures for Small Unmanned Aircraft Applications", 
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      "id": "CC-BY-4.0"
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    "references": [
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European\nNavigation Conf., Gdansk, Poland, 2012.\n[31] R. Sabatini, L. Rodr\u00edguezSalazar, A. Kaharkar, C. Bartel, and T. Shaid,\n\"Satellite Navigation Data Processing for Attitude Determination and\nControl of Unmanned Air Vehicles,\" in Proc. European Navigation\nConf., Gdansk, Poland, 2012.\n[32] R. Sabatini, C. Bartel, A. Kaharkar, T. Shaid, L. Rodr\u00edguezSalazar, and\nD. Zammit-Mangion, \"Low-Cost Navigation and Guidance Systems for\nUnmanned Aerial Vehicles \u2013 Part 2: Attitude Determination and\nControl,\" Annual of Navigation, vol. 20, pp. 97-126, 2013.\n[33] R. Sabatini, S. Ramasamy, A. Gardi, and L. Rodr\u00edguezSalazar, \"Lowcost\nSensors Data Fusion for Small Size Unmanned Aerial Vehicles\nNavigation and Guidance,\"International Journal of Unmanned Systems\nEngineering, vol. 1, no. 3, pp. 16-47, 2013.\n[34] R. Sabatini, A. Kaharkar, C. Bartel, and T. 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Hill, \"A Novel GNSS Integrity\nAugmentation System for Civil and Military Aircraft,\" International\nJournal of Mechanical, Industrial Science and Engineering, vol. 7, no.\n12, pp. 1433-1449. International Science Index 84, 2013.\n[40] R. Sabatini, T. Moore, and C. Hill, \"A New Avionics Based GNSS\nIntegrity Augmentation System: Part 2 \u2013 Integrity Flags,\" Journal of\nNavigation, vol. 66, no. 4, pp. 511-522, 2013.\n[41] R. Sabatini, T. Moore, and C. Hill, \"A New Avionics Based GNSS\nIntegrity Augmentation System: Part 1 \u2013 Fundamentals,\" Journal of\nNavigation, vol. 66, no. 3, pp. 363-383, 2013.\n[42] R. Sabatini, T. Moore, and C. Hill, \"Avionics Based GNSS Integrity\nAugmentation for Mission- and Safety-Critical Applications,\" in Proc.\n25th International Technical Meeting of the Satellite Division of the\nInstitute of Navigation: ION GNSS-2012, Nashville, Tennessee,\nSeptember 2012."
    "keywords": [
      "Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS)", 
      "Lowcost\nNavigation Sensors", 
      "MEMS Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU)", 
      "Unmanned Aerial Vehicle", 
      "Vision Based Navigation."
    "publication_date": "2014-04-01", 
    "creators": [
        "name": "Roberto Sabatini"
        "name": "Celia Bartel"
        "name": "Anish Kaharkar"
        "name": "Tesheen Shaid"
        "name": "Subramanian Ramasamy"
    "access_right": "open", 
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      "title": "Journal article"
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        "scheme": "doi", 
        "identifier": "10.5281/zenodo.1092254", 
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