AI Seminar

Open-Source Flight Management and Its Application to the Flying Fish UAS

Ella Atkins

Associate Professor, Department of Aerospace Engineering
University of Michigan
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
4:00pm - 5:30pm
Stained-Glass Conference Room (3725 Beyster Bldg.)

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About the Event

A student/faculty team in the University of Michigan Aerospace Engineering department has developed an open-source flight management system (FMS) to support autonomous and semi-autonomous unmanned air system (UAS) flight. I will overview the fundamental design and current implementation, as well as efforts to extend decision-making capabilities beyond the guidance, navigation, and control systems required to execute waypoint-based flight plans. Emphasis will be placed on the potential to use AI technologies for long-endurance, highly-complex mission scenarios with no ground-based supervision. The Flying Fish unmanned aerial system, the first beneficiary of the UM flight management software, is designed to perform persistent surveillance on the open ocean by gathering data as a drifting surface buoy and periodically repositioning via self-initiated flight. Flying Fish maintains a preset watch area, defined by center coordinates and a radius, through autonomous flight/drift cycles. I will describe the Flying Fish mission and multi-mode guidance and control system that enable fully-autonomous flight operations. I will present results from a series of flight tests conducted over the past two years and will describe ongoing efforts to extend software "intelligence" to the extent necessary to support fully-autonomous overnight deployment planned for July 2009.

Additional Information

Sponsor(s): Toyota AI Seminar Series

Open to: Public