Curtiss, H. C., Jr.; Sumantran, V.
The stability and control characteristics of an airship equipped with lifting rotors to provide a modest VTOL capability are discussed. The rotors are used for control and maneuvering in near-hovering flight. Configurations with two, three, and four lifting rotors are examined and compared with respect to control capabilities and dynamic response characteristics. Linearized models of the dynamics are employed for this study. A new approach to the prediction of rotor derivatives for operation near zero thrust in hover is presented. It is found that all three configurations have similar control and response characteristics. The responses are characterized by long time constants and low levels of angular damping.
Goller, Benjamin; Altshuler, Douglas L.
Relatively little is known about how sensory information is used for controlling flight in birds. A powerful method is to immerse an animal in a dynamic virtual reality environment to examine behavioral responses. Here, we investigated the role of vision during free-flight hovering in hummingbirds to determine how optic flow—image movement across the retina—is used to control body position. We filmed hummingbirds hovering in front of a projection screen with the prediction that projecting moving patterns would disrupt hovering stability but stationary patterns would allow the hummingbird to stabilize position. When hovering in the presence of moving gratings and spirals, hummingbirds lost positional stability and responded to the specific orientation of the moving visual stimulus. There was no loss of stability with stationary versions of the same stimulus patterns. When exposed to a single stimulus many times or to a weakened stimulus that combined a moving spiral with a stationary checkerboard, the response to looming motion declined. However, even minimal visual motion was sufficient to cause a loss of positional stability despite prominent stationary features. Collectively, these experiments demonstrate that hummingbirds control hovering position by stabilizing motions in their visual field. The high sensitivity and persistence of this disruptive response is surprising, given that the hummingbird brain is highly specialized for sensory processing and spatial mapping, providing other potential mechanisms for controlling position. PMID:25489117
This video collage provides several views of the robotic lander prototype during its second free flight test. The lander is captured in flight from overhead and side mounted cameras in high definit...
Sun, Mao; Wang, Ji Kang
The longitudinal stabilization control of a hovering model insect was studied using the method of computational fluid dynamics to compute the stability and control derivatives, and the techniques of eigenvalue and eigenvector analysis and modal decomposition, for solving the equations of motion (morphological and certain kinematical data of hoverflies were used for the model insect). The model insect has the same three natural modes of motion as those reported recently for a hovering bumblebee: one unstable oscillatory mode, one stable fast subsidence mode and one stable slow subsidence mode. Controllability analysis shows that although unstable, the flight is controllable. For stable hovering, the unstable oscillatory mode needs to be stabilized and the slow subsidence mode needs stability augmentation. The former can be accomplished by feeding back pitch attitude, pitch rate and horizontal velocity to produce delta[symbol: see text] or deltaalpha(2); the latter by feeding back vertical velocity to produce deltaPhi or deltaalpha(1) (deltaPhi, delta[symbol: see text], deltaalpha(1) and deltaalpha(2) denote control inputs: deltaPhi and delta[symbol: see text] represent changes in stroke amplitude and mean stroke angle, respectively; deltaalpha(1) represents an equal change whilst deltaalpha(2) a differential change in the geometrical angles of attack of the downstroke and upstroke).
Wu, Di; Yeo, Khoon Seng; Lim, Tee Tai; Fluid lab, Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore Team
In this paper we present the computational fluid dynamics study of three-dimensional flow field around a free hovering fruit fly integrated with unsteady FSI analysis and the adaptive flight control system for the first time. The FSI model being specified for fruitfly hovering is achieved by coupling a structural problem based on Newton's second law with a rigorous CFD solver concerning generalized finite difference method. In contrast to the previous hovering flight research, the wing motion employed here is not acquired from experimental data but governed by our proposed control systems. Two types of hovering control strategies i.e. stroke plane adjustment mode and paddling mode are explored, capable of generating the fixed body position and orientation characteristic of hovering flight. Hovering flight associated with multiple wing kinematics and body orientations are shown as well, indicating the means by which fruitfly actually maintains hovering may have considerable freedom and therefore might be influenced by many other factors beyond the physical and aerodynamic requirements. Additionally, both the near- and far-field flow and vortex structure agree well with the results from other researchers, demonstrating the reliability of our current model.
Johnson, W.; Chopra, I.
The influence of the rotor blowing coefficient on the calculated roots of the longitudinal and lateral motion was examined for a range of values of the rotor lift and the blade flap frequency. The control characteristics of a helicopter with a circulation controlled rotor are discussed. The principal effect of the blowing is a reduction in the rotor speed stability derivative. Above a critical level of blowing coefficient, which depends on the flap frequency and rotor lift, negative speed stability is produced and the dynamic characteristics of the helicopter are radically altered.
In this work, we show how to computerize a helicopter to fly attitude axes controlled hover flight without the assistance of a pilot and without ever crashing. We start by developing a helicopter research test bed system including all hardware, software, and means for testing and training the helicopter to fly by computer. We select a Remote Controlled helicopter with a 5 ft. diameter rotor and 2.2 hp engine. We equip the helicopter with a payload of sensors, computers, navigation and telemetry equipment, and batteries. We develop a differential GPS system with cm accuracy and a ground computerized navigation system for six degrees of freedom (6-DoF) free flight while tracking navigation commands. We design feedback control loops with yet-to-be-determined gains for the five control "knobs" available to a flying radio-controlled (RC) miniature helicopter: engine throttle, main rotor collective pitch, longitudinal cyclic pitch, lateral cyclic pitch, and tail rotor collective pitch. We develop helicopter flight equations using fundamental dynamics, helicopter momentum theory and blade element theory. The helicopter flight equations include helicopter rotor equations of motions, helicopter rotor forces and moments, helicopter trim equations, helicopter stability derivatives, and a coupled fuselage-rotor helicopter 6-DoF model. The helicopter simulation also includes helicopter engine control equations, a helicopter aerodynamic model, and finally helicopter stability and control equations. The derivation of a set of non-linear equations of motion for the main rotor is a contribution of this thesis work. We design and build two special test stands for training and testing the helicopter to fly attitude axes controlled hover flight, starting with one axis at a time and progressing to multiple axes. The first test stand is built for teaching and testing controlled flight of elevation and yaw (i.e., directional control). The second test stand is built for teaching and
Tapscott, Robert J.
Criteria for satisfactory control and response characteristics of low-speed aircraft are presented and discussed. The basis for the discussion is the results of a study of the effects of various control power (angular acceleration per unit control deflection) and angular velocity damping on pilots' opinions and on pilots' ability to perform precision tasks during hovering and low speed. The control response characteristics resulting in large improvements in the capability of the pilot-helicopter combination, particularly during instrument flight are discussed. A variation of the criteria with aircraft size is presented. The applicability of the criteria to aircraft of varying types is illustrated.
Håkansson, Jonas; Hedenström, Anders; Winter, York; Johansson, L. Christoffer
Hovering means stationary flight at zero net forward speed, which can be achieved by animals through muscle powered flapping flight. Small bats capable of hovering typically do so with a downstroke in an inclined stroke plane, and with an aerodynamically active outer wing during the upstroke. The magnitude and time history of aerodynamic forces should be reflected by vorticity shed into the wake. We thus expect hovering bats to generate a characteristic wake, but this has until now never been studied. Here we trained nectar-feeding bats, Leptonycteris yerbabuenae, to hover at a feeder and using time-resolved stereoscopic particle image velocimetry in conjunction with high-speed kinematic analysis we show that hovering nectar-feeding bats produce a series of bilateral stacked vortex loops. Vortex visualizations suggest that the downstroke produces the majority of the weight support, but that the upstroke contributes positively to the lift production. However, the relative contributions from downstroke and upstroke could not be determined on the basis of the wake, because wake elements from down- and upstroke mix and interact. We also use a modified actuator disc model to estimate lift force, power and flap efficiency. Based on our quantitative wake-induced velocities, the model accounts for weight support well (108%). Estimates of aerodynamic efficiency suggest hovering flight is less efficient than forward flapping flight, while the overall energy conversion efficiency (mechanical power output/metabolic power) was estimated at 13%. PMID:26179990
Håkansson, Jonas; Hedenström, Anders; Winter, York; Johansson, L Christoffer
Hovering means stationary flight at zero net forward speed, which can be achieved by animals through muscle powered flapping flight. Small bats capable of hovering typically do so with a downstroke in an inclined stroke plane, and with an aerodynamically active outer wing during the upstroke. The magnitude and time history of aerodynamic forces should be reflected by vorticity shed into the wake. We thus expect hovering bats to generate a characteristic wake, but this has until now never been studied. Here we trained nectar-feeding bats, Leptonycteris yerbabuenae, to hover at a feeder and using time-resolved stereoscopic particle image velocimetry in conjunction with high-speed kinematic analysis we show that hovering nectar-feeding bats produce a series of bilateral stacked vortex loops. Vortex visualizations suggest that the downstroke produces the majority of the weight support, but that the upstroke contributes positively to the lift production. However, the relative contributions from downstroke and upstroke could not be determined on the basis of the wake, because wake elements from down- and upstroke mix and interact. We also use a modified actuator disc model to estimate lift force, power and flap efficiency. Based on our quantitative wake-induced velocities, the model accounts for weight support well (108%). Estimates of aerodynamic efficiency suggest hovering flight is less efficient than forward flapping flight, while the overall energy conversion efficiency (mechanical power output/metabolic power) was estimated at 13%.
Goyret, Joaquín; Kelber, Almut
Most visual systems are more sensitive to luminance than to colour signals. Animals resolve finer spatial detail and temporal changes through achromatic signals than through chromatic ones. Probably, this explains that detection of small, distant, or moving objects is typically mediated through achromatic signals. Macroglossum stellatarum are fast flying nectarivorous hawkmoths that inspect flowers with their long proboscis while hovering. They can visually control this behaviour using floral markings known as nectar guides. Here, we investigate whether this is mediated by chromatic or achromatic cues. We evaluated proboscis placement, foraging efficiency, and inspection learning of naïve moths foraging on flower models with coloured markings that offered either chromatic, achromatic or both contrasts. Hummingbird hawkmoths could use either achromatic or chromatic signals to inspect models while hovering. We identified three, apparently independent, components controlling proboscis placement: After initial contact, 1) moths directed their probing towards the yellow colour irrespectively of luminance signals, suggesting a dominant role of chromatic signals; and 2) moths tended to probe mainly on the brighter areas of models that offered only achromatic signals. 3) During the establishment of the first contact, naïve moths showed a tendency to direct their proboscis towards the small floral marks independent of their colour or luminance. Moths learned to find nectar faster, but their foraging efficiency depended on the flower model they foraged on. Our results imply that M. stellatarum can perceive small patterns through colour vision. We discuss how the different informational contents of chromatic and luminance signals can be significant for the control of flower inspection, and visually guided behaviours in general.
Huang, Yangyang; Nitsche, Monika; Kanso, Eva
Insects and birds are often faced by opposing requirements for agile and stable flight. Here, we explore the interplay between aerodynamic effort, maneuverability, and stability in a model system that consists of a Λ-shaped flyer hovering in a vertically oscillating airflow. We determine effective conditions that lead to periodic hovering in terms of two parameters: the flyer's shape (opening angle) and the effort (flow acceleration) needed to keep the flyer aloft. We find optimal shapes that minimize effort. We then examine hovering stability and observe a transition from unstable, yet maneuverable, to stable hovering. Interestingly, this transition occurs at post-optimal shapes, that is, at increased aerodynamic effort. These results have profound implications on the interplay between stability and maneuverability in live organisms as well as on the design of man-made air vehicles.
Mcneill, Walter, E.; Chung, William W.; Stortz, Michael W.
A piloted motion simulator evaluation, using the NASA Ames Vertical Motion Simulator, was conducted in support of a NASA Lewis Contractual study of the integration of flight and propulsion systems of a STOVL aircraft. Objectives of the study were to validate the Design Methods for Integrated Control Systems (DMICS) concept, to evaluate the handling qualities, and to assess control power usage. The E-7D ejector-augmentor STOVL fighter design served as the basis for the simulation. Handling-qualities ratings were obtained during precision hover and shipboard landing tasks. Handling-qualities ratings for these tasks ranged from satisfactory to adequate. Further improvement of the design process to fully validate the DMICS concept appears to be warranted.
Yang, Tao; Wei, Mingjun
In this study, we use a strong-coupling approach to simulate three dimensional flexible flapping wings in hovering flight. The approach is based on a uniform description of both fluid and solid in global Eulerian framework. There has been extensive validation of the current approach with other numerical simulation and experiments. Then we apply our approach to simulate flapping wings with different flexibility and other control parameters. The simulation results allow us to study directly the effects of wing flexibility on the aerodynamic performance of hovering flight. Supported by ARL.
Friedmann, P. P.; Takahashi, M. D.
A coupled rotor/fuselage helicopter analysis with the important effects of blade torsional flexibility, unsteady aerodynamics, and forward flight is presented. This model is used to illustrate the effect of unsteady aerodynamics, forward flight, and torsional flexibility on air resonance. Next, a nominal configuration, which experiences air resonance in forward flight, is selected. A simple multivariable compensator using conventional swashplate inputs and a single body roll rate measurement is then designed. The controller design is based on a linear estimator in conjunction with optimal feedback gains, and the design is done in the frequency domain using the loop-transfer recovery method. The controller is shown to suppress the air resonance instability throughout wide range helicopter loading conditions and forward flight speeds.
Bocanegra Evans, Humberto; Allen, James J.; Balakumar, B. J.
A scaled robotic hummingbird model was used to perform a flow analysis of hovering flight at a range of Reynolds numbers (1,750
Fry, Steven N; Sayaman, Rosalyn; Dickinson, Michael H
Using 3D infrared high-speed video, we captured the continuous wing and body kinematics of free-flying fruit flies, Drosophila melanogaster, during hovering and slow forward flight. We then 'replayed' the wing kinematics on a dynamically scaled robotic model to measure the aerodynamic forces produced by the wings. Hovering animals generate a U-shaped wing trajectory, in which large drag forces during a downward plunge at the start of each stroke create peak vertical forces. Quasi-steady mechanisms could account for nearly all of the mean measured force required to hover, although temporal discrepancies between instantaneous measured forces and model predictions indicate that unsteady mechanisms also play a significant role. We analyzed the requirements for hovering from an analysis of the time history of forces and moments in all six degrees of freedom. The wing kinematics necessary to generate sufficient lift are highly constrained by the requirement to balance thrust and pitch torque over the stroke cycle. We also compare the wing motion and aerodynamic forces of free and tethered flies. Tethering causes a strong distortion of the stroke pattern that results in a reduction of translational forces and a prominent nose-down pitch moment. The stereotyped distortion under tethered conditions is most likely due to a disruption of sensory feedback. Finally, we calculated flight power based directly on the measurements of wing motion and aerodynamic forces, which yielded a higher estimate of muscle power during free hovering flight than prior estimates based on time-averaged parameters. This discrepancy is mostly due to a two- to threefold underestimate of the mean profile drag coefficient in prior studies. We also compared our values with the predictions of the same time-averaged models using more accurate kinematic and aerodynamic input parameters based on our high-speed videography measurements. In this case, the time-averaged models tended to overestimate flight
Tobalske, Bret W
Two styles of bird locomotion, hovering and intermittent flight, have great potential to inform future development of autonomous flying vehicles. Hummingbirds are the smallest flying vertebrates, and they are the only birds that can sustain hovering. Their ability to hover is due to their small size, high wingbeat frequency, relatively large margin of mass-specific power available for flight and a suite of anatomical features that include proportionally massive major flight muscles (pectoralis and supracoracoideus) and wing anatomy that enables them to leave their wings extended yet turned over (supinated) during upstroke so that they can generate lift to support their weight. Hummingbirds generate three times more lift during downstroke compared with upstroke, with the disparity due to wing twist during upstroke. Much like insects, hummingbirds exploit unsteady mechanisms during hovering including delayed stall during wing translation that is manifest as a leading-edge vortex (LEV) on the wing and rotational circulation at the end of each half stroke. Intermittent flight is common in small- and medium-sized birds and consists of pauses during which the wings are flexed (bound) or extended (glide). Flap-bounding appears to be an energy-saving style when flying relatively fast, with the production of lift by the body and tail critical to this saving. Flap-gliding is thought to be less costly than continuous flapping during flight at most speeds. Some species are known to shift from flap-gliding at slow speeds to flap-bounding at fast speeds, but there is an upper size limit for the ability to bound (~0.3 kg) and small birds with rounded wings do not use intermittent glides.
Takahashi, Marc D.
The use of rigid-body and rotor-state feedback gains in the design of helicopter flight control laws was investigated analytically on a blade element, articulated rotor, helicopter model. The study was conducted while designing a control law to meet an existing military rotorcraft handling qualities design specification (ADS-33C) in low-speed flight. A systematic approach to meet this specification was developed along with an assessment of the function of these gains in the feedback loops. Using the results of this assessment, the pitch and roll crossover behavior was easily modified by adjusting the body attitude and rotor-flap feedback gains. Critical to understanding the feedback gains is that the roll and pitch rate dynamics each have second-order behavior, not the classic first-order behavior, which arises from a quasi-static rotor, six degree-of-freedom model.
Mahalingam, Sajeni; Welch, Kenneth C
While producing one of the highest sustained mass-specific power outputs of any vertebrate, hovering hummingbirds must also precisely modulate the activity of their primary flight muscles to vary wingbeat kinematics and modulate lift production. Although recent studies have begun to explore how pectoralis (the primary downstroke muscle) neuromuscular activation and wingbeat kinematics are linked in hummingbirds, it is unclear whether different species modulate these features in similar ways, or consistently in response to distinct flight challenges. In addition, little is known about how the antagonist, the supracoracoideus, is modulated to power the symmetrical hovering upstroke. We obtained simultaneous recordings of wingbeat kinematics and electromyograms from the pectoralis and supracoracoideus in ruby-throated hummingbirds (Archilochus colubris) hovering under the following conditions: (1) ambient air, (2) air density reduction trials, (3) submaximal load-lifting trials and (4) maximal load-lifting trials. Increased power output was achieved through increased stroke amplitude during air density reduction and load-lifting trials, but wingbeat frequency only increased at low air densities. Overall, relative electromyographic (EMG) intensity was the best predictor of stroke amplitude and is correlated with angular velocity of the wingtip. The relationship between muscle activation intensity and kinematics was independent of treatment type, indicating that reduced drag on the wings in hypodense air did not lead to high wingtip angular velocities independently of increased muscle work. EMG bursts consistently began and ended before muscle shortening under all conditions. During all sustained hovering, spike number per burst consistently averaged 1.2 in the pectoralis and 2.0 in the supracoracoideus. The number of spikes increased to 2.5-3 in both muscles during maximal load-lifting trials. Despite the relative kinematic symmetry of the hovering downstroke and
Mrongovius, Martina; Wilksch, Philip
Working with the geometry and form of light Martina Mrongovius is a holographic artist and physicist. Martina"s holographics capture a strange beauty through layers of aesthetic. This paper is based on her Honours thesis in Applied Physics. The exhibition Hover consisted of seven different holographic scanning and projection geometries. These devices used a range of mechanics to scan holograms through laser beams and laser beams through holographic arrays. The recorded holograms as well as the contraptions by which they are replayed captured the form and flight of a reconstructed dragonfly. In designing the holographic displays safety was an important consideration. The projection devices were also constructed to accommodate a range of laser sources and be easily adjusted to project dragonflies with wingspans from 30 to 2000 mm. Hover was the installation of these stochastic contraptions into a surreal optical habitat of animated projections. Being part of the 2004 Next Wave Festival for the arts Hover attracted a large and diverse audience. The intent of the exhibition was to engage with this audience on many levels while illustrating the nature of holographic recordings. The results of this investigation into the geometry and dynamics of projection are presented along with the design considerations, construction methods and audience response.
Greif, R. K.; Fry, E. B.; Gerdes, R. M.; Gossett, T. D.
A motion simulator study was conducted to determine the effects of roll and pitch stabilization on the handling qualities and control power requirements of VTOL aircraft during hover and short-distance maneuvering flight. Three levels of stabilization complexity were compared: (1) no stabilization, (2) rate stabilization, and (3) attitude stabilization. Control sensitivities and stabilization gains were optimized prior to comparison. Results are presented to show how the optimum systems were determined and how they compared with each other at different levels of control power. Comparisons were made both in calm air and in the presence of roll disturbances. Results indicate the attitude-stabilized system provides the best handling qualities for the least amount of control power.
Wang, X. Y.; Dong, Y. P.; Qiu, Z. Z.; Zhang, Y. Q.; Shan, J. H.
Half-Rotating Wing (HRW) is a new kind of flapping wing system with rotating flapping instead of oscillating flapping. Estimating approach of hovering lift which generated in hovering flight was important theoretical foundation to design aircraft using HRW. The working principle of HRW based on Half-Rotating Mechanism (HRM) was firstly introduced in this paper. Generating process of lift by HRW was also given. The calculating models of two lift mechanisms for HRW, including Lift of Flow Around Wing (LFAW) and Lift of Flow Dragging Wing (LFDW), were respectively established. The lift estimating model of HRW was further deduced, by which hovering lift for HRW with different angular velocity could be calculated. Case study using XFLOW software simulation indicates that the above estimating method was effective and feasible to predict roughly the hovering lift for a new HRW system.
Curtiss, H. C., Jr.; Mckillip, R. M., Jr.
A set of linearized equations of motion to predict the linearized dynamic response of a single rotor helicopter in a hover trim condition to cyclic pitch control inputs is described. The equations of motion assume four fuselage degrees of freedom: lateral and longitudinal translation, roll angle, pitch angle: four rotor degrees of freedom: flapping (lateral and longitudinal tilt of the tip path plane), lagging (lateral and longitudinal displacement of the rotor plane center of mass); and dynamic inflow (harmonic components). These ten degrees of freedom correspond to a system with eighteen dynamic states. In addition to examination of the full system dynamics, the computer code supplied with this report permits the examination of various reduced order models. The code is presented in a specific form such that the dynamic response of a helicopter in flight can be investigated. With minor modifications to the code the dynamics of a rotor mounted on a flexible support can also be studied.
Liang, Bin; Sun, Mao
Current analyses on insect dynamic flight stability are based on linear theory and limited to small disturbance motions. However, insects' aerial environment is filled with swirling eddies and wind gusts, and large disturbances are common. Here, we numerically solve the equations of motion coupled with the Navier–Stokes equations to simulate the large disturbance motions and analyse the nonlinear flight dynamics of hovering model insects. We consider two representative model insects, a model hawkmoth (large size, low wingbeat frequency) and a model dronefly (small size, high wingbeat frequency). For small and large initial disturbances, the disturbance motion grows with time, and the insects tumble and never return to the equilibrium state; the hovering flight is inherently (passively) unstable. The instability is caused by a pitch moment produced by forward/backward motion and/or a roll moment produced by side motion of the insect. PMID:23697714
Liang, Bin; Sun, Mao
The longitudinal dynamic flight stability of a model dragonfly at hovering flight is studied, using the method of computational fluid dynamics to compute the stability derivatives and the techniques of eigenvalue and eigenvector analysis for solving the equations of motion. Three natural modes of motion are identified for the hovering flight: one unstable oscillatory mode, one stable fast subsidence mode and one stable slow subsidence mode. The flight is dynamically unstable owing to the unstable oscillatory mode. The instability is caused by a pitch-moment derivative with respect to horizontal velocity. The damping force and moment derivatives (with respect to horizontal and vertical velocities and pitch-rotational velocity, respectively) weaken the instability considerably. The aerodynamic interaction between the forewing and the hindwing does not have significant effect on the stability properties. The dragonfly has similar stability derivatives, hence stability properties, to that of a one-wing-pair insect at normal hovering, but there are differences in how the derivatives are produced because of the highly inclined stroke plane of the dragonfly.
Faruque, Imraan; Sean Humbert, J
This paper presents a reduced-order model of longitudinal hovering flight dynamics for dipteran insects. The quasi-steady wing aerodynamics model is extended by including perturbation states from equilibrium and paired with rigid body equations of motion to create a nonlinear simulation of a Drosophila-like insect. Frequency-based system identification tools are used to identify the transfer functions from biologically inspired control inputs to rigid body states. Stability derivatives and a state space linear system describing the dynamics are also identified. The vehicle control requirements are quantified with respect to traditional human pilot handling qualities specification. The heave dynamics are found to be decoupled from the pitch/fore/aft dynamics. The haltere-on system revealed a stabilized system with a slow (heave) and fast subsidence mode, and a stable oscillatory mode. The haltere-off (bare airframe) system revealed a slow (heave) and fast subsidence mode and an unstable oscillatory mode, a modal structure in agreement with CFD studies. The analysis indicates that passive aerodynamic mechanisms contribute to stability, which may help explain how insects are able to achieve stable locomotion on a very small computational budget.
NASA's Robotic Lander Development Project at Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. conducts the second free-flight test of a robotic lander prototype. During test the lander successfully...
Richter, Charles; Lipson, Hod
This project focuses on developing a flapping-wing hovering insect using 3D-printed wings and mechanical parts. The use of 3D printing technology has greatly expanded the possibilities for wing design, allowing wing shapes to replicate those of real insects or virtually any other shape. It has also reduced the time of a wing design cycle to a matter of minutes. An ornithopter with a mass of 3.89 g has been constructed using the 3D printing technique and has demonstrated an 85-s passively stable untethered hovering flight. This flight exhibits the functional utility of printed materials for flapping-wing experimentation and ornithopter construction and for understanding the mechanical principles underlying insect flight and control.
Linton, J. Oliver
In 1934 the French etymologist August Magnan wrote in the introduction to his book Le Vol Des Insects that it was aerodynamically impossible for a honey bee to fly. In 1984 Ellington (1984 Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B 305 1 15) published a seminal series of articles which seemed to lend support to the idea that insects were performing aerodynamic feats which could not be easily explained, and this resulted in an explosion of interest in insect and bird flight which continues unabated to this day. Recent advances in experimental and computational techniques have enabled us to measure, visualize, and calculate the flow round an insect's wings in ever greater detail, and for a comprehensive summary of the present state of research into the area I would recommend a review paper by Sane (2003 J. Exp. Biol. 206 4191 208). He describes at least four effects which purport to increase the amount of lift that would be expected on the basis of conventional aerodynamics. But how bad was the old 'back of the envelope' calculation? Is it really necessary to invoke such complicated mechanisms to explain something which happens before our very eyes every day of the week? If the old calculations give an answer within an order of magnitude, I would be happy with that. If the old calculations are more than a factor of 10 out, no amount of tweaking with 'delayed stall' or 'wake capture' will make up the deficit, and we will have to conclude that the flight of insects and hummingbirds is literally a miracle. Hopefully it will not come to that. This article attempts to find out.
Lim, K. B.; Moerder, D. D.
This paper describes how Control Moment Gyroscopes (CMGs) can be used for stability augmentation to a thrust vectoring system for a generic Vertical Take-Off and Landing platform. The response characteristics of the platform which uses only thrust vectoring and a second configuration which includes a single-gimbal CMG array are simulated and compared for hovering flight while subject to severe air turbulence. Simulation results demonstrate the effectiveness of a CMG array in its ability to significantly reduce the agility requirement on the thrust vectoring system. Albeit simplifying physical assumptions on a generic CMG configuration, the numerical results also suggest that reasonably sized CMGs will likely be sufficient for a small hovering vehicle.
Powers, Donald R; Tobalske, Bret W; Wilson, J Keaton; Woods, H Arthur; Corder, Keely R
Flying animals generate large amounts of heat, which must be dissipated to avoid overheating. In birds, heat dissipation is complicated by feathers, which cover most body surfaces and retard heat loss. To understand how birds manage heat budgets during flight, it is critical to know how heat moves from the skin to the external environment. Hummingbirds are instructive because they fly at speeds from 0 to more than 12 m s(-1), during which they transit from radiative to convective heat loss. We used infrared thermography and particle image velocimetry to test the effects of flight speed on heat loss from specific body regions in flying calliope hummingbirds (Selasphorus calliope). We measured heat flux in a carcass with and without plumage to test the effectiveness of the insulation layer. In flying hummingbirds, the highest thermal gradients occurred in key heat dissipation areas (HDAs) around the eyes, axial region and feet. Eye and axial surface temperatures were 8°C or more above air temperature, and remained relatively constant across speeds suggesting physiological regulation of skin surface temperature. During hovering, birds dangled their feet, which enhanced radiative heat loss. In addition, during hovering, near-body induced airflows from the wings were low except around the feet (approx. 2.5 m s(-1)), which probably enhanced convective heat loss. Axial HDA and maximum surface temperature exhibited a shallow U-shaped pattern across speeds, revealing a localized relationship with power production in flight in the HDA closest to the primary flight muscles. We conclude that hummingbirds actively alter routes of heat dissipation as a function of flight speed.
Powers, Donald R.; Tobalske, Bret W.; Wilson, J. Keaton; Woods, H. Arthur; Corder, Keely R.
Flying animals generate large amounts of heat, which must be dissipated to avoid overheating. In birds, heat dissipation is complicated by feathers, which cover most body surfaces and retard heat loss. To understand how birds manage heat budgets during flight, it is critical to know how heat moves from the skin to the external environment. Hummingbirds are instructive because they fly at speeds from 0 to more than 12 m s−1, during which they transit from radiative to convective heat loss. We used infrared thermography and particle image velocimetry to test the effects of flight speed on heat loss from specific body regions in flying calliope hummingbirds (Selasphorus calliope). We measured heat flux in a carcass with and without plumage to test the effectiveness of the insulation layer. In flying hummingbirds, the highest thermal gradients occurred in key heat dissipation areas (HDAs) around the eyes, axial region and feet. Eye and axial surface temperatures were 8°C or more above air temperature, and remained relatively constant across speeds suggesting physiological regulation of skin surface temperature. During hovering, birds dangled their feet, which enhanced radiative heat loss. In addition, during hovering, near-body induced airflows from the wings were low except around the feet (approx. 2.5 m s−1), which probably enhanced convective heat loss. Axial HDA and maximum surface temperature exhibited a shallow U-shaped pattern across speeds, revealing a localized relationship with power production in flight in the HDA closest to the primary flight muscles. We conclude that hummingbirds actively alter routes of heat dissipation as a function of flight speed. PMID:27019742
Giovanetti, Eli B.
This dissertation investigates the optimal aerodynamic performance and design of conventional and coaxial helicopters in hover and forward flight using conventional and higher harmonic blade pitch control. First, we describe a method for determining the blade geometry, azimuthal blade pitch inputs, optimal shaft angle (rotor angle of attack), and division of propulsive and lifting forces among the components that minimize the total power for a given forward flight condition. The optimal design problem is cast as a variational statement that is discretized using a vortex lattice wake to model inviscid forces, combined with two-dimensional drag polars to model profile losses. The resulting nonlinear constrained optimization problem is solved via Newton iteration. We investigate the optimal design of a compound vehicle in forward flight comprised of a coaxial rotor system, a propeller, and optionally, a fixed wing. We show that higher harmonic control substantially reduces required power, and that both rotor and propeller efficiencies play an important role in determining the optimal shaft angle, which in turn affects the optimal design of each component. Second, we present a variational approach for determining the optimal (minimum power) torque-balanced coaxial hovering rotor using Blade Element Momentum Theory including swirl. We show that the optimal hovering coaxial rotor generates only a small percentage of its total thrust on the portion of the lower rotor operating in the upper rotor's contracted wake, resulting in an optimal design with very different upper and lower rotor twist and chord distributions. We also show that the swirl component of induced velocity has a relatively small effect on rotor performance at the disk loadings typical of helicopter rotors. Third, we describe a more refined model of the wake of a hovering conventional or coaxial rotor. We approximate the rotor or coaxial rotors as actuator disks (though not necessarily uniformly loaded
Xu, Na; Sun, Mao
Many insects hover with their wings beating in a horizontal plane ('normal hovering'), while some insects, e.g., hoverflies and dragonflies, hover with inclined stroke-planes. Here, we investigate the lateral dynamic flight stability of a hovering model hoverfly. The aerodynamic derivatives are computed using the method of computational fluid dynamics, and the equations of motion are solved by the techniques of eigenvalue and eigenvector analysis. The following is shown: The flight of the insect is unstable at normal hovering (stroke-plane angle equals 0) and the instability becomes weaker as the stroke-plane angle increases; the flight becomes stable at a relatively large stroke-plane angle (larger than about 24°). As previously shown, the instability at normal hovering is due to a positive roll-moment/side-velocity derivative produced by the 'changing-LEV-axial-velocity' effect. When the stroke-plane angle increases, the wings bend toward the back of the body, and the 'changing-LEV-axial-velocity' effect decreases; in addition, another effect, called the 'changing-relative-velocity' effect (the 'lateral wind', which is due to the side motion of the insect, changes the relative velocity of its wings), becomes increasingly stronger. This causes the roll-moment/side-velocity derivative to first decrease and then become negative, resulting in the above change in stability as a function of the stroke-plane angle.
Inverse Control technique using an Artificial Neural Network to learn and then cancel out the Hover dynamics of the quadrotor UAV... Inverse Control , Neural Network , Flight Control , and UAV helicopter REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE 11. SPONSOR/MONITOR’S REPORT NUMBER(S) 10. SPONSOR...Helicopter. The goal of the project is to investigate the effectiveness of the Direct Inverse Control technique using an Artificial Neural Network to
Hindson, W. S.; Tucker, G. E.; Lebacqz, J. V.; Hilbert, K. B.
The CH-47B variable-stability helicopter was used to evaluate a range of height-response configurations while performing a precision hover bob-up task. The purpose of the study was to assess the validity of results obtained in previous ground-based and in-flight simulations in the context of a precision bob-up task and to provide additional flight data for inclusion in revisions to specifications for helicopter handling qualities. Height response characteristics were implemented using explicit model-following techniques, and the resulting CH-47B dynamics were validated using time-domain and frequency-domain data-analysis methods. The tests complemented the previous investigations by providing detailed pilot comments and ratings, and performance and control-utilization data that relate exclusively to the hover bob-up task. The results are compared with those from previous investigations and with new criteria that have been proposed for handling qualities requirements for helicopters.
Acree, C. W., Jr.
A 0.656-scale V-22 proprotor, the Joint Vertical Experimental (JVX) rotor, was tested at the NASA Ames Research Center in both hover and airplane-mode (high-speed axial flow) flight conditions, up to an advance ratio of 0.562 (231 knots). This paper examines the two principal data sets generated by those tests, and includes investigations of hub spinner tares, torque/thrust measurement interactions, tunnel blockage effects, and other phenomena suspected of causing erroneous measurements or predictions. Uncertainties in hover and high-speed data are characterized. The results are reported here to provide guidance for future wind tunnel tests, data processing, and data analysis.
Hou, Lei; Chen, Yushu; Cao, Qingjie
This paper focuses on the nonlinear vibration phenomenon caused by aircraft hovering flight in a rub-impact rotor system supported by two general supports with cubic stiffness. The effect of aircraft hovering flight on the rotor system is considered as a maneuver load to formulate the equations of motion, which might result in periodic response instability to the rotor system even the eccentricity is small. The dynamic responses of the system under maneuver load are presented by bifurcation diagrams and the corresponding Lyapunov exponent spectrums. Numerical analyses are carried out to detect the periodic, sub-harmonic and quasi-periodic motions of the system, which are presented by orbit diagrams, phase trajectories, Poincare maps and amplitude power spectrums. The results obtained in this paper will contribute an understanding of the nonlinear dynamic behaviors of aircraft rotor systems in maneuvering flight.
Insects can hover, fly forward, climb, and descend with ease while demonstrating amazing stability, and they can also maneuver in impressive ways as no other organisms can. Is their flight inherently stable? If so, how can they maneuver so well? In recent years, significant progress has been made in revealing the dynamic flight stability and flight control mechanisms of insects and has partially answered these questions. Here the most recent advances in this active area are reviewed. The aim is to provide the background necessary to do research in the area and raise questions that need to be addressed in the future. This review begins with an overview of the flapping kinematics and aerodynamics of insect flight. It is followed by a summary of the governing equations of insect motion and the simplified theoretical models used for analysis of dynamic stability and control. Next, the stability properties of hovering flight and forward flight are scrutinized. Then the flight control properties are explored, dealing in turn with flight stabilization control, steady-state control for changing from hovering to forward flight and from one forward-flight speed to another, and control for maneuvers near hovering. Finally, remarks are given on the state of the art of this research field and speculation is made on its outlook in the near future.
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Kim, Byeongil; Chang, Yushin; Lee, Man Hyung
For a maneuvering unmanned autonomous helicopter, it is necessary to design a proper controller for each flight mode. In this paper, the overall helicopter dynamics is derived and a hovering model is linearized and transformed into a state-space form. However, since it is difficult to obtain parameters for stability derivatives in the state-space directly, a linear control model is derived by a time-domain parametric system identification method with real flight data of a model helicopter. Then, two different controllers (a linear feedback controller with the proportional gain and a robust controller) are designed and their performances are compared. The simulation results show outstanding performance. The validated controllers can be utilized to enable autonomous flight of a RUAV (Rotorcraft-based Unmanned Aerial Vehicle).
Ballin, Mark G.; Dalang-Secretan, Maire-Alix
The dynamic fidelity of an operational blade-element simulation model of the UH-60A helicopter is assessed for the hovering and low-speed flight regimes. Nonparametric frequency-response identification techniques and time-history comparisons are used to determine the validity of vehicle responses. Frequency-domain methods are applied to the model to isolate deficiencies and verify refinements and corrections. A dedicated flight-test program was conducted to provide data used in the analyses. Model deficiencies are also identified by using side-by-side pilot assessments of a motion-based simulation and of a test aircraft. Model refinements are found to improve fidelity significantly in the frequency range of interest to handling-qualities research. The applicability of the model to high-bandwidth flight-control research is also discussed.
Zheng, Yingying; Wu, Yanhua; Tang, Hui
Aerodynamic forces, power consumptions and efficiencies of flexible and rigid tandem wings undergoing combined plunging/pitching motion were measured in a hovering flight and two forward flights with Strouhal numbers of 0.6 and 0.3. Three flexible dragonfly-like tandem wing models termed Wing I, Wing II, and Wing III which are progressively less flexible, as well as a pair of rigid wings as the reference were operated at three phase differences of 0°, 90° and 180°. The results showed that both the flexibility and phase difference have significant effects on the aerodynamic performances. In both hovering and forward flights at a higher oscillation frequency of 1 Hz (St = 0.6), the Wing III model outperformed the other wing models with larger total horizontal force coefficient and efficiency. In forward flight at the lower frequency of 0.5 Hz (St = 0.3), Wing III, rigid wings and Wing II models performed best at 0°, 90° and 180° phase difference, respectively. From the time histories of force coefficients of fore- and hind-wings, different peak values, phase lags, and secondary peaks were found to be the important reasons to cause the differences in the average horizontal force coefficients. Particle image velocimetry and deformation measurements were performed to provide the insights into how the flexibility affects the aerodynamic performance of the tandem wings. The spanwise bending deformation was found to contribute to the horizontal force, by offering a more beneficial position to make LEV more attached to the wing model in both hovering and forward flights, and inducing a higher-velocity region in forward flight.
Baron, S.; Lancraft, R.; Zacharias, G.
The optimal control model (OCM) of the human operator is used to predict the effect of simulator characteristics on pilot performance and workload. The piloting task studied is helicopter hover. Among the simulator characteristics considered were (computer generated) visual display resolution, field of view and time delay.
Yeager, W. T., Jr.; Hamouda, M. N. H.; Mantay, W. R.
A research effort of analysis and testing was conducted to investigate the ground resonance phenomenon of a soft in-plane hingeless rotor. Experimental data were obtained using a 9 ft. (2.74 m) diameter model rotor in hover and forward flight. Eight model rotor configurations were investigated. Configuration parameters included pitch flap coupling, blade sweep and droop, and precone of the blade feathering axis. An analysis based on a comprehensive analytical model of rotorcraft aerodynamics and dynamics was used. The moving block was used to experimentally determine the regressing lead lag mode damping. Good agreement was obtained between the analysis and test. Both analysis and experiment indicated ground resonance instability in hover. An outline of the analysis, a description of the experimental model and procedures, and comparison of the analytical and experimental data are presented.
Ferreira de Sousa, Paulo; Luo, Haoxiang; Bocanegra Evans, Humberto
Hummingbirds are an interesting case study for the development of micro-air vehicles since they combine the high flight stability of insects with the low metabolic power per unit of body mass of bats, during hovering flight. In this study, simulations of a full-body hummingbird in hovering flight were performed at a Reynolds number around 3600. The simulations employ a versatile sharp-interface immersed boundary method recently enhanced at our lab that can treat thin membranes and solid bodies alike. Implemented on a Cartesian mesh, the numerical method allows us to capture the vortex dynamics of the wake accurately and efficiently. The whole-body simulation will allow us to clearly identify the three general patterns of flow velocity around the body of the hummingbird referred in Altshuler et al. (Exp Fluids 46 (5), 2009). One focus of the current study is to understand the interaction between the wakes of the two wings at the end of the upstroke, and how the tail actively defects the flow to contribute to pitch stability. Another focus of the study will be to identify the pair of unconnected loops underneath each wing.
Yang, Hongwei; Bai, Xiaoli; Baoyin, Hexi
This paper proposes a new nonlinear guidance algorithm applicable for asteroid both hovering and landing. With the new guidance, a spacecraft achieves its target position and velocity in finite-time without the requirement of reference trajectories. The global stability is proven for the controlled system. A parametric analysis is conducted to illustrate the parameters' effects on the guidance algorithm. Simulations of straight landing, hovering to hovering and landing with a prior hovering phase of the highly irregular asteroid 2063 Bacchus are presented and the effectiveness of the proposed method is demonstrated.
Rysdyk, Rolf Theoduor
Research under supervision of Dr. Calise and Dr. Prasad at the Georgia Institute of Technology, School of Aerospace Engineering. has demonstrated the applicability of an adaptive controller architecture. The architecture successfully combines model inversion control with adaptive neural network (NN) compensation to cancel the inversion error. The tiltrotor aircraft provides a specifically interesting control design challenge. The tiltrotor aircraft is capable of converting from stable responsive fixed wing flight to unstable sluggish hover in helicopter configuration. It is desirable to provide the pilot with consistency in handling qualities through a conversion from fixed wing flight to hover. The linear model inversion architecture was adapted by providing frequency separation in the command filter and the error-dynamics, while not exiting the actuator modes. This design of the architecture provides for a model following setup with guaranteed performance. This in turn allowed for convenient implementation of guaranteed handling qualities. A rigorous proof of boundedness is presented making use of compact sets and the LaSalle-Yoshizawa theorem. The analysis allows for the addition of the e-modification which guarantees boundedness of the NN weights in the absence of persistent excitation. The controller is demonstrated on the Generic Tiltrotor Simulator of Bell-Textron and NASA Ames R.C. The model inversion implementation is robustified with respect to unmodeled input dynamics, by adding dynamic nonlinear damping. A proof of boundedness of signals in the system is included. The effectiveness of the robustification is also demonstrated on the XV-15 tiltrotor. The SHL Perceptron NN provides a more powerful application, based on the universal approximation property of this type of NN. The SHL NN based architecture is also robustified with the dynamic nonlinear damping. A proof of boundedness extends the SHL NN augmentation with robustness to unmodeled actuator
Huang, Xu; Yan, Ye; Zhou, Yang
To achieve hovering, a spacecraft thrusts continuously to induce an equilibrium state at a desired position. Due to the constraints on the quantity of propellant onboard, long-time hovering around low-Earth orbits (LEO) is hardly achievable using traditional chemical propulsion. The Lorentz force, acting on an electrostatically charged spacecraft as it moves through a planetary magnetic field, provides a new propellantless method for orbital maneuvers. This paper investigates the feasibility of using the induced Lorentz force as an auxiliary means of propulsion for spacecraft hovering. Assuming that the Earth's magnetic field is a dipole that rotates with the Earth, a dynamical model that characterizes the relative motion of Lorentz spacecraft is derived to analyze the required open-loop control acceleration for hovering. Based on this dynamical model, we first present the hovering configurations that could achieve propellantless hovering and the corresponding required specific charge of a Lorentz spacecraft. For other configurations, optimal open-loop control laws that minimize the control energy consumption are designed. Likewise, the optimal trajectories of required specific charge and control acceleration are both presented. The effect of orbital inclination on the expenditure of control energy is also analyzed. Further, we also develop a closed-loop control approach for propellantless hovering. Numerical results prove the validity of proposed control methods for hovering and show that hovering around low-Earth orbits would be achievable if the required specific charge of a Lorentz spacecraft becomes feasible in the future. Typically, hovering radially several kilometers above a target in LEO requires specific charges on the order of 0.1 C/kg.
Dalang-Secretan, Marie-Alix; Ballin, Mark G.
The dynamic fidelity of an operational blade-element simulation model of the UH-60 helicopter is assessed for the hovering and low-speed flight regimes. Nonparametric frequency-domain identification techniques and time-history comparisons are used to determine the validity of total-vehicle on-axis and coupled responses. A dedicated flight-test program was conducted to provide data used in the analysis. The flight-test techniques and data verification methods employed are briefly described. Frequency-domain methods are applied to the model and to several model components in order to isolate deficiencies and verify refinements and corrections. Model deficiencies are also identified by using side-by-side pilot assessments of a motion-base simulation and of a test aircraft. Model updates are found to significantly improve fidelity in the frequency range that is of interest to handling-qualities research. The applicability of the model to high-bandwidth flight-control research is also discussed.
Smith, Charles C., Jr.
An experimental investigation has been made to determine the dynamic stability and control characteristics of a 1/5-scale flying model of a jet-powered vertical-attitude VTOL research airplane in hovering and transition flight. The model was powered with either a hydrogen peroxide rocket motor or a compressed-air jet exhausting through an ejector tube to simulate the turbojet engine of the airplane. The gyroscopic effects of the engine were simulated by a flywheel driven by compressed-air jets. In hovering flight the model was controlled by jet-reaction controls which consisted of a swiveling nozzle on the main jet and a movable nozzle on each wing tip; and in forward flight the model was controlled by elevons and a rudder. If the gyroscopic effects of the jet engine were not represented, the model could be flown satisfactorily in hovering flight without any automatic stabilization devices. When the gyroscopic effects of the jet engine were represented, however, the model could not be controlled without the aid of artificial stabilizing devices because of the gyroscopic coupling of the yawing and pitching motions. The use of pitch and yaw dampers made these motions completely stable and the model could then be controlled very easily. In the transition flight tests, which were performed only with the automatic pitch and yaw dampers operating, it was found that the transition was very easy to perform either with or without the engine gyroscopic effects simulated, although the model had a tendency to fly in a rolled and sideslipped attitude at angles of attack between approximately 25 deg and 45 deg because of static directional instability in this range.
Smith, Charles C., Jr.
An experimental investigation has been made to determine the dynamic stability and control characteristics of a 1/5-scale flying model of a jet-powered vertical-attitude VTOL research airplane in hovering and transition flight. The model was powered with either a hydrogen peroxide rocket motor or a compressed-air jet exhausting through an ejector tube to simulate the turbojet engine of the airplane. The gyroscopic effects of the engine were simulated by a flywheel driven by compressed-air jets. In hovering flight the model was controlled by jet-reaction controls which consisted of a swiveling nozzle on the main jet and a movable nozzle on each wing tip; and in forward flight the model was controlled by elevons and a rudder. If the gyroscopic effects of the jet engine were not represented, the model could be flown satisfactorily in hovering flight without any automatic stabilization devices. When the gyroscopic effects of the jet engine were represented, however, the model could not be controlled without the aid of artificial stabilizing devices because of the gyroscopic coupling of the yawing and pitching motions. The use of pitch and yaw dampers made these motions completely stable and the model could then be controlled very easily. In the transition flight tests, which were performed only with the automatic pitch and yaw dampers operating, it was found that the transition was very easy to perform either with or without the engine gyroscopic effects simulated, although the model had a tendency to fly in a rolled and sideslipped attitude at angles of attack between approximately 25 and 45 deg because of static directional instability in this range.
Aono, Hikaru; Liang, Fuyou; Liu, Hao
We present the first integrative computational fluid dynamics (CFD) study of near- and far-field aerodynamics in insect hovering flight using a biology-inspired, dynamic flight simulator. This simulator, which has been built to encompass multiple mechanisms and principles related to insect flight, is capable of 'flying' an insect on the basis of realistic wing-body morphologies and kinematics. Our CFD study integrates near- and far-field wake dynamics and shows the detailed three-dimensional (3D) near- and far-field vortex flows: a horseshoe-shaped vortex is generated and wraps around the wing in the early down- and upstroke; subsequently, the horseshoe-shaped vortex grows into a doughnut-shaped vortex ring, with an intense jet-stream present in its core, forming the downwash; and eventually, the doughnut-shaped vortex rings of the wing pair break up into two circular vortex rings in the wake. The computed aerodynamic forces show reasonable agreement with experimental results in terms of both the mean force (vertical, horizontal and sideslip forces) and the time course over one stroke cycle (lift and drag forces). A large amount of lift force (approximately 62% of total lift force generated over a full wingbeat cycle) is generated during the upstroke, most likely due to the presence of intensive and stable, leading-edge vortices (LEVs) and wing tip vortices (TVs); and correspondingly, a much stronger downwash is observed compared to the downstroke. We also estimated hovering energetics based on the computed aerodynamic and inertial torques, and powers.
Dugan, Daniel C.; Delamer, Kevin J.
Because of increasing accident rates in Army helicopters in hover and low speed flight, a study was made in 1999 of accidents which could be attributed to inadequate stability augmentation. A study of civil helicopter accidents from 1993-2004 was then undertaken to pursue the issue of poor handling qualities in helicopters which, in almost all cases, had no stability augmentation. The vast majority of the mishaps studied occurred during daylight in visual meteorological condition, reducing the impact of degraded visual environments (DVE) on the results. Based on the Cooper-Harper Rating Scale, the handling qualities of many of the helicopters studied could be described as having from "very objectionable" to "major" deficiencies. These costly deficiencies have resulted in unnecessary loss of life, injury, and high dollar damage. Low cost and lightweight augmentation systems for helicopters have been developed in the past and are still being investigated. They offer the potential for significant reductions in the accident rate.
Inamuro, Takaji; Hirohashi, Kensuke
Hovering and targeting flights of the dragonfly-like flapping wing-body model are numerically investigated by using the immersed boundary-lattice Boltzmann method (IB-LBM). The governing parameters of the problem are the Reynolds number Re , the Froude number Fr , and the non-dimensional mass m. We set the parameters at Re = 200 , Fr = 15 , and m = 51 . First, we simulate free flights of the model for various values of the phase difference angle ϕ between the forewing and the hindwing motions and for various values of the stroke angle β between the stroke plane and the horizontal plane. We find that the vertical motion of the model depends on the phase difference angle ϕ, and the horizontal motion of the model depends on the stroke angle β. Secondly, using the above results we try to simulate the hovering flight by dynamically changing the phase difference angle ϕ and the stroke angle β. The hovering flight can be successfully simulated by a simple proportional controlleres of the phase difference angle and the stroke angle. Finally, we simualte targeting flight by dynamically changing the stroke angle β. The authors acknowledge the HPCI System Research Project (hp140025 and hp150087) and the Grants-in-Aid Scientific Research (No. 26420108) from JSPS.
This paper presents validations of a novel rotorcraft analysis that coupled Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), Computational Structural Dynamics (CSD), and Particle Vortex Transport Method (PVTM) methodologies. The CSD with associated vehicle trim analysis is used to calculate blade deformations and trim parameters. The near body CFD analysis is employed to provide detailed near body flow field information which is used to obtain high-fidelity blade aerodynamic loadings. The far field wake dominated region is simulated using the PVTM analysis which provides accurate prediction of the evolution of the rotor wake released from the near body CFD domains. A loose coupling methodology between the CSD and CFD/PVTM modules are used with appropriate information exchange amongst the CSD/CFD/PVTM modules. The coupled CSD/CFD/PVTM methodology is used to simulate various rotorcraft flight conditions (i.e. hover, transition, and high speed flights), and the results are compared with several sets of experimental data. For the hover condition, the results are compared with hover data for the HART II rotor tested at DLR Institute of Flight Systems, Germany. For the forward flight conditions, the results are validated with the UH-60A flight test data.
Nabawy, Mostafa R. A.; Crowther, William J.
This paper introduces a generic, transparent and compact model for the evaluation of the aerodynamic performance of insect-like flapping wings in hovering flight. The model is generic in that it can be applied to wings of arbitrary morphology and kinematics without the use of experimental data, is transparent in that the aerodynamic components of the model are linked directly to morphology and kinematics via physical relationships and is compact in the sense that it can be efficiently evaluated for use within a design optimization environment. An important aspect of the model is the method by which translational force coefficients for the aerodynamic model are obtained from first principles; however important insights are also provided for the morphological and kinematic treatments that improve the clarity and efficiency of the overall model. A thorough analysis of the leading-edge suction analogy model is provided and comparison of the aerodynamic model with results from application of the leading-edge suction analogy shows good agreement. The full model is evaluated against experimental data for revolving wings and good agreement is obtained for lift and drag up to 90° incidence. Comparison of the model output with data from computational fluid dynamics studies on a range of different insect species also shows good agreement with predicted weight support ratio and specific power. The validated model is used to evaluate the relative impact of different contributors to the induced power factor for the hoverfly and fruitfly. It is shown that the assumption of an ideal induced power factor (k = 1) for a normal hovering hoverfly leads to a 23% overestimation of the generated force owing to flapping. PMID:24554578
Nabawy, Mostafa R A; Crowther, William J
This paper introduces a generic, transparent and compact model for the evaluation of the aerodynamic performance of insect-like flapping wings in hovering flight. The model is generic in that it can be applied to wings of arbitrary morphology and kinematics without the use of experimental data, is transparent in that the aerodynamic components of the model are linked directly to morphology and kinematics via physical relationships and is compact in the sense that it can be efficiently evaluated for use within a design optimization environment. An important aspect of the model is the method by which translational force coefficients for the aerodynamic model are obtained from first principles; however important insights are also provided for the morphological and kinematic treatments that improve the clarity and efficiency of the overall model. A thorough analysis of the leading-edge suction analogy model is provided and comparison of the aerodynamic model with results from application of the leading-edge suction analogy shows good agreement. The full model is evaluated against experimental data for revolving wings and good agreement is obtained for lift and drag up to 90° incidence. Comparison of the model output with data from computational fluid dynamics studies on a range of different insect species also shows good agreement with predicted weight support ratio and specific power. The validated model is used to evaluate the relative impact of different contributors to the induced power factor for the hoverfly and fruitfly. It is shown that the assumption of an ideal induced power factor (k = 1) for a normal hovering hoverfly leads to a 23% overestimation of the generated force owing to flapping.
Nabawy, Mostafa R. A.; Crowthe, William J.
A novel lifting line formulation is presented for the quasi-steady aerodynamic evaluation of insect-like wings in hovering flight. The approach allows accurate estimation of aerodynamic forces from geometry and kinematic information alone and provides for the first time quantitative information on the relative contribution of induced and profile drag associated with lift production for insect-like wings in hover. The main adaptation to the existing lifting line theory is the use of an equivalent angle of attack, which enables capture of the steady non-linear aerodynamics at high angles of attack. A simple methodology to include non-ideal induced effects due to wake periodicity and effective actuator disc area within the lifting line theory is included in the model. Low Reynolds number effects as well as the edge velocity correction required to account for different wing planform shapes are incorporated through appropriate modification of the wing section lift curve slope. The model has been successfully validated against measurements from revolving wing experiments and high order computational fluid dynamics simulations. Model predicted mean lift to weight ratio results have an average error of 4% compared to values from computational fluid dynamics for eight different insect cases. Application of an unmodified linear lifting line approach leads on average to a 60% overestimation in the mean lift force required for weight support, with most of the discrepancy due to use of linear aerodynamics. It is shown that on average for the eight insects considered, the induced drag contributes 22% of the total drag based on the mean cycle values and 29% of the total drag based on the mid half-stroke values. PMID:26252657
Pechner, Adam Daniel
With recent design improvement in fixed wing aircraft, there has been a considerable interest in the design of robust flight control systems to compensate for the inherent instability necessary to achieve desired performance. Such systems are designed for maximum available retention of stability and performance in the presence of significant vehicle damage or system failure. The rotorcraft industry has shown similar interest in adopting these reconfigurable flight control schemes specifically because of their ability to reject disturbance inputs and provide a significant amount of robustness for all but the most catastrophic of situations. The research summarized herein focuses on the extension of the pseudo-sliding mode control design procedure interpreted in the frequency domain. Application of the technique is employed and simulated on two well known helicopters, a simplified model of a hovering Sikorsky S-61 and the military's Black Hawk UH-60A also produced by Sikorsky. The Sikorsky helicopter model details are readily available and was chosen because it can be limited to pitch and roll motion reducing the number of degrees of freedom and yet contains two degrees of freedom, which is the minimum requirement in proving the validity of the pseudo-sliding control technique. The full order model of a hovering Black Hawk system was included both as a comparison to the S-61 helicopter design system and as a means to demonstrate the scaleability and effectiveness of the control technique on sophisticated systems where design robustness is of critical concern.
Rival, David; Schönweitz, Dirk; Tropea, Cameron
The force evolution and associated vortex dynamics on a nominal two-dimensional tandem pitching and plunging configuration inspired by hovering dragonfly-like flight have been investigated experimentally using time-resolved particle image velocimetry. The aerodynamic forces acting on the flat plates have been determined using a classic control-volume approach, i.e. a momentum balance. It was found that only the tandem phasing of ψ = 90° was capable of generating similar levels of thrust when compared to the single-plate reference case. For this tandem configuration, however, a much more constant thrust generation was developed over the cycle. Further examination showed that the force and vortex development on the fore-plate was unaffected by the tandem configuration and that nearly all variations in performance could be attributed to the vortex interaction on the hind-plate. By calculating the trajectory and strength of the hind-plate's trailing-edge vortex, the chain-like vortex interaction mechanism responsible for improved performance at ψ = 90° could be identified. The underlying result from this study suggests that the dominant vortex interaction in dragonfly flight is two dimensional and that the spanwise flow generated by root-flapping kinematics is not entirely necessary for efficient propulsion but potentially due to evolutionary restrictions in nature.
Takahashi, Marc D.
Rate-command and attitude-command flight-control designs for a UH-60 helicopter in hover are presented and were synthesized using an H(2) method. Using weight functions, this method allows the direct shaping of the singular values of the sensitivity, complementary sensitivity, and control input transfer-function matrices to give acceptable feedback properties. The designs were implemented on the Vertical Motion Simulator, and four low-speed hover tasks were used to evaluate the control system characteristics. The pilot comments from the accel-decel, bob-up, hovering turn, and side-step tasks indicated good decoupling and quick response characteristics. However, an underlying roll PIO tendency was found to exist away from the hover condition, which was caused by a flap regressing mode with insufficient damping.
stability augmentation system (SAS) for the AV-8B Advanced Harrier VSTOL aircraft using microprocessor-based digital control. The research focuses on improving the handling qualities of the airplane through SAS redesign in the low speed flight regime. Particular attention is paid to the so-called weather-cocking instability encountered in transition (hover to conventional and vice versa) flight. Until quite recently, there has been a dearth of information about the flight characteristics of the Harrier. A major breakthrough in this field was achieved by the
Phan, Hoang Vu; Truong, Quang Tri; Park, Hoon Cheol
frequency using a high geometric AoA with a largest vertical force. Additionally, by considering both aerodynamic and inertial forces, the average geometric AoAs obtained in this study are in a range from 30º to 40°, which are similar to those of typical hovering insect's wings. Therefore, operation of aerodynamically uneconomical high AoA in hovering insect's wings during flight can be explainable.
Kweon, Jihoon; Choi, Haecheon
In the present study, we investigate the interaction between the fore- and hind-wings in hovering flight of modelled dragonfly using 3D numerical simulation. The three-dimensional wing shape is based on that of Aeschna juncea (Norberg 1972) and numerically realized using an immersed boundary method (Kim et al. 2001). The wing flapping motion is modelled using a sinusoidal function and the stroke plane angle is 60^o. We consider 12 different phase differences between the fore- and hind-wings (φ=0^o ˜ 330^o). The Reynolds number is 1,000 based on the maximum translational velocity and mean chord length. In counter stroke (φ=180^o), the wing-tip vortices from both wings are connected, generating an entangled wing-tip vortex (e-WTV). A strong downward motion induced by this vortex decreases the vertical force in the following stroke (Kweon & Choi 2008). In parallel stroke (φ=0^o), both wings meet e-WTV during the upstroke and thus the decrease of vertical force is small. At φ=270^o, although e-WTV is generated on a relatively narrow region, the hind-wing moves downward along with e-WTV, resulting in a significant reduction of vertical force on the hind-wing. Therefore, the sum of vertical forces on both wings is maximum with parallel stroke and minimum at φ=270^o. The power required has a similar trend to the vertical force and thus the efficiency does not show a large variation with the phase difference.
Culpepper, R. G.; Murphy, R. D.; Gillespie, E. A.; Lane, A. G.
The Langley Impact Dynamics Research Facility (IDRF) was modified to obtain static force and moment data and to allow assessment of aircraft handling qualities during dynamic tethered hover flight. Test probe procedures were also established. Static lift and control measurements obtained are presented along with results of limited dynamic tethered hover flight.
There has been a significant growth in the use of UAV helicopters for a multitude of military and civilian applications over the last few years. Due to these numerous applications, from crop dusting to remote sensing, UAV helicopters are now a major topic of interest within the aerospace community. The main research focus is on the development of automatic flight control systems (AFCS). The design of AFCS for these vehicles requires a mathematical model representing the dynamics of the vehicle. The mathematical model is developed either from first-principles, using the equations of motion of the vehicle, or from the flight data, using parameter identification techniques. The traditional six-degrees-of-freedom (6-DoF) dynamics model is not suitable for high-bandwidth control system design. Such models are valid only within the low- to mid-frequency range. The agility and high maneuverability of small-scale helicopters require a high-bandwidth control system for full authority autonomous performance. The design of a high-bandwidth control system in turn requires a high-fidelity simulation model that is able to capture the key dynamics of the helicopter. These dynamics include the rotor dynamics. This dissertation presents the development of a 14-degrees-of-freedom (14-DoF) state-space linear model for the KU Thunder Tiger Raptor 50 UAV helicopter from first-principles and from flight test data using a parameter identification technique for the hovering and forward flight conditions. The model includes rigid body, rotor regressive, rotor inflow, stabilizer bar, and rotor coning dynamics. The model is implemented within The MathWork's MATLAB/Simulink environment. The simulation results show that the high-order model is able to predict the helicopter's dynamics up to the frequency of 30 rad/sec. The main contributions of this dissertation are the development of a high-order simulation model for a small UAV helicopter from first-principles and the identification of a
Tischler, Mark B.; Biezad, Daniel J.; Cheng, Rendy
A multi-input, multi-output controls design with dynamic crossfeed pre-compensation is presented for rotorcraft in near-hovering flight using Quantitative Feedback Theory (QFT). The resulting closed-loop control system bandwidth allows the rotorcraft to be considered for use as an inflight simulator. The use of dynamic, robust crossfeeds prior to the QFT design reduces the magnitude of required feedback gain and results in performance that meets most handling qualities specifications relative to the decoupling of off-axis responses. Handling qualities are Level 1 for both low-gain tasks and high-gain tasks in the roll, pitch, and yaw axes except for the 10 deg/sec moderate-amplitude yaw command where the rotorcraft exhibits Level 2 handling qualities in the yaw axis caused by phase lag. The combined effect of the QFT feedback design following the implementation of low-order, dynamic crossfeed compensators successfully decouples ten of twelve off-axis channels. For the other two channels it was not possible to find a single, low-order crossfeed that was effective. This is an area to be investigated in future research.
Sridhar, Madhu; Kang, Chang-kwon
Fruit flies have flexible wings that deform during flight. To explore the fluid-structure interaction of flexible flapping wings at fruit fly scale, we use a well-validated Navier-Stokes equation solver, fully-coupled with a structural dynamics solver. Effects of chordwise flexibility on a two dimensional hovering wing is studied. Resulting wing rotation is purely passive, due to the dynamic balance between aerodynamic loading, elastic restoring force, and inertial force of the wing. Hover flight is considered at a Reynolds number of Re = 100, equivalent to that of fruit flies. The thickness and density of the wing also corresponds to a fruit fly wing. The wing stiffness and motion amplitude are varied to assess their influences on the resulting aerodynamic performance and structural response. Highest lift coefficient of 3.3 was obtained at the lowest-amplitude, highest-frequency motion (reduced frequency of 3.0) at the lowest stiffness (frequency ratio of 0.7) wing within the range of the current study, although the corresponding power required was also the highest. Optimal efficiency was achieved for a lower reduced frequency of 0.3 and frequency ratio 0.35. Compared to the water tunnel scale with water as the surrounding fluid instead of air, the resulting vortex dynamics and aerodynamic performance remained similar for the optimal efficiency motion, while the structural response varied significantly. Despite these differences, the time-averaged lift scaled with the dimensionless shape deformation parameter γ. Moreover, the wing kinematics that resulted in the optimal efficiency motion was closely aligned to the fruit fly measurements, suggesting that fruit fly flight aims to conserve energy, rather than to generate large forces.
Borchers, Paul F.; Moralez, Ernesto, III; Merrick, Vernon K.; Stortz, Michael W.
Using a calibrated Rolls-Royce Pegasus engine and existing aircraft instrumentation and pressure taps, total and individual nozzle reaction control system (RCS) bleed flow rates have been measured on a YAV-8B Harrier during typical short takeoff, transition, hover, and vertical landing maneuvers. RCS thrust forces were calculated from RCS nozzle total pressure measurements, and control power was determined from the moments produced by these thrusts and the aircraft's moments of inertia. These data document the characteristics of the YAV-8B RCS with its basic stability augmentation system (SAS) engaged. Advanced control system designs for the YAV-8B can be compared to the original SAS based on the total bleed use and the percentage of available bleed used. In addition, the peak and mean values of the bleed and control power data can be used for sizing the reaction controls for a future short takeoff and vertical landing (STOVL) aircraft.
Nabawy, Mostafa R A; Crowther, William J
An analytical treatment to quantify the losses captured in the induced power factor, k, is provided for flapping wings in normal hover, including the effects of non-uniform downwash, tip losses and finite flapping amplitude. The method is based on a novel combination of actuator disc and lifting line blade theories that also takes into account the effect of advance ratio. The model has been evaluated against experimental results from the literature and qualitative agreement obtained for the effect of advance ratio on the lift coefficient of revolving wings. Comparison with quantitative experimental data for the circulation as a function of span for a fruitfly wing shows that the model is able to correctly predict the circulation shape of variation, including both the magnitude of the peak circulation and the rate of decay in circulation towards zero. An evaluation of the contributions to induced power factor in normal hover for eight insects is provided. It is also shown how Reynolds number can be accounted for in the induced power factor, and good agreement is obtained between predicted span efficiency as a function of Reynolds number and numerical results from the literature. Lastly, it is shown that for a flapping wing in hover k owing to the non-uniform downwash effect can be reduced to 1.02 using an arcsech chord distribution. For morphologically realistic wing shapes based on beta distributions, it is shown that a value of 1.07 can be achieved for a radius of first moment of wing area at 40% of wing length.
Poisson-Quinton, PH.; Cook, W. L.
An experimental research program has been conducted on a series of tilt rotors designed for a range of blade twist in various wind tunnel facilities. The objective was to obtain precise results on the influence of blade twist and aeroelasticity on tilt rotor performance, from hover to high speed cruise Mach number of about 0.7. global forces on the rotor, local loads and blade torsional deflection measurements were compared with theoretical predictions inside a large Reynolds-Mach envelope. Testing techniques developed during the program are described.
Dinyavari, M. A. H.; Friedmann, P. P.
Several incompressible finite-time arbitrary-motion airfoil theories suitable for coupled flap-lag-torsional aeroelastic analysis of helicopter rotors in hover and forward flight are derived. These theories include generalized Greenberg's theory, generalized Loewy's theory, and a staggered cascade theory. The generalized Greenberg's and staggered cascade theories were derived directly in Laplace domain considering the finite length of the wake and using operational methods. The load expressions are presented in Laplace, frequency, and time domains. Approximate time domain loads for the various generalized theories, discussed in the paper, are obtained by developing finite state models using the Pade approximant of the appropriate lift deficiency functions. Three different methods for constructing Pade approximants of the lift deficiency functions were considered and the more flexible one was used. Pade approximants of Loewy's lift deficiency function, for various wake spacing and radial location parameters of a helicopter typical rotor blade section, are presented.
The reduction of the O(cu epsilon) integro differential equations to ordinary differential equations using a set of orthogonal functions is described. Attention was focused on the hover flight condition. The set of Galerkin integrals that appear in the reduced equations was evaluated by making use of nonrotating beam modes. Although a large amount of computer time was needed to accomplish this task, the Galerkin integrals so evaluated were stored on tape on a permanent basis. Several of the coefficients were also obtained in closed form in order to check the accuracy of the numerical computations. The equilibrium solution to the set of 3n equations obtained was determined as the solution to a minimization problem.
ul Amin, Rooh; Aijun, Li; Khan, Muhammad Umer; Shamshirband, Shahaboddin; Kamsin, Amirrudin
In this paper, an adaptive trajectory tracking controller based on extended normalized radial basis function network (ENRBFN) is proposed for 3-degree-of-freedom four rotor hover vehicle subjected to external disturbance i.e. wind turbulence. Mathematical model of four rotor hover system is developed using equations of motions and a new computational intelligence based technique ENRBFN is introduced to approximate the unmodeled dynamics of the hover vehicle. The adaptive controller based on the Lyapunov stability approach is designed to achieve tracking of the desired attitude angles of four rotor hover vehicle in the presence of wind turbulence. The adaptive weight update based on the Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm is used to avoid weight drift in case the system is exposed to external disturbances. The closed-loop system stability is also analyzed using Lyapunov stability theory. Simulations and experimental results are included to validate the effectiveness of the proposed control scheme.
Mirick, Paul H.
Four cases were selected for comparison with theoretical predictions using stability data obtained during the flight test of the Bearingless Main Rotor (BMR) on a Messerschmidt-Boelkow-Blohm BO 105 helicopter. The four cases selected form the flight test included two ground resonance cases and two air resonance cases. The BMR used four modified BO 105 blades attached to a bearingless hub. The hub consisted of dual fiberglass C-channel beams attached to the hub center at 0.0238R and attached to the blade root at 0.25R with blade pitch control provided by a torque tube. Analyses from Bell Helicopter Textron, Boeing Vertol, and Sikorsky Aircraft were compared with the data and the correlation ranged from very poor-to-poor to poor-to-fair.
Fan, M. K. H.; Tits, A.; Barlow, J.; Tsing, N. K.; Tischler, M.; Takahashi, M.
A methodology for design of helicopter control systems is proposed that can account for various types of concurrent specifications: stability, decoupling between longitudinal and lateral motions, handling qualities, and physical limitations of the swashplate motions. This is achieved by synergistic use of analytical techniques (Q-parameterization of all stabilizing controllers, transfer function interpolation) and advanced numerical optimization techniques. The methodology is used to design a controller for the UH-60 helicopter in hover. Good results are achieved for decoupling and handling quality specifications.
Wingett, Paul T. (Inventor); Gaines, Louie T. (Inventor); Evans, Paul S. (Inventor); Kern, James I. (Inventor)
A flight control actuation system comprises a controller, electromechanical actuator and a pneumatic actuator. During normal operation, only the electromechanical actuator is needed to operate a flight control surface. When the electromechanical actuator load level exceeds 40 amps positive, the controller activates the pneumatic actuator to offset electromechanical actuator loads to assist the manipulation of flight control surfaces. The assistance from the pneumatic load assist actuator enables the use of an electromechanical actuator that is smaller in size and mass, requires less power, needs less cooling processes, achieves high output forces and adapts to electrical current variations. The flight control actuation system is adapted for aircraft, spacecraft, missiles, and other flight vehicles, especially flight vehicles that are large in size and travel at high velocities.
Wingett, Paul T. (Inventor); Gaines, Louie T. (Inventor); Evans, Paul S. (Inventor); Kern, James I. (Inventor)
A flight control actuation system comprises a controller, electromechanical actuator and a pneumatic actuator. During normal operation, only the electromechanical actuator is needed to operate a flight control surface. When the electromechanical actuator load level exceeds 40 amps positive, the controller activates the pneumatic actuator to offset electromechanical actuator loads to assist the manipulation of flight control surfaces. The assistance from the pneumatic load assist actuator enables the use of an electromechanical actuator that is smaller in size and mass, requires less power, needs less cooling processes, achieves high output forces and adapts to electrical current variations. The flight control actuation system is adapted for aircraft, spacecraft, missiles, and other flight vehicles, especially flight vehicles that are large in size and travel at high velocities.
Hindson, William S.
A flight investigation was conducted to evaluate a multi-mode flight control system designed according to the most recent recommendations for handling qualities criteria for new military helicopters. The modes and capabilities that were included in the system are those considered necessary to permit divided-attention (single-pilot) lowspeed and hover operations near the ground in poor visibility conditions. Design features included mode-selection and mode-blending logic, the use of an automatic position-hold mode that employed precision measurements of aircraft position, and a hover display which permitted manually-controlled hover flight tasks in simulated instrument conditions. Pilot evaluations of the system were conducted using a multi-segment evaluation task. Pilot comments concerning the use of the system are provided, and flight-test data are presented to show system performance.
per quarter turn for each of the four blades for a total of 1080 vortex ring elements of unknown strength at each flight condition. Images of these...azimuthal direction per quarter turn for each of the four blades for a total of 1080 vortex ring elements of unknown strength for the forward flight
Cheng, Xin; Sun, Mao
Wing-motion of hovering small fly Liriomyza sativae was measured using high-speed video and flows of the wings calculated numerically. The fly used high wingbeat frequency (≈265 Hz) and large stroke amplitude (≈182°); therefore, even if its wing-length (R) was small (R ≈ 1.4 mm), the mean velocity of wing reached ≈1.5 m/s, the same as that of an average-size insect (R ≈ 3 mm). But the Reynolds number (Re) of wing was still low (≈40), owing to the small wing-size. In increasing the stroke amplitude, the outer parts of the wings had a "clap and fling" motion. The mean-lift coefficient was high, ≈1.85, several times larger than that of a cruising airplane. The partial "clap and fling" motion increased the lift by ≈7%, compared with the case of no aerodynamic interaction between the wings. The fly mainly used the delayed stall mechanism to generate the high-lift. The lift-to-drag ratio is only 0.7 (for larger insects, Re being about 100 or higher, the ratio is 1-1.2); that is, although the small fly can produce enough lift to support its weight, it needs to overcome a larger drag to do so.
Cheng, Xin; Sun, Mao
Wing-motion of hovering small fly Liriomyza sativae was measured using high-speed video and flows of the wings calculated numerically. The fly used high wingbeat frequency (≈265 Hz) and large stroke amplitude (≈182°) therefore, even if its wing-length (R) was small (R ≈ 1.4 mm), the mean velocity of wing reached ≈1.5 m/s, the same as that of an average-size insect (R ≈ 3 mm). But the Reynolds number (Re) of wing was still low (≈40), owing to the small wing-size. In increasing the stroke amplitude, the outer parts of the wings had a “clap and fling” motion. The mean-lift coefficient was high, ≈1.85, several times larger than that of a cruising airplane. The partial “clap and fling” motion increased the lift by ≈7%, compared with the case of no aerodynamic interaction between the wings. The fly mainly used the delayed stall mechanism to generate the high-lift. The lift-to-drag ratio is only 0.7 (for larger insects, Re being about 100 or higher, the ratio is 1–1.2) that is, although the small fly can produce enough lift to support its weight, it needs to overcome a larger drag to do so.
Cheng, Xin; Sun, Mao
Wing-motion of hovering small fly Liriomyza sativae was measured using high-speed video and flows of the wings calculated numerically. The fly used high wingbeat frequency (≈265 Hz) and large stroke amplitude (≈182°); therefore, even if its wing-length (R) was small (R ≈ 1.4 mm), the mean velocity of wing reached ≈1.5 m/s, the same as that of an average-size insect (R ≈ 3 mm). But the Reynolds number (Re) of wing was still low (≈40), owing to the small wing-size. In increasing the stroke amplitude, the outer parts of the wings had a “clap and fling” motion. The mean-lift coefficient was high, ≈1.85, several times larger than that of a cruising airplane. The partial “clap and fling” motion increased the lift by ≈7%, compared with the case of no aerodynamic interaction between the wings. The fly mainly used the delayed stall mechanism to generate the high-lift. The lift-to-drag ratio is only 0.7 (for larger insects, Re being about 100 or higher, the ratio is 1–1.2); that is, although the small fly can produce enough lift to support its weight, it needs to overcome a larger drag to do so. PMID:27168523
Potter, J. E.; Stern, R. G.; Smith, T. B.; Sinha, P.
The results of studies which were undertaken to contribute to the design of digital flight control systems, particularly for transport aircraft are presented. In addition to the overall design considerations for a digital flight control system, the following topics are discussed in detail: (1) aircraft attitude reference system design, (2) the digital computer configuration, (3) the design of a typical digital autopilot for transport aircraft, and (4) a hybrid flight simulator.
Sterbing-D'Angelo, Susanne; Chadha, Mohit; Chiu, Chen; Falk, Ben; Xian, Wei; Barcelo, Janna; Zook, John M.; Moss, Cynthia F.
Bats are the only mammals capable of powered flight, and they perform impressive aerial maneuvers like tight turns, hovering, and perching upside down. The bat wing contains five digits, and its specialized membrane is covered with stiff, microscopically small, domed hairs. We provide here unique empirical evidence that the tactile receptors associated with these hairs are involved in sensorimotor flight control by providing aerodynamic feedback. We found that neurons in bat primary somatosensory cortex respond with directional sensitivity to stimulation of the wing hairs with low-speed airflow. Wing hairs mostly preferred reversed airflow, which occurs under flight conditions when the airflow separates and vortices form. This finding suggests that the hairs act as an array of sensors to monitor flight speed and/or airflow conditions that indicate stall. Depilation of different functional regions of the bats’ wing membrane altered the flight behavior in obstacle avoidance tasks by reducing aerial maneuverability, as indicated by decreased turning angles and increased flight speed. PMID:21690408
Stengel, Robert F.
The capabilities of flight control systems can be enhanced by designing them to emulate functions of natural intelligence. Intelligent control functions fall in three categories. Declarative actions involve decision-making, providing models for system monitoring, goal planning, and system/scenario identification. Procedural actions concern skilled behavior and have parallels in guidance, navigation, and adaptation. Reflexive actions are spontaneous, inner-loop responses for control and estimation. Intelligent flight control systems learn knowledge of the aircraft and its mission and adapt to changes in the flight environment. Cognitive models form an efficient basis for integrating 'outer-loop/inner-loop' control functions and for developing robust parallel-processing algorithms.
Dickinson, Michael H; Muijres, Florian T
A firm understanding of how fruit flies hover has emerged over the past two decades, and recent work has focused on the aerodynamic, biomechanical and neurobiological mechanisms that enable them to manoeuvre and resist perturbations. In this review, we describe how flies manipulate wing movement to control their body motion during active manoeuvres, and how these actions are regulated by sensory feedback. We also discuss how the application of control theory is providing new insight into the logic and structure of the circuitry that underlies flight stability.This article is part of the themed issue 'Moving in a moving medium: new perspectives on flight'.
The feasibility of using an electromechanical actuator (EMA) as the primary flight control equipment in aerospace flight is examined. The EMA motor design is presented utilizing improved permanent magnet materials. The necessary equipment to complete a single channel EMA using the single channel power electronics breadboard is reported. The design and development of an improved rotor position sensor/tachometer is investigated.
Hill, G. C.
Piloted simulation studies of candidate control systems for VATOL aircraft were conducted on a six degree of freedom simulator. Hover and transitions from wing-born to hovering flight were performed, with and without turbulence, on a representative high performance fighter configuration. Deflection of the rear engine nozzle provided pitch and yaw control moments in concert with reaction controls for roll. Unique motion cues in hover result from the vertical displacement of the cockpit and the thrust vectoring nozzles. Abundant control power available with moderate engine nozzle deflection combined with rate feedback for stability augmentation provided very satisfactory control.
Friedmann, P.; Tong, P.
Equations for large coupled flap-lag motion of hingeless elastic helicopter blades are consistently derived. Only torsionally-rigid blades excited by quasi-steady aerodynamic loads are considered. The nonlinear equations of motion in the time and space variables are reduced to a system of coupled nonlinear ordinary differential equations with periodic coefficients, using Galerkin's method for the space variables. The nonlinearities present in the equations are those arising from the inclusion of moderately large deflections in the inertia and aerodynamic loading terms. The resulting system of nonlinear equations has been solved, using an asymptotic expansion procedure in multiple time scales. The stability boundaries, amplitudes of nonlinear response, and conditions for existence of limit cycles are obtained analytically. Thus, the different roles played by the forcing function, parametric excitation, and nonlinear coupling in affecting the solution can be easily identified, and the basic physical mechanism of coupled flap-lag response becomes clear. The effect of forward flight is obtained with the requirement of trimmed flight at fixed values of the thrust coefficient.
Born, G. J.; Kai, T.
A major difficulty in the practical application of linear-quadratic regulator theory is how to choose the weighting matrices in quadratic cost functions. The control system design with optimal weighting matrices was applied to a helicopter in the hover and approach phase. The weighting matrices were calculated to extremize the closed loop total system damping subject to constraints on the determinants. The extremization is really a minimization of the effects of disturbances, and interpreted as a compromise between the generalized system accuracy and the generalized system response speed. The trade-off between the accuracy and the response speed is adjusted by a single parameter, the ratio of determinants. By this approach an objective measure can be obtained for the design of a control system. The measure is to be determined by the system requirements.
Colbourne, Jason D.; Frost, Chad R.; Tischler, Mark B.; Ciolani, Luigi; Sahai, Ranjana; Tomoshofski, Chris; LaMontagne, Troy; Rutkowski, Michael (Technical Monitor)
Developing autonomous flying vehicles has been a growing field in aeronautical research within the last decade and will continue into the next century. With concerns about safety, size, and cost of manned aircraft, several autonomous vehicle projects are currently being developed; uninhabited rotorcraft offer solutions to requirements for hover, vertical take-off and landing, as well as slung load transportation capabilities. The newness of the technology requires flight control engineers to question what design approaches, control law architectures, and performance criteria apply to control law development and handling quality evaluation. To help answer these questions, this paper documents the control law design process for Kaman Aerospace BURRO project. This paper will describe the approach taken to design control laws and develop math models which will be used to convert the manned K-MAX into the BURRO autonomous rotorcraft. With the ability of the K-MAX to lift its own weight (6000 lb) the load significantly affects the dynamics of the system; the paper addresses the additional design requirements for slung load autonomous flight. The approach taken in this design was to: 1) generate accurate math models of the K-MAX helicopter with and without slung loads, 2) select design specifications that would deliver good performance as well as satisfy mission criteria, and 3) develop and tune the control system architecture to meet the design specs and mission criteria. An accurate math model was desired for control system development. The Comprehensive Identification from Frequency Responses (CIFER(R)) software package was used to identify a linear math model for unloaded and loaded flight at hover, 50 kts, and 100 kts. The results of an eight degree-of-freedom CIFER(R)-identified linear model for the unloaded hover flight condition are presented herein, and the identification of the two-body slung-load configuration is in progress.
A viewgraph presentation detailing X-43A Flight controls at NASA Dryden Flight Research Center is shown. The topics include: 1) NASA Dryden, Overview and current and recent flight test programs; 2) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Synthetic Aperture Radar (UAVSAR) Program, Program Overview and Platform Precision Autopilot; and 3) Hyper-X Program, Program Overview, X-43A Flight Controls and Flight Results.
Curtiss, H. C., Jr.; Putman, W. F.
An experimental investigation of the flap-lag stability of a hingeless rotor in hovering flight is presented and discussed. The rotor blade and hub configuration were selected such that the hub and blade had comparable levels of bending stiffness. Experimental measurements of the lag damping were made for various values of rotor rotational speed and blade pitch angle. Specifically at a blade pitch angle of 8 deg at three-quarters radius, the lag damping was determined over a range of rotational speeds from 200 RPM to 320 RPM and also over a range of blade pitch angles from 0 deg to 8 deg.
Riley, Donald R.; Shah, Gautam H.; Kuhn, Richard E.
A brief wind-tunnel study was conducted in the Langley 12-Foot Low-Speed Tunnel to determine reaction control-jet effectiveness and some associated aerodynamic characteristics of a 15 percent scale model of the General Dynamics E-7A STOVL fighter/attack aircraft concept applicable to hover and transition flight. Tests were made with the model at various attitude angles in the tunnel test section and at various tunnel airspeeds for a range of control-jet nozzle pressure ratios. Eight reaction control-jets were tested individually. Four jets were at the design baseline locations providing roll, pitch, and yaw control. Comparisons of measured data with values calculated using empirical methods were made where possible.
Biezad, Daniel J.
This work is extending the research accomplished on project NCC2-751. A newly implemented helicopter model has been used to simulate 25 flight configurations near hover for the UH-60 RASCAL aircraft. A new engine model has been installed in the FORECAST simulation (alias UMGENHEL) for the better prediction of the yaw and heave responses. By applying the decoupling metric from project NCC 751 it was determined that the aileron to pitch and the elevator to yaw responses do not indicate the need for crossfeeds since both of them have a decoupling metric value over 20 dB (less than 10 percent coupling). In the case of the aileron to heave and the elevator to heave responses, the large size and the overlapping of the templates indicate that a low-order dynamic crossfeed cannot be found. The low-order dynamic crossfeed selection is proceeding, however, for the remaining eight crossfeeds. Note that most of them have successfully decoupled the system by 20 dB or more, except for the rudder to heave crossfeed (18.2 dB). It is probable that the engine model needs more accuracy to further improve the heave to yaw crossfeed decoupling metric value. To see how the new low-order dynamic crossfeeds perform, a simulation was accomplished using MATLAB SIMULINK.
Flying insects achieve flight stabilization and control in a manner that requires only small, specialized neural structures to perform the essential components of sensing and feedback, achieving unparalleled levels of robust aerobatic flight on limited computational resources. An engineering mechanism to replicate these control strategies could provide a dramatic increase in the mobility of small scale aerial robotics, but a formal investigation has not yet yielded tools that both quantitatively and intuitively explain flapping wing flight as an "input-output" relationship. This work uses experimental and simulated measurements of insect flight to create reduced order flight dynamics models. The framework presented here creates models that are relevant for the study of control properties. The work begins with automated measurement of insect wing motions in free flight, which are then used to calculate flight forces via an empirically-derived aerodynamics model. When paired with rigid body dynamics and experimentally measured state feedback, both the bare airframe and closed loop systems may be analyzed using frequency domain system identification. Flight dynamics models describing maneuvering about hover and cruise conditions are presented for example fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) and blowflies (Calliphorids). The results show that biologically measured feedback paths are appropriate for flight stabilization and sexual dimorphism is only a minor factor in flight dynamics. A method of ranking kinematic control inputs to maximize maneuverability is also presented, showing that the volume of reachable configurations in state space can be dramatically increased due to appropriate choice of kinematic inputs.
Flight Tests of the Sikorsky HNS-1 (Army YR-4B) Helicopter. 2 - Hovering and Vertical-Flight Performance with the Original and an Alternative Set of Main-Rotor Blades, Including a Comparison with Hovering Performance Theory
sustentation at various altitudes in the ground-effect region is shown in figure 2. A hovering point obtained at approximately 400 feet altitude and a...power required. DISCUSSION Ground-effect data.- The effect of rpm on the power— .— required for sustentation is clearly indicated by figure 2. A ret
Ma, Kevin Y; Chirarattananon, Pakpong; Fuller, Sawyer B; Wood, Robert J
Flies are among the most agile flying creatures on Earth. To mimic this aerial prowess in a similarly sized robot requires tiny, high-efficiency mechanical components that pose miniaturization challenges governed by force-scaling laws, suggesting unconventional solutions for propulsion, actuation, and manufacturing. To this end, we developed high-power-density piezoelectric flight muscles and a manufacturing methodology capable of rapidly prototyping articulated, flexure-based sub-millimeter mechanisms. We built an 80-milligram, insect-scale, flapping-wing robot modeled loosely on the morphology of flies. Using a modular approach to flight control that relies on limited information about the robot's dynamics, we demonstrated tethered but unconstrained stable hovering and basic controlled flight maneuvers. The result validates a sufficient suite of innovations for achieving artificial, insect-like flight.
Klinar, W. J.; Kubiak, E. T.; Peters, W. H.; Saldana, R. L.; Smith, E. E., Jr.; Stegall, H. W.
The Space Shuttle is a control stabilized vehicle with control provided by an all digital, fly-by-wire flight control system. This paper gives a description of the several modes of flight control which correspond to the Shuttle mission phases. These modes are ascent flight control (including open loop first stage steering, the use of four computers operating in parallel and inertial guidance sensors), on-orbit flight control (with a discussion of reaction control, phase plane switching logic, jet selection logic, state estimator logic and OMS thrust vector control), entry flight control and TAEM (terminal area energy management to landing). Also discussed are redundancy management and backup flight control.
Liu, Xiaosong; Zhang, Peng; Liu, Keping; Li, Yuanchun
This paper is concerned with 6-DOF control of a probe hovering in the orbital frame of an asteroid. Considering the requirements of the scientific instruments pointing direction and orbital position in practical missions, the coordinate control of relative attitude and orbit between the probe and target asteroid is imperative. A 6-DOF dynamic equation describing the relative translational and rotational motion of a probe in the asteroid's orbital frame is derived, taking the irregular gravitation, model and parameter uncertainties and external disturbances into account. An adaptive sliding mode controller is employed to guarantee the convergence of the state error, where the adaptation law is used to estimate the unknown upper bound of system uncertainty. Then the controller is improved to deal with the practical problem of actuator limitations by introducing a RBF neural network compensator, which is used to approximate the difference between the actual control with magnitude constraint and the designed nominal control law. The closed-loop system is proved to be asymptotically stable through the Lyapunov stability analysis. Numerical simulations are performed to compare the performances of the preceding designed control laws. Simulation results demonstrate the validity of the control scheme using the compensator-based adaptive sliding mode control law in the presence of actuator limitations, system uncertainty and external disturbance.
The Neural Flight Control System (NFCS) was developed to address the need for control systems that can be produced and tested at lower cost, easily adapted to prototype vehicles and for flight systems that can accommodate damaged control surfaces or changes to aircraft stability and control characteristics resulting from failures or accidents. NFCS utilizes on a neural network-based flight control algorithm which automatically compensates for a broad spectrum of unanticipated damage or failures of an aircraft in flight. Pilot stick and rudder pedal inputs are fed into a reference model which produces pitch, roll and yaw rate commands. The reference model frequencies and gains can be set to provide handling quality characteristics suitable for the aircraft of interest. The rate commands are used in conjunction with estimates of the aircraft s stability and control (S&C) derivatives by a simplified Dynamic Inverse controller to produce virtual elevator, aileron and rudder commands. These virtual surface deflection commands are optimally distributed across the aircraft s available control surfaces using linear programming theory. Sensor data is compared with the reference model rate commands to produce an error signal. A Proportional/Integral (PI) error controller "winds up" on the error signal and adds an augmented command to the reference model output with the effect of zeroing the error signal. In order to provide more consistent handling qualities for the pilot, neural networks learn the behavior of the error controller and add in the augmented command before the integrator winds up. In the case of damage sufficient to affect the handling qualities of the aircraft, an Adaptive Critic is utilized to reduce the reference model frequencies and gains to stay within a flyable envelope of the aircraft.
Yaici, Malika; Hariche, Kamel; Clarke, Tim
In a precedent paper a design process is described to achieve eigenstructure assignment using block poles. Systems described in state space equations are transformed to systems in matrix fractions description (MFD) and its desired eigenstructure is transformed to a desired latent structure, which is used to construct desired block poles. In this paper, the proposed design method is applied for attitude stabilization of a Lynx helicopter in hover. An input-output feedback configuration has been chosen for more generality, and to validate the results the output responses are compared to state and output feedback control responses.
Still, David L.; Temme, Leonard A.
Hover is an essential component of rotary wing aviation but learning to hover is extremely difficult. From the viewpoint inside the cockpit, the beginning student neither sees nor understands what needs to be done to control the aircraft. This is because the out-the-window real world visual cues suffer from two primary shortcomings. First, the real world visual cues are ambiguous. For example, the relative motion of the ground moving under the nose may indicate forward flight, pitching upward, vertical ascent, or any combination of these. Second, human ability to judge aircraft pitch by itself is insufficient to stabilize the aircraft; such other clues as relative motion or parallax are needed to augment pitch judgments to set aircraft attitude adequately. We report a training display (TD) designed to assist training rotary wing hover. The TD is specifically constructed to communicate aircraft performance and attitude to the student pilot and to disambiguate the external world's features and motions cues into symbology that allows each cue independently to support sufficient levels of parameter resolution. Our preliminary observations, based on pilot data collected during the design, parameterization, and calibration of the TD indicate that it meets its goals in a fashion that enables beginning flight students to understand and interpret the motion cues of the real world out-the-window view.
Chung, W. Y. William; Borchers, Paul F.; Franklin, James A.
A simulation model has been developed for use in piloted evaluations of takeoff, transition, hover, and landing characteristics of an advanced, short takeoff, vertical landing lift fan fighter aircraft. The flight/propulsion control system includes modes for several response types which are coupled to the aircraft's aerodynamic and propulsion system effectors through a control selector tailored to the lift fan propulsion system. Head-up display modes for approach and hover, tailored to their corresponding control modes are provided in the simulation. Propulsion system components modeled include a remote lift and a lift/cruise engine. Their static performance and dynamic response are represented by the model. A separate report describes the subsonic, power-off aerodynamics and jet induced aerodynamics in hover and forward flight, including ground effects.
Mancuso, Peter Timothy
Fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) that offer vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) and forward flight capability suffer from sub-par performance in both flight modes. Achieving the next generation of efficient hybrid aircraft requires innovations in: (i) power management, (ii) efficient structures, and (iii) control methodologies. Existing hybrid UAVs generally utilize one of three transitioning mechanisms: an external power mechanism to tilt the rotor-propulsion pod, separate propulsion units and rotors during hover and forward flight, or tilt body craft (smaller scale). Thus, hybrid concepts require more energy compared to dedicated fixed-wing or rotorcraft UAVs. Moreover, design trade-offs to reinforce the wing structure (typically to accommodate the propulsion systems and enable hover, i.e. tilt-rotor concepts) adversely impacts the aerodynamics, controllability and efficiency of the aircraft in both hover and forward flight modes. The goal of this research is to develop more efficient VTOL/ hover and forward flight UAVs. In doing so, the transition sequence, transition mechanism, and actuator performance are heavily considered. A design and control methodology was implemented to address these issues through a series of computer simulations and prototype benchtop tests to verify the proposed solution. Finally, preliminary field testing with a first-generation prototype was conducted. The methods used in this research offer guidelines and a new dual-arm rotor UAV concept to designing more efficient hybrid UAVs in both hover and forward flight.
Landis, K. H.; Glusman, S. I.; Aiken, E. W.; Hilbert, K. B.
Simulation of the reduced visibility tasks is effected by providing the pilot with a visually coupled, helmet-mounted display of flight-control symbols superimposed upon terrain-board imagery. Forward-flight, low-speed, and precision-hover control modes are implemented, and a method is developed for the blending of control laws between each control mode. An investigation is made of the variations in the level of integration of primary control functions on a single side-stick controller. For most of the flight tasks investigated, separated controller configurations are preferred to a single, fully integrated side-stick device. Satisfactory handling qualities over all controller configurations are attained only for a precision-hover task conducted with a high level of stability and control augmentation. For most tasks flown with the helmet-mounted display significant degradation in handling qualities occurs relative to the identical tasks flown under visual flight conditions.
Caglayan, A. K.; Vanlandingham, H. F.
The design of stable feedback control laws for sampled-data systems with variable rate sampling was investigated. These types of sampled-data systems arise naturally in digital flight control systems which use digital actuators where it is desirable to decrease the number of control computer output commands in order to save wear and tear of the associated equipment. The design of aircraft control systems which are optimally tolerant of sensor and actuator failures was also studied. Detection of the failed sensor or actuator must be resolved and if the estimate of the state is used in the control law, then it is also desirable to have an estimator which will give the optimal state estimate even under the failed conditions.
Kim, Joong-Kwan; Han, Jong-Seob; Lee, Jun-Seong; Han, Jae-Hung
We show that the forward flight speed affects the stability characteristics of the longitudinal and lateral dynamics of a flying hawkmoth; dynamic modal structures of both the planes of motion are altered due to variations in the stability derivatives. The forward flight speed u e is changed from 0.00 to 1.00 m s(-1) with an increment of 0.25 m s(-1). (The equivalent advance ratio is 0.00 to 0.38; the advance ratio is the ratio of the forward flight speed to the average wing tip speed.) As the flight speed increases, for the longitudinal dynamics, an unstable oscillatory mode becomes more unstable. Also, we show that the up/down (w(b)) dynamics become more significant at a faster flight speed due to the prominent increase in the stability derivative Z(u) (up/down force due to the forward/backward velocity). For the lateral dynamics, the decrease in the stability derivative L(v) (roll moment due to side slip velocity) at a faster flight speed affects a slightly damped stable oscillatory mode, causing it to become more stable; however, the t(half) (the time taken to reach half the amplitude) of this slightly damped stable oscillatory mode remains relatively long (∼12T at u(e) = 1 m s(-1); T is wingbeat period) compared to the other modes of motion, meaning that this mode represents the most vulnerable dynamics among the lateral dynamics at all flight speeds. To obtain the stability derivatives, trim conditions for linearization are numerically searched to find the exact trim trajectory and wing kinematics using an algorithm that uses the gradient information of a control effectiveness matrix and fully coupled six-degrees of freedom nonlinear multibody equations of motion. With this algorithm, trim conditions that consider the coupling between the dynamics and aerodynamics can be obtained. The body and wing morphology, and the wing kinematics used in this study are based on actual measurement data from the relevant literature. The aerodynamic model of the flapping
Wu, J H; Sun, M
When an insect hovers or performs constant-speed flight, its wings flap at certain amplitude, frequency, angle of attack, etc., and the flight is balanced (vertical force equals to the weight, and horizontal force and pitch moment are zero). It is possible that when some other sets of values of wing kinematical parameters are used, the force and moment balance conditions can still be satisfied. Does the wing kinematics used by a constant-speed flying insect minimize the power expenditure? In this study, whether the wing kinematics used by a freely hovering dronefly minimizes its energy expenditure was investigated. First, the power consumption using the set of values of wing kinematical parameters that was actually employed by the insect was computed. Then, the kinematical parameters were changed while keeping the equilibrium flight conditions satisfied, and the power consumption was recalculated. It was found that wing kinematical parameters used by the freely hovering dronefly are very close to that minimize its energy consumption, and they can ensure the margin of controllability from hovering to maneuvers. That is, slight change of wing kinematical parameters did not cause significant change of the specific power (maintained a relatively small value).
Rediess, H. A.; Buckley, E. C.
The results of a technology survey in flight crucial flight controls conducted as a data base for planning future research and technology programs are provided. Free world countries were surveyed with primary emphasis on the United States and Western Europe because that is where the most advanced technology resides. The survey includes major contemporary systems on operational aircraft, R&D flight programs, advanced aircraft developments, and major research and technology programs. The survey was not intended to be an in-depth treatment of the technology elements, but rather a study of major trends in systems level technology. The information was collected from open literature, personal communications and a tour of several companies, government organizations and research laboratories in the United States, United Kingdom, France, and the Federal Republic of Germany.
Hartmann, G. L.; Wall, J. E., Jr.; Rang, E. R.; Lee, H. P.; Schulte, R. W.; Ng, W. K.
A fly by wire flight control system architecture designed for high reliability includes spare sensor and computer elements to permit safe dispatch with failed elements, thereby reducing unscheduled maintenance. A methodology capable of demonstrating that the architecture does achieve the predicted performance characteristics consists of a hierarchy of activities ranging from analytical calculations of system reliability and formal methods of software verification to iron bird testing followed by flight evaluation. Interfacing this architecture to the Lockheed S-3A aircraft for flight test is discussed. This testbed vehicle can be expanded to support flight experiments in advanced aerodynamics, electromechanical actuators, secondary power systems, flight management, new displays, and air traffic control concepts.
Catapang, David R.
Control law design for rotorcraft fly-by-wire systems normally attempts to decouple angular responses using fixed-gain crossfeeds. This approach can lead to poor decoupling over the frequency range of pilot inputs and increase the load on the feedback loops. In order to improve the decoupling performance, dynamic crossfeeds may be adopted. Moreover, because of the large changes that occur in rotorcraft dynamics due to small changes about the nominal design condition, especially for near-hovering flight, the crossfeed design must be 'robust'. A new low-order matching method is presented here to design robust crossfeed compensators for multi-input, multi-output (MIMO) systems. The technique identifies degrees-of-freedom that can be decoupled using crossfeeds, given an anticipated set of parameter variations for the range of flight conditions of concern. Cross-coupling is then reduced for degrees-of-freedom that can use crossfeed compensation by minimizing off-axis response magnitude average and variance. Results are presented for the analysis of pitch, roll, yaw and heave coupling of the UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter in near-hovering flight. Robust crossfeeds are designed that show significant improvement in decoupling performance and robustness over nominal, single design point, compensators. The design method and results are presented in an easily used graphical format that lends significant physical insight to the design procedure. This plant pre-compensation technique is an appropriate preliminary step to the design of robust feedback control laws for rotorcraft.
Johannsen, G.; Govindaraj, T.
The influence of different types of predictor displays in a longitudinal VTOL hover task is analyzed in a theoretical study. It was assumed that pitch angle and position are presented to the pilot in separate displays namely the artificial horizon and position display. The predictive information is calculated by means of a Taylor series. From earlier experimental studies it is well known that predictor displays improve human and system performance and result in reducing human workload. In this study, an optimal control model is used to prove this effect theoretically. Several cases with differing amounts of predictive and rate information are compared.
Mcgough, J.; Moses, K.; Klafin, J. F.
The architecture, requirements, and system elements of an ultrareliable, advanced flight control system are described. The basic criteria are functional reliability of 10 to the minus 10 power/hour of flight and only 6 month scheduled maintenance. A distributed system architecture is described, including a multiplexed communication system, reliable bus controller, the use of skewed sensor arrays, and actuator interfaces. Test bed and flight evaluation program are proposed.
Kim, Erica J.; Wolf, Marta; Ortega-Jimenez, Victor Manuel; Cheng, Stanley H.; Dudley, Robert
Aerodynamic performance and energetic savings for flight in ground effect are theoretically maximized during hovering, but have never been directly measured for flying animals. We evaluated flight kinematics, metabolic rates and induced flow velocities for Anna's hummingbirds hovering at heights (relative to wing length R = 5.5 cm) of 0.7R, 0.9R, 1.1R, 1.7R, 2.2R and 8R above a solid surface. Flight at heights less than or equal to 1.1R resulted in significant reductions in the body angle, tail angle, anatomical stroke plane angle, wake-induced velocity, and mechanical and metabolic power expenditures when compared with flight at the control height of 8R. By contrast, stroke plane angle relative to horizontal, wingbeat amplitude and wingbeat frequency were unexpectedly independent of height from ground. Qualitative smoke visualizations suggest that each wing generates a vortex ring during both down- and upstroke. These rings expand upon reaching the ground and present a complex turbulent interaction below the bird's body. Nonetheless, hovering near surfaces results in substantial energetic benefits for hummingbirds, and by inference for all volant taxa that either feed at flowers or otherwise fly close to plant or other surfaces. PMID:24990291
Menon, P. K. A.; Walker, R. A.
Two control law design techniques are compared and the performance of the resulting controllers evaluated. The design requirement is for a flight test trajectory controller (FTTC) capable of closed-loop, outer-loop control of an F-15 aircraft performing high-quality research flight test maneuvers. The maneuver modeling, linearization, and design methodologies utilized in this research, are detailed. The results of applying these FTTCs to a nonlinear F-15 simulation are presented.
Menon, P. K. A.; Walker, R. A.
Two design techniques for linear flight test trajectory controllers (FTTCs) are described: Eigenstructure assignment and the minimum error excitation technique. The two techniques are used to design FTTCs for an F-15 aircraft model for eight different maneuvers at thirty different flight conditions. An evaluation of the FTTCs is presented.
Rodríguez, Enrique; Weber, Jean-Michel; Pagé, Benoît; Roubik, David W; Suarez, Raul K; Darveau, Charles-A
Patterns of metabolic rate variation have been documented extensively in animals, but their functional basis remains elusive. The membrane pacemaker hypothesis proposes that the relative abundance of polyunsaturated fatty acids in membrane phospholipids sets the metabolic rate of organisms. Using species of tropical orchid bees spanning a 16-fold range in body size, we show that the flight muscles of smaller bees have more linoleate (%18 : 3) and stearate (%18 : 0), but less oleate (%18 : 1). More importantly, flight metabolic rate (FlightMR) varies with the relative abundance of 18 : 3 according to the predictions of the membrane pacemaker hypothesis. Although this relationship was found across large differences in metabolic rate, a direct association could not be detected when taking phylogeny and body mass into account. Higher FlightMR, however, was related to lower %16 : 0, independent of phylogeny and body mass. Therefore, this study shows that flight muscle membrane composition plays a significant role in explaining diversity in FlightMR, but that body mass and phylogeny are other factors contributing to their variation. Multiple factors are at play to modulate metabolic capacity, and changing membrane composition can have gradual and stepwise effects to achieve a new range of metabolic rates. Orchid bees illustrate the correlated evolution between membrane composition and metabolic rate, supporting the functional link proposed in the membrane pacemaker hypothesis.
Rodríguez, Enrique; Weber, Jean-Michel; Pagé, Benoît; Roubik, David W.; Suarez, Raul K.; Darveau, Charles-A.
Patterns of metabolic rate variation have been documented extensively in animals, but their functional basis remains elusive. The membrane pacemaker hypothesis proposes that the relative abundance of polyunsaturated fatty acids in membrane phospholipids sets the metabolic rate of organisms. Using species of tropical orchid bees spanning a 16-fold range in body size, we show that the flight muscles of smaller bees have more linoleate (%18 : 3) and stearate (%18 : 0), but less oleate (%18 : 1). More importantly, flight metabolic rate (FlightMR) varies with the relative abundance of 18 : 3 according to the predictions of the membrane pacemaker hypothesis. Although this relationship was found across large differences in metabolic rate, a direct association could not be detected when taking phylogeny and body mass into account. Higher FlightMR, however, was related to lower %16 : 0, independent of phylogeny and body mass. Therefore, this study shows that flight muscle membrane composition plays a significant role in explaining diversity in FlightMR, but that body mass and phylogeny are other factors contributing to their variation. Multiple factors are at play to modulate metabolic capacity, and changing membrane composition can have gradual and stepwise effects to achieve a new range of metabolic rates. Orchid bees illustrate the correlated evolution between membrane composition and metabolic rate, supporting the functional link proposed in the membrane pacemaker hypothesis. PMID:25652831
Carter, John; Stephenson, Mark
The NASA Dryden Flight Research Center has completed the initial flight test of a modified set of F/A-18 flight control computers that gives the aircraft a research control law capability. The production support flight control computers (PSFCC) provide an increased capability for flight research in the control law, handling qualities, and flight systems areas. The PSFCC feature a research flight control processor that is "piggybacked" onto the baseline F/A-18 flight control system. This research processor allows for pilot selection of research control law operation in flight. To validate flight operation, a replication of a standard F/A-18 control law was programmed into the research processor and flight-tested over a limited envelope. This paper provides a brief description of the system, summarizes the initial flight test of the PSFCC, and describes future experiments for the PSFCC.
A technique to achieve output tracking for nonminimum phase linear systems with non-hyperbolic and near non-hyperbolic internal dynamics is presented. This approach integrates stable inversion techniques, that achieve exact-tracking, with approximation techniques, that modify the internal dynamics to achieve desirable performance. Such modification of the internal dynamics is used (1) to remove non-hyperbolicity which an obstruction to applying stable inversion techniques and (2) to reduce large pre-actuation time needed to apply stable inversion for near non-hyperbolic cases. The method is applied to an example helicopter hover control problem with near non-hyperbolic internal dynamic for illustrating the trade-off between exact tracking and reduction of pre-actuation time.
Marr, R. L.; Sambell, K. W.; Neal, G. T.
Stability and control tests of a scale model of a tilt rotor research aircraft were conducted. The characteristics of the model for hover, low speed, and conversion flight were analyzed. Hover tests were conducted in a rotor whirl cage. Helicopter and conversion tests were conducted in a low speed wind tunnel. Data obtained from the tests are presented as tables and graphs. Diagrams and illustrations of the test equipment are provided.
Churchill, G. B.; Gerdes, R. M.
The design criteria and control and handling qualities of the Automatic Flight Control System (AFCS), developed in the framework of the XV-15 tilt-rotor research aircraft, are evaluated, differentiating between the stability and control criteria. A technically aggressive SCAS control law was implemented, demonstrating that significant benefits accrue when stability criteria are separated from design criteria; the design analyses for application of the control law are presented, and the limit bandwidth for stabilization in hovering flight is shown to be defined by rotor or control lag functions. Flight tests of the aircraft resulted in a rating of 3 on the Cooper-Harper scale; a possibility of achieving a rating of 2 is expected if the system is applied to the yaw and heave control modes.
Roberts, Stephen P; Harrison, Jon F; Dudley, Robert
We assessed the energetic and aerodynamic limits of hovering flight in the carpenter bee Xylocopa varipuncta. Using normoxic, variable-density mixtures of O(2), N(2) and He, we were able to elicit maximal hovering performance and aerodynamic failure in the majority of bees sampled. Bees were not isometric regarding thorax mass and wing area, both of which were disproportionately lower in heavier individuals. The minimal gas density necessary for hovering (MGD) increased with body mass and decreased with relative thoracic muscle mass. Only the four bees in our sample with the highest body mass-specific thorax masses were able to hover in pure heliox. Wingbeat frequency and stroke amplitude during maximal hovering were significantly greater than in normodense hovering, increased significantly with body mass during normodense hovering but were mass independent during maximal hovering. Reserve capacity for wingbeat frequency and stroke amplitude decreased significantly with increasing body mass, although reserve capacity in stroke amplitude (10-30%) exceeded that of wingbeat frequency (0-8%). Stroke plane angle during normodense hovering was significantly greater than during maximal hovering, whereas body angle was significantly greater during maximal hovering than during normodense hovering. Power production during normodense hovering was significantly less than during maximal hovering. Metabolic rates were significantly greater during maximal hovering than during normodense hovering and were inversely related to body mass during maximal and normodense hovering. Metabolic reserve capacity averaged 34% and was independent of body mass. Muscle efficiencies were slightly higher during normodense hovering. The allometry of power production, power reserve capacity and muscle efficiency were dependent on the assumed coefficient of drag (C(D)), with significant allometries most often at lower values of C(D). Larger bees operate near the envelope of maximal performance even
O'Donnell, K. A.; Johnson, W. W.; Bennett, C. T.
The effect of perspective displays on flight performance is investigated using two simulation experiments. In the first, a perspective grid display was superimposed on computer-generated terrain and subjects attempted to maintain their initial attitude in a simulated hover using terrain and/or one of four grid patterns. Horizontal lines produced the best attitude control performance. In the second experiment, a square grid was studied in combination with various visual display configurations and grid attachment conditions. It was found that performance with the panel-mounted display was significantly worse than with the out-the-window or helmet-mounted displays. The results suggested that the partial grid attachment condition improved hovering performance with the panel-mounted display.
Percin, M; van Oudheusden, B W; de Croon, G C H E; Remes, B
The study investigates the aerodynamic performance and the relation between wing deformation and unsteady force generation of a flapping-wing micro air vehicle in hovering flight configuration. Different experiments were performed where fluid forces were acquired with a force sensor, while the three-dimensional wing deformation was measured with a stereo-vision system. In these measurements, time-resolved power consumption and flapping-wing kinematics were also obtained under both in-air and in-vacuum conditions. Comparison of the results for different flapping frequencies reveals different wing kinematics and deformation characteristics. The high flapping frequency case produces higher forces throughout the complete flapping cycle. Moreover, a phase difference occurs in the variation of the forces, such that the low flapping frequency case precedes the high frequency case. A similar phase lag is observed in the temporal evolution of the wing deformation characteristics, suggesting that there is a direct link between the two phenomena. A considerable camber formation occurs during stroke reversals, which is mainly determined by the stiffener orientation. The wing with the thinner surface membrane displays very similar characteristics to the baseline wing, which implies the dominance of the stiffeners in terms of providing rigidity to the wing. Wing span has a significant effect on the aerodynamic efficiency such that increasing the span length by 4 cm results in a 6% enhancement in the cycle-averaged X-force to power consumption ratio compared to the standard DelFly II wings with a span length of 28 cm.
Nabawy, Mostafa R A; Crowther, William J
Hovering flight for flapping wing vehicles requires rapid and relatively complex reciprocating movement of a wing relative to a stationary surrounding fluid. This note develops a compact analytical aero-kinematic model that can be used for optimization of flapping wing kinematics against aerodynamic criteria of effectiveness (maximum lift) and efficiency (minimum power for a given amount of lift). It can also be used to make predictions of required flapping frequency for a given geometry and basic aerodynamic parameters. The kinematic treatment is based on a consolidation of an existing formulation that allows explicit derivation of flapping velocity for complex motions whereas the aerodynamic model is based on existing quasi-steady analysis. The combined aero-kinematic model provides novel explicit analytical expressions for both lift and power of a hovering wing in a compact form that enables exploration of a rich kinematic design space. Good agreement is found between model predictions of flapping frequency and observed results for a number of insects and optimal hovering kinematics identified using the model are consistent with results from studies using higher order computational models. For efficient flight, the flapping angle should vary using a triangular profile in time leading to a constant velocity flapping motion, whereas for maximum effectiveness the shape of variation should be sinusoidal. For both cases the wing pitching motion should be rectangular such that pitch change at stroke reversal is as rapid as possible.
Liu, Bin; Weathers, Annie; Childress, Stephen; Zhang, Jun
A free rigid body, built with up-down asymmetry can hover in a vertical oscillatory airflow if the airflow amplitude and frequency exceed certain thresholds. The key to free hovering lies in the difference in drag coefficients as the airflow passes the object in two opposite directions. The hovering motion is surprisingly stable and robust, lasting for thousands of oscillation periods. We describe a series of flow visualizations of vortex shedding by the hovering object, which show how correcting moments restore its orientation, leading to stable hovering. This study may shed light on the stability of the hovering flight of insects.
stabilizes the time dependent linearized plant (7.9) than it is to synthesize a control law which stabilizes the LTI plant (7.5). However, if a stabilizing ... control law is available, Lyapunov’s stabilizability result can also be applied to non LTI scenarios which arise from the application of linearization to
Bachelder, Edward N. (Inventor); Lee, Dong-Chan (Inventor); Aponso, Bimal L. (Inventor)
The present invention provides computer implemented methodology that permits the safe landing and recovery of rotorcraft following engine failure. With this invention successful autorotations may be performed from well within the unsafe operating area of the height-velocity profile of a helicopter by employing the fast and robust real-time trajectory optimization algorithm that commands control motion through an intuitive pilot display, or directly in the case of autonomous rotorcraft. The algorithm generates optimal trajectories and control commands via the direct-collocation optimization method, solved using a nonlinear programming problem solver. The control inputs computed are collective pitch and aircraft pitch, which are easily tracked and manipulated by the pilot or converted to control actuator commands for automated operation during autorotation in the case of an autonomous rotorcraft. The formulation of the optimal control problem has been carefully tailored so the solutions resemble those of an expert pilot, accounting for the performance limitations of the rotorcraft and safety concerns.
control algorithms for four-dimensional guidance of a transport air- craft were investigated for feasibility. Cost function constraints on the ptimal...21 3.1.6 Solution Constraints .... ............. ... 25 3.1.7 Trajectory Generator Review .. ......... .. 25 3.2 OPTIMAl CONTROLLER ALGORITHM...value formulation to a six-degree-of-freedom point mass aircraft with all the structural, maneuver, and mission constraints accounted for by using pelalty
... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Flight controls. 27.151 Section 27.151... STANDARDS: NORMAL CATEGORY ROTORCRAFT Flight Flight Characteristics § 27.151 Flight controls. (a... response to control system input....
... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Flight controls. 29.151 Section 29.151... STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY ROTORCRAFT Flight Flight Characteristics § 29.151 Flight controls. (a... response to control system input....
... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Flight controls. 29.151 Section 29.151... STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY ROTORCRAFT Flight Flight Characteristics § 29.151 Flight controls. (a... response to control system input....
... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Flight controls. 29.151 Section 29.151... STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY ROTORCRAFT Flight Flight Characteristics § 29.151 Flight controls. (a) Longitudinal, lateral, directional, and collective controls may not exhibit excessive breakout force,...
... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Flight controls. 27.151 Section 27.151... STANDARDS: NORMAL CATEGORY ROTORCRAFT Flight Flight Characteristics § 27.151 Flight controls. (a) Longitudinal, lateral, directional, and collective controls may not exhibit excessive breakout force,...
... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Flight controls. 27.151 Section 27.151... STANDARDS: NORMAL CATEGORY ROTORCRAFT Flight Flight Characteristics § 27.151 Flight controls. (a) Longitudinal, lateral, directional, and collective controls may not exhibit excessive breakout force,...
Walker, R.; Gupta, N.
Recent extensions to optimal control theory applied to meaningful linear models with sufficiently flexible software tools provide powerful techniques for designing flight test trajectory controllers (FTTCs). This report describes the principal steps for systematic development of flight trajectory controllers, which can be summarized as planning, modeling, designing, and validating a trajectory controller. The techniques have been kept as general as possible and should apply to a wide range of problems where quantities must be computed and displayed to a pilot to improve pilot effectiveness and to reduce workload and fatigue. To illustrate the approach, a detailed trajectory guidance law is developed and demonstrated for the F-15 aircraft flying the zoom-and-pushover maneuver.
Bivens, Courtland C.; Guercio, Joseph G.
A piloted simulator experiment was conducted to investigate directional axis handling qualities requirements for low speed and hover tasks performed by a Scout/Attack helicopter. Included were the directional characteristics of various candidate light helicopter family configurations. Also, the experiment focused on conventional single main/tail rotor configurations of the OH-58 series aircraft, where the first-order yaw-axis dynamic effects that contributed to the loss of tail rotor control were modeled. Five pilots flew 22 configurations under various wind conditions. Cooper-Harper handling quality ratings were used as the primary measure of merit of each configuration. The results of the experiment indicate that rotorcraft configurations with high directional gust sensitivity require greater minimum yaw damping to maintain satisfactory handling qualities during nap-of-the-Earth flying tasks. It was also determined that both yaw damping and control response are critical handling qualities parameters in performing the air-to-air target acquisition and tracking task. Finally, the lack of substantial yaw damping and larger values of gust sensitivity increased the possibility of loss of directional control at low airspeeds for the single main/tail rotor configurations.
Niewoehner, Kevin R.; Carter, John (Technical Monitor)
The research accomplishments for the cooperative agreement 'Online Learning Flight Control for Intelligent Flight Control Systems (IFCS)' include the following: (1) previous IFC program data collection and analysis; (2) IFC program support site (configured IFC systems support network, configured Tornado/VxWorks OS development system, made Configuration and Documentation Management Systems Internet accessible); (3) Airborne Research Test Systems (ARTS) II Hardware (developed hardware requirements specification, developing environmental testing requirements, hardware design, and hardware design development); (4) ARTS II software development laboratory unit (procurement of lab style hardware, configured lab style hardware, and designed interface module equivalent to ARTS II faceplate); (5) program support documentation (developed software development plan, configuration management plan, and software verification and validation plan); (6) LWR algorithm analysis (performed timing and profiling on algorithm); (7) pre-trained neural network analysis; (8) Dynamic Cell Structures (DCS) Neural Network Analysis (performing timing and profiling on algorithm); and (9) conducted technical interchange and quarterly meetings to define IFC research goals.
Peters, David A.
The purpose of this research is the development of an unsteady aerodynamic model for rotors such that it can be used in conventional aeroelastic analysis (e.g., eigenvalue determination and control system design). For this to happen, the model must be in a state-space formulation such that the states of the flow can be defined, calculated and identified as part of the analysis. The fluid mechanics of the problem is given by a closed-form inversion of an acceleration potential. The result is a set of first-order differential equations in time for the unknown flow coefficients. These equations are hierarchical in the sense that they may be truncated at any number of radial or azimuthal terms.
Ortega-Jimenez, Victor Manuel; Dudley, Robert
Flight in rain represents a greater challenge for smaller animals because the relative effects of water loading and drop impact are greater at reduced scales given the increased ratios of surface area to mass. Nevertheless, it is well known that small volant taxa such as hummingbirds can continue foraging even in extreme precipitation. Here, we evaluated the effect of four rain intensities (i.e. zero, light, moderate and heavy) on the hovering performance of Anna's hummingbirds (Calypte anna) under laboratory conditions. Light-to-moderate rain had only a marginal effect on flight kinematics; wingbeat frequency of individuals in moderate rain was reduced by 7 per cent relative to control conditions. By contrast, birds hovering in heavy rain adopted more horizontal body and tail positions, and also increased wingbeat frequency substantially, while reducing stroke amplitude when compared with control conditions. The ratio between peak forces produced by single drops on a wing and on a solid surface suggests that feathers can absorb associated impact forces by up to approximately 50 per cent. Remarkably, hummingbirds hovered well even under heavy precipitation (i.e. 270 mm h(-1)) with no apparent loss of control, although mechanical power output assuming perfect and zero storage of elastic energy was estimated to be about 9 and 57 per cent higher, respectively, compared with normal hovering.
Malpica, Carlos; Theodore, Colin R.; Lawrence , Ben; Blanken, Chris L.
According to a number of system studies, large capacity advanced rotorcraft with a capability of high cruise speeds (approx.350 mph) as well as vertical and/or short take-off and landing (V/STOL) flight could alleviate anticipated air transportation capacity issues by making use of non-primary runways, taxiways, and aprons. These advanced aircraft pose a number of design challenges, as well as unknown issues in the flight control and handling qualities domains. A series of piloted simulation experiments have been conducted on the NASA Ames Research Center Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) in recent years to systematically investigate the fundamental flight control and handling qualities issues associated with the characteristics of large rotorcraft, including tiltrotors, in hover and low-speed maneuvering.
Kaufman, H.; Alag, G.; Berry, P.; Kotob, S.
A design study of adaptive control logic suitable for implementation in modern airborne digital flight computers was conducted. Two designs are described for an example aircraft. Each of these designs uses a weighted least squares procedure to identify parameters defining the dynamics of the aircraft. The two designs differ in the way in which control law parameters are determined. One uses the solution of an optimal linear regulator problem to determine these parameters while the other uses a procedure called single stage optimization. Extensive simulation results and analysis leading to the designs are presented.
to achieve desired performance over the full flight envelope when linear feedback is employed. Exact linearization methods  provide means for...designing nonlinear feedback laws which satisfy these requirements. However, exact linearization is not always compatible with control authority...specific situations. The most promising approaches appear to be those associated with methods of exact linearization . This procedure is based on some
Lee, Y. H.; Chahl, J. S.
This paper demonstrates an approach to the vision-based control of the unmanned quadrotors for hover and object tracking. The algorithms used the Speed Up Robust Features (SURF) algorithm to detect objects. The pose of the object in the image was then calculated in order to pass the pose information to the flight controller. Finally, the flight controller steered the quadrotor to approach the object based on the calculated pose data. The above processes was run using standard onboard resources found in the 3DR Solo quadrotor in an embedded computing environment. The obtained results showed that the algorithm behaved well during its missions, tracking and hovering, although there were significant latencies due to low CPU performance of the onboard image processing system.
Catapang, David R.
Control law design for rotorcraft fly-by-wire systems normally attempts to decouple angular responses using fixed-gain crossfeeds. This approach can lead to poor decoupling over the frequency range of pilot inputs and increase the load on the feedback loops. In order to improve the decoupling performance, dynamic crossfeeds may be adopted. Moreover, because of the large changes that occur in rotorcraft dynamics due to small changes about the nominal design condition, especially for near-hovering flight, the crossfeed design must be 'robust.' A new low-order matching method is presented here to design robost crossfeed compensators for multi-input, multi-output (MIMO) systems. The technique identifies degrees-of-freedom that can be decoupled using crossfeeds, given an anticipated set of parameter variations for the range of flight conditions of concern. Cross-coupling is then reduced for degrees-of-freedom that can use crossfeed compensation by minimizing off-axis response magnitude average and variance. Results are presented for the analysis of pitch, roll, yaw, and heave coupling of the UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter in near-hovering flight. Robust crossfeeds are designed that show significant improvement in decoupling performance and robustness over nominal, single design point, compensators. The design method and results are presented in an easily-used graphical format that lends significant physical insight to the design procedure. This plant pre-compensation technique is an appropriate preliminary step to the design of robust feedback control laws for rotorcraft.
Program is primarily oriented to the development, integration, and I - evaluation of new flight control technologies . The testbed used in this program is...will be tested for safe operations to give confidence in case of non-rUettable automatic IBU engagement. ISSUE: CONTROL LAW AND REDUNDANCY MAGEMENT CO...were available. Being an advanced development program evaluating new aspects of integrated flight control technology , the latter approach was chosen
Lim, Kyong B.; Shin, Jong-Yeob; Moerder, Daniel D.
An atmospheric flight vehicle in hover is typically controlled by varying its thrust vector. Achieving both levitation and attitude control with the propulsion system places considerable demands on it for agility and precision, particularly if the vehicle is statically unstable, or nearly so. These demands can be relaxed by introducing an appropriately sized angular momentum bias aligned with the vehicle's yaw axis, thus providing an additional margin of attitude stability about the roll and pitch axes. This paper describes a methodical approach for trading off angular momentum bias level needed with desired levels of vehicle response due to the design disturbance environment given a vehicle's physical parameters. It also describes several simplifications that provide a more physical and intuitive understanding of dual-spin dynamics for hovering atmospheric vehicles. This approach also mitigates the need for control torques and inadvertent actuator saturation difficulties in trying to stabilize a vehicle via control torques produced by unsteady aerodynamics, thrust vectoring, and unsteady throttling. Simulation results, based on a subscale laboratory test flying platform, demonstrate significant improvements in the attitude control robustness of the vehicle with respect to both wind disturbances and off-center of gravity payload changes during flight.
From NASA's International Space Station Mission Control Center, EVA Systems Flight Controller Sandy Fletcher participates in a Digital Learning Network (DLN) event with students from Northtowne Ele...
Ristroph, Leif; Childress, Stephen
Ornithopters, or flapping-wing aircraft, offer an alternative to helicopters in achieving maneuverability at small scales, although stabilizing such aerial vehicles remains a key challenge. Here, we present a hovering machine that achieves self-righting flight using flapping wings alone, without relying on additional aerodynamic surfaces and without feedback control. We design, construct, and test-fly a prototype that opens and closes four wings, resembling the motions of swimming jellyfish more so than any insect or bird. Lift measurements and high-speed video of free-flight are used to inform an aerodynamic model that explains the stabilization mechanism. These results show the promise of flapping-flight strategies beyond those that directly mimic the wing motions of flying animals.
Pavlock, Kate Maureen; Less, James L.; Larson, David Nils
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Dryden Flight Research Center completed flight testing of adaptive controls research on a full-scale F-18 testbed. The testbed served as a full-scale vehicle to test and validate adaptive flight control research addressing technical challenges involved with reducing risk to enable safe flight in the presence of adverse conditions such as structural damage or control surface failures. This paper describes the research interface architecture, risk mitigations, flight test approach and lessons learned of adaptive controls research.
Carpenter, Paul J.; Paulnock, Russell S.
An investigation has been conducted with the Langley helicopter tower to obtain basic performance and control characteristics of the Raman rotor system. Blade-pitch control is obtained in this configuration by utilizing an auxiliary flap to twist the blades. Rotor thrust and power required were measured for the hovering condition and over a range of wind velocities from 0 to 30 miles per hour. The control characteristics and the transient response of the rotor to various control movements were also measured. The hovering-performance data are presented as a survey of the wake velocities and the variation of torque coefficient with thrust coefficient. The power required for the test rotor to hover at a thrust of 1350 pounds and a rotor speed of 240 rpm is approximately 6.5 percent greater than that estimated for a conventional rotor of the same diameter and solidity. It is believed that most of this difference is caused by th e flap servomechanism. The reduction in total power required for sustentation of the single-rotor configuration tested at various wind velocities and at the normal operating rotor thrust was found to be similar to the theoretical and experimental results for ro tors with conventionally actuated pitch. The control effectiveness was determined as a function of rotor speed. Sufficient control was available to give a thrust range of 0 to 1500 pounds and a rotor tilt of plus or minus 7 degrees. The time lag between flap motion and blade-pitch response is approximately 0.02 to 0.03 second. The response of the rotor following the blade-pitch response is similar to that of a rotor with conventionally actuated pitch changes. The over-all characteristics of the rotor investigated indicate that satisfactory performance and control characteristics were obtained.
Ristroph, Leif; Childress, Stephen
Ornithopters, or flapping-wing aircraft, offer an alternative to helicopters in achieving manoeuvrability at small scales, although stabilizing such aerial vehicles remains a key challenge. Here, we present a hovering machine that achieves self-righting flight using flapping wings alone, without relying on additional aerodynamic surfaces and without feedback control. We design, construct and test-fly a prototype that opens and closes four wings, resembling the motions of swimming jellyfish more so than any insect or bird. Measurements of lift show the benefits of wing flexing and the importance of selecting a wing size appropriate to the motor. Furthermore, we use high-speed video and motion tracking to show that the body orientation is stable during ascending, forward and hovering flight modes. Our experimental measurements are used to inform an aerodynamic model of stability that reveals the importance of centre-of-mass location and the coupling of body translation and rotation. These results show the promise of flapping-flight strategies beyond those that directly mimic the wing motions of flying animals. PMID:24430122
Ristroph, Leif; Childress, Stephen
Ornithopters, or flapping-wing aircraft, offer an alternative to helicopters in achieving manoeuvrability at small scales, although stabilizing such aerial vehicles remains a key challenge. Here, we present a hovering machine that achieves self-righting flight using flapping wings alone, without relying on additional aerodynamic surfaces and without feedback control. We design, construct and test-fly a prototype that opens and closes four wings, resembling the motions of swimming jellyfish more so than any insect or bird. Measurements of lift show the benefits of wing flexing and the importance of selecting a wing size appropriate to the motor. Furthermore, we use high-speed video and motion tracking to show that the body orientation is stable during ascending, forward and hovering flight modes. Our experimental measurements are used to inform an aerodynamic model of stability that reveals the importance of centre-of-mass location and the coupling of body translation and rotation. These results show the promise of flapping-flight strategies beyond those that directly mimic the wing motions of flying animals.
Jorgensen, Charles C.
Neural networks are being developed at NASA Ames Research Center to permit real-time adaptive control of time varying nonlinear systems, enhance the fault-tolerance of mission hardware, and permit online system reconfiguration. In general, the problem of controlling time varying nonlinear systems with unknown structures has not been solved. Adaptive neural control techniques show considerable promise and are being applied to technical challenges including automated docking of spacecraft, dynamic balancing of the space station centrifuge, online reconfiguration of damaged aircraft, and reducing cost of new air and spacecraft designs. Our experiences have shown that neural network algorithms solved certain problems that conventional control methods have been unable to effectively address. These include damage mitigation in nonlinear reconfiguration flight control, early performance estimation of new aircraft designs, compensation for damaged planetary mission hardware by using redundant manipulator capability, and space sensor platform stabilization. This presentation explored these developments in the context of neural network control theory. The discussion began with an overview of why neural control has proven attractive for NASA application domains. The more important issues in control system development were then discussed with references to significant technical advances in the literature. Examples of how these methods have been applied were given, followed by projections of emerging application needs and directions.
Tosti, Louis P.
An experimental investigation has been conducted to determine the dynamic stability and control characteristics of a tilt-wing vertical-take-off-and-landing aircraft with the use of a remotely controlled 1/4-scale free-flight model. The model had two propellers with hinged (flapping) blades mounted on the wing which could be tilted up to an incidence angle of nearly 90 deg for vertical take-off and landing. The investigation consisted of hovering flights in still air, vertical take-offs and landings, and slow constant-altitude transitions from hovering to forward flight. The stability and control characteristics of the model were generally satisfactory except for the following characteristics. In hovering flight, the model had an unstable pitching oscillation of relatively long period which the pilots were able to control without artificial stabilization but which could not be considered entirely satisfactory. At very low speeds and angles of wing incidence on the order of 70 deg, the model experienced large nose-up pitching moments which severely limited the allowable center-of-gravity range.
Pavlock, Kate Maureen; Less, James L.; Larson, David Nils
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration s Dryden Flight Research Center completed flight testing of adaptive controls research on a full-scale F-18 testbed. The validation of adaptive controls has the potential to enhance safety in the presence of adverse conditions such as structural damage or control surface failures. This paper describes the research interface architecture, risk mitigations, flight test approach and lessons learned of adaptive controls research.
Rossing, R.; Hupp, R.
Flight control actuators and feedback sensors suitable for use in a redundant digital flight control system were examined. The most appropriate design approach for an advanced digital flight control actuation system for development and use in a fly-by-wire system was selected. The concept which was selected consisted of a PM torque motor direct drive. The selected system is compatible with concurrent and independent development efforts on the computer system and the control law mechanizations.
Rediess, H. A.
A survey of foreign technology in flight crucial flight controls is being conducted to provide a data base for planning future research and technology programs. Only Free World countries were surveyed, and the primary emphasis was on Western Europe because that is where the most advanced technology resides. The survey includes major contemporary systems on operational aircraft, R&D flight programs, advanced aircraft developments, and major research and technology programs. The information was collected from open literature, personal communications, and a tour of several companies, government organizations, and research laboratories in the United Kingdom, France, and the Federal Republic of Germany. A summary of the survey results to date is presented.
Baron, S., and Levison, W.H., "An Optimal Control Midel of Human Response, Part I: Theory and Validation," Automatica, Vol. 6, pp . 357-369, 1970. 1...Factors, Vol. 19, No. 5, pp . 437-457, Oct. 1977. 17 / Its I J- Jp.-- I NAVTRAEQUIPC-EN 80-C-0055-1 Zacharias,22 in which a number of these models are... modelos trend for pitch cyclic does not agree at all with the observed data. In the experiment, pitch cyclic activity increases when motion cues are added
Rothhaar, Paul M.; Murphy, Patrick C.; Bacon, Barton J.; Gregory, Irene M.; Grauer, Jared A.; Busan, Ronald C.; Croom, Mark A.
Control of complex Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft traversing from hovering to wing born flight mode and back poses notoriously difficult modeling, simulation, control, and flight-testing challenges. This paper provides an overview of the techniques and advances required to develop the GL-10 tilt-wing, tilt-tail, long endurance, VTOL aircraft control system. The GL-10 prototype's unusual and complex configuration requires application of state-of-the-art techniques and some significant advances in wind tunnel infrastructure automation, efficient Design Of Experiments (DOE) tunnel test techniques, modeling, multi-body equations of motion, multi-body actuator models, simulation, control algorithm design, and flight test avionics, testing, and analysis. The following compendium surveys key disciplines required to develop an effective control system for this challenging vehicle in this on-going effort.
This research set out to investigate flight control of aircraft which has sustained damage in regular flight control effectors, due to jammed control surfaces or complete loss of hydraulic power. It is recognized that in such an extremely difficult situation unconventional measures may need to be taken to regain control and stability of the aircraft. Propulsion controlled aircraft (PCA) concept, initiated at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. represents a ground-breaking effort in this direction. In this approach, the engine is used as the only flight control effector in the rare event of complete loss of normal flight control system. Studies and flight testing conducted at NASA Dryden have confirmed the feasibility of the PCA concept. During the course of this research (March 98, 1997 to November 30, 1997), a comparative study has been done using the full nonlinear model of an F-18 aircraft. Linear controllers and nonlinear controllers based on a nonlinear predictive control method have been designed for normal flight control system and propulsion controlled aircraft. For the healthy aircraft with normal flight control, the study shows that an appropriately designed linear controller can perform as well as a nonlinear controller. On the other hand. when the normal flight control is lost and the engine is the only available means of flight control, a nonlinear PCA controller can significantly increase the size of the recoverable region in which the stability of the unstable aircraft can be attained by using only thrust modulation. The findings and controller design methods have been summarized in an invited paper entitled.
Coffen, Charles David
The methodology, results, and conclusions of a study of tilt rotor hover aeroacoustics and aerodynamics are presented. Flow visualization and hot wire velocity measurement were performed on a 1/12-scale model of the XV-15 Tilt Rotor Aircraft in hover. The wing and fuselage below the rotor cause a complex recirculating flow. Results indicate the physical dimensions and details of the flow including the relative unsteadiness and turbulence characteristics of the flow. Discrete frequency harmonic thickness and the loading noise mechanism were predicted using WOPWOP for the standard metal blades and the Advanced Technology Blades. The recirculating flow created by the wing below the rotor is a primary sound mechanism for a hovering tilt rotor. The effects of dynamic blade response should be included for fountain flow conditions which produce impulsive blade loading. Broadband noise mechanisms were studied using Amiet's method with azimuthally varying turbulence characteristics derived from the measurements. The recirculating fountain flow with high turbulence levels in the recirculating zone is the dominant source of broadband noise for a hovering rotor. It is shown that tilt rotor hover aeroacoustic noise mechanisms are now understood. Noise predictions can be made based on reasonably accurate aerodynamic models developed here.
Liu, H; Aono, H
Hovering is a miracle of insects that is observed for all sizes of flying insects. Sizing effect in insect hovering on flapping-wing aerodynamics is of interest to both the micro-air-vehicle (MAV) community and also of importance to comparative morphologists. In this study, we present an integrated computational study of such size effects on insect hovering aerodynamics, which is performed using a biology-inspired dynamic flight simulator that integrates the modelling of realistic wing-body morphology, the modelling of flapping-wing and body kinematics and an in-house Navier-Stokes solver. Results of four typical insect hovering flights including a hawkmoth, a honeybee, a fruit fly and a thrips, over a wide range of Reynolds numbers from O(10(4)) to O(10(1)) are presented, which demonstrate the feasibility of the present integrated computational methods in quantitatively modelling and evaluating the unsteady aerodynamics in insect flapping flight. Our results based on realistically modelling of insect hovering therefore offer an integrated understanding of the near-field vortex dynamics, the far-field wake and downwash structures, and their correlation with the force production in terms of sizing and Reynolds number as well as wing kinematics. Our results not only give an integrated interpretation on the similarity and discrepancy of the near- and far-field vortex structures in insect hovering but also demonstrate that our methods can be an effective tool in the MAVs design.
A design study of adaptive control logic suitable for implementation in modern airborne digital flight computers was conducted. Both explicit controllers which directly utilize parameter identification and implicit controllers which do not require identification were considered. Extensive analytical and simulation efforts resulted in the recommendation of two explicit digital adaptive flight controllers. Interface weighted least squares estimation procedures with control logic were developed using either optimal regulator theory or with control logic based upon single stage performance indices.
Theodore, Colin R.
This presentation will touch topics, including but not limited to, the objectives and challenges of flight dynamics and controls that deal with the pilot and the cockpit's technology, the flight dynamics and controls discipline tasks, and the full envelope of flight dynamics modeling. In addition, the LCTR 7x10-ft wind tunnel test will also be included along with the optimal trajectories for noise abatement and its investigations on handling quality. Furthermore, previous experiments and their complying results will also be discussed.
Lambregts, Antonius A. (Inventor)
An integrated aircraft longitudinal flight control system uses a generalized thrust and elevator command computation (38), which accepts flight path angle, longitudinal acceleration command signals, along with associated feedback signals, to form energy rate error (20) and energy rate distribution error (18) signals. The engine thrust command is developed (22) as a function of the energy rate distribution error and the elevator position command is developed (26) as a function of the energy distribution error. For any vertical flight path and speed mode the outerloop errors are normalized (30, 34) to produce flight path angle and longitudinal acceleration commands. The system provides decoupled flight path and speed control for all control modes previously provided by the longitudinal autopilot, autothrottle and flight management systems.
Sato, Hirotaka; Berry, Christopher W; Peeri, Yoav; Baghoomian, Emen; Casey, Brendan E; Lavella, Gabriel; Vandenbrooks, John M; Harrison, Jon F; Maharbiz, Michel M
We demonstrated the remote control of insects in free flight via an implantable radio-equipped miniature neural stimulating system. The pronotum mounted system consisted of neural stimulators, muscular stimulators, a radio transceiver-equipped microcontroller and a microbattery. Flight initiation, cessation and elevation control were accomplished through neural stimulus of the brain which elicited, suppressed or modulated wing oscillation. Turns were triggered through the direct muscular stimulus of either of the basalar muscles. We characterized the response times, success rates, and free-flight trajectories elicited by our neural control systems in remotely controlled beetles. We believe this type of technology will open the door to in-flight perturbation and recording of insect flight responses.
Sato, Hirotaka; Berry, Christopher W.; Peeri, Yoav; Baghoomian, Emen; Casey, Brendan E.; Lavella, Gabriel; VandenBrooks, John M.; Harrison, Jon F.; Maharbiz, Michel M.
We demonstrated the remote control of insects in free flight via an implantable radio-equipped miniature neural stimulating system. The pronotum mounted system consisted of neural stimulators, muscular stimulators, a radio transceiver-equipped microcontroller and a microbattery. Flight initiation, cessation and elevation control were accomplished through neural stimulus of the brain which elicited, suppressed or modulated wing oscillation. Turns were triggered through the direct muscular stimulus of either of the basalar muscles. We characterized the response times, success rates, and free-flight trajectories elicited by our neural control systems in remotely controlled beetles. We believe this type of technology will open the door to in-flight perturbation and recording of insect flight responses. PMID:20161808
Operations and Control System ADIRS Air Data & Inertial Reference Systems AFB Air Force Base AFTI Advanced Fighter Technology Integration AGARD Advisory...redundancy is employed at the aircraft effector plane. The objective is to generate forces and moments about some control axis, in the case of failure of...Flight Control System", Proceedings of the United States Air Force Academy Advanced Flight Controls Symposium, 198 1. 2-13 2 fFlapper, J.A., and
A reconfigurable flight control system is a control system which can automatically adapt itself to maintain the performance of a damaged aircraft to be as close as possible to that of the normal or undamaged one. This research focuses mainly on Multi-Input, Multi-Output (MIMO) reconfigurable flight control for an aircraft with damaged actuator(s) which may greatly affect the performance and control of the aircraft, and also pose a challenging flight control problem. The foundation of the control system is a baseline controller and an adaptive module which constitutes a reconfigurable part. The baseline controller ensures that the aircraft has acceptable performance and handling qualities throughout the flight envelope. The combination of a Quantitative Feedback Theory (QFT) Pre-Design Technique (PDT) and a Reduced-order, Linear, Dynamic Inversion (RLDI) control strategy yields a flight control system with good tracking performance and handling qualities with no Pilot Induced Oscillation (PIO) tendencies throughout the designated set of flight conditions. In addition, the system is highly immune to large uncertainties in the aircraft dynamics. The modified filtered-ɛ adaptive algorithm is developed and utilized in the adaptive module of the system. This adaptive algorithm performs well with MIMO system with the added advantage of not having to pre-identify the dynamics of the damaged aircraft, provided that the conditions of reconfigurability are met. An example of the proposed control system with the NASA F-18 HARV vehicle model and a damaged actuator demonstrates the effectiveness of the concept.
Hess, R. A.; Gorder, P. J.
Quantitative Feedback Theory describes a frequency-domain technique for the design of multi-input, multi-output control systems which meet time or frequency domain performance criteria when specified uncertainty exists in the linear description of the vehicle dynamics. Quantitative Feedback Theory is applied to the design of the longitudinal flight control system for a linear uncertain model of the AH-64 rotorcraft. In this model, the uncertainty is assigned, and is assumed to be attributable to actual uncertainty in the dynamic model and to the changes in the vehicle aerodynamic characteristics which occur near hover. The model includes an approximation to the rotor and actuator dynamics. The design example indicates the manner in which handling qualities criteria may be incorporated into the design of realistic rotorcraft control systems in which significant uncertainty exists in the vehicle model.
Modeling Considerations for Close Formation Flight,” Proceed- ings of the 1998 AIAA GNC Conference, Boston, MA, Jul. 1998, pp. 476–86, Paper no. 4343 ...with Wake Vortices,” STI Technical Report 1035-4 , 1975 , pp. 38–57. 20Pachter, M., D’Azzo, J., and Proud, A., “Tight Formation Flight Control,” J
Nguyen, Quoc-Viet; Chan, Woei Leong; Debiasi, Marco
We present our recent flying insect-inspired Flapping-Wing Micro Air Vehicle (FW-MAV) capable of hovering flight which we have recently achieved. The FW-MAV has wing span of 22 cm (wing tip-to-wing tip), weighs about 16.6 grams with onboard integration of radio control system including a radio receiver, an electronic speed control (ESC) for brushless motor, three servos for attitude flight controls of roll, pitch, and yaw, and a single cell lithium-polymer (LiPo) battery (3.7 V). The proposed gear box enables the FW-MAV to use one DC brushless motor to synchronously drive four wings and take advantage of the double clap-and-fling effects during one flapping cycle. Moreover, passive wing rotation is utilized to simplify the design, in addition to passive stabilizing surfaces for flight stability. Powered by a single cell LiPo battery (3.7 V), the FW-MAV flaps at 13.7 Hz and produces an average vertical force or thrust of about 28 grams, which is sufficient for take-off and hovering flight. Finally, free flight tests in terms of vertical take-off, hovering, and manual attitude control flight have been conducted to verify the performance of the FW-MAV.
Zinchiak, Andrew G.
Nearly all modern helicopters are designed with a swashplate-based system for control of the main rotor blades. However, the swashplate-based approach does not provide the level of redundancy necessary to cope with abnormal actuator conditions. For example, if an actuator fails (becomes locked) on the main rotor, the cyclic inputs are consequently fixed and the helicopter may become stuck in a flight maneuver. This can obviously be seen as a catastrophic failure, and would likely lead to a crash. These types of failures can be overcome with the application of individual blade control (IBC). IBC is achieved using the blade pitch control method, which provides complete authority of the aerodynamic characteristics of each rotor blade at any given time by replacing the normally rigid pitch links between the swashplate and the pitch horn of the blade with hydraulic or electronic actuators. Thus, IBC can provide the redundancy necessary for subsystem failure accommodation. In this research effort, a simulation environment is developed to investigate the potential of the IBC main rotor configuration for fault-tolerant control. To examine the applications of IBC to failure scenarios and fault-tolerant controls, a conventional, swashplate-based linear model is first developed for hover and forward flight scenarios based on the UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter. The linear modeling techniques for the swashplate-based helicopter are then adapted and expanded to include IBC. Using these modified techniques, an IBC based mathematical model of the UH-60 helicopter is developed for the purposes of simulation and analysis. The methodology can be used to model and implement a different aircraft if geometric, gravimetric, and general aerodynamic data are available. Without the kinetic restrictions of the swashplate, the IBC model effectively decouples the cyclic control inputs between different blades. Simulations of the IBC model prove that the primary control functions can be manually
Kaneshige, John; Gundy-Burlet, Karen; Norvig, Peter (Technical Monitor)
This paper describes an integrated neural flight and propulsion control system. which uses a neural network based approach for applying alternate sources of control power in the presence of damage or failures. Under normal operating conditions, the system utilizes conventional flight control surfaces. Neural networks are used to provide consistent handling qualities across flight conditions and for different aircraft configurations. Under damage or failure conditions, the system may utilize unconventional flight control surface allocations, along with integrated propulsion control, when additional control power is necessary for achieving desired flight control performance. In this case, neural networks are used to adapt to changes in aircraft dynamics and control allocation schemes. Of significant importance here is the fact that this system can operate without emergency or backup flight control mode operations. An additional advantage is that this system can utilize, but does not require, fault detection and isolation information or explicit parameter identification. Piloted simulation studies were performed on a commercial transport aircraft simulator. Subjects included both NASA test pilots and commercial airline crews. Results demonstrate the potential for improving handing qualities and significantly increasing survivability rates under various simulated failure conditions.
Chen, Robert T. N.
The results of a brief survey of nonuniform inflow models was summarized for the calculation of induced velocities at and near a lifting rotor in and out of ground effect. The survey, conducted from the perspective of flight dynamics and control applications, covers a spectrum of flight conditions including hover, vertical flight, and low-speed and high-speed forward flight, and reviews both static and dynamic aspects of the inflow. A primary emphasis is on the evaluation of various simple first harmonic inflow models developed over the years, in comparison with more sophisticated methods developed for use in performance and airload computations. The results of correlation with several sets of test data obtained at the rotor out of ground effect indicate that the Pitt/Peters first harmonic inflow model works well overall. For inflow near the rotor or in ground effect, it is suggested that charts similar to those of Heyson/Katzoff and Castles/De Leeuw of NACA be produced using modern free-wake methods for use in flight dynamic analyses and simulations.
Biezad, Daniel J.; Chou, Hwei-Lan
Through throttle manipulations, engine thrust can be used for emergency flight control for multi-engine aircraft. Previous study by NASA Dryden has shown the use of throttles for emergency flight control to be very difficult. In general, manual fly-by-throttle is extremely difficult - with landing almost impossible, but control augmentation makes runway landings feasible. Flight path control using throttles-only to achieve safe emergency landing for a large jet transport airplane, Boeing 720, was investigated using Quantitative Feedback Theory (QFT). Results were compared to an augmented control developed in a previous simulation study. The control augmentation corrected the unsatisfactory open-loop characteristics by increasing system bandwidth and damping, but increasing the control bandwidth substantially proved very difficult. The augmented pitch control is robust under no or moderate turbulence. The augmented roll control is sensitive to configuration changes.
Biezad, Daniel J.; Chou, Hwei-Lan
Through throttle manipulations, engine thrust can be used for emergency flight control for multi-engine aircraft. Previous study by NASA Dryden has shown the use of throttles for emergency flight control to be very difficult. In general, manual fly-by-throttle is extremely difficult - with landing almost impossible, but control augmentation makes runway landings feasible. Flight path control using throttles-only to achieve safe emergency landing for a large jet transport airplane, Boeing 720, was investigated using Quantitative Feedback Theory (QFT). Results were compared to an augmented control developed in a previous simulation study. The control augmentation corrected the unsatisfactory open-loop characteristics by increasing system bandwidth and damping, but increasing the control bandwidth substantially proved very difficult. The augmented pitch control is robust under no or moderate turbulence. The augmented roll control is sensitive to configuration changes.
The idea behind intelligent flight control is to provide more autonomy in an aircraft cockpit. Such systems must allow for all different kinds of situations and for human factors that occur in loss...
Schroeder, J. A.; Watson, D. C.; Tischler, M. B.; Eshow, M. M.
Frequency-domain parameter-identification techniques were used to develop a hover mathematical model of the AH-64 Apache helicopter from flight data. The unstable AH-64 bare-airframe characteristics without a stability-augmentation system were parameterized in the convectional stability-derivative form. To improve the model's vertical response, a simple transfer-function model approximating the effects of dynamic inflow was developed. Additional subcomponents of the vehicle were also modeled and simulated, such as a basic engine response for hover and the vehicle stick dynamic characteristics. The model, with and without stability augmentation, was then evaluated by AH-64 pilots in a moving-base simulation. It was the opinion of the pilots that the simulation was a satisfactory representation of the aircraft for the tasks of interest. The principal negative comment was that height control was more difficult in the simulation than in the aircraft.
Burcham, Frank W. (Inventor); Gilyard, Glenn B (Inventor); Conley, Joseph L. (Inventor); Stewart, James F. (Inventor); Fullerton, Charles G. (Inventor)
A backup flight control system for controlling the flightpath of a multi-engine airplane using the main drive engines is introduced. The backup flight control system comprises an input device for generating a control command indicative of a desired flightpath, a feedback sensor for generating a feedback signal indicative of at least one of pitch rate, pitch attitude, roll rate and roll attitude, and a control device for changing the output power of at least one of the main drive engines on each side of the airplane in response to the control command and the feedback signal.
Smith, G. A.; Meyer, G.; Nordstrom, M.
A new automatic flight control system concept suitable for aircraft with highly nonlinear aerodynamic and propulsion characteristics and which must operate over a wide flight envelope was investigated. This exact model follower inverts a complete nonlinear model of the aircraft as part of the feed-forward path. The inversion is accomplished by a Newton-Raphson trim of the model at each digital computer cycle time of 0.05 seconds. The combination of the inverse model and the actual aircraft in the feed-forward path alloys the translational and rotational regulators in the feedback path to be easily designed by linear methods. An explanation of the model inversion procedure is presented. An extensive set of simulation data for essentially the full flight envelope for a vertical attitude takeoff and landing aircraft (VATOL) is presented. These data demonstrate the successful, smooth, and precise control that can be achieved with this concept. The trajectory includes conventional flight from 200 to 900 ft/sec with path accelerations and decelerations, altitude changes of over 6000 ft and 2g and 3g turns. Vertical attitude maneuvering as a tail sitter along all axes is demonstrated. A transition trajectory from 200 ft/sec in conventional flight to stationary hover in the vertical attitude includes satisfactory operation through lift-cure slope reversal as attitude goes from horizontal to vertical at constant altitude. A vertical attitude takeoff from stationary hover to conventional flight is also demonstrated.
Berry, D. T.
Despite the application of sophisticated design methodology, newly introduced aircraft continue to suffer from basic flying qualities deficiencies. Two recent meetings, the DOD/NASA Workshop on Highly Augmented Aircraft Criteria and the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center/Air Force Flight Test Center/AIAA Pilot Induced Oscillation Workshop, addressed this problem. An overview of these meetings is provided from the point of view of the relationship between flying qualities criteria and flight control system design. Among the items discussed are flying qualities criteria development, the role of simulation, and communication between flying qualities specialists and control system designers.
Lightweight flexible aircraft may be the future of aviation, but a major problem is their susceptibility to flutter-uncontrollable vibrations that can destroy wings. Armstrong Flight Research Center awarded SBIR funding to Minneapolis, Minnesota-based MUSYN Inc. to develop software that helps program flight controllers to suppress flutter. The technology is now available for aircraft manufacturers and other industries that use equipment with automated controls.
Nakata, Toshiyuki; Liu, Hao
Insect wings are deformable structures that change shape passively and dynamically owing to inertial and aerodynamic forces during flight. It is still unclear how the three-dimensional and passive change of wing kinematics owing to inherent wing flexibility contributes to unsteady aerodynamics and energetics in insect flapping flight. Here, we perform a systematic fluid-structure interaction based analysis on the aerodynamic performance of a hovering hawkmoth, Manduca, with an integrated computational model of a hovering insect with rigid and flexible wings. Aerodynamic performance of flapping wings with passive deformation or prescribed deformation is evaluated in terms of aerodynamic force, power and efficiency. Our results reveal that wing flexibility can increase downwash in wake and hence aerodynamic force: first, a dynamic wing bending is observed, which delays the breakdown of leading edge vortex near the wing tip, responsible for augmenting the aerodynamic force-production; second, a combination of the dynamic change of wing bending and twist favourably modifies the wing kinematics in the distal area, which leads to the aerodynamic force enhancement immediately before stroke reversal. Moreover, an increase in hovering efficiency of the flexible wing is achieved as a result of the wing twist. An extensive study of wing stiffness effect on aerodynamic performance is further conducted through a tuning of Young's modulus and thickness, indicating that insect wing structures may be optimized not only in terms of aerodynamic performance but also dependent on many factors, such as the wing strength, the circulation capability of wing veins and the control of wing movements.
Hine, Butler Preston; Turner, Mark; Marshall, William S.
In order to develop the capability to evaluate control system technologies, NASA Ames Research Center (Ames) began a test program to build a Hover Test Vehicle (HTV) - a ground-based simulated flight vehicle. The HTV would integrate simulated propulsion, avionics, and sensors into a simulated flight structure, and fly that test vehicle in terrestrial conditions intended to simulate a flight environment, in particular for attitude control. The ultimate purpose of the effort at Ames is to determine whether the low-cost hardware and flight software techniques are viable for future low cost missions. To enable these engineering goals, the project sought to develop a team, processes and procedures capable of developing, building and operating a fully functioning vehicle including propulsion, GN&C, structure, power and diagnostic sub-systems, through the development of the simulated vehicle.
Bortins, Richard; Sorensen, John A.
The NASA Ames Research Center developed the Aircraft Synthesis (ACSYNT) computer program to synthesize conceptual future aircraft designs and to evaluate critical performance metrics early in the design process before significant resources are committed and cost decisions made. ACSYNT uses steady-state performance metrics, such as aircraft range, payload, and fuel consumption, and static performance metrics, such as the control authority required for the takeoff rotation and for landing with an engine out, to evaluate conceptual aircraft designs. It can also optimize designs with respect to selected criteria and constraints. Many modern aircraft have stability provided by the flight control system rather than by the airframe. This may allow the aircraft designer to increase combat agility, or decrease trim drag, for increased range and payload. This strategy requires concurrent design of the airframe and the flight control system, making trade-offs of performance and dynamics during the earliest stages of design. ACSYNT presently lacks means to implement flight control system designs but research is being done to add methods for predicting rotational degrees of freedom and control effector performance. A software module to compute and analyze the dynamics of the aircraft and to compute feedback gains and analyze closed loop dynamics is required. The data gained from these analyses can then be fed back to the aircraft design process so that the effects of the flight control system and the airframe on aircraft performance can be included as design metrics. This report presents results of a feasibility study and the initial design work to add an inner loop flight control system (ILFCS) design capability to the stability and control module in ACSYNT. The overall objective is to provide a capability for concurrent design of the aircraft and its flight control system, and enable concept designers to improve performance by exploiting the interrelationships between
Lim, K. B.; Shin, J-Y.; Moerder, D. D.
An atmospheric flight vehicle in hover is typically controlled by varying its thrust vector. Achieving both levitation and control with the propulsion system places considerable demands on it for agility and precision, particularly if the vehicle is statically unstable, or nearly so. These demands can be relaxed by introducing an appropriately sized angular momentum bias about the vehicle's yaw axis, thus providing an additional margin of attitude stability about the roll and pitch axes. This paper describes an approach for specifying the appropriate size of such angular momentum bias, based on the vehicle s physical parameters and its disturbance environment. It also describes several simplifications that provide a more physical and intuitive understanding of the dynamics. This will enhance the possibility of practically applying this technology to a flying vehicle.
Jang, Jiann-Woei; Alaniz, Abran; Hall, Robert; Bedrossian, Nazareth; Hall, Charles; Ryan, Stephen; Jackson, Mark
The Ares I launch vehicle represents a challenging flex-body structural environment for flight control system design. This paper presents a design methodology for employing numerical optimization to develop the Ares I flight control system. The design objectives include attitude tracking accuracy and robust stability with respect to rigid body dynamics, propellant slosh, and flex. Under the assumption that the Ares I time-varying dynamics and control system can be frozen over a short period of time, the flight controllers are designed to stabilize all selected frozen-time launch control systems in the presence of parametric uncertainty. Flex filters in the flight control system are designed to minimize the flex components in the error signals before they are sent to the attitude controller. To ensure adequate response to guidance command, step response specifications are introduced as constraints in the optimization problem. Imposing these constraints minimizes performance degradation caused by the addition of the flex filters. The first stage bending filter design achieves stability by adding lag to the first structural frequency to phase stabilize the first flex mode while gain stabilizing the higher modes. The upper stage bending filter design gain stabilizes all the flex bending modes. The flight control system designs provided here have been demonstrated to provide stable first and second stage control systems in both Draper Ares Stability Analysis Tool (ASAT) and the MSFC 6DOF nonlinear time domain simulation.
Tran, Thanh Trung
The subject of nonlinear flight control design using backstepping control methodology is investigated in the dissertation research presented here. Control design methods based on nonlinear models of the dynamic system provide higher utility and versatility because the design model more closely matches the physical system behavior. Obtaining requisite model fidelity is only half of the overall design process, however. Design of the nonlinear control loops can lessen the effects of nonlinearity, or even exploit nonlinearity, to achieve higher levels of closed-loop stability, performance, and robustness. The goal of the research is to improve control quality for a general class of strict-feedback dynamic systems and provide flight control architectures to augment the aircraft motion. The research is divided into two parts: theoretical control development for the strict-feedback form of nonlinear dynamic systems and application of the proposed theory for nonlinear flight dynamics. In the first part, the research is built on two components: transforming the nonlinear dynamic model to a canonical strict-feedback form and then applying backstepping control theory to the canonical model. The research considers a process to determine when this transformation is possible, and when it is possible, a systematic process to transfer the model is also considered when practical. When this is not the case, certain modeling assumptions are explored to facilitate the transformation. After achieving the canonical form, a systematic design procedure for formulating a backstepping control law is explored in the research. Starting with the simplest subsystem and ending with the full system, pseudo control concepts based on Lyapunov control functions are used to control each successive subsystem. Typically each pseudo control must be solved from a nonlinear algebraic equation. At the end of this process, the physical control input must be re-expressed in terms of the physical states by
Minott, G. M.; Peller, J. B.; Cox, K. J.
The space shuttle digital, fly by wire, flight control system presents an interesting challenge in avionics system design. In residence in each of four redundant general purpose computers at lift off are the guidance, navigation, and control algorithms for the entire flight. The mission is divided into several flight segments: first stage ascent, second stage ascent; abort to launch site, abort once around; on orbit operations, entry, terminal area energy management; and approach and landing. The FCS is complicated in that it must perform the functions to fly the shuttle as a boost vehicle, as a spacecraft, as a reentry vehicle, and as a conventional aircraft. The crew is provided with both manual and automatic modes of operations in all flight phases including touchdown and rollout.
Motter, Mark A.
A broad overview of current adaptive flight control research efforts at NASA is presented, as well as some more detailed discussion of selected specific approaches. The stated objective of the Integrated Resilient Aircraft Control Project, one of NASA s Aviation Safety programs, is to advance the state-of-the-art of adaptive controls as a design option to provide enhanced stability and maneuverability margins for safe landing in the presence of adverse conditions such as actuator or sensor failures. Under this project, a number of adaptive control approaches are being pursued, including neural networks and multiple models. Validation of all the adaptive control approaches will use not only traditional methods such as simulation, wind tunnel testing and manned flight tests, but will be augmented with recently developed capabilities in unmanned flight testing.
Scharton, Terry D.
A vibration retest of a spacecraft flight instrument, the Mars Observer Camera (MOC), was conducted using extremal dual control to automatically limit the shaker force and notch the shaker acceleration at resonances. This was the first application of extremal dual control with flight hardware at JPL. The retest was successful in that the environment was representative of flight plus some margin, the instrument survived without any structural or performance degradation, and the force limiting worked very well. The test set-up, force limiting procedure, and test results are described herein. It is concluded that dual control should be utilized when there is a concern about overtesting in hard-base-drive tests and the instrumentation for force measurement and control is available. Recommendations for improving the implementation of dual control are provided as a result of this first experience.
Sampaio, Rafael C. B.; Becker, Marcelo; Siqueira, Adriano A. G.; Freschi, Leonardo W.; Montanher, Marcelo P.
This paper introduces a novel methodology to assist the evaluation of control algorithms for MAVs (Micro Aerial Vehicles) using Software-in-the-Loop (SiL) based flight simulation. The originality of this paper is to use © Microsoft Flight Simulator (MSFS) as the environment to embed both the dynamic and graphic models of © Ascending Technologies Pelican MAV flying robot. The resulting is a reliable model of the Pelican quadrotor. The full duplex communication between the virtual aircraft and the control algorithm is achieved by a custom C++/C software named FVMS (Flight Variables Management System), developed by Aerial Robots Team (ART), which is able to reach (read/write) a great number of flight variables from MSFS. To illustrate the effectiveness of such method, we first completely present FVMS architecture and main features. Later, the synthesis and then the application of the optimal H∞ robust control algorithm and its operation into the FVMS SiL context are explained. Regarding MAVs control evaluation, SiL simulation considerably contributes to save battery time, to ease control synthesis and prototyping and to prevent accidents during tests with the real robot. The final goal is to evaluate the stability of the Pelican platform in hovering tasks in flight simulation focusing on the efficiency of FVMS to properly run the optimal H∞ robust control algorithm. The SiL control of the MAV has proven FVMS capabilities, which may be extended to assist the design of other classes of controllers.
Andrews, D. M.; Mahmood, A.; Mccluskey, E. J.
Digital Flight Control System (DFCS) software was used as a test case for assertion testing. The assertions were written and embedded in the code, then errors were inserted (seeded) one at a time and the code executed. Results indicate that assertion testing is an effective and efficient method of detecting errors in flight software. Most errors are eliminate at an earlier stage in the development than before.
microseconds to transfer the data to a memory location on DMA, 2 274 4P4 275 or to an accumulator if under program control. While it is possible, in principle ...March, 1973, to May, 1974, by the Flight Systems Division of The Bendix Corporation, Teterboro, New Jersey under Air Force Contract No. 333615-73-C...3035 AFFDL. The work was administered under the direction of the Air Force Flight Dynamics Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, 45433, by
Bieniawski, Stefan Richard
The increasing complexity of aerospace systems demands new approaches for their design and control. Approaches are required to address the trend towards aerospace systems comprised of a large number of inherently distributed and highly nonlinear components with complex and sometimes competing interactions. This work introduces collectives to address these challenges. Although collectives have been used for distributed optimization problems in computer science, recent developments based upon Probability Collectives (PC) theory enhance their applicability to discrete, continuous, mixed, and constrained optimization problems. Further, they are naturally applied to distributed systems and those involving uncertainty, such as control in the presence of noise and disturbances. This work describes collectives theory and its implementation, including its connections to multi-agent systems, machine learning, statistics, and gradient-based optimization. To demonstrate the approach, two experiments were developed. These experiments built upon recent advances in actuator technology that resulted in small, simple flow control devices. Miniature-Trailing Edge Effectors (MiTE), consisting of a small, 1-5% chord, moveable surface mounted at the wing trailing edge, are used for the experiments. The high bandwidth, distributed placement, and good control authority make these ideal candidates for rigid and flexible mode control of flight vehicles. This is demonstrated in two experiments: flutter suppression of a flexible wing, and flight control of a remotely piloted aircraft. The first experiment successfully increased the flutter speed by over 25%. The second experiment included a novel distributed flight control system based upon the MiTEs that includes distributed sensing, logic, and actuation. Flight tests validated the control capability of the MiTEs and the associated flight control architecture. The collectives approach was used to design controllers for the distributed
strongly on the flight envelope, re-entry trajectory and vehicle structure. Flight envelope and re-entry trajectory influence primarily the sensor...6 3.3 Flight Wind angles and basic considerations...determination the Mach number independence principle can however be used to derive simple analytic expressions. 3.3 Flight Wind angles and basic
Mihaloew, James R.; Ballin, Mark G.; Ruttledge, D. G. C.
The NASA Ames and Lewis Research Centers, in conjunction with the Army Research and Technology Laboratories have initiated and completed, in part, a joint research program focused on improving the performance, maneuverability, and operating characteristics of rotorcraft by integrating the flight and propulsion controls. The background of the program, its supporting programs, its goals and objectives, and an approach to accomplish them are discussed. Results of the modern control governor design of the T700 and the Rotorcraft Integrated Flight-Propulsion Control Study, which were key elements of the program, are also presented.
Miller, Chris J.
The problem of control command and maneuver induced structural loads is an important aspect of any control system design. Designers must design the aircraft structure and the control architecture to achieve desired piloted control responses while limiting the imparted structural loads. The classical approach is to build the structure with high margins, restrict control surface commands to known good combinations, and train pilots to follow procedural maneuvering limitations. With recent advances in structural sensing and the continued desire to improve safety and vehicle fuel efficiency, it is both possible and desirable to develop control architectures that enable lighter vehicle weights while maintaining and improving protection against structural damage.
3.7.1 PI Controller and Linear Mixer ............... 3-12 3.8 Three Dimensional Controller Development ............ 3-13 3.8.1 PI Control Laws for Three...Mixer Gains ................ 4-38 4.3.3 Varying Y-Channel PI Controller Gains Only .... 4-41 4.3.4 Varying X-Channel PI Controller Gains Only .... 4...44 4.3.5 Trial and Error: PI Controller Gains ............ 4-44 4.3.6 Comparison of New Dimensional Gains With Those of Dargan’s
The "Mighty Eagle," a NASA robotic prototype lander, had a successful first untethered flight Aug. 8 at the Marshall Center. During the 34-second flight, the Mighty Eagle soared and hovered at 30 f...
Taylor, G K
Insects have evolved sophisticated fight control mechanisms permitting a remarkable range of manoeuvres. Here, I present a qualitative analysis of insect flight control from the perspective of flight mechanics, drawing upon both the neurophysiology and biomechanics literatures. The current literature does not permit a formal, quantitative analysis of flight control, because the aerodynamic force systems that biologists have measured have rarely been complete and the position of the centre of gravity has only been recorded in a few studies. Treating the two best-known insect orders (Diptera and Orthoptera) separately from other insects, I discuss the control mechanisms of different insects in detail. Recent experimental studies suggest that the helicopter model of flight control proposed for Drosophila spp. may be better thought of as a facultative strategy for flight control, rather than the fixed (albeit selected) constraint that it is usually interpreted to be. On the other hand, the so-called 'constant-lift reaction' of locusts appears not to be a reflex for maintaining constant lift at varying angles of attack, as is usually assumed, but rather a mechanism to restore the insect to pitch equilibrium following a disturbance. Differences in the kinematic control mechanisms used by the various insect orders are related to differences in the arrangement of the wings, the construction of the flight motor and the unsteady mechanisms of lift production that are used. Since the evolution of insect flight control is likely to have paralleled the evolutionary refinement of these unsteady aerodynamic mechanisms, taxonomic differences in the kinematics of control could provide an assay of the relative importance of different unsteady mechanisms. Although the control kinematics vary widely between orders, the number of degrees of freedom that different insects can control will always be limited by the number of independent control inputs that they use. Control of the moments
Davenport, Otha B.; Leggett, David B.
The Aircraft Digital Flight Control Technical Review was initiated by two pilot induced oscillation (PIO) incidents in the spring and summer of 1992. Maj. Gen. Franklin (PEO) wondered why the Air Force development process for digital flight control systems was not preventing PIO problems. Consequently, a technical review team was formed to examine the development process and determine why PIO problems continued to occur. The team was also to identify the 'best practices' used in the various programs. The charter of the team was to focus on the PIO problem, assess the current development process, and document the 'best practices.' The team reviewed all major USAF aircraft programs with digital flight controls, specifically, the F-15E, F-16C/D, F-22, F-111, C-17, and B-2. The team interviewed contractor, System Program Office (SPO), and Combined Test Force (CTF) personnel on these programs. The team also went to NAS Patuxent River to interview USN personnel about the F/A-18 program. The team also reviewed experimental USAF and NASA systems with digital flight control systems: X-29, X-31, F-15 STOL and Maneuver Technology Demonstrator (SMTD), and the Variable In-Flight Stability Test Aircraft (VISTA). The team also discussed the problem with other experts in the field including Ralph Smith and personnel from Calspan. The major conclusions and recommendations from the review are presented.
Franklin, James A.; Stortz, Michael W.; Borchers, Paul F.; Moralez, Ernesto, III
Flight experiments were conducted on Ames Research Center's V/STOL Systems Research Aircraft (VSRA) to assess the influence of advanced control modes and head-up displays (HUD's) on flying qualities for precision approach and landing operations. Evaluations were made for decelerating approaches to hover followed by a vertical landing and for slow landings for four control/display mode combinations: the basic YAV-8B stability augmentation system; attitude command for pitch, roll, and yaw; flightpath/acceleration command with translational rate command in the hover; and height-rate damping with translational-rate command. Head-up displays used in conjunction with these control modes provided flightpath tracking/pursuit guidance and deceleration commands for the decelerating approach and a mixed horizontal and vertical presentation for precision hover and landing. Flying qualities were established and control usage and bandwidth were documented for candidate control modes and displays for the approach and vertical landing. Minimally satisfactory bandwidths were determined for the translational-rate command system. Test pilot and engineer teams from the Naval Air Warfare Center, the Boeing Military Airplane Group, Lockheed Martin, McDonnell Douglas Aerospace, Northrop Grumman, Rolls-Royce, and the British Defense Research Agency participated in the program along with NASA research pilots from the Ames and Lewis Research Centers. The results, in conjunction with related ground-based simulation data, indicate that the flightpath/longitudinal acceleration command response type in conjunction with pursuit tracking and deceleration guidance on the HUD would be essential for operation to instrument minimums significantly lower than the minimums for the AV-8B. It would also be a superior mode for performing slow landings where precise control to an austere landing area such as a narrow road is demanded. The translational-rate command system would reduce pilot workload for
Arnold, Scott; Barry, Matthew R.; Benton, Isaac; Bishop, Michael M.; Evans, Steven; Harvey, Jason; King, Timothy; Martin, Jacob; Mercier, Al; Miller, Walt; Payne, Dan L.; Phu, Hanh; Thompson, James C.; Aadsen, Ron
The Next Generation Flight Controller Trainer (NGFCT) is a relatively inexpensive system of hardware and software that provides high-fidelity training for spaceshuttle flight controllers. NGFCT provides simulations into which are integrated the behaviors of emulated space-shuttle vehicle onboard general-purpose computers (GPCs), mission-control center (MCC) displays, and space-shuttle systems as represented by high-fidelity shuttle mission simulator (SMS) mathematical models. The emulated GPC computers enable the execution of onboard binary flight-specific software. The SMS models include representations of system malfunctions that can be easily invoked. The NGFCT software has a flexible design that enables independent updating of its GPC, SMS, and MCC components.
Dade, W. W.; Edwards, R. H.; Katt, G. T.; Mcclellan, K. L.; Shomber, H. A.
Collection and analysis of data are reported that concern the reliability and maintenance experience of flight control system electronics currently in use on passenger carrying jet aircraft. Two airlines B-747 airplane fleets were analyzed to assess the component reliability, system functional reliability, and achieved availability of the CAT II configuration flight control system. Also assessed were the costs generated by this system in the categories of spare equipment, schedule irregularity, and line and shop maintenance. The results indicate that although there is a marked difference in the geographic location and route pattern between the airlines studied, there is a close similarity in the reliability and the maintenance costs associated with the flight control electronics.
Stewart, James F.
Over the last two decades, NASA has conducted several flight research experiments in integrated flight propulsion control. Benefits have included increased thrust, range, and survivability; reduced fuel consumption; and reduced maintenance. These flight programs were flown at NASA Dryden Flight Research Facility. This paper presents the basic concepts for control integration, examples of implementation, and benefits of integrated flight propulsion control systems. The F-15 research involved integration of the engine, flight, and inlet control systems. Further extension of the integration included real time, onboard optimization of engine, inlet, and flight control variables; a self repairing flight control system; and an engines only control concept for emergency control. The flight research programs and the resulting benefits are described for the F-15 research.
Cheng, Rendy P.
A multi-input, multi-output controls design with robust crossfeeds is presented for a rotorcraft in near-hovering flight using quantitative feedback theory (QFT). Decoupling criteria are developed for dynamic crossfeed design and implementation. Frequency dependent performance metrics focusing on piloted flight are developed and tested on 23 flight configurations. The metrics show that the resulting design is superior to alternative control system designs using conventional fixed-gain crossfeeds and to feedback-only designs which rely on high gains to suppress undesired off-axis responses. The use of dynamic, robust crossfeeds prior to the QFT design reduces the magnitude of required feedback gain and results in performance that meets current handling qualities specifications relative to the decoupling of off-axis responses. The combined effect of the QFT feedback design following the implementation of low-order, dynamic crossfeed compensator successfully decouples ten of twelve off-axis channels. For the other two channels it was not possible to find a single, low-order crossfeed that was effective.
pilot commanded maneuvering without adverse characteristics, such as departures, requiring the pilot’s attention . Then, there is a discussion of... Loaded Actuator Frequency Response 136 Figure 5.3.4 Actuator Model with and without Control Module Dynamics 137 Figure 5.3.5 Object diagram of HIRM 141...obvious, and frequently the most important, is that the direct connection between the pilot and the control surfaces is not there. Special attention is
Mettler, Bernard F.
Rotorcraft can take off and land vertically, and can perform flight ranging from hovering to airplane-like cruising with agility and maneuverability. These qualities have made them indispensable vehicles for a variety of applications. Today, there is a growing interest in using small-scale rotorcraft as platforms for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Current RUAVs, however, fail to exploit the vehicles' full potential because of deficient flight control systems. The design of high performance control systems for a vehicle with complex dynamics requires a mathematical model that accurately describes the vehicle's dynamics. Linear, low order models are preferred, setting difficult constraints on the modeling task. This thesis describes the development of a dynamic model for a small-scale Yamaha R-50 helicopter using rotorcraft system identification techniques. Based on experimental data collected from the vehicle, a parameterized model of its dynamics was identified. The parameterized model accounts for the presence of a stabilizer bar and an active yaw damping system; which are typical stability augmentation system on small-scale helicopters. Because rotorcraft dynamics change with operating conditions, both a hover and cruise flight condition were identified. The resulting models were validated against flight-test data and were shown to be highly accurate in predicting the vehicle responses, and the identified parameters were shown to be close to the theoretical values. The model helped us understand typical characteristics of small-scale rotorcraft. We used dynamic scaling rules to determine the effect of scale on the dynamic characteristics of helicopters, and at the same time, we used these rules to compare between the characteristics of the R-50 and those of a full-scale Bell UH-1H helicopter. By explicitly accounting for the stabilizer bar, we were able to use our model to determine and simulate the effect that system has on the vehicle dynamics. Finally, by
Strahan, Alan L.; Loe, Greg R.; Seiler, Pete
The Orion Spacecraft will be required to perform entry and landing functions for both Low Earth Orbit (LEO) and Lunar return missions, utilizing only the Command Module (CM) with its unique systems and GN&C design. This paper presents the current CM Flight Control System (FCS) design to support entry and landing, with a focus on analyses that have supported its development to date. The CM FCS will have to provide for spacecraft stability and control while following guidance or manual commands during exo-atmospheric flight, after Service Module separation, translational powered flight required of the CM, atmospheric flight supporting both direct entry and skip trajectories down to drogue chute deploy, and during roll attitude reorientation just prior to touchdown. Various studies and analyses have been performed or are on-going supporting an overall FCS design with reasonably sized Reaction Control System (RCS) jets, that minimizes fuel usage, that provides appropriate command following but with reasonable stability and control margin. Results from these efforts to date are included, with particular attention on design issues that have emerged, such as the struggle to accommodate sub-sonic pitch and yaw control without using excessively large jets that could have a detrimental impact on vehicle weight. Apollo, with a similar shape, struggled with this issue as well. Outstanding CM FCS related design and analysis issues, planned for future effort, are also briefly be discussed.
Sensors for synthetic vision are needed to extend the mission profiles of helicopters. A special task for various applications is the autonomous position hold of a helicopter above a ground fixed or moving target. A computer-vision based system, which is able to observe the helicopter flight state during hover and low speed, based on the detection and tracking of significant but arbitrary features, has been developed by the Institute of Flight Mechanics of DLR Deutsche Forschungsanstalt fuer Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V. The approach is as follows: A CCD camera looks straight downward to the ground and produces an image of the ground view. The digitized video signal is fed into a high performance on- board computer which looks for distinctive features in the image. Any motion of the helicopter results in movements of these patterns in the camera image. By tracking the distinctive features during the succession of incoming images and by the support of inertial sensor data, it is possible to calculate all necessary helicopter state variables, which are needed for a position hold control algorithm. This information is gained from a state variable observer. That means that no additional information about the appearance of the camera view has to be known in advance to achieve autonomous helicopter hover stabilization. The hardware architecture for this image evaluation system mainly consists of several PowerPC processors which communicate with the aid of transputers and an image distribution bus. Feature tracking is performed by a dedicated 2D-correlator subsystem. The paper presents the characteristics of the computer vision sensor and demonstrates its functionality.
Myers, T. T.; Johnston, D. E.; Mcruer, D.
The suitability of existing and proposed flying quality and flight control system criteria for application to the space shuttle orbiter during atmospheric flight phases was assessed. An orbiter experiment for flying qualities and flight control system design criteria is discussed. Orbiter longitudinal and lateral-directional flying characteristics, flight control system lag and time delay considerations, and flight control manipulator characteristics are included. Data obtained from conventional aircraft may be inappropriate for application to the shuttle orbiter.
Hall, Charles; Lee, Chong; Jackson, Mark; Whorton, Mark; West, mark; Brandon, Jay; Hall, Rob A.; Jang, Jimmy; Bedrossian, Naz; Compton, Jimmy; Rutherford, Chad
This paper describes the control challenges posed by the Ares I vehicle, the flight control system design and performance analyses used to test and verify the design. The major challenges in developing the control system are structural dynamics, dynamic effects from the powerful first stage booster, aerodynamics, first stage separation and large uncertainties in the dynamic models for all these. Classical control techniques were employed using innovative methods for structural mode filter design and an anti-drift feature to compensate for translational and rotational disturbances. This design was coded into an integrated vehicle flight simulation and tested by Monte Carlo methods. The product of this effort is a linear, robust controller design that is easy to implement, verify and test.
VanZwieten, Tannen S.; Orr, Jeb S.; Wall, John H.; Hall, Charles E.
A robust and flexible autopilot architecture for NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) family of launch vehicles is presented. As the SLS configurations represent a potentially significant increase in complexity and performance capability of the integrated flight vehicle, it was recognized early in the program that a new, generalized autopilot design should be formulated to fulfill the needs of this new space launch architecture. The present design concept is intended to leverage existing NASA and industry launch vehicle design experience and maintain the extensibility and modularity necessary to accommodate multiple vehicle configurations while relying on proven and flight-tested control design principles for large boost vehicles. The SLS flight control architecture combines a digital three-axis autopilot with traditional bending filters to support robust active or passive stabilization of the vehicle's bending and sloshing dynamics using optimally blended measurements from multiple rate gyros on the vehicle structure. The algorithm also relies on a pseudo-optimal control allocation scheme to maximize the performance capability of multiple vectored engines while accommodating throttling and engine failure contingencies in real time with negligible impact to stability characteristics. The architecture supports active in-flight load relief through the use of a nonlinear observer driven by acceleration measurements, and envelope expansion and robustness enhancement is obtained through the use of a multiplicative forward gain modulation law based upon a simple model reference adaptive control scheme.
Murphy, James R.
Contents include the following: 1. Commercial flight is a partnership. Airlines. Pilots. Air traffic control. 2. Airline schedules and weather problems can cause delays at the airport. Delays are inevitable in de-regulated industry due to simple economics. 3.Delays can be mitigated. Build more runways/technology. Increase airspace supply. 4. Cost/benefit analysis determine justification.
This news release reports on the development and testing of a new integrated flight and propulsion automated control system that aerospace engineers at NASA's Ames Research Center have been working on. The system is being tested in the V/STOL (Vertical/Short Takeoff and Landing) Systems Research Aircraft (VSRA).
Gorder, Peter James
Rotorcraft flight control systems present design challenges which often exceed those associated with fixed-wing aircraft. First, large variations in the response characteristics of the rotorcraft result from the wide range of airspeeds of typical operation (hover to over 100 kts). Second, the assumption of vehicle rigidity often employed in the design of fixed-wing flight control systems is rarely justified in rotorcraft where rotor degrees of freedom can have a significant impact on the system performance and stability. This research was intended to develop a methodology for the design of robust rotorcraft flight control systems. Quantitative Feedback Theory (QFT) was chosen as the basis for the investigation. Quantitative Feedback Theory is a technique which accounts for variability in the dynamic response of the controlled element in the design robust control systems. It was developed to address a Multiple-Input Single-Output (MISO) design problem, and utilizes two degrees of freedom to satisfy the design criteria. Two techniques were examined for extending the QFT MISO technique to the design of a Multiple-Input-Multiple-Output (MIMO) flight control system (FCS) for a UH-60 Black Hawk Helicopter. In the first, a set of MISO systems, mathematically equivalent to the MIMO system, was determined. QFT was applied to each member of the set simultaneously. In the second, the same set of equivalent MISO systems were analyzed sequentially, with closed loop response information from each loop utilized in subsequent MISO designs. The results of each technique were compared, and the advantages of the second, termed Sequential Loop Closure, were clearly evident.
...; Electronic Flight Control System: Control Surface Position Awareness AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration... design features include an electronic flight control system. The applicable airworthiness regulations do... an electronic flight control system and no direct coupling from the cockpit controller to the...
Chung, W. W.; Mcneill, W. E.; Stortz, M. W.
The nonlinear inverse transformation flight control system design method is applied to the Lockheed Ft. Worth Company's E-7D short takeoff and vertical land (STOVL) supersonic fighter/attack aircraft design with a modified General Electric F110 engine which has augmented propulsive lift capability. The system is fully augmented to provide flight path control and velocity control, and rate command attitude hold for angular axes during the transition and hover operations. In cruise mode, the flight control system is configured to provide direct thrust command, rate command attitude hold for pitch and roll axes, and sideslip command with turn coordination. A control selector based on the nonlinear inverse transformation method is designed specifically to be compatible with the propulsion system's physical configuration which has a two dimensional convergent-divergent aft nozzle, a vectorable ventral nozzle, and a thrust augmented ejector. The nonlinear inverse transformation is used to determine the propulsive forces and nozzle deflections, which in combination with the aerodynamic forces and moments (including propulsive induced contributions), and gravitational force, are required to achieve the longitudinal and vertical acceleration commands. The longitudinal control axes are fully decoupled within the propulsion system's performance envelope. A piloted motion-base flight simulation was conducted on the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames Research Center to examine the handling qualities of this design. Based on results of the simulation, refinements to the control system have been made and will also be covered in the report.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Maine, Trindel; Wolf, Thomas
Flight tests and simulation studies using the throttles of an F-15 airplane for emergency flight control have been conducted at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Facility. The airplane and the simulation are capable of extended up-and-away flight, using only throttles for flight path control. Initial simulation results showed that runway landings using manual throttles-only control were difficult, but possible with practice. Manual approaches flown in the airplane were much more difficult, indicating a significant discrepancy between flight and simulation. Analysis of flight data and development of improved simulation models that resolve the discrepancy are discussed. An augmented throttle-only control system that controls bank angle and flight path with appropriate feedback parameters has also been developed, evaluated in simulations, and is planned for flight in the F-15.
Clinedinst, Winston C.; Debure, Kelly R.; Dickson, Richard W.; Heaphy, William J.; Parks, Mark A.; Slominski, Christopher J.; Wolverton, David A.
The Flight Management/Flight Controls (FM/FC) software for the Norden 2 (PDP-11/70M) computer installed on the NASA 737 aircraft is described. The software computes the navigation position estimates, guidance commands, those commands to be issued to the control surfaces to direct the aircraft in flight based on the modes selected on the Advanced Guidance Control System (AGSC) mode panel, and the flight path selected via the Navigation Control/Display Unit (NCDU).
Biezad, Daniel J.; Chou, Hwei-Lan
During the final reporting period (Jun. - Dec. 1992), analyses of the longitudinal and lateral flying qualities were made for propulsive-only flight control (POFC) of a Boeing 720 aircraft model. Performance resulting from compensators developed using Quantitative Feedback Theory (QFT) is documented and analyzed. This report is a first draft of a thesis to be presented by graduate student Hwei-Lan Chou. The final thesis will be presented to NASA when it is completed later this year. The latest landing metrics related to bandwidth criteria and based on the Neal-Smith approach to flying qualities prediction were used in developing performance criteria for the controllers. The compensator designs were tested on the NASA simulator and exhibited adequate performance for piloted flight. There was no significant impact of QFT on performance of the propulsive-only flight controllers in either the longitudinal or lateral modes of flight. This was attributed to the physical limits of thrust available and the engine rate of response, both of whiih severely limited the available bandwidth of the closed-loop system.
Harmonic Control System," Journal of the American Helicopter Society, January 1985. 7. McKeown, J.C., "Helicopter Design Requirements ," Lecture notes...0 NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL Monterey, California AD-A242 478 ,j’ STATS4 G’CtAD’%3P’ THESIS FLIGHT OPERATIONS FOR HIGHER HARMONIC CONTROL RESEARCH by...SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF THIS PAGE Form Approved REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE OMB No. 0704-0188 la REPORT SECURITY CLASSIFICATION Ib RESTRICTIVE
Flight control computer (FCC) 0104-I has been designated the prime unit for the SA-210 launch vehicle. The results of the final flight simulation for FCC S/N 0104-I are documented. These results verify satisfactory implementation of the design release and proper interfacing of the FCC with flight-type control sensor elements and simulated thrust vector control system.
Green, William Edward
Reconnaissance, surveillance, and search-and-rescue missions in near-Earth environments such as caves, forests, and urban areas pose many new challenges to command and control (C2) teams. Of great significance is how to acquire situational awareness when access to the scene is blocked by enemy fire, rubble, or other occlusions. Small bird-sized aerial robots are expendable and can fly over obstacles and through small openings to assist in the acquisition and distribution of intelligence. However, limited flying space and densely populated obstacle fields requires a vehicle that is capable of hovering, but also maneuverable. A secondary flight mode was incorporated into a fixed-wing aircraft to preserve its maneuverability while adding the capability of hovering. An inertial measurement sensor and onboard flight control system were interfaced and used to transition the hybrid prototype from cruise to hover flight and sustain a hover autonomously. Furthermore, the hovering flight mode can be used to maneuver the aircraft through small openings such as doorways. An ultrasonic and infrared sensor suite was designed to follow exterior building walls until an ingress route was detected. Reactive control was then used to traverse the doorway and gather reconnaissance. Entering a dangerous environment to gather intelligence autonomously will provide an invaluable resource to any C2 team. The holistic approach of platform development, sensor suite design, and control serves as the philosophy of this work.
Gaonkar, G. H.; Subramanian, S.
Since the early 1990s the Aeroflightdynamics Directorate at the Ames Research Center has been conducting tests on isolated hingeless rotors in hover and forward flight. The primary objective is to generate a database on aeroelastic stability in trimmed flight for torsionally soft rotors at realistic tip speeds. The rotor test model has four soft inplane blades of NACA 0012 airfoil section with low torsional stiffness. The collective pitch and shaft tilt are set prior to each test run, and then the rotor is trimmed in the following sense: the longitudinal and lateral cyclic pitch controls are adjusted through a swashplate to minimize the 1/rev flapping moment at the 12 percent radial station. In hover, the database comprises lag regressive-mode damping with pitch variations. In forward flight the database comprises cyclic pitch controls, root flap moment and lag regressive-mode damping with advance ratio, shaft angle and pitch variations. This report presents the predictions and their correlation with the database. A modal analysis is used, in which nonrotating modes in flap bending, lag bending and torsion are computed from the measured blade mass and stiffness distributions. The airfoil aerodynamics is represented by the ONERA dynamic stall models of lift, drag and pitching moment, and the wake dynamics is represented by a state-space wake model. The trim analysis of finding, the cyclic controls and the corresponding, periodic responses is based on periodic shooting with damped Newton iteration; the Floquet transition matrix (FTM) comes out as a byproduct. The stabillty analysis of finding the frequencies and damping levels is based on the eigenvalue-eigenvector analysis of the FTM. All the structural and aerodynamic states are included from modeling to trim analysis. A major finding is that dynamic wake dramatically improves the correlation for the lateral cyclic pitch control. Overall, the correlation is fairly good.
Hammond, Walter E.; Vanhook, Michael E. (Technical Monitor)
Good program management practices, cost analysis, cost estimation, and cost control for aerospace flight systems are interrelated and depend upon each other. The best cost control process cannot overcome poor design or poor systems trades that lead to the wrong approach. The project needs robust Technical, Schedule, Cost, Risk, and Cost Risk practices before it can incorporate adequate Cost Control. Cost analysis both precedes and follows cost estimation -- the two are closely coupled with each other and with Risk analysis. Parametric cost estimating relationships and computerized models are most often used. NASA has learned some valuable lessons in controlling cost problems, and recommends use of a summary Project Manager's checklist as shown here.
Due to the hover capability of rotary wing Micro Air Vehicles (MAVs), it is of interest to improve their aerodynamic performance, and hence hover endurance (or payload capability). In this research, a shrouded rotor configuration is studied and implemented, that has the potential to offer two key operational benefits: enhanced system thrust for a given input power, and improved structural rigidity and crashworthiness of an MAV platform. The main challenges involved in realising such a system for a lightweight craft are: design of a lightweight and stiff shroud, and increased sensitivity to external flow disturbances that can affect flight stability. These key aspects are addressed and studied in order to assess the capability of the shrouded rotor as a platform of choice for MAV applications. A fully functional shrouded rotor vehicle (disk loading 60 N/ m2) was designed and constructed with key shroud design variables derived from previous studies on micro shrouded rotors. The vehicle weighed about 280 g (244 mm rotor diameter). The shrouded rotor had a 30% increase in power loading in hover compared to an unshrouded rotor. Due to the stiff, lightweight shroud construction, a net payload benefit of 20-30 g was achieved. The different components such as the rotor, stabilizer bar, yaw control vanes and the shroud were systematically studied for system efficiency and overall aerodynamic improvements. Analysis of the data showed that the chosen shroud dimensions was close to optimum for a design payload of 250 g. Risk reduction prototypes were built to sequentially arrive at the final configuration. In order to prevent periodic oscillations in ight, a hingeless rotor was incorporated in the shroud. The vehicle was successfully ight tested in hover with a proportional-integralderivative feedback controller. A flybarless rotor was incorporated for efficiency and control moment improvements. Time domain system identification of the attitude dynamics of the flybar and
Williams-Hayes, Peggy S.
The NASA F-15 Intelligent Flight Control System project team developed a series of flight control concepts designed to demonstrate neural network-based adaptive controller benefits, with the objective to develop and flight-test control systems using neural network technology to optimize aircraft performance under nominal conditions and stabilize the aircraft under failure conditions. This report presents flight-test results for an adaptive controller using stability and control derivative values from an online learning neural network. A dynamic cell structure neural network is used in conjunction with a real-time parameter identification algorithm to estimate aerodynamic stability and control derivative increments to baseline aerodynamic derivatives in flight. This open-loop flight test set was performed in preparation for a future phase in which the learning neural network and parameter identification algorithm output would provide the flight controller with aerodynamic stability and control derivative updates in near real time. Two flight maneuvers are analyzed - pitch frequency sweep and automated flight-test maneuver designed to optimally excite the parameter identification algorithm in all axes. Frequency responses generated from flight data are compared to those obtained from nonlinear simulation runs. Flight data examination shows that addition of flight-identified aerodynamic derivative increments into the simulation improved aircraft pitch handling qualities.
Orr, Jeb S.; Wall, John H.; VanZwieten, Tannen S.; Hall, Charles E.
A robust and flexible autopilot architecture for NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) family of launch vehicles is presented. The SLS configurations represent a potentially significant increase in complexity and performance capability when compared with other manned launch vehicles. It was recognized early in the program that a new, generalized autopilot design should be formulated to fulfill the needs of this new space launch architecture. The present design concept is intended to leverage existing NASA and industry launch vehicle design experience and maintain the extensibility and modularity necessary to accommodate multiple vehicle configurations while relying on proven and flight-tested control design principles for large boost vehicles. The SLS flight control architecture combines a digital three-axis autopilot with traditional bending filters to support robust active or passive stabilization of the vehicle's bending and sloshing dynamics using optimally blended measurements from multiple rate gyros on the vehicle structure. The algorithm also relies on a pseudo-optimal control allocation scheme to maximize the performance capability of multiple vectored engines while accommodating throttling and engine failure contingencies in real time with negligible impact to stability characteristics. The architecture supports active in-flight disturbance compensation through the use of nonlinear observers driven by acceleration measurements. Envelope expansion and robustness enhancement is obtained through the use of a multiplicative forward gain modulation law based upon a simple model reference adaptive control scheme.
Ward, Texas M.; Harlan, Don L.
The research and work conducted on the development of a testbed for a display and control panel for the Flight Telerobotic Servicer (FTS) are presented. Research was conducted on both software and hardware needed to control the FTS. A breadboard was constructed and placed into a mockup of the aft station of the Orbiter spacecraft. This breadboard concept was then evaluated using a computer graphics representation of the Tinman FTS. Extensive research was conducted on the software requirements and implementation. The hardware selected for the breadboard was 'flight like' and in some cases fit and function evaluated. The breadboard team studied some of the concepts without pursuing in depth their impact on the Orbiter or other missions. Assumptions are made concerning payload integration.
Owen, Dean H.
Three topics which can be applied to rotorcraft flight are examined: (1) the nature of visual information; (2) what visual information is informative about; and (3) the control of visual information. The anchorage of visual perception is defined as the distribution of structure in the surrounding optical array or the distribution of optical structure over the retinal surface. A debate was provoked about whether the referent of visual event perception, and in turn control, is optical motion, kinetics, or dynamics. The interface of control theory and visual perception is also considered. The relationships among these problems is the basis of this article.
Carestia, R. A.
The use of advanced digital systems for flight control and guidance for a specific mission is investigated. The research areas include advanced electronic system architectures, tests with the global positioning system (GPS) in a helicopter, and advanced integrated systems concept for rotorcraft. Emphasis is on a search and rescue mission, differential global positioning systems to provide a data base of performance information for navigation, and a study to determine the present usage and trends of microcomputers and microcomputer components in the avionics industries.
Urnes, James M.; Hoy, Stephen E.; Ladage, Robert N.; Stewart, James
A flight control concept that can identify aircraft stability properties and continually optimize the aircraft flying qualities has been developed by McDonnell Aircraft Company under a contract with the NASA-Dryden Flight Research Facility. This flight concept, termed the Intelligent Flight Control System, utilizes Neural Network technology to identify the host aircraft stability and control properties during flight, and use this information to design on-line the control system feedback gains to provide continuous optimum flight response. This self-repairing capability can provide high performance flight maneuvering response throughout large flight envelopes, such as needed for the National Aerospace Plane. Moreover, achieving this response early in the vehicle's development schedule will save cost.
Nguyen, Nhan T.; Gregory, Irene M.; Joshi, Suresh M.
This poster presents the current adaptive control research being conducted at NASA ARC and LaRC in support of the Integrated Resilient Aircraft Control (IRAC) project. The technique "Approximate Stability Margin Analysis of Hybrid Direct-Indirect Adaptive Control" has been developed at NASA ARC to address the needs for stability margin metrics for adaptive control that potentially enables future V&V of adaptive systems. The technique "Direct Adaptive Control With Unknown Actuator Failures" is developed at NASA LaRC to deal with unknown actuator failures. The technique "Adaptive Control with Adaptive Pilot Element" is being researched at NASA LaRC to investigate the effects of pilot interactions with adaptive flight control that can have implications of stability and performance.
Stewart, James F.; Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Gatlin, Donald H.
Over the last two decades, NASA has conducted several experiments in integrated flight-propulsion control. Benefits have included improved maneuverability; increased thrust, range, and survivability; reduced fuel consumption; and reduced maintenance. This paper presents the basic concepts for control integration, examples of implementation, and benefits. The F-111E experiment integrated the engine and inlet control systems. The YF-12C incorporated an integral control system involving the inlet, autopilot, autothrottle, airdata, navigation, and stability augmentation systems. The F-15 research involved integration of the engine, flight, and inlet control systems. Further extension of the integration included real-time, onboard optimization of engine, inlet, and flight control variables; a self-repairing flight control system; and an engines-only control concept for emergency control. The F-18A aircraft incorporated thrust vectoring integrated with the flight control system to provide enhanced maneuvering at high angles of attack. The flight research programs and the resulting benefits of each program are described.
Wang, Wei; Li, Aijun; Xie, Yanwu; Tan, Jian
Historically, aircraft longitudinal control has been realized by means of two loops: flight path (the control variable is elevator displacement) and speed control (the control variable is propulsive thrust or engine power). Both the elevator and throttle control cause coupled altitude and speed response, which exerts negative effects on longitudinal flight performance of aircraft, especially for Terrain Following(TF) flight. Energy-based method can resolve coupled problem between flight speed and path by controlling total energy rate and energy distribution rate between elevator and throttle. In this paper, energy-based control method is applied to design a TF flight control system for controlling flight altitude directly. An error control method of airspeed and altitude is adopted to eliminate the stable error of the total energy control system when decoupling control. Pitch loop and pitch rate feedback loop are designed for the system to damp the oscillatory response produced by TF system. The TF flight control system structure diagram and an aircraft point-mass energy motion model including basic control loops are given and used to simulate decoupling performance of the TF fight control system. Simulation results show that the energy-based TF flight control system can decouple flight velocity and flight path angle, exactly follow planned flight path, and greatly reduce altitude error, which is between +10m and -8m.
Burcham, F. W., Jr.; Burken, John; Maine, Trindel A.
Flight tests of a propulsion-controlled aircraft (PCA) system on an F-15 airplane have been conducted at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. The airplane was flown with all flight control surfaces locked both in the manual throttles-only mode and in an augmented system mode. In the latter mode, pilot thumbwheel commands and aircraft feedback parameters were used to position the throttles. Flight evaluation results showed that the PCA system can be used to land an airplane that has suffered a major flight control system failure safely. The PCA system was used to recover the F-15 airplane from a severe upset condition, descend, and land. Pilots from NASA, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, and McDonnell Douglas Aerospace evaluated the PCA system and were favorably impressed with its capability. Manual throttles-only approaches were unsuccessful. This paper describes the PCA system operation and testing. It also presents flight test results and pilot comments.
After completing its first flight with the Digital Flight Control System on December 16, 1997, the F-16XL #1 aircraft began a series of envelope expansion flights. On January 27 and 29, 1998, it successfully completed structural clearance tests, as well as most of the load testing Only flights at Mach 1.05 at 10,000 feet, Mach 1.1 at 15,000 feet, and Mach 1.2 at 20,000 feet remained. During the next flight, on February 4, an instrumentation problem cut short the planned envelope expansion tests. After the problem was corrected, the F-16XL returned to flight status, and on February 18 and 20, flight control and evaluation flights were made. Two more research flights were planned for the following week, but another problem appeared. During the ground start up, project personnel noticed that the leading edge flap moved without being commanded. The Digital Flight Control Computer was sent to the Lockheed-Martin facility at Fort Worth, where the problem was traced to a defective chip in the computer. After it was replaced, the F-16XL #1 flew a highly successful flight controls and handling qualities evaluation flight on March 26, clearing the way for the final tests. The final limited loads expansion flight occurred on March 31, and was fully successful. As a result, the on-site Lockheed-Martin loads engineer cleared the aircraft to Mach 1.8. The remaining two handling qualities and flight control evaluation flights were both made on April 3, 1998. These three flights concluded the flight test portion of the DFCS upgrade.
Brody, Adam R. (Editor); Ellis, Stephen R. (Editor)
A brief description of several laboratories' current research in the general area of manual control of orbital flight is presented. With an operational-space-station era (and its increased traffic levels) approaching, now is an opportune time to investigate issues such as docking and rendezvous profiles and course-planning aids. The tremendous increase in the capabilities of computers and computer graphics has made extensive study possible and economical. It is time to study these areas, from a human factors and manual control perspective in order to preclude the occurrence of problems analogous to those that occurred in the airline and other related industries.
Chenoweth, C. C.; Fain, D. M.; Svensson, C. I.
Two concepts of redundant secondary actuator mechanization, applicable to future advanced flight control systems, were studied to quantitatively assess their design applicability to an AST. The two actuator concepts, a four-channel, force summed system and a three-channel, active/standby system have been developed and evaluated through analysis, analog computer simulation, and piloted motion simulation. The quantitative comparison of the two concepts indicates that the force summed concept better meet performance requirements, although the active/standby is superior in other respects. Both concepts are viable candidates for advanced control application dependent on the specific performance requirements.
Williams, Peggy S.
The NASA F-15 Intelligent Flight Control System project team has developed a series of flight control concepts designed to demonstrate the benefits of a neural network-based adaptive controller. The objective of the team is to develop and flight-test control systems that use neural network technology to optimize the performance of the aircraft under nominal conditions as well as stabilize the aircraft under failure conditions. Failure conditions include locked or failed control surfaces as well as unforeseen damage that might occur to the aircraft in flight. This report presents flight-test results for an adaptive controller using stability and control derivative values from an online learning neural network. A dynamic cell structure neural network is used in conjunction with a real-time parameter identification algorithm to estimate aerodynamic stability and control derivative increments to the baseline aerodynamic derivatives in flight. This set of open-loop flight tests was performed in preparation for a future phase of flights in which the learning neural network and parameter identification algorithm output would provide the flight controller with aerodynamic stability and control derivative updates in near real time. Two flight maneuvers are analyzed a pitch frequency sweep and an automated flight-test maneuver designed to optimally excite the parameter identification algorithm in all axes. Frequency responses generated from flight data are compared to those obtained from nonlinear simulation runs. An examination of flight data shows that addition of the flight-identified aerodynamic derivative increments into the simulation improved the pitch handling qualities of the aircraft.
Xargay, Enric; Hovakimyan, Naira; Dobrokhodov, Vladimir; Kaminer, Isaac; Gregory, Irene M.; Cao, Chengyu
Certification of adaptive control technologies for both manned and unmanned aircraft represent a major challenge for current Verification and Validation techniques. A (missing) key step towards flight certification of adaptive flight control systems is the definition and development of analysis tools and methods to support Verification and Validation for nonlinear systems, similar to the procedures currently used for linear systems. In this paper, we describe and demonstrate the advantages of L(sub l) adaptive control architectures for closing some of the gaps in certification of adaptive flight control systems, which may facilitate the transition of adaptive control into military and commercial aerospace applications. As illustrative examples, we present the results of a piloted simulation evaluation on the NASA AirSTAR flight test vehicle, and results of an extensive flight test program conducted by the Naval Postgraduate School to demonstrate the advantages of L(sub l) adaptive control as a verifiable robust adaptive flight control system.
Calise, A. J.; Kadushin, I.; Kramer, F.
The current status of research on the application of variable structure system (VSS) theory to design aircraft flight control systems is summarized. Two aircraft types are currently being investigated: the Augmentor Wing Jet STOL Research Aircraft (AWJSRA), and AV-8A Harrier. The AWJSRA design considers automatic control of longitudinal dynamics during the landing phase. The main task for the AWJSRA is to design an automatic landing system that captures and tracks a localizer beam. The control task for the AV-8A is to track velocity commands in a hovering flight configuration. Much effort was devoted to developing computer programs that are needed to carry out VSS design in a multivariable frame work, and in becoming familiar with the dynamics and control problems associated with the aircraft types under investigation. Numerous VSS design schemes were explored, particularly for the AWJSRA. The approaches that appear best suited for these aircraft types are presented. Examples are given of the numerical results currently being generated.
Training of ground control teams has been a difficult task in space operations. There are several intangible skills that must be learned to become the steely eyed men and women of mission control who respond to spacecraft failures that can lead to loss of vehicle or crew if handled improperly. And as difficult as training is, it can also be costly. Every day, month or year an operator is in training, is a day that not only they are being trained without direct benefit to the organization, but potentially an instructor or mentor is also being paid for hours spent assisting them. Therefore, optimization of the training flow is highly desired. Recently the Expedition Division (DI) at Johnson Space Flight Center has recreated their training flows for the purpose of both moving to an operator/specialist/instructor hierarchy and to address past inefficiencies in the training flow. This paper will discuss the types of training DI is utilizing in their new flows, and the balance that has been struck between the ideal learning environments and realistic constraints. Specifically, the past training flow for the ISS Attitude Determination and Control Officer will be presented, including drawbacks that were encountered. Then the new training flow will be discussed and how a new approach utilizes more training methods and teaching techniques. We will look at how DI has integrated classes, workshops, checkouts, module reviews, scenarios, OJT, paper sims, Mini Sims, and finally Integrated Sims to balance the cost and timing of training a new flight controller.
A limiting factor in control system design and analysis for spacecraft is the inability to physically test new algorithms quickly and cheaply. Test flights of space vehicles are costly and take much preparation. As such, EV41 recently acquired a small research quadrocopter that has the ability to be a test bed for new control systems. This project focused on learning how to operate, fly, and maintain the quadrocopter, as well as developing and testing protocols for its use. In parallel to this effort, developing a model in Simulink facilitated the design and analysis of simple control systems for the quadrocopter. Software provided by the manufacturer enabled testing of the Simulink control system on the vehicle.
Wilkes, Donald R.; Hummer, Leigh L.; Zwiener, James M.
The Thermal Control Surfaces Experiment (TCSE) is the most complex system, other than the LDEF, retrieved after long term space exposure. The TCSE is a microcosm of complex electro-optical payloads being developed and flow by NASA and the DoD including SDI. The objective of TCSE was to determine the effects of the near-Earth orbital environment and the LDEF induced environment on spacecraft thermal control surfaces. The TCSE was a comprehensive experiment that combined in-space measurements with extensive post flight analyses of thermal control surfaces to determine the effects of exposure to the low earth orbit space environment. The TCSE was the first space experiment to measure the optical properties of thermal control surfaces the way they are routinely measured in a lab. The performance of the TCSE confirms that low cost, complex experiment packages can be developed that perform well in space.
Urnes, James M.; Stewart, James; Eslinger, Robert
Battle damage causing loss of control capability can compromise mission objectives and even result in aircraft loss. The Self Repairing Flight Control System (SRFCS) flight development program directly addresses this issue with a flight control system design that measures the damage and immediately refines the control system commands to preserve mission potential. The system diagnostics process detects in flight the type of faults that are difficult to isolate post flight, and thus cause excessive ground maintenance time and cost. The control systems of fighter aircraft have the control power and surface displacement to maneuver the aircraft in a very large flight envelope with a wide variation in airspeed and g maneuvering conditions, with surplus force capacity available from each control surface. Digital flight control processors are designed to include built-in status of the control system components, as well as sensor information on aircraft control maneuver commands and response. In the event of failure or loss of a control surface, the SRFCS utilizes this capability to reconfigure control commands to the remaining control surfaces, thus preserving maneuvering response. Correct post-flight repair is the key to low maintainability support costs and high aircraft mission readiness. The SRFCS utilizes the large data base available with digital flight control systems to diagnose faults. Built-in-test data and sensor data are used as inputs to an Onboard Expert System process to accurately identify failed components for post-flight maintenance action. This diagnostic technique has the advantage of functioning during flight, and so is especially useful in identifying intermittent faults that are present only during maneuver g loads or high hydraulic flow requirements. A flight system was developed to test the reconfiguration and onboard maintenance diagnostics concepts on a NASA F-15 fighter aircraft.
This dissertation is on the development and experimental demonstration of a new nonlinear approach to developing control laws for the lateral-directional dynamics of aircraft at high angles of attack using Forebody Tangential Blowing (FTB). FTB is a pneumatic device that modifies the vortical flow over the forebody. The modified vortical flow in turn creates roll and yaw moments for control. FTB has been shown to be a very powerful means of generating forces and moments on aircraft operating in flight regimes where the effectiveness of conventional aerodynamic surfaces is reduced (e.g. post stall). Consequently, it provides a mechanism that could greatly expand the flight envelope of future aircraft systems. One major factor that currently limits the use of FTB is that it is a highly nonlinear and uncertain effector. In particular, FTB can provide very powerful effects (e.g. forces and moments) at low levels of blowing but the characteristic relating input to output is highly nonlinear in this region. On the other hand, if higher levels of blowing are used, the characteristics become well behaved. Hence, the trade-off between robustness and control usage is particularly acute. The goal of this thesis is to develop a technique that will yield for the first time robust control at small levels of blowing thus enabling a new level of efficiency in the use of FTB as a device for flight control at high angles of attack. The approach developed is based on combining High-Gain Control (HGC) and Lyapunov techniques. By employing a robust inversion of uncertain static nonlinearities, the new control law can be applied to a class of systems represented by a cascade connection of a nonlinear system and an uncertain linear system. In particular, the nonlinear control approach is applied to the control of an aircraft utilizing FTB and can fully exploit the FTB efficiency. Simulation and experimental results are provided that demonstrate the effectiveness of the approach. Further
... CAPACITY OF 6,000 POUNDS OR MORE; AND RULES GOVERNING PERSONS ON BOARD SUCH AIRCRAFT Flight Operations § 125.311 Flight crewmembers at controls. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, each... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Flight crewmembers at controls....
... CAPACITY OF 6,000 POUNDS OR MORE; AND RULES GOVERNING PERSONS ON BOARD SUCH AIRCRAFT Flight Operations § 125.311 Flight crewmembers at controls. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, each... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Flight crewmembers at controls....
... CAPACITY OF 6,000 POUNDS OR MORE; AND RULES GOVERNING PERSONS ON BOARD SUCH AIRCRAFT Flight Operations § 125.311 Flight crewmembers at controls. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, each... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Flight crewmembers at controls....
... CAPACITY OF 6,000 POUNDS OR MORE; AND RULES GOVERNING PERSONS ON BOARD SUCH AIRCRAFT Flight Operations § 125.311 Flight crewmembers at controls. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, each... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Flight crewmembers at controls....
... CAPACITY OF 6,000 POUNDS OR MORE; AND RULES GOVERNING PERSONS ON BOARD SUCH AIRCRAFT Flight Operations § 125.311 Flight crewmembers at controls. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, each... 14 Aeronautics and Space 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Flight crewmembers at controls....
Mackall, Dale A.
Engineers and scientists in the advanced fighter technology integration (AFTI) F-16 program investigated the integration of emerging technologies into an advanced fighter aircraft. AFTI's three major technologies included: flight-crucial digital control, decoupled aircraft flight control, and integration of avionics, flight control, and pilot displays. In addition to investigating improvements in fighter performance, researchers studied the generic problems confronting the designers of highly integrated flight-crucial digital control. An overview is provided of both the advantages and problems of integration digital control systems. Also, an examination of the specification, design, qualification, and flight test life-cycle phase is provided. An overview is given of the fault-tolerant design, multimoded decoupled flight control laws, and integrated avionics design. The approach to qualifying the software and system designs is discussed, and the effects of design choices on system qualification are highlighted.
This is the closeout report for the Research Cooperative Agreement NCC4-00130 of accomplishments for the Intelligent Flight Control System (IFCS) Project. It has been a pleasure working with NASA and NASA partners as we strive to meet the goals of this research initiative. ISR was engaged in this Research Cooperative Agreement beginning 01 January 2003 and ending 31 January 2004. During this time ISR conducted efforts towards development of the ARTS II Computer Software Configuration Item (CSCI) version 4.0 by performing or developing the following: 1) Requirements Definition; 2) Software Design and Development; 3) Hardware In the Loop Simulation; 4) Unit Level testing; 5) Documentation.
Mulcare, D. B.; Downing, L. E.; Smith, M. K.
Described are the development and validation of a double fail-operational digital flight control system architecture for critical pitch axis functions. Architectural tradeoffs are assessed, system simulator modifications are described, and demonstration testing results are critiqued. Assessment tools and their application are also illustrated. Ultimately, the vital role of system simulation, tailored to digital mechanization attributes, is shown to be essential to validating the airworthiness of full-time critical functions such as augmented fly-by-wire systems for relaxed static stability airplanes.
Wolverton, David A.; Dickson, Richard W.; Clinedinst, Winston C.; Slominski, Christopher J.
The flight software developed for the Flight Management/Flight Controls (FM/FC) MicroVAX computer used on the Transport Systems Research Vehicle for Advanced Transport Operating Systems (ATOPS) research is described. The FM/FC software computes navigation position estimates, guidance commands, and those commands issued to the control surfaces to direct the aircraft in flight. Various modes of flight are provided for, ranging from computer assisted manual modes to fully automatic modes including automatic landing. A high-level system overview as well as a description of each software module comprising the system is provided. Digital systems diagrams are included for each major flight control component and selected flight management functions.
Smolka, James W.
NASA-Ames' Highly Integrated Digital Electronic Control (HIDEC) flight test program aims to develop fully integrated airframe, propulsion, and flight control systems. The HIDEC F-15 adaptive engine control system flight test program has demonstrated that significant performance improvements are obtainable through the retention of stall-free engine operation throughout the aircraft flight and maneuver envelopes. The greatest thrust increase was projected for the medium-to-high altitude flight regime at subsonic speed which is of such importance to air combat. Adaptive engine control systems such as the HIDEC F-15's can be used to upgrade the performance of existing aircraft without resort to expensive reengining programs.
Xu, Yunjun; Fitz-Coy, Norman; Mason, Paul
Physical constraints of any real system can have a drastic effect on its performance. Some of the more recognized constraints are actuator and sensor saturation and bandwidth, power consumption, sampling rate (sensor and control-loop) and computation limits. These constraints can degrade system s performance, such as settling time, overshoot, rising time, and stability margins. In order to address these issues, researchers have investigated the use of robust and nonlinear controllers that can incorporate uncertainty and constraints into a controller design. For instance, uncertainties can be addressed in the synthesis model used in such algorithms as H(sub infinity), or mu. There is a significant amount of literature addressing this type of problem. However, there is one constraint that has not often been considered; that is, actuator authority resolution. In this work, thruster resolution and controller schemes to compensate for this effect are investigated for position and attitude control of a Low Earth Orbit formation flight system In many academic problems, actuators are assumed to have infinite resolution. In real system applications, such as formation flight systems, the system actuators will not have infinite resolution. High-precision formation flying requires the relative position and the relative attitude to be controlled on the order of millimeters and arc-seconds, respectively. Therefore, the minimum force resolution is a significant concern in this application. Without the sufficient actuator resolution, the system may be unable to attain the required pointing and position precision control. Furthermore, fuel may be wasted due to high-frequency chattering phenomena when attempting to provide a fine control with inadequate actuators. To address this issue, a Sliding Mode Controller is developed along with the boundary Layer Control to provide the best control resolution constraints. A Genetic algorithm is used to optimize the controller parameters
In recent years, there has been significant effort put into the design and use small, autonomous, multi-agent, aerial teams for a variety of military and commercial applications. In particular, small multi-rotor systems have been shown to be especially useful for carrying sensors as they have the ability to rapidly transit between locations as well as hover in place. This dissertation seeks to use multi-agent teams of autonomous rotorcraft to sample spatiotemporal fields in windy conditions. For many sampling objectives, there is the problem of how to accomplish the sampling objective in the presence of strong wind fields caused by external means or by other rotorcraft flying in close proximity. This dissertation develops several flight control strategies for both wind compensation, using nonlinear control techniques, and wind avoidance, using artificial potential-based control. To showcase the utility of teams of unmanned rotorcraft for spatiotemporal sampling, optimal algorithms are developed for two sampling objectives: (1) sampling continuous spatiotemporal fields modeled as Gaussian processes, and (2) optimal motion planning for coordinated target detection, which is an example of a discrete spatiotemporal field. All algorithms are tested in simulation and several are tested in a motion capture based experimental testbed.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Fullerton, C. Gordon; Stewart, James F.; Gilyard, Glenn B.; Conley, Joseph A.
Propulsion Controlled Aircraft (PCA) systems are digital electronic control systems undergoing development to provide limited maneuvering ability through variations of individual engine thrusts in multiple-engine airplanes. Provide landing capability when control surfaces inoperable. Incorporated on existing and future airplanes that include digital engine controls, digital flight controls, and digital data buses, adding no weight for additional hardware to airplane. Possible to handle total failure of hydraulic system, depending on how surfaces respond to loss of hydraulic pressure, and broken control cables or linkages. Future airplanes incorporate data from Global Positioning System for guidance to any suitable emergency runway in world.
Bosworth, John T.
Objective: Provide validation of adaptive control law concepts through full scale flight evaluation. Technical Approach: a) Engage failure mode - destabilizing or frozen surface. b) Perform formation flight and air-to-air tracking tasks. Evaluate adaptive algorithm: a) Stability metrics. b) Model following metrics. Full scale flight testing provides an ability to validate different adaptive flight control approaches. Full scale flight testing adds credence to NASA's research efforts. A sustained research effort is required to remove the road blocks and provide adaptive control as a viable design solution for increased aircraft resilience.
Bloomberg, Jacob J.; Layne, Charles S.; McDonald, P. Vernon; Peters, Brian T.; Huebner, William P.; Reschke, Millard F.; Berthoz, Alain; Glasauer, Stefan; Newman, Dava; Jackson, D. Keoki
In the microgravity environment of spaceflight, the relationship between sensory input and motor output is altered. During prolonged missions, neural adaptive processes come into play to recalibrate central nervous system function, thereby permitting new motor control strategies to emerge in the novel sensory environment of microgravity. However, the adaptive state achieved during spaceflight is inappropriate for a unit gravity environment and leads to motor control alterations upon return to Earth that include disturbances in locomotion. Indeed, gait and postural instabilities following the return to Earth have been reported in both U.S. astronauts and Russian cosmonauts even after short duration (5- to 10-day) flights. After spaceflight, astronauts may: (1) experience the sensation of turning while attempting to walk a straight path, (2) encounter sudden loss of postural stability, especially when rounding corners, (3) perceive exaggerated pitch and rolling head movements during walking, (4) experience sudden loss of orientation in unstructured visual environments, or (5) experience significant oscillopsia during locomotion.
Weiss, Jerold L.; Hsu, John Y.
The purpose of this study was to examine the complementary capabilities of several restructurable flight control system (RFCS) concepts through the integration of these technologies into a complete system. Performance issues were addressed through a re-examination of RFCS functional requirements, and through a qualitative analysis of the design issues that, if properly addressed during integration, will lead to the highest possible degree of fault-tolerant performance. Software developed under previous phases of this contract and under NAS1-18004 was modified and integrated into a complete RFCS subroutine for NASA's B-737 simulation. The integration of these modules involved the development of methods for dealing with the mismatch between the outputs of the failure detection module and the input requirements of the automatic control system redesign module. The performance of this demonstration system was examined through extensive simulation trials.
Iwaniuk, Andrew N; Wylie, Douglas R W
Hummingbirds possess an array of morphological and physiological specializations that allow them hover such that they maintain a stable position in space for extended periods. Among birds, this sustained hovering is unique to hummingbirds, but possible neural specializations underlying this behavior have not been investigated. The optokinetic response (OKR) is one of several behaviors that facilitates stabilization. In birds, the OKR is generated by the nucleus of the basal optic root (nBOR) and pretectal nucleus lentiformis mesencephali (LM). Because stabilization during hovering is dependent on the OKR, we predicted that nBOR and LM would be significantly enlarged in hummingbirds. We examined the relative size of nBOR, LM, and other visual nuclei of 37 species of birds from 13 orders, including nine hummingbird species. Also included were three species that hover for short periods of time (transient hoverers; a kingfisher, a kestrel, and a nectarivorous songbird). Our results demonstrate that, relative to brain volume, LM is significantly hypertrophied in hummingbirds compared with other birds. In the transient hoverers, there is a moderate enlargement of the LM, but not to the extent found in the hummingbirds. The same degree of hypertrophy is not, however, present in nBOR or the other visual nuclei measured: nucleus geniculatus lateralis, pars ventralis, and optic tectum. This selective hypertrophy of LM and not other visual nuclei suggests that the direction-selective optokinetic neurons in LM are critical for sustained hovering flight because of their prominent role in the OKR and gaze stabilization.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Fullerton, C. Gordon; Maine, Trindel A.
If normal aircraft flight controls are lost, emergency flight control may be attempted using only engines thrust. Collective thrust is used to control flightpath, and differential thrust is used to control bank angle. Flight test and simulation results on many airplanes have shown that pilot manipulation of throttles is usually adequate to maintain up-and-away flight, but is most often not capable of providing safe landings. There are techniques that will improve control and increase the chances of a survivable landing. This paper reviews the principles of throttles-only control (TOC), a history of accidents or incidents in which some or all flight controls were lost, manual TOC results for a wide range of airplanes from simulation and flight, and suggested techniques for flying with throttles only and making a survivable landing.
Brown, Nelson A.
This video presentation reviews the F-15 Intelligent Flight Control System and contains clips of flight tests and aircraft performance in the areas of target tracking, takeoff and differential stabilators. Video of the APG milestone flight 1g formation is included.
Warrick, Douglas R; Tobalske, Bret W; Powers, Donald R
Despite profound musculoskeletal differences, hummingbirds (Trochilidae) are widely thought to employ aerodynamic mechanisms similar to those used by insects. The kinematic symmetry of the hummingbird upstroke and downstroke has led to the assumption that these halves of the wingbeat cycle contribute equally to weight support during hovering, as exhibited by insects of similar size. This assumption has been applied, either explicitly or implicitly, in widely used aerodynamic models and in a variety of empirical tests. Here we provide measurements of the wake of hovering rufous hummingbirds (Selasphorus rufus) obtained with digital particle image velocimetry that show force asymmetry: hummingbirds produce 75% of their weight support during the downstroke and only 25% during the upstroke. Some of this asymmetry is probably due to inversion of their cambered wings during upstroke. The wake of hummingbird wings also reveals evidence of leading-edge vortices created during the downstroke, indicating that they may operate at Reynolds numbers sufficiently low to exploit a key mechanism typical of insect hovering. Hummingbird hovering approaches that of insects, yet remains distinct because of effects resulting from an inherently dissimilar-avian-body plan.
Lim, Kyong B.; Markley, F. Landis; Whorton, Mark S.
Several unique issues related to mated flight control have been broadly identified. These issues include redundancies in subsystems, controllability, command and control authority distribution, information flow across elements, and changes and variability in system characteristics due to variable mated configurations during operations. Architectural options for mated flight control are discussed in the context of evolving space systems.
Kempel, Robert W.; Earls, Michael R.
Two highly maneuverable aircraft technology (HiMAT) remotely piloted vehicles were flown a total of 26 flights. These subscale vehicles were of advanced aerodynamic configuration with advanced technology concepts such as composite and metallic structures, digital integrated propulsion control, and ground (primary) and airborne (backup) relaxed static stability, digital fly-by-wire control systems. Extensive systems development, checkout, and flight qualification were required to conduct the flight test program. The design maneuver goal was to achieve a sustained 8-g turn at Mach 0.9 at an altitude of 25,000 feet. This goal was achieved, along with the acquisition of high-quality flight data at subsonic and supersonic Mach numbers. Control systems were modified in a variety of ways using the flight-determined aerodynamic characteristics. The HiMAT program was successfully completed with approximately 11 hours of total flight time.
Wells, Edward A.; Urnes, James M., Sr.
This report describes the design, development and flight testing of the Propulsion Controlled Aircraft (PCA) flight control system performed at McDonnell Douglas Aerospace (MDA), St. Louis, Missouri and at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Facility, Edwards Air Force Base, California. This research and development program was conducted by MDA and directed by NASA through the Dryden Flight Research Facility for the period beginning January 1991 and ending December 1993. A propulsion steering backup to the aircraft conventional flight control system has been developed and flight demonstrated on a NASA F-15 test aircraft. The Propulsion Controlled Aircraft (PCA) flight system utilizes collective and differential thrust changes to steer an aircraft that experiences partial or complete failure of the hydraulically actuated control surfaces. The PCA flight control research has shown that propulsion steering is a viable backup flight control mode and can assist the pilot in safe landing recovery of a fighter aircraft that has damage to or loss of the flight control surfaces. NASA, USAF and Navy evaluation test pilots stated that the F-15 PCA design provided the control necessary to land the aircraft. Moreover, the feasibility study showed that PCA technology can be directly applied to transport aircraft and provide a major improvement in the survivability of passengers and crew of controls damaged aircraft.
Institute for Scientific Research, Inc. (ISR) is pleased to submit this closeout report for the Research Cooperative Agreement NCC4-00128 of accomplishments for the Intelligent Flight Control System (IFCS) Project. It has been a pleasure working with NASA and NASA partners as we strive to meet the goals of this research initiative. ISR was engaged in this Research Cooperative Agreement beginning March 3, 2001 and ending March 31, 2003. During this time, a great deal has been accomplished and plans have been solidified for the continued success of this program. Our primary areas of involvement include the following: 1) ARTS II Master Test Plan; 2) ARTS II Hardware Design and Development; 3) ARTS II Software Design and Development; 4) IFCS PID/BLNN/OLNN Development; 5) Performed Preliminary and Formal Testing; 6) Documentation and Reporting.
Hartmann, G. L.; Harvey, C. A.; Stein, G.; Carlson, D. N.; Hendrick, R. C.
Three candidate digital adaptive control laws were designed for NASA's F-8C digital flyby wire aircraft. Each design used the same control laws but adjusted the gains with a different adaptative algorithm. The three adaptive concepts were: high-gain limit cycle, Liapunov-stable model tracking, and maximum likelihood estimation. Sensors were restricted to conventional inertial instruments (rate gyros and accelerometers) without use of air-data measurements. Performance, growth potential, and computer requirements were used as criteria for selecting the most promising of these candidates for further refinement. The maximum likelihood concept was selected primarily because it offers the greatest potential for identifying several aircraft parameters and hence for improved control performance in future aircraft application. In terms of identification and gain adjustment accuracy, the MLE design is slightly superior to the other two, but this has no significant effects on the control performance achievable with the F-8C aircraft. The maximum likelihood design is recommended for flight test, and several refinements to that design are proposed.
Wilbur, Matthew L.; Yeager, William T., Jr.; Wilkie, W. Keats; Cesnik, Carlos E. S.; Shin, Sangloon
Helicopter rotor individual blade control promises to provide a mechanism for increased rotor performance and reduced rotorcraft vibrations and noise. Active material methods, such as piezoelectrically actuated trailing-edge flaps and strain-induced rotor blade twisting, provide a means of accomplishing individual blade control without the need for hydraulic power in the rotating system. Recent studies have indicated that controlled strain induced blade twisting can be attained using piezoelectric active fiber composite technology. In order to validate these findings experimentally, a cooperative effort between NASA Langley Research Center, the Army Research Laboratory, and the MIT Active Materials and Structures Laboratory has been developed. As a result of this collaboration an aeroelastically-scaled active-twist model rotor blade has been designed and fabricated for testing in the heavy gas environment of the Langley Transonic Dynamics Tunnel (TDT). The results of hover tests of the active-twist prototype blade are presented in this paper. Comparisons with applicable analytical predictions of active-twist frequency response in hovering flight are also presented.
Williams-Hayes, Peggy S.
The NASA F-15 Intelligent Flight Control System project team has developed a series of flight control concepts designed to demonstrate the benefits of a neural network-based adaptive controller. The objective of the team was to develop and flight-test control systems that use neural network technology, to optimize the performance of the aircraft under nominal conditions, and to stabilize the aircraft under failure conditions. Failure conditions include locked or failed control surfaces as well as unforeseen damage that might occur to the aircraft in flight. The Intelligent Flight Control System team is currently in the process of implementing a second generation control scheme, collectively known as Generation 2 or Gen 2, for flight testing on the NASA F-15 aircraft. This report describes the Gen 2 system as implemented by the team for flight test evaluation. Simulation results are shown which describe the experiment to be performed in flight and highlight the ways in which the Gen 2 system meets the defined objectives.
Kelly, Mark W.; Smaus, Louis H.
A l/4-scale dynamically similar model of the XFV-1 airplane has been flown in the Ames 40- by 80-foot wind tunnel, using the trailing flight-cable technique. This investigation was devoted to establishing the flight characteristics of the model in forward flight from hovering to wing stall, and in yawed flight (wing span alined with the relative wind) from hovering to the maximum speed at which controlled flight could be maintained. Landings, take-offs, and hovering characteristics in flights close to the ground were also investigated.. Since the remote control system for the model was rather complicated and provided artificial damping about the pitch, roll, and yaw axes, sufficient data from the control-system calibration tests are included in this report to specify the performance of the control system in relation to both the model flight tests and the design of an automatic control system for the full-scale airplane. The model in hovering flight appeared to be neutrally stable. The response of the model to the controls was very rapid, and it was always necessary to provide some amount of artificial damping to maintain control. The model could be landed with little difficulty by hovering approximately a foot above the floor and then cutting the power. Take-offs were more difficult to perform, primarily because the rate of change in power to the model motors was limited by the characteristics of the available power source. The model was,capable of controlled yawed flight at translational velocities up to and including 20 feet per second. The effectiveness of the controls decreased with increasing speed, however, and at 25 fps control in pitch, and probably roll, was lost completely. The model was flown in controlled forward flight from hovering up to 70 fps. During these flights the model appeared to be more difficult to control in yaw than it was in pitch or roll. The flights of the model were recorded by motion picture cameras. These motion pictures are
Engelland, Shawn A.
An evaluation of the longitudinal stability and control characteristics of a mixed-flow remote-lift (MFRL) STOVL aircraft in the powered-lift portion of the flight envelope is presented. A stabilization and command augmentation system was implemented on the MFRL aircraft to meet the requirements for satisfactory flying qualities. The pitch portion of this control system uses a state-rate feedback implicit model following controller to achieve the desired flying qualities and to suppress the effects of external variations and disturbances in the aircrafts characteristics over the low speed envelope.
Bright, Michelle M.; Simon, Donald L.
A new flight simulation facility was developed at NASA-Lewis. The purpose of this flight simulator is to allow integrated propulsion control and flight control algorithm development and evaluation in real time. As a preliminary check of the simulator facility capabilities and correct integration of its components, the control design and physics models for a short take-off and vertical landing fighter aircraft model were shown, with their associated system integration and architecture, pilot vehicle interfaces, and display symbology. The initial testing and evaluation results show that this fixed based flight simulator can provide real time feedback and display of both airframe and propulsion variables for validation of integrated flight and propulsion control systems. Additionally, through the use of this flight simulator, various control design methodologies and cockpit mechanizations can be tested and evaluated in a real time environment.
Murch, Austin M.
A flight control system architecture for the NASA AirSTAR infrastructure has been designed to address the challenges associated with safe and efficient flight testing of research control laws in adverse flight conditions. The AirSTAR flight control system provides a flexible framework that enables NASA Aviation Safety Program research objectives, and includes the ability to rapidly integrate and test research control laws, emulate component or sensor failures, inject automated control surface perturbations, and provide a baseline control law for comparison to research control laws and to increase operational efficiency. The current baseline control law uses an angle of attack command augmentation system for the pitch axis and simple stability augmentation for the roll and yaw axes.
The Johnson Space Center s (JSC) International Space Station (ISS) Space Flight Resource Management (SFRM) training program is designed to teach the team skills required to be an effective flight controller. It was adapted from the SFRM training given to Shuttle flight controllers to fit the needs of a "24 hours a day/365 days a year" flight controller. More recently, the length reduction of technical training flows for ISS flight controllers impacted the number of opportunities for fully integrated team scenario based training, where most SFRM training occurred. Thus, the ISS SFRM training program is evolving yet again, using a new approach of teaching and evaluating SFRM alongside of technical materials. Because there are very few models in other industries that have successfully tied team and technical skills together, challenges are arising. Despite this, the Mission Operations Directorate of NASA s JSC is committed to implementing this integrated training approach because of the anticipated benefits.
Ortega-Jimenez, Victor Manuel; Mittal, Rajat; Hedrick, Tyson L
Vertical vortex systems such as tornadoes dramatically affect the flight control and stability of aircraft. However, the control implications of smaller scale vertically oriented vortex systems for small fliers such as animals or micro-air vehicles are unknown. Here we examined the flapping kinematics and body dynamics of hawkmoths performing hovering flights (controls) and maintaining position in three different whirlwind intensities with transverse horizontal velocities of 0.7, 0.9 and 1.2 m s(-1), respectively, generated in a vortex chamber. The average and standard deviation of yaw and pitch were respectively increased and reduced in comparison with hovering flights. Average roll orientation was unchanged in whirlwind flights but was more variable from wingbeat to wingbeat than in hovering. Flapping frequency remained unchanged. Wingbeat amplitude was lower and the average stroke plane angle was higher. Asymmetry was found in the angle of attack between right and left wings during both downstroke and upstroke at medium and high vortex intensities. Thus, hawkmoth flight control in tornado-like vortices is achieved by a suite of asymmetric and symmetric changes to wingbeat amplitude, stroke plane angle and principally angle of attack.
Kirkpatrick, J. P.; Brennan, P. J.
The Advanced Thermal Control Flight Experiment on ATS-6 was designed to demonstrate the thermal control capability of a thermal diode (one-way) heat pipe, a phase-change material for thermal storage, and a feedback-controlled heat pipe. Flight data for the different operational modes are compared to ground test data, and the performance of the components is evaluated on an individual basis and as an integrated temperature-control system.
Iliff, Kenneth W.; Shafer, Mary F.
The Space Shuttle Orbiter has provided unique and important information on aircraft flight dynamics. This information has provided the opportunity to assess the flight-derived stability and control derivatives for maneuvering flight in the hypersonic regime. In the case of the Space Shuttle Orbiter, these derivatives are required to determine if certain configuration placards (limitations on the flight envelope) can be modified. These placards were determined on the basis of preflight predictions and the associated uncertainties. As flight-determined derivatives are obtained, the placards are reassessed, and some of them are removed or modified. Extraction of the stability and control derivatives was justified by operational considerations and not by research considerations. Using flight results to update the predicted database of the orbiter is one of the most completely documented processes for a flight vehicle. This process followed from the requirement for analysis of flight data for control system updates and for expansion of the operational flight envelope. These results show significant changes in many important stability and control derivatives from the preflight database. This paper presents some of the stability and control derivative results obtained from Space Shuttle flights. Some of the limitations of this information are also examined.
Baer-Riedhart, Jennifer L.; Landy, Robert J.
The highly integrated digital electronic control (HIDEC) program at NASA Ames Research Center, Dryden Flight Research Facility is a multiphase flight research program to quantify the benefits of promising integrated control systems. McDonnell Aircraft Company is the prime contractor, with United Technologies Pratt and Whitney Aircraft, and Lear Siegler Incorporated as major subcontractors. The NASA F-15A testbed aircraft was modified by the HIDEC program by installing a digital electronic flight control system (DEFCS) and replacing the standard F100 (Arab 3) engines with F100 engine model derivative (EMD) engines equipped with digital electronic engine controls (DEEC), and integrating the DEEC's and DEFCS. The modified aircraft provides the capability for testing many integrated control modes involving the flight controls, engine controls, and inlet controls. This paper focuses on the first two phases of the HIDEC program, which are the digital flight control system/aircraft model identification (DEFCS/AMI) phase and the adaptive engine control system (ADECS) phase.
This thesis discusses both normal aircraft flight control where the control surfaces are the primary effectors, and unconventional emergency flight control by engines only. It has long been realized that nonlinearity in aircraft dynamics is a prominent consideration in design of high-performance conventional flight control systems. The engine-only flight control problem also faces strong nonlinearity, although due to different reasons. A nonlinear predictive control method and an approximate receding-horizon control method are used for normal and engine-only flight control system designs for an F-18 aircraft. The comparison of the performance with that of linear flight controllers provides some insight into when nonlinear controllers may render a much improved performance. The concept of nonlinear flight control system design is extended to output tracking control problem. The capability of the nonlinear controller to stabilize the aircraft and accomplish output tracking control for non-minimum phase system is successfully demonstrated. Numerical simulation results of longitudinal motion based on two typical flight conditions for an F-18 aircraft is presented to illustrate some of these aspects. It is suggested in this thesis that nonlinear flight control system design, particularly the engine-only controller design and output tracking control design for non-minimum phase system by using a nonlinear method is more effective for the highly nonlinear environment. The recently developed continuous-time predictive control approach and an approximate receding-horizon control method are shown to be effective methods in the situation while the conventional linear or popular nonlinear control designs are either ineffective or inapplicable.
Southwick, Robert D.; Gallops, George W.; Kerr, Laura J.; Kielb, Robert P.; Welsh, Mark G.; DeLaat, John C.; Orme, John S.
The High Stability Engine Control (HISTEC) Program, managed and funded by the NASA Lewis Research Center, is a cooperative effort between NASA and Pratt & Whitney (P&W). The program objective is to develop and flight demonstrate an advanced high stability integrated engine control system that uses real-time, measurement-based estimation of inlet pressure distortion to enhance engine stability. Flight testing was performed using the NASA Advanced Controls Technologies for Integrated Vehicles (ACTIVE) F-15 aircraft at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. The flight test configuration, details of the research objectives, and the flight test matrix to achieve those objectives are presented. Flight test results are discussed that show the design approach can accurately estimate distortion and perform real-time control actions for engine accommodation.
Baer-Ruedhart, J. L.
The capabilities and performance of various fault detection and accommodation (FDA) schemes in existing and projected engine control systems were investigated. Flight tests of the digital electronic engine control (DEEC) in an F-15 aircraft show discrepancies between flight results and predictions based on simulation and altitude testing. The FDA methodology and logic in the DEEC system, and the results of the flight failures which occurred to date are described.
Moes, Tim; Smith, Mark; Morelli, Gene
A flight test on an F-15 airplane was performed to evaluate the utility of prescribed simultaneous independent surface excitations (PreSISE) for real-time estimation of flight-control parameters, including stability and control derivatives. The ability to extract these derivatives in nearly real time is needed to support flight demonstration of intelligent flight-control system (IFCS) concepts under development at NASA, in academia, and in industry. Traditionally, flight maneuvers have been designed and executed to obtain estimates of stability and control derivatives by use of a post-flight analysis technique. For an IFCS, it is required to be able to modify control laws in real time for an aircraft that has been damaged in flight (because of combat, weather, or a system failure). The flight test included PreSISE maneuvers, during which all desired control surfaces are excited simultaneously, but at different frequencies, resulting in aircraft motions about all coordinate axes. The objectives of the test were to obtain data for post-flight analysis and to perform the analysis to determine: 1) The accuracy of derivatives estimated by use of PreSISE, 2) The required durations of PreSISE inputs, and 3) The minimum required magnitudes of PreSISE inputs. The PreSISE inputs in the flight test consisted of stacked sine-wave excitations at various frequencies, including symmetric and differential excitations of canard and stabilator control surfaces and excitations of aileron and rudder control surfaces of a highly modified F-15 airplane. Small, medium, and large excitations were tested in 15-second maneuvers at subsonic, transonic, and supersonic speeds. Typical excitations are shown in Figure 1. Flight-test data were analyzed by use of pEst, which is an industry-standard output-error technique developed by Dryden Flight Research Center. Data were also analyzed by use of Fourier-transform regression (FTR), which was developed for onboard, real-time estimation of the
Analytical aerodynamic models are derived from a high alpha 6 DOF wind tunnel model. One detail model requires some interpolation between nonlinear functions of alpha. One analytical model requires no interpolation and as such is a completely continuous model. Flight path optimization is conducted on the basic maneuvers: half-loop, 90 degree pitch-up, and level turn. The optimal control analysis uses the derived analytical model in the equations of motion and is based on both moment and force equations. The maximum principle solution for the half-loop is poststall trajectory performing the half-loop in 13.6 seconds. The agility induced by thrust vectoring capability provided a minimum effect on reducing the maneuver time. By means of thrust vectoring control the 90 degrees pitch-up maneuver can be executed in a small place over a short time interval. The agility capability of thrust vectoring is quite beneficial for pitch-up maneuvers. The level turn results are based currently on only outer layer solutions of singular perturbation. Poststall solutions provide high turn rates but generate higher losses of energy than that of classical sustained solutions.
Brody, Adam R.
Studies of spacecraft rendezvous and docking operations began in the Gemini program in preparation for the two dockings required to send a crew to the moon and return them safely to Earth. However, the goal of getting to the moon before the end of the decade was of greater concern than mission optimization so little or no time or money was expended in researching human factors implications of operational aspects such as braking gates or control modes. Also, with sixteen operational dockings over a six year period (12 Apollo, 3 Skylab, and 1 ASTP) in the United States space program, economies of scale were not yet available to justify extensive research into decreasing the time or fuel necessary for a successful docking. With an operational space station era approaching in which orbital maneuvering vehicle (OMV), orbital transfer vehicle (OTV), shuttle orbiter, and other traffic will play a major role, a concerted research effort now could help avoid many potential problems later in addition to increasing safety, fuel economy, and productivity. A knowledge of manual control capabilities associated with piloted spaceflight could help save a life if the operational flight envelope can be safely enlarged to include faster dockings that currently envisioned. For example, current and future research is designed to acquire the appropriate information.
Niessen, F. R.; Kelly, J. R.; Garren, J. F., Jr.; Yenni, K. R.; Person, L. H., Jr.
A flight investigation was conducted with a variable stability helicopter to determine the effects of variations in controls and displays on helicopter instrument approach capabilities. The baseline instrument approach task was a decelerating approach to a hover along a 6 deg glide slope. Pilot evaluations were obtained for both the constant speed part of the task and the deceleration and hover part of the task. The attitude stability augmentation system (SAS) was strongly preferred over the rate SAS because the aircraft had a divergent pitch response. From a display variation standpoint, it was not possible to decelerate to a hover in a consistent manner, regardless of the control system employed, with situation information only. In particular, the deceleration and hover part of the task was unacceptable without flight director command information.
The Cassini Attitude and Articulation Control Subsystem (AACS) Flight Software (FSW) has achieved its intended design goals by successfully guiding and controlling the Cassini-Huygens planetary mission to Saturn and its moons. This paper describes an overview of AACS FSW details from early design, development, implementation, and test to its fruition of operating and maintaining spacecraft control over an eleven year prime mission. Starting from phases of FSW development, topics expand to FSW development methodology, achievements utilizing in-flight autonomy, and summarize lessons learned during flight operations which can be useful to FSW in current and future spacecraft missions.
34. PRIMARY FLIGHT CONTROL STATION - AFT LOOKING FORWARD ON PORT SIDE SHOWING FLIGHT DECK LIGHTING BOARD, ARRESTING GEAR CONTROL CONSOLE AND FRESNEL LENS OPTICAL LANDING SYSTEM. - U.S.S. HORNET, Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Sinclair Inlet, Bremerton, Kitsap County, WA
Smaili, H.; Breeman, J.; Lombaerts, T.; Stroosma, O.
A large transport aircraft simulation benchmark (REconfigurable COntrol for Vehicle Emergency Return - RECOVER) has been developed within the GARTEUR (Group for Aeronautical Research and Technology in Europe) Flight Mechanics Action Group 16 (FM-AG(16)) on Fault Tolerant Control (2004 2008) for the integrated evaluation of fault detection and identification (FDI) and reconfigurable flight control strategies. The benchmark includes a suitable set of assessment criteria and failure cases, based on reconstructed accident scenarios, to assess the potential of new adaptive control strategies to improve aircraft survivability. The application of reconstruction and modeling techniques, based on accident flight data, has resulted in high-fidelity nonlinear aircraft and fault models to evaluate new Fault Tolerant Flight Control (FTFC) concepts and their real-time performance to accommodate in-flight failures.
Hess, R. A.; Siwakosit, W.; Chung, J.
A technique for the design of flight control systems that can accommodate a set of actuator failures is presented. As employed herein, an actuator failure is defined as any change in the parametric model of the actuator which can adversely affect actuator performance. The technique is based upon the formulation of a fixed feedback topology which ensures at least stability in the presence of the failures in the set. The fixed compensation is obtained from a loop-shaping design procedure similar to Quantitative Feedback Theory and provides stability robustness in the presence of uncertainty in the vehicle dynamics caused by the failures. System adaptation to improve performance after actuator failure(s) occurs through a static gain adjustment in the compensator followed by modification of the system prefilter. Precise identification of the vehicle dynamics is unnecessary. Application to a single-input, single-output design using a simplified model of the longitudinal dynamics of the NASA High Angle of Attack Research Vehicle is discussed. Non-real time simulations of the system including a model of the pilot demonstrate the effectiveness and limitations of the approach.
Goodrich, Kenneth H.; Schutte, Paul C.; Williams, Ralph A.
The rapidly advancing capabilities of autonomous aircraft suggest a future where many of the responsibilities of today s pilot transition to the vehicle, transforming the pilot s job into something akin to driving a car or simply being a passenger. Notionally, this transition will reduce the specialized skills, training, and attention required of the human user while improving safety and performance. However, our experience with highly automated aircraft highlights many challenges to this transition including: lack of automation resilience; adverse human-automation interaction under stress; and the difficulty of developing certification standards and methods of compliance for complex systems performing critical functions traditionally performed by the pilot (e.g., sense and avoid vs. see and avoid). Recognizing these opportunities and realities, researchers at NASA Langley are developing a haptic-multimodal flight control (HFC) system concept that can serve as a bridge between today s state of the art aircraft that are highly automated but have little autonomy and can only be operated safely by highly trained experts (i.e., pilots) to a future in which non-experts (e.g., drivers) can safely and reliably use autonomous aircraft to perform a variety of missions. This paper reviews the motivation and theoretical basis of the HFC system, describes its current state of development, and presents results from two pilot-in-the-loop simulation studies. These preliminary studies suggest the HFC reshapes human-automation interaction in a way well-suited to revolutionary ease-of-use.
Washburn, D. A.; Rumbaugh, D. M.; Richardson, W. K.; Gulledge, J. P.; Shlyk, G. G.; Vasilieva, O. N.
A total of 25 young monkeys (Macaca mulatta) were trained with the Psychomotor Test System, a package of software tasks and computer hardware developed for spaceflight research with nonhuman primates. Two flight monkeys and two control monkeys were selected from this pool and performed a psychomotor task before and after the Bion 11 flight or a ground-control period. Monkeys from both groups showed significant disruption in performance after the 14-day flight or simulation (plus one anesthetized day of biopsies and other tests), and this disruption appeared to be magnified for the flight animal.
Motter, Mark A.; High, James W.
A successful flight test and training campaign of the NASA Flying Controls Testbed was conducted at Naval Outlying Field, Webster Field, MD during 2008. Both the prop and jet-powered versions of the subscale, remotely piloted testbeds were used to test representative experimental flight controllers. These testbeds were developed by the Subsonic Fixed Wing Project s emphasis on new flight test techniques. The Subsonic Fixed Wing Project is under the Fundamental Aeronautics Program of NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD). The purpose of these testbeds is to quickly and inexpensively evaluate advanced concepts and experimental flight controls, with applications to adaptive control, system identification, novel control effectors, correlation of subscale flight tests with wind tunnel results, and autonomous operations. Flight tests and operator training were conducted during four separate series of tests during April, May, June and August 2008. Experimental controllers were engaged and disengaged during fully autonomous flight in the designated test area. Flaps and landing gear were deployed by commands from the ground control station as unanticipated disturbances. The flight tests were performed NASA personnel with support from the Maritime Unmanned Development and Operations (MUDO) team of the Naval Air Warfare Center, Aircraft Division
Wacker, Roger; Munday, Steve; Merkle, Scott
This paper summarizes the application of a nonlinear dynamic inversion (DI) flight control system (FCS) to an autonomous flight test vehicle in NASA's X-38 Project, a predecessor to the International Space Station (ISS) Crew Return Vehicle (CRV). Honeywell's Multi-Application Control-H (MACH) is a parameterized FCS design architecture including both model-based DI rate-compensation and classical P+I command-tracking. MACH was adopted by X-38 in order to shorten the design cycle time for different vehicle shapes and flight envelopes and evolving aerodynamic databases. Specific design issues and analysis results are presented for the application of MACH to the 3rd free flight (FF3) of X-38 Vehicle 132 (V132). This B-52 drop test, occurring on March 30, 2000, represents the first flight test of MACH and one of the first few known applications of DI in the primary FCS of an autonomous flight test vehicle.
From NASAâs International Space Station Mission Control Center ODIN Flight Controller Amy Brezinski participates in a Digital Learning Network (DLN) event with students at Coppell Middle School i...
Insects can smoothly control their height while flying by adjusting lift to maintain a set-point in the ventral optic flow. The efficacy of this simple flight-control mechanism has been demonstrated using a robot helicopter.
From NASAâs International Space Station Mission Control Center Todd Quasny, ODIN Flight Controller, participates in a Digital Learning Network (DLN) event with students at Northeast Nodaway Eleme...
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Gilyard, Glenn B.; Myers, Lawrence P.
Integration of propulsion and flight control systems and their optimization offers significant performance improvements. Research programs were conducted which have developed new propulsion and flight control integration concepts, implemented designs on high-performance airplanes, demonstrated these designs in flight, and measured the performance improvements. These programs, first on the YF-12 airplane, and later on the F-15, demonstrated increased thrust, reduced fuel consumption, increased engine life, and improved airplane performance; with improvements in the 5 to 10 percent range achieved with integration and with no changes to hardware. The design, software and hardware developments, and testing requirements were shown to be practical.
Gregory, Irene M.; Xargay, Enric; Cao, Chengyu; Hovakimyan, Naira
This paper presents new results of a flight test of the L1 adaptive control architecture designed to directly compensate for significant uncertain cross-coupling in nonlinear systems. The flight test was conducted on the subscale turbine powered Generic Transport Model that is an integral part of the Airborne Subscale Transport Aircraft Research system at the NASA Langley Research Center. The results presented include control law evaluation for piloted offset landing tasks as well as results in support of nonlinear aerodynamic modeling and real-time dynamic modeling of the departure-prone edges of the flight envelope.
Motter, Mark A.; Logan, Michael J.; French, Michael L.; Guerreiro, Nelson M.
The NASA Flying Controls Testbed (FLiC) is a relatively small and inexpensive unmanned aerial vehicle developed specifically to test highly experimental flight control approaches. The most recent version of the FLiC is configured with 16 independent aileron segments, supports the implementation of C-coded experimental controllers, and is capable of fully autonomous flight from takeoff roll to landing, including flight test maneuvers. The test vehicle is basically a modified Army target drone, AN/FQM-117B, developed as part of a collaboration between the Aviation Applied Technology Directorate (AATD) at Fort Eustis, Virginia and NASA Langley Research Center. Several vehicles have been constructed and collectively have flown over 600 successful test flights, including a fully autonomous demonstration at the Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) UAV Demo 2005. Simulations based on wind tunnel data are being used to further develop advanced controllers for implementation and flight test.
Pahle, Joe W.
This viewgraph presentation describes the adaptive and intelligent control methods used for aircraft survival. The contents include: 1) Motivation for Adaptive Control; 2) Integrated Resilient Aircraft Control Project; 3) Full-scale Flight Assets in Use for IRAC; 4) NASA NF-15B Tail Number 837; 5) Gen II Direct Adaptive Control Architecture; 6) Limited Authority System; and 7) 837 Flight Experiments. A simulated destabilization failure analysis along with experience and lessons learned are also presented.
Smith, Charles C., Jr.
An experimental investigation has been made to determine the dynamic stability and control characteristics of a 1/6-scale flying model of the Hawker P lIP7 jet vertical-take-off-and-landing (VTOL) airplane in hovering and transition flight. The model was powered by a counter-rotating ducted fan driven by compressed-air jets at the tips of the fan blades. In hovering flight the model was controlled by jet-reaction controls which consisted of yaw and pitch jets at the extremities of the fuselage and a roll jet on each wing tip. In forward flight the model was controlled by conventional ailerons and rudder and an all-movable horizontal tail. In hovering flight the model could be flown smoothly and easily, but the roll control was considered too weak for rapid maneuvering or hovering in gusty air. Transitions from hovering to normal forward flight and back to hovering could be made smoothly and consistently and with only moderate changes in longitudinal trim. The model had a static longitudinal instability or pitch-up tendency throughout the transition range, but the rate of divergence in the pitch-up was moderate and the model could be controlled easily provided the angle of attack was not allowed to become too high. In both the transition and normal forward flight conditions the lateral motions of the model were difficult to control at high angles of attack, apparently because of low directional stability at small angles of sideslip. The longitudinal stability of the model in normal forward flight was generally satisfactory, but there was a decided pitch-up tendency for the flap-down condition at high angles of attack. In the VTOL landing approach condition, with the jets directed straight down or slightly forward, the nose-down pitch trim required was greater than in the transitions from hovering to forward flight, but the longitudinal instability was about the same. Take-offs and landings in still air could be made smoothly although there was a slight unfavorable
Kelly, James R.; Person, Lee H., Jr.; Bruce, Kevin R.
This paper describes some of the unique features of an integrated throttle-elevator control law known as the Total Energy Control System (TECS) which has been flight tested on NASA Langley's Transport Systems Research Vehicle. The TECS concept is designed around total energy principles. It utilizes a full-time autothrottle to control the total energy of the aircraft and the elevator to distribute the energy between speed and flight path objectives. Time histories of selected parameters generated from flight data are used to illustrate the pilot-like control strategy of the system and the priority logic employed when throttle limiting is encountered.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Gilyard, Glenn B.; Gelhausen, Paul A.
Integration of propulsion and flight control systems will provide significant performance improvements for supersonic transport airplanes. Increased engine thrust and reduced fuel consumption can be obtained by controlling engine stall margin as a function of flight and engine operating conditions. Improved inlet pressure recovery and decreased inlet drag can result from inlet control system integration. Using propulsion system forces and moments to augment the flight control system and airplane stability can reduce the flight control surface and tail size, weight, and drag. Special control modes may also be desirable for minimizing community noise and for emergency procedures. The overall impact of integrated controls on the takeoff gross weight for a generic high speed civil transport is presented.
A viewgraph presentation on the lessons learned and flight results from the F15 Intelligent Flight Control System (IFCS) project is shown. The topics include: 1) F-15 IFCS Project Goals; 2) Motivation; 3) IFCS Approach; 4) NASA F-15 #837 Aircraft Description; 5) Flight Envelope; 6) Limited Authority System; 7) NN Floating Limiter; 8) Flight Experiment; 9) Adaptation Goals; 10) Handling Qualities Performance Metric; 11) Project Phases; 12) Indirect Adaptive Control Architecture; 13) Indirect Adaptive Experience and Lessons Learned; 14) Gen II Direct Adaptive Control Architecture; 15) Current Status; 16) Effect of Canard Multiplier; 17) Simulated Canard Failure Stab Open Loop; 18) Canard Multiplier Effect Closed Loop Freq. Resp.; 19) Simulated Canard Failure Stab Open Loop with Adaptation; 20) Canard Multiplier Effect Closed Loop with Adaptation; 21) Gen 2 NN Wts from Simulation; 22) Direct Adaptive Experience and Lessons Learned; and 23) Conclusions
Schmidt, D. K.; Innocenti, M.
An optimal control-law synthesis approach is presented that involves simultaneous solution for two cooperating controllers operating in parallel. One controller's structure includes stochastic state estimation and linear feedback of the state estimates, while the other controller involves direct linear feedback of selected system output measurements. This structure is shown to be optimal under the constraint of linear feedback of system outputs in one controller. Furthermore, it is appropriate for flight control synthesis where the full-state optimal stochastic controller can be adjusted to be representative of an optimal control model of the human pilot in a stochastic regulation task. The method is experimentally verified in the case of the selection of pitch-damper gain for optimum pitch tracking, where optimum implies the best subjective pilot rating in the task. Finally, results from application of the method to synthesize a controller for a multivariable fighter aircraft are presented, and implications of the results of this method regarding the optimal plant dynamics for tracking are discussed.
Davidson, J.; Lallman, F.; McMinn, J. D.; Martin, J.; Pahle, J.; Stephenson, M.; Selmon, J.; Bose, D.
The goal of the Hyper-X program is to demonstrate and validate technology for design and performance predictions of hypersonic aircraft with an airframe-integrated supersonic-combustion ramjet propulsion system. Accomplishing this goal requires flight demonstration of a hydrogen-fueled scramjet powered hypersonic aircraft. A key enabling technology for this flight demonstration is flight controls. Closed-loop flight control is required to enable a successful stage separation, to achieve and maintain the design condition during the engine test, and to provide a controlled descent. Before the contract award, NASA developed preliminary flight control laws for the Hyper-X to evaluate the feasibility of the proposed scramjet test sequence and descent trajectory. After the contract award, a Boeing/NASA partnership worked to develop the current control laws. This paper presents a description of the Hyper-X Research Vehicle control law architectures with performance and robustness analyses. Assessments of simulated flight trajectories and stability margin analyses demonstrate that these control laws meet the flight test requirements.
Bevacqoa, Tim; Adams, Tony; Zhu. J. Jim; Rao, P. Prabhakara
Flight control of small crew return vehicles during atmospheric reentry will be an important technology in any human space flight mission undertaken in the future. The control system presented in this paper is applicable to small crew return vehicles in which reaction control system (RCS) thrusters are the only actuators available for attitude control. The control system consists of two modules: (i) the attitude controller using the trajectory linearization control (TLC) technique, and (ii) the reaction control system (RCS) control allocation module using a dynamic table-lookup technique. This paper describes the design and implementation of the TLC attitude control and the dynamic table-lookup RCS control allocation for nonimal flight along with design verification test results.
Murch, Austin M.; Cox, David E.; Cunningham, Kevin
The NASA AirSTAR system has been designed to address the challenges associated with safe and efficient subscale flight testing of research control laws in adverse flight conditions. In this paper, software elements of this system are described, with an emphasis on components which allow for rapid prototyping and deployment of aircraft control laws. Through model-based design and automatic coding a common code-base is used for desktop analysis, piloted simulation and real-time flight control. The flight control system provides the ability to rapidly integrate and test multiple research control laws and to emulate component or sensor failures. Integrated integrity monitoring systems provide aircraft structural load protection, isolate the system from control algorithm failures, and monitor the health of telemetry streams. Finally, issues associated with software configuration management and code modularity are briefly discussed.
Sato, Hirotaka; Maharbiz, Michel M
The continuing miniaturization of digital circuits and the development of low power radio systems coupled with continuing studies into the neurophysiology and dynamics of insect flight are enabling a new class of implantable interfaces capable of controlling insects in free flight for extended periods. We provide context for these developments, review the state-of-the-art and discuss future directions in this field.
Ness, W. G.; Davis, R. M.; Benson, J. W.; Smith, M. K.; Eldredge, D.
The integrated application of reliability, failure effects and system simulator methods in establishing the airworthiness of a flight critical digital flight control system (DFCS) is demonstrated. The emphasis was on the mutual reinforcement of the methods in demonstrating the system safety.
This study investigates a hybrid adaptive flight control method as a design possibility for a flight control system that can enable an effective adaptation strategy to deal with off-nominal flight conditions. The hybrid adaptive control blends both direct and indirect adaptive control in a model inversion flight control architecture. The blending of both direct and indirect adaptive control provides a much more flexible and effective adaptive flight control architecture than that with either direct or indirect adaptive control alone. The indirect adaptive control is used to update the model inversion controller by an on-line parameter estimation of uncertain plant dynamics based on two methods. The first parameter estimation method is an indirect adaptive law based on the Lyapunov theory, and the second method is a recursive least-squares indirect adaptive law. The model inversion controller is therefore made to adapt to changes in the plant dynamics due to uncertainty. As a result, the modeling error is reduced that directly leads to a decrease in the tracking error. In conjunction with the indirect adaptive control that updates the model inversion controller, a direct adaptive control is implemented as an augmented command to further reduce any residual tracking error that is not entirely eliminated by the indirect adaptive control.
Marshall, Kara L.; Chadha, Mohit; deSouza, Laura A.; Sterbing-D’Angelo, Susanne J.; Moss, Cynthia F.; Lumpkin, Ellen A.
Summary Flight maneuvers require rapid sensory integration to generate adaptive motor output. Bats achieve remarkable agility with modified forelimbs that serve as airfoils while retaining capacity for object manipulation. Wing sensory inputs provide behaviorally relevant information to guide flight; however, components of wing sensory-motor circuits have not been analyzed. Here, we elucidate the organization of wing innervation in an insectivore, the big brown bat, Eptesicus fuscus. We demonstrate that wing sensory innervation differs from other vertebrate forelimbs, revealing a peripheral basis for the atypical topographic organization reported for bat somatosensory nuclei. Furthermore, the wing is innervated by an unusual complement of sensory neurons poised to report airflow and touch. Finally, we report that cortical neurons encode tactile and airflow inputs with sparse activity patterns. Together, our findings identify neural substrates of somatosensation in the bat wing and imply that evolutionary pressures giving rise to mammalian flight led to unusual sensorimotor projections. PMID:25937277
On Wednesday, June 8, the lander prototype managed by the Robotic Lunar Lander Development Project at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., hovered autonomously for 15 seconds at...
Rothhaar, Paul M.; Moerder, Daniel D.; Lim, Kyong B.
Angular bias momentum offers significant stability augmentation for hovering flight vehicles. The reliance of the vehicle on thrust vectoring for agility and disturbance rejection is greatly reduced with significant levels of stored angular momentum in the system. A methodical procedure for bias momentum sizing has been developed in previous studies. This current study provides groundwork for experimental validation of that method using an experimental vehicle called the Dual-Spin Test Device, a thrust-levitated platform. Using measured data the vehicle's thrust vectoring units are modeled and a gust environment is designed and characterized. Control design is discussed. Preliminary experimental results of the vehicle constrained to three rotational degrees of freedom are compared to simulation for a case containing no bias momentum to validate the simulation. A simulation of a bias momentum dominant case is presented.
Bosworth, John T.
This viewgraph presentation reviews the use of Intelligent Flight Control System (IFCS) for the F-15. The goals of the project are: (1) Demonstrate Revolutionary Control Approaches that can Efficiently Optimize Aircraft Performance in both Normal and Failure Conditions (2) Advance Neural Network-Based Flight Control Technology for New Aerospace Systems Designs. The motivation for the development are to reduce the chance and skill required for survival.
The major operational characteristics of the 747 Primary Flight Control Systems (PFCS) are described. Results of reliability analysis for separate control functions are presented. The analysis makes use of a NASA computer program which calculates reliability of redundant systems. Costs for maintaining the 747 PFCS in airline service are assessed. The reliabilities and cost will provide a baseline for use in trade studies of future flight control system design.
A proof-of-concept hand controller for controlling lateral and longitudinal cyclic pitch, collective pitch and tail rotor thrust was developed. The purpose of the work was to address problems of operator fatigue, poor proprioceptive feedback and cross-coupling of axes associated with many four-axis controller designs. The present design is an attempt to reduce cross-coupling to a level that can be controlled with breakout force, rather than to eliminate it entirely. The cascaded design placed lateral and longitudinal cyclic in their normal configuration. Tail rotor thrust was placed atop the cyclic controller. A left/right twisting motion with the wrist made the control input. The axis of rotation was canted outboard (clockwise) to minimize cross-coupling with the cyclic pitch axis. The collective control was a twist grip, like a motorcycle throttle. Measurement of the amount of cross-coupling involved in pure, single-axis inputs showed cross coupling under 10 percent of full deflection for all axes. This small amount of cross-coupling could be further reduced with better damping and force gradient control. Fatigue was not found to be a problem, and proprioceptive feedback was adequate for all flight tasks executed.
Brand, Timothy J.; Engel, Albert G.
The Aeroassist Flight Experiment scheduled for the early 1990's will demonstrate the use of a low L/D lifting brake using aerodynamic drag to return a spacecraft from a high energy to a low earth orbit. The experimental vehicle will be deployed and retrieved by the Shuttle Orbiter. This paper reviews some of the challenges, problems, and solutions encountered to date during guidance system development, with emphasis on technology advances which will benefit an operational Orbit Transfer Vehicle (OTV). Key factors to be discussed include guidance alternatives, aerodynamic modeling, navigation requirements, the impact of atmospheric uncertainties, and flight profile alternatives considered during initial planning.
Mcruer, D. T.; Johnston, D. E.
This volume contains a delineation of fundamental and mechanization-specific flight control characteristics and problems gleaned from many sources and spanning a period of over two decades. It is organized to present and discuss first some fundamental, generic problems of closed-loop flight control systems involving numerator characteristics (quadratic dipoles, non-minimum phase roots, and intentionally introduced zeros). Next the principal elements of the largely mechanical primary flight control system are reviewed with particular emphasis on the influence of nonlinearities. The characteristics and problems of augmentation (damping, stability, and feel) system mechanizations are then dealt with. The particular idiosyncracies of automatic control actuation and command augmentation schemes are stressed, because they constitute the major interfaces with the primary flight control system and an often highly variable vehicle response.
Rastgaar Aagaah, M. A.; Ahmadian, M.; Southward, S. C.
Orthogonal eigenstructure control is used for designing a control law that decouples the dynamic modes of a flying vehicle. Orthogonal eigenstructure control is a feedback control method for linear time invariant multi-input multi-output systems. This method has been recently developed by authors. The advantage of this control method over eigenstructure assignment methods is that there is no need for defining the closed-loop poles or shaping the closed-loop eigenvectors. This method eliminates the error due to the difference between achievable and desirable eigenvectors, by finding vectors orthogonal to the open-loop eigenvectors within the achievable eigenvectors set and replacing the open-loop eigenvectors with them. This method is also applicable to the systems with non-collocated actuators and sensors. Application of this method for designing a flight control law for the lateral directional dynamics of an F-18 HARV is presented, and compared to the results of an eigenstructure assignment method. In this case study, the actuators and sensors are not collocated. It is shown that the application of the orthogonal eigenstructure control results in a more significant dynamic modes decoupling in comparison to the application of the eigenstructure assignment technique.
Schmidt, David K.; Schierman, John D.
This report documents the activities and research results obtained under a grant (NAG3-998) from the NASA Lewis Research Center. The focus of the research was the investigation of dynamic interactions between airframe and engines for advanced ASTOVL aircraft configurations, and the analysis of the implications of these interactions on the stability and performance of the airframe and engine control systems. In addition, the need for integrated flight and propulsion control for such aircraft was addressed. The major contribution of this research was the exposition of the fact that airframe and engine interactions could be present, and their effects could include loss of stability and performance of the control systems. Also, the significance of two directional, as opposed to one-directional, coupling was identified and explained. A multi variable stability and performance analysis methodology was developed, and applied to several candidate aircraft configurations. Also exposed was the fact that with interactions present along with some integrated control approaches, the engine command/limiting logic (which represents an important non-linear component of the engine control system) can impact closed-loop airframe/engine system stability. Finally, a brief investigation of control-law synthesis techniques appropriate for the class of systems was pursued, and it was determined that multi variable techniques, included model-following formulations of LQG and/or H (infinity) methods showed promise. However, for practical reasons, decentralized control architectures are preferred, which is an architecture incompatible with these synthesis methods.
Wehrend, W. R., Jr.; Meyer, G.
Flight control systems capable of handling the complex operational requirements of the STOL and VTOL aircraft designs as well as designs using active control concepts are considered. Emphasis is placed on the total automatic flight control system (TACOS) (TAFCOS). Flight test results which verified the performance of the system concept are presented.
Cooke, D. R.
A unique approach for obtaining vehicle aerodynamic characteristics during entry has been developed for the Space Shuttle. This is due to the high cost of Shuttle testing, the need to open constraints for operational flights, and the fact that all flight regimes are flown starting with the first flight. Because of uncertainties associated with predicted aerodynamic coefficients, nine flight conditions have been identified at which control problems could occur. A detailed test plan has been developed for testing at these conditions and is presented. Due to limited testing, precise computer initiated maneuvers are implemented. These maneuvers are designed to optimize the vehicle motion for determining aerodynamic coefficients. Special sensors and atmospheric measurements are required to provide stability and control flight data during an entire entry. The techniques employed in data reduction are proven programs developed and used at NASA/DFRC.
Stewart, James F.; Shuck, Thomas L.
Flight tests conducted with the self-repairing flight control system (SRFCS) installed on the NASA F-15 highly integrated digital electronic control aircraft are described. The development leading to the current SRFCS configuration is highlighted. Key objectives of the program are outlined: (1) to flight-evaluate a control reconfiguration strategy with three types of control surface failure; (2) to evaluate a cockpit display that will inform the pilot of the maneuvering capacity of the damage aircraft; and (3) to flight-evaluate the onboard expert system maintenance diagnostics process using representative faults set to occur only under maneuvering conditions. Preliminary flight results addressing the operation of the overall system, as well as the individual technologies, are included.
Stewart, James F.; Shuck, Thomas L.
Flight tests conducted with the self-repairing flight control system (SRFCS) installed on the NASA F-15 highly integrated digital electronic control aircraft are described. The development leading to the current SRFCS configuration is highlighted. Key objectives of the program are outlined: (1) to flight-evaluate a control reconfiguration strategy with three types of control surface failure; (2) to evaluate a cockpit display that will inform the pilot of the maneuvering capacity of the damaged aircraft; and (3) to flight-evaluate the onboard expert system maintenance diagnostics process using representative faults set to occur only under maneuvering conditions. Preliminary flight results addressing the operation of the overall system, as well as the individual technologies, are included.
...; Electronic Flight Control System Mode Annunciation AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION... design features include an electronic flight control system. The applicable airworthiness regulations do... system. This system provides an electronic interface between the pilot's flight controls and ] the...
Hedenström, Anders; Johansson, L Christoffer
Bats evolved the ability of powered flight more than 50 million years ago. The modern bat is an efficient flyer and recent research on bat flight has revealed many intriguing facts. By using particle image velocimetry to visualize wake vortices, both the magnitude and time-history of aerodynamic forces can be estimated. At most speeds the downstroke generates both lift and thrust, whereas the function of the upstroke changes with forward flight speed. At hovering and slow speed bats use a leading edge vortex to enhance the lift beyond that allowed by steady aerodynamics and an inverted wing during the upstroke to further aid weight support. The bat wing and its skeleton exhibit many features and control mechanisms that are presumed to improve flight performance. Whereas bats appear aerodynamically less efficient than birds when it comes to cruising flight, they have the edge over birds when it comes to manoeuvring. There is a direct relationship between kinematics and the aerodynamic performance, but there is still a lack of knowledge about how (and if) the bat controls the movements and shape (planform and camber) of the wing. Considering the relatively few bat species whose aerodynamic tracks have been characterized, there is scope for new discoveries and a need to study species representing more extreme positions in the bat morphospace.
Jan, Shau Shiun; Lin, Yu Hsiang
This paper focuses on the design of an integrated navigation and guidance system for unmanned helicopters. The integrated navigation system comprises two systems: the Flight Path Planning System (FPPS) and the Flight Control System (FCS). The FPPS finds the shortest flight path by the A-Star (A*) algorithm in an adaptive manner for different flight conditions, and the FPPS can add a forbidden zone to stop the unmanned helicopter from crossing over into dangerous areas. In this paper, the FPPS computation time is reduced by the multi-resolution scheme, and the flight path quality is improved by the path smoothing methods. Meanwhile, the FCS includes the fuzzy inference systems (FISs) based on the fuzzy logic. By using expert knowledge and experience to train the FIS, the controller can operate the unmanned helicopter without dynamic models. The integrated system of the FPPS and the FCS is aimed at providing navigation and guidance to the mission destination and it is implemented by coupling the flight simulation software, X-Plane, and the computing software, MATLAB. Simulations are performed and shown in real time three-dimensional animations. Finally, the integrated system is demonstrated to work successfully in controlling the unmanned helicopter to operate in various terrains of a digital elevation model (DEM).
Hess, R. A.; Wells, S. R.; Bacon, Barton (Technical Monitor)
Sliding mode control is applied to the design of a flight control system capable of operating with limited bandwidth actuators and in the presence of significant damage to the airframe and/or control effector actuators. Although inherently robust, sliding mode control algorithms have been hampered by their sensitivity to the effects of parasitic unmodeled dynamics, such as those associated with actuators and structural modes. It is known that asymptotic observers can alleviate this sensitivity while still allowing the system to exhibit significant robustness. This approach is demonstrated. The selection of the sliding manifold as well as the interpretation of the linear design that results after introduction of a boundary layer is accomplished in the frequency domain. The design technique is exercised on a pitch-axis controller for a simple short-period model of the High Angle of Attack F-18 vehicle via computer simulation. Stability and performance is compared to that of a system incorporating a controller designed by classical loop-shaping techniques.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Maine, Trindel A.; Fullerton, C. Gordon; Webb, Lannie Dean
A propulsion-controlled aircraft (PCA) system for emergency flight control of aircraft with no flight controls was developed and flight tested on an F-15 aircraft at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. The airplane has been flown in a throttles-only manual mode and with an augmented system called PCA in which pilot thumbwheel commands and aircraft feedback parameters were used to drive the throttles. Results from a 36-flight evaluation showed that the PCA system can be used to safety land an airplane that has suffered a major flight control system failure. The PCA system was used to recover from a severe upset condition, descend, and land. Guest pilots have also evaluated the PCA system. This paper describes the principles of throttles-only flight control; a history of loss-of-control accidents; a description of the F-15 aircraft; the PCA system operation, simulation, and flight testing; and the pilot comments.
Hecht, H.; Hecht, M.
Software error data of major recent Digital Flight Control Systems Development Programs. The report summarizes the data, compare these data with similar data from previous surveys and identifies trends and disciplines to improve software reliability.
White, Molly E.; Hyatt, Andrew J.
The Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) Reaction Control System (RCS) is critical to guide the vehicle along the desired trajectory during re--entry. However, this system has a significant impact on the convective heating environment to the spacecraft. Heating augmentation from the jet interaction (JI) drives thermal protection system (TPS) material selection and thickness requirements for the spacecraft. This paper describes the heating environment from the RCS on the afterbody of the Orion MPCV during Orion's first flight test, Exploration Flight Test 1 (EFT-1). These jet plumes interact with the wake of the crew capsule and cause an increase in the convective heating environment. Not only is there widespread influence from the jet banks, there may also be very localized effects. The firing history during EFT-1 will be summarized to assess which jet bank interaction was measured during flight. Heating augmentation factors derived from the reconstructed flight data will be presented. Furthermore, flight instrumentation across the afterbody provides the highest spatial resolution of the region of influence of the individual jet banks of any spacecraft yet flown. This distribution of heating augmentation across the afterbody will be derived from the flight data. Additionally, trends with possible correlating parameters will be investigated to assist future designs and ground testing programs. Finally, the challenges of measuring JI, applying this data to future flights and lessons learned will be discussed.
Endeavour, Orbiter Vehicle (OV) 105, forward flight deck controls are documented during manufacture, assembly, and checkout at North American Rockwell facilities Building 150, Palmdale, California. Overall view looks from aft flight deck forward showing displays and controls with panel F7 CRT screens lit and window shades in place on W2, W3, W4, W5. OV-105 is undergoing final touches prior to rollout and a scheduled flight for STS-49. View was included as part of Rockwell International (RI) Submittal No. 40 (STS 87-0342-40) with alternate number A901207 R-16/NAS9-17800.
Azam, Mohammad; Pattipati, Krishna; Allanach, Jeffrey; Poll, Scott; Patterson-Hine, Ann
In this paper we consider the problem of test design for real-time fault detection and isolation (FDI) in the flight control system of fixed-wing aircraft. We focus on the faults that are manifested in the control surface elements (e.g., aileron, elevator, rudder and stabilizer) of an aircraft. For demonstration purposes, we restrict our focus on the faults belonging to nine basic fault classes. The diagnostic tests are performed on the features extracted from fifty monitored system parameters. The proposed tests are able to uniquely isolate each of the faults at almost all severity levels. A neural network-based flight control simulator, FLTZ(Registered TradeMark), is used for the simulation of various faults in fixed-wing aircraft flight control systems for the purpose of FDI.
Research Office P.O. Box 12211 Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2211 Insect flight, flight control, REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE 11. SPONSOR...challenge is prominent in small flying insects since their small moment of inertia renders them susceptible even to gentle air currents [1–4]. More- over...time scale of a few wing-beats [7–18]. It is, therefore, intriguing how insects overcome such control challenges and man- age to fly with impressive
Franklin, J. A.; Smith, D. W.; Watson, D. M.; Warner, D. N., Jr.; Innis, R. C.; Hardy, G. H.
A flight research program was conducted to assess the improvements, in longitudinal path control during a STOL approach and landing, that can be achieved with manual and automatic control system concepts and cockpit displays with various degrees of complexity. NASA-Ames powered-lift Augmentor Wing Research Aircraft was used in the research program. Satisfactory flying qualities were demonstrated for selected stabilization and command augmentation systems and flight director combinations. The ability of the pilot to perform precise landings at low touchdown sink rates with a gentle flare maneuver was also achieved. The path-control improvement is considered to be applicable to other powered-lift aircraft configurations.
The F-16XL #1 (NASA 849) takes off for the first flight of the Digital Flight Control System (DFCS) on December 16, 1997. Like most first flight, the DFCS required months of preparations. During July 1997, crews worked on the engine, cockpit, canopy, seat, and instrumentation. By late August, the aircraft began combined systems tests and a flight readiness review. Although the Air Force Safety Review Board (AFSRB)- a group that provided double checks on all flight operations - approved the program in late November 1997, a problem with the aircraft flight computer delayed the functional check flight until mid-December.
Orlowski, Christopher T.
The flight dynamics, stability, and control of a model flapping wing micro air vehicle are analyzed with a focus on the inertial and mass effects of the wings on the position and Orientation of the body. A multi-body, flight dynamics model is derived from first principles. The multi-body model predicts significant differences in the position and orientation of the flapping wing micro air vehicle, when compared to a flight dynamics model based on the standard aircraft, or six degree of freedom, equations of motion. The strongly coupled, multi-body equations of motion are transformed into first order form using an approximate inverse and appropriate assumptions. Local (naive) averaging of the first order system does not produce an accurate result and a new approximation technique named 'quarter-cycle' averaging is proposed. The technique is effective in reducing the error by at least an order of magnitude for three reference flight conditions. A stability analysis of the local averaged equations of motions, in the vicinity of a hover condition, produces a modal structure consist with the most common vertical takeoff or landing structure and independent stability analyses of the linearized flight dynamics of insect models. The inclusion of the wing effects produces a non-negligible change in the linear stability of a hawkmoth-sized model. The hovering solution is shown, under proper control, to produce a limit cycle. The control input to achieve a limit cycle is different if the flight dynamics model includes the wing effects or does not include the wing effects. Improper control input application will not produce the desired limit cycle effects. A scaling analysis is used to analyze the relative importance of the mass of the wings, based on the quarter-cycle approximation. The conclusion of the scaling analysis is that the linear momentum effects of the wings are always important in terms of the inertial position of the flapping wing micro air vehicle. Above a
Andrews, D. M.; Mahmood, A.; Mccluskey, E. J.
An experiment in using assertions to dynamically test fault tolerant flight software is described. The experiment showed that 87% of typical errors introduced into the program would be detected by assertions. Detailed analysis of the test data showed that the number of assertions needed to detect those errors could be reduced to a minimal set. The analysis also revealed that the most effective assertions tested program parameters that provided greater indirect (collateral) testing of other parameters.
Andrews, D. M.; Mahmood, A.; Mccluskey, E. J.
Assertions are used to dynamically test fault tolerant flight software. The experiment showed that 87% of typical errors introduced into the program would be detected by assertions. Detailed analysis of the test data showed that the number of assertions needed to detect those errors could be reduced to a minimal set. The analysis also revealed that the most effective assertions tested program parameters that provided greater indirect (collateral) testing of other parameters.
Schutte, Paul C.; Willshire, Kelli F.
It is widely accepted that human error is a major contributing factor in aircraft accidents. There has been a significant amount of research in why these errors occurred, and many reports state that the design of flight deck can actually dispose humans to err. This research has led to the call for changes in design according to human factors and human-centered principles. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Langley Research Center has initiated an effort to design a human-centered flight deck from a clean slate (i.e., without constraints of existing designs.) The effort will be based on recent research in human-centered design philosophy and mission management categories. This design will match the human's model of the mission and function of the aircraft to reduce unnatural or non-intuitive interfaces. The product of this effort will be a flight deck design description, including training and procedures, and a cross reference or paper trail back to design hypotheses, and an evaluation of the design. The present paper will discuss the philosophy, process, and status of this design effort.
Rao, Jinjun; Luo, Jun; Gong, Zhenbang; Jiang, Zhen; Xie, Shaorong
Robotic blimps present an enormous potential for applications in low-speed and low-altitude exploration, surveillance, and monitoring, as well as telecommunication relay platforms. To make our lighter-than-air platform a robotic blimp with significant levels of autonomy, the decoupled longitude and latitude dynamic model are developed, and the hardware and software of the flight control system are designed. The onboard hardware consists of blimp state observer, actuators, MCU, etc. The software functions include signals processing, data filtering and fault tolerance, ground command execution, etc. Based on decoupled dynamic model, the control system architecture is presented, and navigation strategy for waypoint flight problem is discussed. The paper gives results of a flight experiment using the designed flight control system, and the results manifests that the system is applicable and initial machine intelligence of robotic blimp is achieved.
Bauer, Jeffrey E.; Clarke, Robert; Burken, John J.
The NASA Dryden Flight Research Center has flight tested two X-29A aircraft at low and high angles of attack. The high-angle-of-attack tests evaluate the feasibility of integrated X-29A technologies. More specific objectives focus on evaluating the high-angle-of-attack flying qualities, defining multiaxis controllability limits, and determining the maximum pitch-pointing capability. A pilot-selectable gain system allows examination of tradeoffs in airplane stability and maneuverability. Basic fighter maneuvers provide qualitative evaluation. Bank angle captures permit qualitative data analysis. This paper discusses the design goals and approach for high-angle-of-attack control laws and provides results from the envelope expansion and handling qualities testing at intermediate angles of attack. Comparisons of the flight test results to the predictions are made where appropriate. The pitch rate command structure of the longitudinal control system is shown to be a valid design for high-angle-of-attack control laws. Flight test results show that wing rock amplitude was overpredicted and aileron and rudder effectiveness were underpredicted. Flight tests show the X-29A airplane to be a good aircraft up to 40 deg angle of attack.
Mettler, Bernard; Tuschler, Mark B.; Kanade, Takeo
This paper presents a process of design and flight-test validation and flying qualities evaluation of a flight control system for a rotorcraft-based unmanned aerial vehicle (RUAV). The keystone of this process is an accurate flight-dynamic model of the aircraft, derived by using system identification modeling. The model captures the most relevant dynamic features of our unmanned rotorcraft, and explicitly accounts for the presence of a stabilizer bar. Using the identified model we were able to determine the performance margins of our original control system and identify limiting factors. The performance limitations were addressed and the attitude control system was 0ptimize.d for different three performance levels: slow, medium, fast. The optimized control laws will be implemented in our RUAV. We will first determine the validity of our control design approach by flight test validating our optimized controllers. Subsequently, we will fly a series of maneuvers with the three optimized controllers to determine the level of flying qualities that can be attained. The outcome enable us to draw important conclusions on the flying qualities requirements for small-scale RUAVs.
Song, Yong D.; Gupta, Kajal (Technical Monitor)
The research is concerned with developing a new approach to enhancing fault tolerance of flight control systems. The original motivation for fault-tolerant control comes from the need for safe operation of control elements (e.g. actuators) in the event of hardware failures in high reliability systems. One such example is modem space vehicle subjected to actuator/sensor impairments. A major task in flight control is to revise the control policy to balance impairment detectability and to achieve sufficient robustness. This involves careful selection of types and parameters of the controllers and the impairment detecting filters used. It also involves a decision, upon the identification of some failures, on whether and how a control reconfiguration should take place in order to maintain a certain system performance level. In this project new flight dynamic model under uncertain flight conditions is considered, in which the effects of both ramp and jump faults are reflected. Stabilization algorithms based on neural network and adaptive method are derived. The control algorithms are shown to be effective in dealing with uncertain dynamics due to external disturbances and unpredictable faults. The overall strategy is easy to set up and the computation involved is much less as compared with other strategies. Computer simulation software is developed. A serious of simulation studies have been conducted with varying flight conditions.
stability augmentation system evaluated did not provide a clearcut improvement in flight performance and workload across all flight parameters. (Author)... augmentation system (Ministab) with integrated rate attitude and heading retention was installed on the USAARL JUH-1H helicopter. Participating personnel for...examines a method of aiding the MEDEVAC pilot in performing a hover maneuver while perhaps reducing workload. A modular, four-axes stability
Merrill, Walter; Garg, Sanjay
The research vision of the NASA Lewis Research Center in the area of integrated flight and propulsion controls technologies is described. In particular the Integrated Method for Propulsion and Airframe Controls developed at the Lewis Research Center is described including its application to an advanced aircraft configuration. Additionally, future research directions in integrated controls are described.
Kennedy, Quinn; Taylor, Joy L.; Reade, Gordon; Yesavage, Jerome A.
Introduction Age (due to declines in cognitive abilities necessary for navigation) and level of aviation expertise are two factors that may affect aviation performance and decision making under adverse weather conditions. We examined the roles of age, expertise, and their relationship on aviation decision making and flight control performance during a flight simulator task. Methods Seventy-two IFR-rated general aviators, aged 19–79 yr, made multiple approach, holding pattern entry, and landing decisions while navigating under Instrument Flight Rules weather conditions. Over three trials in which the fog level varied, subjects decided whether or not to land the aircraft. They also completed two holding pattern entries. Subjects’ flight control during approaches and holding patterns was measured. Results Older pilots (41+ yr) were more likely than younger pilots to land when visibility was inadequate (older pilots’ mean false alarm rate: 0.44 vs 0.25). They also showed less precise flight control for components of the approach, performing 0.16 SD below mean approach scores. Expertise attenuated an age-related decline in flight control during holding patterns: older IFR/CFI performed 0.73 SD below mean score; younger IFR/CFI, younger CFII/ATP, older CFII/ATP: 0.32, 0.26, 0.03 SD above mean score. Additionally, pilots with faster processing speed (by median split) had a higher mean landing decision false alarm rate (0.42 vs 0.28), yet performed 0.14 SD above the mean approach control score. Conclusions Results have implications regarding specialized training for older pilots and for understanding processes involved in older adults’ real world decision making and performance. PMID:20464816
Badrya, Camli; Baeder, James D.
Insect flight kinematics involves complex interplay between aerodynamics structural response and insect body control. Features such as cross-coupling kinematics, high flapping frequencies and geometrical small-scales, result in experiments being challenging to perform. In this study OVERTURNS, an in-house 3D compressible Navier-Stokes solver is utilized to simulate the simplified kinematics of an insect wing in hover and forward flight. The flapping wings simulate the full cycle of wing motion, i.e., the upstroke, downstroke, pronation and supination.The numerical results show good agreement against experimental data in predicting the lift and drag over the flapping cycle. The flow structures around the flapping wing are found to be highly unsteady and vortical. Aside from the tip vortex on the wings, the formation of a prominent leading edge vortex (LEV) during the up/down stroke portions, and the shedding of a trailing edge vortex (TEV) at end of each stroke were observed. Differences in the insect dynamics and the flow features of the LEV are observed between hover and forward flight. In hover the up and downstroke cycles are symmetric, whereas in forward flight, these up and downstroke are asymmetric and LEV strength varies as a function of the kinematics and advance ratio. This work was supported by the Micro Autonomous Systems and Technology (MAST) CTA at the Univer- sity of Maryland.
The objectives of the integrated digital flight control system (DFCS) is to provide rotational and translational control of the space shuttle orbiter in all phases of flight: from launch ascent through orbit to entry and touchdown, and during powered horizontal flights. The program provides a versatile control system structure while maintaining uniform communications with other programs, sensors, and control effectors by using an executive routine/functional subroutine format. The program reads all external variables at a single point, copies them into its dedicated storage, and then calls the required subroutines in the proper sequence. As a result, the flight control program is largely independent of other programs in the computer complex and is equally insensitive to characteristics of the processor configuration. The integrated structure is described of the control system and the DFCS executive routine which embodies that structure. The input and output, including jet selection are included. Specific estimation and control algorithm are shown for the various mission phases: cruise (including horizontal powered flight), entry, on-orbit, and boost. Attitude maneuver routines that interface with the DFCS are included.
Allen, C. B.
An upwind Euler solver is presented, and applied to multibladed lifting hovering rotor flow. These flows can be simulated as a steady case, in a blade-fixed rotating co-ordinate system. However, forward flight simulation will always require an unsteady solution. Hence, as a stepping stone in the development of a forward flight simulation tool, both explicit steady and implicit unsteady simulations of the same hovering case are presented. Convergence of the two approaches is examined and compared, in terms of residual history, cost, and solution evolution, as a means of both validating the unsteady formulation and considering implications for forward flight simulation. Consideration of the solution evolution and wake capturing shows that for hovering rotor cases, the unsteady and steady solutions are the same, but the unsteady solution is more expensive in terms of CPU time. It is also shown that for hover, the fewer real time-steps taken per revolution the more efficient the implicit scheme is. However, this is a characteristic of the case, which results in smooth solution variation between time steps. It is also demonstrated that for rotary flow simulation, the global residual is not a useful quantity to assess convergence. The residual reaches a very low (constant in the implicit case) value while the solution is still evolving.
Barfield, A. F.
A modified YF-16 aircraft was used to flight demonstrate decoupled modes under the USAF Fighter Control Configured Vehicle (CCV) Program. The direct force capabilities were used to implement seven manually controlled unconventional modes on the aircraft, allowing flat turns, decoupled normal acceleration control, independent longitudinal and lateral translations, uncoupled elevation and azimuth aiming, and blended direct lift. This paper describes the design, development, and flight testing of these control modes. The need for task-tailored mode authorities, gain-scheduling and selected closed-loop design is discussed.
Geissler, W. H.
The results of a feasibility study of orbiter flight control experiments performed are summarized. Feasibility studies were performed on a group of 14 experiments selected from a candidate list of 35 submitted to the study contractor by the flight control community. Concepts and requirements were developed for the 14 selected experiments and they were ranked on a basis of technical value, feasibility, and cost. It was concluded that all the selected experiments can be considered as potential candidates for the Orbiter Experiment program, which is being formulated for the Orbiter Flight Tests and subsequent operational flights, regardless of the relative ranking established during the study. None of the selected experiments has significant safety implications and the cost of most was estimated to be less than $200K.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Maine, Trindel A.; Fullerton, C. Gordon; Wells, Edward A.
A multi-engine aircraft, with some or all of the flight control system inoperative, may use engine thrust for control. NASA Dryden has conducted a study of the capability and techniques for this emergency flight control method for the F-15 airplane. With an augmented control system, engine thrust, along with appropriate feedback parameters, is used to control flightpath and bank angle. Extensive simulation studies were followed by flight tests. The principles of throttles only control, the F-15 airplane, the augmented system, and the flight results including actual landings with throttles-only control are discussed.
Taylor, Lawrence W., Jr.; Day, Richard E.
A simulator study and flight tests were performed to determine the levels of static stability and damping necessary to enable a pilot to control the longitudinal and lateral-directional dynamics of a vehicle for short periods of time. Although a basic set of aerodynamic characteristics was used, the study was conducted so that the results would be applicable to a wide range of flight conditions and configurations. Novel piloting techniques were found which enabled the pilot to control the vehicle at conditions that were otherwise uncontrollable. The influence of several critical factors in altering the controllability limits was also investigated. Several human transfer functions were used which gave fairly good representations of the controllability limits determined experimentally for the short-period longitudinal, directional, and lateral modes. A transfer function with approximately the same gain and phase angle as the pilot at the controlling frequencies along the controllability limits was also derived.
Jang, Jiann-Woei; Yang, Lee; Fritz, Mathew; Nguyen, Louis H.; Johnson, Wyatt R.; Hart, Jeremy J.
The Morpheus Lander is a vertical takeoff and landing test bed vehicle developed to demonstrate the system performance of the Guidance, Navigation and Control (GN&C) system capability for the integrated autonomous landing and hazard avoidance system hardware and software. The Morpheus flight control system design must be robust to various mission profiles. This paper presents a design methodology for employing numerical optimization to develop the Morpheus flight control system. The design objectives include attitude tracking accuracy and robust stability with respect to rigid body dynamics and propellant slosh. Under the assumption that the Morpheus time-varying dynamics and control system can be frozen over a short period of time, the flight controllers are designed to stabilize all selected frozen-time control systems in the presence of parametric uncertainty. Both control gains in the inner attitude control loop and guidance gains in the outer position control loop are designed to maximize the vehicle performance while ensuring robustness. The flight control system designs provided herein have been demonstrated to provide stable control systems in both Draper Ares Stability Analysis Tool (ASAT) and the NASA/JSC Trick-based Morpheus time domain simulation.
On the Space Shuttle Discovery's aft flight deck, astronaut Susan J. Helms handles controls for the Remote Manipulator System (RMS). The robot arm operated by Helms, who remained inside the cabin, was used to support task such as the release and retrieval of the free-flying Shuttle Pointed Autonomous Research Tool for Astronomy (SPARTAN) - 201, a six-hour space walk and the Shuttle Plume Impingement Flight Experiment (SPIFEX).
Sato, Hirotaka; Maharbiz, Michel M.
The continuing miniaturization of digital circuits and the development of low power radio systems coupled with continuing studies into the neurophysiology and dynamics of insect flight are enabling a new class of implantable interfaces capable of controlling insects in free flight for extended periods. We provide context for these developments, review the state-of-the-art and discuss future directions in this field. PMID:21629761
ntamber) Flight Trajectory C.ntrol Control Law Development Profile Synthesis Tactical Situation Display Four -Dimensional Navigation Vertical Situation...realtime trajectory generation was developed as a vital part of the total solution. This trajectory, generator operates in four dimensions, X, Y...FLIGHT PROFILE SYNTHESIS 5-1 5.1 Four -Dimensional Trajectory Generator 5-1 5.1.1 Waypoint Parameters 5-1 5.1.2 Threat Avoidance 5-2 5.1.3 Horizontal Path
Closed Loop Control Using a PI Controller . 2-10 2.5.2 Closed Loop Control Using a Linear Mixer and a PI Controller .................... 2-12 2.6...Page 7.2 Performance Evaluation using Modified PI Controller and Linear Mixer Gains ................... 7-5 7.2.1 Velocity Change Performance... PI Controller ................ 2-11 2.7. Formation Control System utilizing a Linear Mixer and PI Controller . 2-13 3.1. Example of Lead Aircraft’s
Carlin, C. M.; Hastings, W. J.
The Propulsion Flight Control Integration Technology (PROFIT) program is designed to develop a flying testbed dedicated to controls research. The control software for PROFIT is defined. Maximum flexibility, needed for long term use of the flight facility, is achieved through a modular design. The Host program, processes inputs from the telemetry uplink, aircraft central computer, cockpit computer control and plant sensors to form an input data base for use by the control algorithms. The control algorithms, programmed as application modules, process the input data to generate an output data base. The Host program formats the data for output to the telemetry downlink, the cockpit computer control, and the control effectors. Two applications modules are defined - the bill of materials F-100 engine control and the bill of materials F-15 inlet control.
This thesis addresses three control problems related to flight safety. The first problem relates to the scope of improvement in performance of conventional flight control laws. In particular, aircraft longitudinal axis control based on the Total Energy Control System (TECS) is studied. The research draws attention to a potentially sluggish and undesirable aircraft response when the engine dynamics is slow (typically the case). The proposed design method uses a theoretically well-developed modern design method based on Hinfinity optimization to improve the aircraft dynamic behavior in spite of slow engine characteristics. At the same time, the proposed design method achieves other desirable performance goals such as insensitivity to sensor noise and wind gust rejection: all addressed in one unified framework. The second problem is based on a system level analysis of control structure hierarchy for aircraft flight control. The objective of the analysis problem is to translate outer-loop stability and performance specifications into a comprehensive inner-loop metric. The prime motivation is to make the flight control design process more systematic and the system-integration reliable and independent of design methodology. The analysis problem is posed within the robust control analysis framework. Structured singular value techniques and free controller parameterization ideas are used to impose a hierarchical structure for flight control architecture. The third problem involves development and demonstration of a new reconfiguration strategy in the flight control architecture that has the potential of improving flight safety while keeping cost and complexity low. This research proposes a fault tolerant feature based on active robust reconfiguration. The fault tolerant control problem is formulated in the Linear Parameter Varying (LPV) design framework. A prime advantage of this approach is that the synthesis results in a single nonlinear controller (as opposed to a bank
Bomben, Craig R.; Smolka, James W.; Bosworth, John T.; Silliams-Hayes, Peggy S.; Burken, John J.; Larson, Richard R.; Buschbacher, Mark J.; Maliska, Heather A.
The Intelligent Flight Control System (IFCS) project at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards AFB, CA, has been investigating the use of neural network based adaptive control on a unique NF-15B test aircraft. The IFCS neural network is a software processor that stores measured aircraft response information to dynamically alter flight control gains. In 2006, the neural network was engaged and allowed to learn in real time to dynamically alter the aircraft handling qualities characteristics in the presence of actual aerodynamic failure conditions injected into the aircraft through the flight control system. The use of neural network and similar adaptive technologies in the design of highly fault and damage tolerant flight control systems shows promise in making future aircraft far more survivable than current technology allows. This paper will present the results of the IFCS flight test program conducted at the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center in 2006, with emphasis on challenges encountered and lessons learned.
Cotting, M. Christopher; Burken, John J.
A reconfigurable control law for the full X-33 flight envelope has been designed to accommodate a failed control surface and redistribute the control effort among the remaining working surfaces to retain satisfactory stability and performance. An offline nonlinear constrained optimization approach has been used for the X-33 reconfigurable control design method. Using a nonlinear, six-degree-of-freedom simulation, three example failures are evaluated: ascent with a left body flap jammed at maximum deflection; entry with a right inboard elevon jammed at maximum deflection; and landing with a left rudder jammed at maximum deflection. Failure detection and identification are accomplished in the actuator controller. Failure response comparisons between the nominal control mixer and the reconfigurable control subsystem (mixer) show the benefits of reconfiguration. Single aerosurface jamming failures are considered. The cases evaluated are representative of the study conducted to prove the adequate and safe performance of the reconfigurable control mixer throughout the full flight envelope. The X-33 flight control system incorporates reconfigurable flight control in the existing baseline system.
Hong, Steven W.; Curtiss, H. C., Jr.
A combination of analytic modeling and system identification methods have been used to develop an improved dynamic model describing the response of articulated rotor helicopters to control inputs. A high-order linearized model of coupled rotor/body dynamics including flap and lag degrees of freedom and inflow dynamics with literal coefficients is compared to flight test data from single rotor helicopters in the near hover trim condition. The identification problem was formulated using the maximum likelihood function in the time domain. The dynamic model with literal coefficients was used to generate the model states, and the model was parametrized in terms of physical constants of the aircraft rather than the stability derivatives resulting in a significant reduction in the number of quantities to be identified. The likelihood function was optimized using the genetic algorithm approach. This method proved highly effective in producing an estimated model from flight test data which included coupled fuselage/rotor dynamics. Using this approach it has been shown that blade flexibility is a significant contributing factor to the discrepancies between theory and experiment shown in previous studies. Addition of flexible modes, properly incorporating the constraint due to the lag dampers, results in excellent agreement between flight test and theory, especially in the high frequency range.
Hong, Steven W.; Curtiss, H. C., Jr.
A combination of analytic modeling and system identification methods have been used to develop an improved dynamic model describing the response of articulated rotor helicopters to control inputs. A high-order linearized model of coupled rotor/body dynamics including flap and lag degrees of freedom and inflow dynamics with literal coefficients is compared to flight test data from single rotor helicopters in the near hover trim condition. The identification problem was formulated using the maximum likelihood function in the time domain. The dynamic model with literal coefficients was used to generate the model states, and the model was parametrized in terms of physical constants of the aircraft rather than the stability derivatives, resulting in a significant reduction in the number of quantities to be identified. The likelihood function was optimized using the genetic algorithm approach. This method proved highly effective in producing an estimated model from flight test data which included coupled fuselage/rotor dynamics. Using this approach it has been shown that blade flexibility is a significant contributing factor to the discrepancies between theory and experiment shown in previous studies. Addition of flexible modes, properly incorporating the constraint due to the lag dampers, results in excellent agreement between flight test and theory, especially in the high frequency range.
Lefevre, Brian D.
For the purpose of maintaining dynamic stability and improving guidance command tracking performance under off-nominal flight conditions, a hybrid adaptive control scheme is selected and modified for use as a launch vehicle flight controller. This architecture merges a model reference adaptive approach, which utilizes both direct and indirect adaptive elements, with a classical dynamic inversion controller. This structure is chosen for a number of reasons: the properties of the reference model can be easily adjusted to tune the desired handling qualities of the spacecraft, the indirect adaptive element (which consists of an online parameter identification algorithm) continually refines the estimates of the evolving characteristic parameters utilized in the dynamic inversion, and the direct adaptive element (which consists of a neural network) augments the linear feedback signal to compensate for any nonlinearities in the vehicle dynamics. The combination of these elements enables the control system to retain the nonlinear capabilities of an adaptive network while relying heavily on the linear portion of the feedback signal to dictate the dynamic response under most operating conditions. To begin the analysis, the ascent dynamics of a launch vehicle with a single 1st stage rocket motor (typical of the Ares 1 spacecraft) are characterized. The dynamics are then linearized with assumptions that are appropriate for a launch vehicle, so that the resulting equations may be inverted by the flight controller in order to compute the control signals necessary to generate the desired response from the vehicle. Next, the development of the hybrid adaptive launch vehicle ascent flight control architecture is discussed in detail. Alterations of the generic hybrid adaptive control architecture include the incorporation of a command conversion operation which transforms guidance input from quaternion form (as provided by NASA) to the body-fixed angular rate commands needed by the
Hartmann, G. L.; Hauge, J. A.; Hendrick, R. C.
A set of digital flight control laws were designed for the NASA F-8C digital fly-by-wire aircraft. The control laws emphasize Control Configured Vehicle (CCV) benefits. Specific pitch axis objectives were improved handling qualities, angle-of-attack limiting, gust alleviation, drag reduction in steady and maneuvering flight, and a capability to fly with reduced static stability. The lateral-directional design objectives were improved Dutch roll damping and turn coordination over a wide range in angle-of-attack. An overall program objective was to explore the use of modern control design methodilogy to achieve these specific CCV benefits. Tests for verifying system integrity, an experimental design for handling qualities evaluation, and recommended flight test investigations were specified.
Handelman, David A.
Artificial intelligence techniques were used along with statistical hpyothesis testing and modern control theory, to help the pilot cope with the issues of information, knowledge, and capability in the event of a failure. An intelligent flight control system is being developed which utilizes knowledge of cause and effect relationships between all aircraft components. It will screen the information available to the pilots, supplement his knowledge, and most importantly, utilize the remaining flight capability of the aircraft following a failure. The list of failure types the control system will accommodate includes sensor failures, actuator failures, and structural failures.
Broussard, J. R.; Berry, P. W.; Stengel, R. F.
Methods for and results from the design and evaluation of a digital flight control system (DFCS) for a CH-47B helicopter are presented. The DFCS employed proportional-integral control logic to provide rapid, precise response to automatic or manual guidance commands while following conventional or spiral-descent approach paths. It contained altitude- and velocity-command modes, and it adapted to varying flight conditions through gain scheduling. Extensive use was made of linear systems analysis techniques. The DFCS was designed, using linear-optimal estimation and control theory, and the effects of gain scheduling are assessed by examination of closed-loop eigenvalues and time responses.
Mihaloew, James R.; Ballin, Mark G.; Ruttledge, D. C. G.
The NASA Ames and Lewis Research Centers, in conjunction with the Army Research and Technology Laboratories, have initiated and partially completed a joint research program focused on improving the performance, maneuverability, and operating characteristics of rotorcraft by integrating the flight and propulsion controls. The background of the program, its supporting programs, its goals and objectives, and an approach to accomplish them are discussed. Results of the modern control governor design of the General Electric T700 engine and the Rotorcraft Integrated Flight-Propulsion Control Study, which were key elements of the program, are also presented.
An image of the F-16XL #1 during its functional flight check of the Digital Flight Control System (DFCS) on December 16, 1997. The mission was flown by NASA research pilot Dana Purifoy, and lasted 1 hour and 25 minutes. The tests included pilot familiarly, functional check, and handling qualities evaluation maneuvers to a speed of Mach 0.6 and 300 knots. Purifoy completed all the briefed data points with no problems, and reported that the DFCS handled as well, if not better than the analog computer system that it replaced.
Tischler, Mark B.; Colbourne, Jason D.; Morel, Mark R.; Biezad, Daniel J.; Levine, William S.; Moldoveanu, Veronica
A state-of-the-art computational facility for aircraft flight control design, evaluation, and integration called CONDUIT (Control Designer's Unified Interface) has been developed. This paper describes the CONDUIT tool and case study applications to complex rotary- and fixed-wing fly-by-wire flight control problems. Control system analysis and design optimization methods are presented, including definition of design specifications and system models within CONDUIT, and the multi-objective function optimization (CONSOL-OPTCAD) used to tune the selected design parameters. Design examples are based on flight test programs for which extensive data are available for validation. CONDUIT is used to analyze baseline control laws against pertinent military handling qualities and control system specifications. In both case studies, CONDUIT successfully exploits trade-offs between forward loop and feedback dynamics to significantly improve the expected handling, qualities and minimize the required actuator authority. The CONDUIT system provides a new environment for integrated control system analysis and design, and has potential for significantly reducing the time and cost of control system flight test optimization.
Baird, Emily; Kreiss, Eva; Wcislo, William; Warrant, Eric; Dacke, Marie
To avoid collisions when navigating through cluttered environments, flying insects must control their flight so that their sensory systems have time to detect obstacles and avoid them. To do this, day-active insects rely primarily on the pattern of apparent motion generated on the retina during flight (optic flow). However, many flying insects are active at night, when obtaining reliable visual information for flight control presents much more of a challenge. To assess whether nocturnal flying insects also rely on optic flow cues to control flight in dim light, we recorded flights of the nocturnal neotropical sweat bee, Megalopta genalis, flying along an experimental tunnel when: (i) the visual texture on each wall generated strong horizontal (front-to-back) optic flow cues, (ii) the texture on only one wall generated these cues, and (iii) horizontal optic flow cues were removed from both walls. We find that Megalopta increase their groundspeed when horizontal motion cues in the tunnel are reduced (conditions (ii) and (iii)). However, differences in the amount of horizontal optic flow on each wall of the tunnel (condition (ii)) do not affect the centred position of the bee within the flight tunnel. To better understand the behavioural response of Megalopta, we repeated the experiments on day-active bumble-bees (Bombus terrestris). Overall, our findings demonstrate that despite the limitations imposed by dim light, Megalopta-like their day-active relatives-rely heavily on vision to control flight, but that they use visual cues in a different manner from diurnal insects.
Larson, R. R.
The wing on the NASA F-111 transonic aircraft technology airplane was modified to provide flexible leading and trailing edge flaps. This wing is known as the mission adaptive wing (MAW) because aerodynamic efficiency can be maintained at all speeds. Unlike a conventional wing, the MAW has no spoilers, external flap hinges, or fairings to break the smooth contour. The leading edge flaps and three-segment trailing edge flaps are controlled by a redundant fly-by-wire control system that features a dual digital primary system architecture providing roll and symmetric commands to the MAW control surfaces. A segregated analog backup system is provided in the event of a primary system failure. This paper discusses the design, development, testing, qualification, and flight test experience of the MAW primary and backup flight control systems.
Corliss, Lloyd D.; Dunn, William R.; Morrison, Michael A.
The X-Wing, in concept, marries the efficiencies of a helicopter and fixed wing aircraft through the use of a four-bladed wing/rotor that can be rotated or stopped in flight. The RSRA/X-Wing flight test program was a technology demonstration of this concept which, after three successful flights, was discontinued in late 1987. In spite of many technical challenges in this program, such as the use of circulation control, the fabrication of a large all-composite rotor, the development of an advanced, quadruplex digital flight control system, and the need for higher harmonic control, no major technical problems had been encountered at the time of the stop-work order. This paper addresses the issues of flight control system development and focuses on lessons learned. As with other such programs, software development was the most consuming issue. Other subjects of discussion include the problems of balancing program goals with technical goals, software- and hard-ware-related problems, safety issues, and system testing.
Jacklin, Stephen A.
Over the last five decades, extensive research has been performed to design and develop adaptive control systems for aerospace systems and other applications where the capability to change controller behavior at different operating conditions is highly desirable. Although adaptive flight control has been partially implemented through the use of gain-scheduled control, truly adaptive control systems using learning algorithms and on-line system identification methods have not seen commercial deployment. The reason is that the certification process for adaptive flight control software for use in national air space has not yet been decided. The purpose of this paper is to examine the gaps between the state-of-the-art methodologies used to certify conventional (i.e., non-adaptive) flight control system software and what will likely to be needed to satisfy FAA airworthiness requirements. These gaps include the lack of a certification plan or process guide, the need to develop verification and validation tools and methodologies to analyze adaptive controller stability and convergence, as well as the development of metrics to evaluate adaptive controller performance at off-nominal flight conditions. This paper presents the major certification gap areas, a description of the current state of the verification methodologies, and what further research efforts will likely be needed to close the gaps remaining in current certification practices. It is envisioned that closing the gap will require certain advances in simulation methods, comprehensive methods to determine learning algorithm stability and convergence rates, the development of performance metrics for adaptive controllers, the application of formal software assurance methods, the application of on-line software monitoring tools for adaptive controller health assessment, and the development of a certification case for adaptive system safety of flight.
Stachowiak, Susan J.; Bosworth, John T.
In the early 1980s, two F-16 airplanes were modified to extend the fuselage length and incorporate a large area delta wing planform. These two airplanes, designated the F-16XL, were designed by the General Dynamics Corporation (now Lockheed Martin Tactical Aircraft Systems) (Fort Worth, Texas) and were prototypes for a derivative fighter evaluation program conducted by the United States Air Force. Although the concept was never put into production, the F-16XL prototypes provided a unique planform for testing concepts in support of future high-speed supersonic transport aircraft. To extend the capabilities of this testbed vehicle the F-16XL ship 1 aircraft was upgraded with a digital flight control system. The added flexibility of a digital flight control system increases the versatility of this airplane as a testbed for aerodynamic research and investigation of advanced technologies. This report presents the handling qualities flight test results covering the envelope expansion of the F-16XL with the digital flight control system.
Aslam Butt, Waseem; Yan, Lin; Amezquita S., Kendrick
In this article, non-linear adaptive dynamic surface air speed and flight path angle control designs are presented for the longitudinal dynamics of a flexible hypersonic flight vehicle. The tracking performance of the control design is enhanced by introducing a novel integral term that caters to avoiding a large initial control signal. To ensure feasibility, the design scheme incorporates magnitude and rate constraints on the actuator commands. The uncertain non-linear functions are approximated by an efficient use of the neural networks to reduce the computational load. A detailed stability analysis shows that all closed-loop signals are uniformly ultimately bounded and the ? tracking performance is guaranteed. The robustness of the design scheme is verified through numerical simulations of the flexible flight vehicle model.
Wilkes, Donald R.; Hummer, Leigh L.
The behavior of materials in the space environment continues to be a limiting technology for spacecraft and experiments. The thermal control surfaces experiment (TCSE) aboard the Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF) is the most comprehensive experiment flown to study the effects of the space environment on thermal control surfaces. Selected thermal control surfaces were exposed to the LDEF orbital environment and the effects of this exposure were measured. The TCSE combined in-space orbital measurements with pre and post-flight analyses of flight materials to determine the effects of long term space exposure. The TCSE experiment objective, method, and measurements are described along with the results of the initial materials analysis. The TCSE flight system and its excellent performance on the LDEF mission is described. A few operational anomalies were encountered and are discussed.
The NASA Langley Research Center has been performing studies to address the feasibility of various single-stage to orbit concepts for use by NASA and the commercial launch industry to provide a lower cost access to space. Some work on the conceptual design of a typical lifting body concept vehicle, designated VentureStar(sup TM) has been conducted in cooperation with the Lockheed Martin Skunk Works. This paper will address the results of a preliminary flight controls assessment of this vehicle concept during the atmospheric entry phase of flight. The work includes control analysis from hypersonic flight at the atmospheric entry through supersonic speeds to final approach and landing at subsonic conditions. The requirements of the flight control effectors are determined over the full range of entry vehicle Mach number conditions. The analysis was performed for a typical maximum crossrange entry trajectory utilizing angle of attack to limit entry heating and providing for energy management, and bank angle to modulation of the lift vector to provide downrange and crossrange capability to fly the vehicle to a specified landing site. Sensitivity of the vehicle open and closed loop characteristics to CG location, control surface mixing strategy and wind gusts are included in the results. An alternative control surface mixing strategy utilizing a reverse aileron technique demonstrated a significant reduction in RCS torque and fuel required to perform bank maneuvers during entry. The results of the control analysis revealed challenges for an early vehicle configuration in the areas of hypersonic pitch trim and subsonic longitudinal controllability.
The objective of the integrated digital flight control system is to provide rotational and translational control of the space shuttle orbiter in all phases of flight: from launch ascent through orbit to entry and touchdown, and during powered horizontal flights. The program provides a versatile control system structure while maintaining uniform communications with other programs, sensors, and control effects by using an executive routine/function subroutine format. The program reads all external variables at a single point, copies them into its dedicated storage, and then calls the required subroutines in the proper sequence. As a result, the flight control program is largely independent of other programs in the GN and C computer complex and is equally insensitive to the characteristics of the processor configuration. The integrated structure of the control system and the DFCS executive routine which embodies that structure are described. The specific estimation and control algorithms used in the various mission phases are shown. Attitude maneuver routines that interface with the DFCS are also described.
Neri, David F.; Oyung, Raymond L.; Colletti, Laura M.; Mallis, Melissa M.; Tam, Patricia Y.; Dinges, David F.
BACKGROUND: A major challenge for flight crews is the need to maintain vigilance during long, highly automated nighttime flights. No system currently exists to assist in managing alertness, and countermeasure options are limited. Surveys reveal many pilots use breaks as an in-flight countermeasure, but there have been no controlled studies of their effectiveness. HYPOTHESIS: We hypothesized that brief, regular breaks could improve alertness and performance during an overnight flight. METHOD: A 6-h, uneventful, nighttime flight in a Boeing 747-400 flight simulator was flown by fourteen two-man crews. The 14 subjects in the treatment group received 5 short breaks spaced hourly during cruise; the 14 subjects in the control group received 1 break in the middle of cruise. Continuous EEG/EOG, subjective sleepiness, and psychomotor vigilance performance data were collected. RESULTS: During the latter part of the night, the treatment group showed significant reductions for 15 min post-break in slow eye movements, theta-band activity, and unintended sleep episodes compared with the control group. The treatment group reported significantly greater subjective alertness for up to 25 min post-break, with strongest effects near the time of the circadian trough. There was no evidence of objective vigilance performance improvement at 15-25 min post-break, with expected performance deterioration occurring due to elevated sleep drive and circadian time. CONCLUSIONS: The physiological and subjective data indicate the breaks reduced nighttime sleepiness for at least 15 min post-break and may have masked sleepiness for up to 25 min, suggesting the potential usefulness of short-duration breaks as an in-flight fatigue countermeasure.
Smith, R. H.; Chisholm, J. D.; Stewart, J. F.
The Performance-Seeking Control (PSC) integrated flight/propulsion adaptive control algorithm presented was developed in order to optimize total aircraft performance during steady-state engine operation. The PSC multimode algorithm minimizes fuel consumption at cruise conditions, while maximizing excess thrust during aircraft accelerations, climbs, and dashes, and simultaneously extending engine service life through reduction of fan-driving turbine inlet temperature upon engagement of the extended-life mode. The engine models incorporated by the PSC are continually upgraded, using a Kalman filter to detect anomalous operations. The PSC algorithm will be flight-demonstrated by an F-15 at NASA-Dryden.
Olberg, Robert M
Interacting with a moving object poses a computational problem for an animal's nervous system. This problem has been elegantly solved by the dragonfly, a formidable visual predator on flying insects. The dragonfly computes an interception flight trajectory and steers to maintain it during its prey-pursuit flight. This review summarizes current knowledge about pursuit behavior and neurons thought to control interception in the dragonfly. When understood, this system has the potential for explaining how a small group of neurons can control complex interactions with moving objects.
DeLaat, John C.; Southwick, Robert D.; Gallops, George W.; Orme, John S.
Future aircraft turbine engines, both commercial and military, must be able to accommodate expected increased levels of steady-state and dynamic engine-face distortion. The current approach of incorporating sufficient design stall margin to tolerate these increased levels of distortion would significantly reduce performance. The objective of the High Stability Engine Control (HISTEC) program is to design, develop, and flight-demonstrate an advanced, integrated engine control system that uses measurement-based estimates of distortion to enhance engine stability. The resulting distortion tolerant control reduces the required design stall margin, with a corresponding increase in performance and decrease in fuel burn. The HISTEC concept has been developed and was successfully flight demonstrated on the F-15 ACTIVE aircraft during the summer of 1997. The flight demonstration was planned and carried out in two phases, the first to show distortion estimation, and the second to show distortion accommodation. Post-flight analysis shows that the HISTEC technologies are able to successfully estimate and accommodate distortion, transiently setting the stall margin requirement on-line and in real-time. This allows the design stall margin requirement to be reduced, which in turn can be traded for significantly increased performance and/or decreased weight. Flight demonstration of the HISTEC technologies has significantly reduced the risk of transitioning the technology to tactical and commercial engines.
Orme, John S.; Gilyard, Glenn B.
Digital flight and engine control, powerful onboard computers, and sophisticated controls techniques may improve aircraft performance by maximizing fuel efficiency, maximizing thrust, and extending engine life. An adaptive performance seeking control system for optimizing the quasi-steady state performance of an F-15 aircraft was developed and flight tested. This system has three optimization modes: minimum fuel, maximum thrust, and minimum fan turbine inlet temperature. Tests of the minimum fuel and fan turbine inlet temperature modes were performed at a constant thrust. Supersonic single-engine flight tests of the three modes were conducted using varied after burning power settings. At supersonic conditions, the performance seeking control law optimizes the integrated airframe, inlet, and engine. At subsonic conditions, only the engine is optimized. Supersonic flight tests showed improvements in thrust of 9 percent, increases in fuel savings of 8 percent, and reductions of up to 85 deg R in turbine temperatures for all three modes. The supersonic performance seeking control structure is described and preliminary results of supersonic performance seeking control tests are given. These findings have implications for improving performance of civilian and military aircraft.
Algorithms are presented for rotational and translational control of the space shuttle orbiter in the orbital mission phases, which are external tank separation, orbit insertion, on-orbit and de-orbit. The program provides a versatile control system structure while maintaining uniform communications with other programs, sensors, and control effectors by using an executive routine/functional subroutine format. Software functional requirements are described using block diagrams where feasible, and input--output tables, and the software implementation of each function is presented in equations and structured flow charts. Included are a glossary of all symbols used to define the requirements, and an appendix of supportive material.
Youssef, Hussein; Lee, Howard; Chowdhry, Rajiv; Cotting, Chris
A new optimization technique was used to aide in the selection of aerodynamic surfaces and Thrust Vectoring Control (TVC) based on maximizing control margin during ascent and entry portions of the trajectory. In order to meet the mass fraction requirement of RLV (Reusable Launch Vehicle), every substructure needed to be carefully designed to minimize the dry mass. The trajectory was designed to deliver the payload required for each mission subject to thermal and structural constraints. At each point on the trajectory the angle of attack and Mach number pair was used to calculate the control power required to trim and to stabilize the vehicle. The new optimization technique was based on finding the configuration that minimizes the control power peaks along the entire trajectory.
An electromechanical actuator was developed that will follow a proportional control command with minimum wasted energy to demonstrate the feasibility of meeting space vehicle actuator requirements using advanced electromechanical concepts. The approach was restricted to a four-channel redundant configuration. Each channel has independent drive and control electronics, a brushless electric motor with brake, and velocity and position feedback transducers. A differential gearbox sums the output velocities of the motors. Normally, two motors are active and the other two are braked.
the algorithm for estimating T, * will wait until the state observers (x*) equal the state variables (xp) and this system is in steady state. From...Appendix A (this system is in steady state at the time 200T) and Appendix C (the state observers equal the state variables at time approximate equals 40T...system, the DIGITAL CONTROLLER #1 in the monitor will wait until the state observers (x*) equal the state variables (xp). Then p the DIGITAL CONTROLLER
Lu, Bei; Wu, Fen; Kim, Sung-Wan
In this paper, we propose a saturation control scheme for linear parameter-varying (LPV) systems from an antiwindup control perspective. The proposed control approach is advantageous because it can be thought of as an augmented control algorithm from the existing control system. Moreover, the synthesis condition for an antiwindup compensator is formulated as a linear matrix inequality (LMI) optimization problem and can be solved efficiently. We have applied the LPV antiwindup controller to an F-16 longitudinal autopilot control system design to enhance aircraft safety and improve flight quality in a high angle of attack region.
Contreras, Hugo; Bassi, Danilo
This article depicts a navigation control system design that is based on a set of rules in order to follow a desired trajectory. The full control of the aircraft considered here comprises: a low level stability control loop, based on classic PID controller and the higher level navigation whose main job is to exercise lateral control (course) and altitude control, trying to follow a desired trajectory. The rules and PID gains were adjusted systematically according to the result of flight simulation. In spite of its simplicity, the rule-based navigation control proved to be robust, even with big perturbation, like crossing winds.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Gatlin, Donald H.; Stewart, James F.
The NASA Dryden Flight Research Center has been conducting integrated flight-propulsion control flight research using the NASA F-15 airplane for the past 12 years. The research began with the digital electronic engine control (DEEC) project, followed by the F100 Engine Model Derivative (EMD). HIDEC (Highly Integrated Digital Electronic Control) became the umbrella name for a series of experiments including: the Advanced Digital Engine Controls System (ADECS), a twin jet acoustics flight experiment, self-repairing flight control system (SRFCS), performance-seeking control (PSC), and propulsion controlled aircraft (PCA). The upcoming F-15 project is ACTIVE (Advanced Control Technology for Integrated Vehicles). This paper provides a brief summary of these activities and provides background for the PCA and PSC papers, and includes a bibliography of all papers and reports from the NASA F-15 project.
Kelly, Ryan T.
Aero-optical disturbances produced from turbulent compressible flow-fields can seriously degrade the performance of an optical signal. At compressible flight speeds these disturbances stem from the density variations present in turbulent boundary layers and free shear layers; however helicopters typically operate at incompressible speeds, which nearly eliminates the aberrating effect of these flows. For helicopter platforms the sources of aberration originate from the high subsonic flow-field near the rotor blade tips in the form of rotor-tip vortices and from the high temperatures of the engine effluence. During hover the shed rotor-tip vortices and engine effluence convect with the rotor wake encircling the airframe and subsequently a helicopter mounted optical system. The aero-optical effects of the wake beneath a hovering helicopter were analyzed using a combination of Unsteady RANS (URANS) and Large-Eddy Simulations (LES). The spatial and temporal characteristics of the numerical optical wavefronts were compared to full-scale aero-optic experimental measurements. The results indicate that the turbulence of the rotor-tip vortices contributes to the higher order aberrations measured experimentally and that the thermal exhaust plumes effectively limit the optical field-of-regard to forward- and side-looking beam directions. This information along with the computed optical aberrations of the wake can be used to guide the development of adaptive-optic systems or other beam-control approaches.
an architecture and control law consultant on the project. In 1981, Lt. Jack Crotty joined the program as a software designer thereby completing the...processor and helped to develop the CRMmFCS control laws and corresponding aircraft simulation. Mark Mears was iii responsible for the haidware and...for development of the real-world plant simulation and overall control law design. He also organized a national workshop on multi-processor flight
Mizukami, Masashi; Nakazono, Barry
The NASA Dawn spacecraft mission is studying conditions and processes of the solar system's earliest epoch by investigating two protoplanets remaining intact since their formations, Ceres and Vesta. Launch was in 2007. Ion propulsion is used to fly to and enter orbit around Vesta, depart Vesta and fly to Ceres, and enter orbit around Ceres. A conventional blowdown hydrazine reaction control system (RCS) is used to provide external torques for attitude control. Reaction wheel assemblies were intended to provide attitude control in most cases. However, the spacecraft experienced one, then two apparent failures of reaction wheels. Also, similar thrusters experienced degradation in a long life application on another spacecraft. Those factors led to RCS being operated in ways completely different than anticipated prior to launch. Numerous mitigations and developments needed to be implemented. The Vesta mission was fully successful. Even with the compromises necessary due to those anomalies, the Ceres mission is also projected to be feasible.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Burken, John J.; Maine, Trindel A.; Fullerton, C. Gordon
An emergency flight control system that uses only engine thrust, called the propulsion-controlled aircraft (PCA) system, was developed and flight tested on an MD-11 airplane. The PCA system is a thrust-only control system, which augments pilot flightpath and track commands with aircraft feedback parameters to control engine thrust. The PCA system was implemented on the MD-11 airplane using only software modifications to existing computers. Results of a 25-hr flight test show that the PCA system can be used to fly to an airport and safely land a transport airplane with an inoperative flight control system. In up-and-away operation, the PCA system served as an acceptable autopilot capable of extended flight over a range of speeds, altitudes, and configurations. PCA approaches, go-arounds, and three landings without the use of any normal flight controls were demonstrated, including ILS-coupled hands-off landings. PCA operation was used to recover from an upset condition. The PCA system was also tested at altitude with all three hydraulic systems turned off. This paper reviews the principles of throttles-only flight control, a history of accidents or incidents in which some or all flight controls were lost, the MD-11 airplane and its systems, PCA system development, operation, flight testing, and pilot comments.
Windsor, Shane P; Bomphrey, Richard J; Taylor, Graham K
Vision is a key sensory modality for flying insects, playing an important role in guidance, navigation and control. Here, we use a virtual-reality flight simulator to measure the optomotor responses of the hawkmoth Hyles lineata, and use a published linear-time invariant model of the flight dynamics to interpret the function of the measured responses in flight stabilization and control. We recorded the forces and moments produced during oscillation of the visual field in roll, pitch and yaw, varying the temporal frequency, amplitude or spatial frequency of the stimulus. The moths' responses were strongly dependent upon contrast frequency, as expected if the optomotor system uses correlation-type motion detectors to sense self-motion. The flight dynamics model predicts that roll angle feedback is needed to stabilize the lateral dynamics, and that a combination of pitch angle and pitch rate feedback is most effective in stabilizing the longitudinal dynamics. The moths' responses to roll and pitch stimuli coincided qualitatively with these functional predictions. The moths produced coupled roll and yaw moments in response to yaw stimuli, which could help to reduce the energetic cost of correcting heading. Our results emphasize the close relationship between physics and physiology in the stabilization of insect flight.
This research effort describes the design and simulation of a distributed Neural Network (NN) based fault tolerant flight control scheme and the interface of the scheme within a simulation/visualization environment. The goal of the fault tolerant flight control scheme is to recover an aircraft from failures to its sensors or actuators. A commercially available simulation package, Aviator Visual Design Simulator (AVDS), was used for the purpose of simulation and visualization of the aircraft dynamics and the performance of the control schemes. For the purpose of the sensor failure detection, identification and accommodation (SFDIA) task, it is assumed that the pitch, roll and yaw rate gyros onboard are without physical redundancy. The task is accomplished through the use of a Main Neural Network (MNN) and a set of three De-Centralized Neural Networks (DNNs), providing analytical redundancy for the pitch, roll and yaw gyros. The purpose of the MNN is to detect a sensor failure while the purpose of the DNNs is to identify the failed sensor and then to provide failure accommodation. The actuator failure detection, identification and accommodation (AFDIA) scheme also features the MNN, for detection of actuator failures, along with three Neural Network Controllers (NNCs) for providing the compensating control surface deflections to neutralize the failure induced pitching, rolling and yawing moments. All NNs continue to train on-line, in addition to an offline trained baseline network structure, using the Extended Back-Propagation Algorithm (EBPA), with the flight data provided by the AVDS simulation package. The above mentioned adaptive flight control schemes have been traditionally implemented sequentially on a single computer. This research addresses the implementation of these fault tolerant flight control schemes on parallel and distributed computer architectures, using Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD) sockets and Message Passing Interface (MPI) for inter
Stewart, James F.; Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Gatlin, Donald H.
The fundamentals of control integration for propulsion are reviewed giving practical illustrations of its use to demonstrate the advantages of integration. Attention is given to the first integration propulsion-control systems (IPCSs) which was developed for the F-111E, and the integrated controller design is described that NASA developed for the YF-12C aircraft. The integrated control systems incorporate a range of aircraft components including the engine, inlet controls, autopilot, autothrottle, airdata, navigation, and/or stability-augmentation systems. Also described are emergency-control systems, onboard engine optimization, and thrust-vectoring control technologies developed for the F-18A and the F-15. Integrated flight-propulsion control systems are shown to enhance the thrust, range, and survivability of the aircraft while reducing fuel consumption and maintenance.
80 Horseshoe Logic. .................................................................................................... 83...ability to either crab or slip into the wind of the modified airflow. Osteroos modified the control laws to effectively follow the lead aircraft...from the wing observation position are done in the horseshoe pattern shown in Figure 25 to avoid potential collision. 77 Vertically, when moving
The Controlled Impact Demonstration (CID) was a joint research project by NASA and the FAA to test a survivable aircraft impact using a remotely piloted Boeing 720 aircraft. The edited 'CID movie montage' runs 29 seconds and views the CID impact from four different positions on the ground.
Berkhout, J.; Osgood, R.; Berry, D.
Data from decoupled flight maneuvers have been collected and analyzed for four AFTI-F-16 pilots operating this aircraft's highly augmented fly-by-wire control system, in order to obtain spectral density, cross spectra, and Bode amplitude data, as well as coherences and phase angles for the two longitudinal axis control functions of each of 50 20-sec epochs. The analysis of each epoch yielded five distinct plotted parameters for the left hand twist grip and right hand sidestick controller output time series. These two control devices allow the left hand to generate vertical translation, direct lift, or pitch-pointing commands that are decoupled from those of the right hand. Attention is given to the control patterns obtained for decoupled normal flight, air-to-air gun engagement decoupled maneuvering, and decoupled air-to-surface bombing run maneuvering.
Buschbacher, Mark; Bosworth, John
The Second Generation (Gen II) control system for the F-15 Intelligent Flight Control System (IFCS) program implements direct adaptive neural networks to demonstrate robust tolerance to faults and failures. The direct adaptive tracking controller integrates learning neural networks (NNs) with a dynamic inversion control law. The term direct adaptive is used because the error between the reference model and the aircraft response is being compensated or directly adapted to minimize error without regard to knowing the cause of the error. No parameter estimation is needed for this direct adaptive control system. In the Gen II design, the feedback errors are regulated with a proportional-plus-integral (PI) compensator. This basic compensator is augmented with an online NN that changes the system gains via an error-based adaptation law to improve aircraft performance at all times, including normal flight, system failures, mispredicted behavior, or changes in behavior resulting from damage.
Franklin, James A.
A moving-base simulation has been conducted on the Vertical Motion Simulator at Ames Research Center using a model of an advanced, short takeoff and vertical landing (STOVL) lift fan fighter aircraft. This experiment expanded on investigations during previous simulations with this STOVL configuration with the objective of evaluating (1) control law modifications over the low speed flight envelope, (2) integration of the throttle inceptor with flight control laws that provide direct thrust command for conventional flight, vertical and short takeoff, and flightpath or vertical velocity command for transition, hover, and vertical landing, (3) control mode blending for pitch, roll, yaw, and flightpath control during transition from wing-borne to jet-borne flight, and (4) effects of conformal versus nonconformal presentation of flightpath and pursuit guidance symbology on the out-the-window display for low speed STOVL operations. Assessments were made for takeoff, transition, hover, and landing, including precision hover and landing aboard an LPH-type amphibious assault ship in the presence of winds and rough seas. Results yielded Level 1 pilot ratings for the flightpath and vertical velocity command modes for a range of land-based and shipboard operation and were consistent with previous experience with earlier control laws and displays for this STOVL concept. Control mode blending was performed over speed ranges in accord with the pilot's tasks and with the change of the basic aircraft's characteristics between wing-borne and hover flight. Blending of yaw control from heading command in hover to sideslip command in wing-borne flight performed over a broad speed range helped reduce yaw transients during acceleration through the low speed regime. Although the pilots appreciated conformality of flightpath and guidance symbols with the external scene during the approach, increased sensitivity of the symbols for lateral path tracking elevated the pilots' control activity
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.; Maine, Trindel A.; Burken, John J.; Pappas, Drew
An emergency flight control system using only engine thrust, called Propulsion-Controlled Aircraft (PCA), has been developed and flight tested on an MD-11 airplane. In this thrust-only control system, pilot flight path and track commands and aircraft feedback parameters are used to control the throttles. The PCA system was installed on the MD-11 airplane using software modifications to existing computers. Flight test results show that the PCA system can be used to fly to an airport and safely land a transport airplane with an inoperative flight control system. In up-and-away operation, the PCA system served as an acceptable autopilot capable of extended flight over a range of speeds and altitudes. The PCA approaches, go-arounds, and three landings without the use of any non-nal flight controls have been demonstrated, including instrument landing system-coupled hands-off landings. The PCA operation was used to recover from an upset condition. In addition, PCA was tested at altitude with all three hydraulic systems turned off. This paper reviews the principles of throttles-only flight control; describes the MD-11 airplane and systems; and discusses PCA system development, operation, flight testing, and pilot comments.
Arthur, Jarvis J., III; Prinzel, Lawrence J., III; Kramer, Lynda J.; Parrish, Russell V.; Bailey, Randall E.
In commercial aviation, over 30-percent of all fatal accidents worldwide are categorized as Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) accidents, where a fully functioning airplane is inadvertently flown into the ground. The major hypothesis for a simulation experiment conducted at NASA Langley Research Center was that a Primary Flight Display (PFD) with synthetic terrain will improve pilots ability to detect and avoid potential CFITs compared to conventional instrumentation. All display conditions, including the baseline, contained a Terrain Awareness and Warning System (TAWS) and Vertical Situation Display (VSD) enhanced Navigation Display (ND). Each pilot flew twenty-two approach departure maneuvers in Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IMC) to the terrain challenged Eagle County Regional Airport (EGE) in Colorado. For the final run, flight guidance cues were altered such that the departure path went into terrain. All pilots with a synthetic vision system (SVS) PFD (twelve of sixteen pilots) noticed and avoided the potential CFIT situation. The four pilots who flew the anomaly with the conventional baseline PFD configuration (which included a TAWS and VSD enhanced ND) had a CFIT event. Additionally, all the SVS display concepts enhanced the pilot s situational awareness, decreased workload and improved flight technical error (FTE) compared to the baseline configuration.
Schematic diagrams are given for both the four-channel electromechanical actuator and the single-channel power electronics breadboard. Detailed design data is also given on the gears used in the differential gearbox and a copy of the operations manual for the system is included. Performance test results are given for the EMA motor and its current source indicator, the drive control electronics, and the overall system. The power converter waveform test results are also summarized.
Phan, Hoang Vu; Kang, Taesam; Park, Hoon Cheol
An insect-like tailless flapping wing micro air vehicle (FW-MAV) without feedback control eventually becomes unstable after takeoff. Flying an insect-like tailless FW-MAV is more challenging than flying a bird-like tailed FW-MAV, due to the difference in control principles. This work introduces the design and controlled flight of an insect-like tailless FW-MAV, named KUBeetle. A combination of four-bar linkage and pulley-string mechanisms was used to develop a lightweight flapping mechanism that could achieve a high flapping amplitude of approximately 190°. Clap-and-flings at dorsal and ventral stroke reversals were implemented to enhance vertical force. In the absence of a control surface at the tail, adjustment of the location of the trailing edges at the wing roots to modulate the rotational angle of the wings was used to generate control moments for the attitude control. Measurements by a 6-axis load cell showed that the control mechanism produced reasonable pitch, roll and yaw moments according to the corresponding control inputs. The control mechanism was integrated with three sub-micro servos to realize the pitch, roll and yaw controls. A simple PD feedback controller was implemented for flight stability with an onboard microcontroller and a gyroscope that sensed the pitch, roll and yaw rates. Several flight tests demonstrated that the tailless KUBeetle could successfully perform a vertical climb, then hover and loiter within a 0.3 m ground radius with small variations in pitch and roll body angles.
Johnston, D. E.; Klein, R. H.; Hoh, R. H.
An analytical and experimental investigation of possible contributing factors in jet aircraft turbulence upsets was conducted. Major contributing factors identified included autopilot and display deficiencies, the large aircraft inertia and associated long response time, and excessive pilot workload. An integrated flight and thrust energy management director system was synthesized. The system was incorporated in a moving-base simulation and evaluated using highly experienced airline pilots. The evaluation included comparison of pilot workload and flight performance during severe turbulence penetration utilizing four control/display concepts: manual control with conventional full panel display, conventional autopilot (A/P-A) with conventional full panel display, improved autopilot (A/P-B) with conventional full panel display plus thrust director display, and longitudinal flight director with conventional full panel display plus thrust director display. Simulation results show improved performance, reduced pilot workload, and a pilot preference for the autopilot system controlling to the flight director command and manual control of thrust following the trim thrust director.
Schmidt, D. K.
Development of a unified control synthesis methodology for complex and/or non-conventional flight vehicles, and prediction techniques for the handling characteristics of such vehicles are reported. Identification of pilot dynamics and objectives, using time domain and frequency domain methods is proposed.
Malekpour, Mahyar; Torres, Wilfredo
The design and development of a Closed-Loop System to study and evaluate the performance of the Honeywell Recoverable Computer System (RCS) in electromagnetic environments (EME) is presented. The development of a Windows-based software package to handle the time-critical communication of data and commands between the RCS and flight simulation code in real-time while meeting the stringent hard deadlines is also submitted. The performance results of the RCS and characteristics of its upset recovery scheme while exercising flight control laws under ideal conditions as well as in the presence of electromagnetic fields are also discussed.
Helmke, C. A.; Hasara, S. H.; Mount, F. E.
The software for the Backup Flight Control System Functional Evaluator (BFCSFE) on a Data General Corporation Nova 1200 computer consists of three programs: the ground support program, the operational flight program (OFP), and the ground pulse code modulation (PCM) program. The Nova OFP software is structurally as close as possible to the AP101 code; therefore, this document highlights and describes only those areas of the Nova OFP that are significantly different from the AP101. Since the Ground Support Program was developed to meet BFCSFE requirements and differs considerably from the AP101 code, it is described in detail.
body variahlos. control surface deflections, or gust variables as well as structur l m -,,- 4hapes. 1-12 As indicated by Arrows 3 and 11 in Figure 1-1...flexibility matrix is used, it i:: m - , i,ticable to define it for a structure that is supported in a statical1y d--’,iiate way. 1-27 !* CDMS GEOMETRY...dynamicist chooses as his reduced set of degrees of freedom m ,,tly translational deflections along the major axes of the str,,t,,, : on a wing
Myers, Thomas T.; Mcruer, Duane T.
The development of a comprehensive and electric methodology for conceptual and preliminary design of flight control systems is presented and illustrated. The methodology is focused on the design states starting with the layout of system requirements and ending when some viable competing system architectures (feedback control structures) are defined. The approach is centered on the human pilot and the aircraft as both the sources of, and the keys to the solution of, many flight control problems. The methodology relies heavily on computational procedures which are highly interactive with the design engineer. To maximize effectiveness, these techniques, as selected and modified to be used together in the methodology, form a cadre of computational tools specifically tailored for integrated flight control system preliminary design purposes. The FCX expert system as presently developed is only a limited prototype capable of supporting basic lateral-directional FCS design activities related to the design example used. FCX presently supports design of only one FCS architecture (yaw damper plus roll damper) and the rules are largely focused on Class IV (highly maneuverable) aircraft. Despite this limited scope, the major elements which appear necessary for application of knowledge-based software concepts to flight control design were assembled and thus FCX represents a prototype which can be tested, critiqued and evolved in an ongoing process of development.
Ryan, Jack; Hanson, Curtis E.; Norlin, Ken A.; Allen, Michael J.; Schkolnik, Gerard (Technical Monitor)
Aircraft hardware-in-the-loop simulation is an invaluable tool to flight test engineers; it reveals design and implementation flaws while operating in a controlled environment. Engineers, however, must always be skeptical of the results and analyze them within their proper context. Engineers must carefully ascertain whether an anomaly that occurs in the simulation will also occur in flight. This report presents a chronology illustrating how misleading simulation timing problems led to the implementation of an overly complex position data synchronization guidance algorithm in place of a simpler one. The report illustrates problems caused by the complex algorithm and how the simpler algorithm was chosen in the end. Brief descriptions of the project objectives, approach, and simulation are presented. The misleading simulation results and the conclusions then drawn are presented. The complex and simple guidance algorithms are presented with flight data illustrating their relative success.
Rynaski, E. G.; Weingarten, N. C.; Grantham, W.
The flying requirements of MIL-F-8785(C) are interpreted in terms of command/response configurations, and pilot preference for flight control systems configurations of angle of attack, or pitch rate command, specified independently for the short period and phugoid dynamics, is determined using the Total-In-Flight-Simulator aircraft. The results show that for either command configuration, the short term response applies to the angle of attack response of the vehicle, and that this response must satisfy the omega(n) vs n/alpha requirement. The preference in the long term for angle of attack command indicates that the pilot wants the aircraft to fly in the direction it is pointing, and an attitude hold system is not found to be preferred unless attitude hold results in flight path angle hold.
Powell, J. D.; Parsons, E.; Tashker, M. G.
Many variations in design methods for aircraft digital flight control have been proposed in the literature. In general, the methods fall into two categories: those where the design is done in the continuous domain (or s-plane), and those where the design is done in the discrete domain (or z-plane). This paper evaluates several variations of each category and compares them for various flight control modes of the Langley TCV Boeing 737 aircraft. Design method fidelity is evaluated by examining closed loop root movement and the frequency response of the discretely controlled continuous aircraft. It was found that all methods provided acceptable performance for sample rates greater than 10 cps except the 'uncompensated s-plane design' method which was acceptable above 20 cps. A design procedure based on optimal control methods was proposed that provided the best fidelity at very slow sample rates and required no design iterations for changing sample rates.
Frost, Susan A.; Taylor, Brian R.; Bodson, Marc
Advances in sensors and avionics computation power suggest real-time structural load measurements could be used in flight control systems for improved safety and performance. A conventional transport flight control system determines the moments necessary to meet the pilot's command, while rejecting disturbances and maintaining stability of the aircraft. Control allocation is the problem of converting these desired moments into control effector commands. In this paper, a framework is proposed to incorporate real-time structural load feedback and structural load constraints in the control allocator. Constrained optimal control allocation can be used to achieve desired moments without exceeding specified limits on monitored load points. Minimization of structural loads by the control allocator is used to alleviate gust loads. The framework to incorporate structural loads in the flight control system and an optimal control allocation algorithm will be described and then demonstrated on a nonlinear simulation of a generic transport aircraft with flight dynamics and static structural loads.
Biewener, Andrew A.
Flapping flight places strenuous requirements on the physiological performance of an animal. Bird flight muscles, particularly at smaller body sizes, generally contract at high frequencies and do substantial work in order to produce the aerodynamic power needed to support the animal's weight in the air and to overcome drag. This is in contrast to terrestrial locomotion, which offers mechanisms for minimizing energy losses associated with body movement combined with elastic energy savings to reduce the skeletal muscles' work requirements. Muscles also produce substantial power during swimming, but this is mainly to overcome body drag rather than to support the animal's weight. Here, I review the function and architecture of key flight muscles related to how these muscles contribute to producing the power required for flapping flight, how the muscles are recruited to control wing motion and how they are used in manoeuvring. An emergent property of the primary flight muscles, consistent with their need to produce considerable work by moving the wings through large excursions during each wing stroke, is that the pectoralis and supracoracoideus muscles shorten over a large fraction of their resting fibre length (33–42%). Both muscles are activated while being lengthened or undergoing nearly isometric force development, enhancing the work they perform during subsequent shortening. Two smaller muscles, the triceps and biceps, operate over a smaller range of contractile strains (12–23%), reflecting their role in controlling wing shape through elbow flexion and extension. Remarkably, pigeons adjust their wing stroke plane mainly via changes in whole-body pitch during take-off and landing, relative to level flight, allowing their wing muscles to operate with little change in activation timing, strain magnitude and pattern. PMID:21502121
Felker, F. F.; Light, J. S.
An experimental and theoretical investigation of rotor/wing aerodynamic interactions in hover is described. The experimental investigation consisted of both a large-scale and small-scale test. A 0.658-scale, V-22 rotor and wing was used in the large-scale test. Wind download, wing surface pressure, rotor performance, and rotor downwash data from the large-scale test are presented. A small-scale experiment was conducted to determine how changes in the rotor/wing geometry affected the aerodynamic interactions. These geometry variations included the distance between the rotor and wing, wing incidence angle, and configurations both with the rotor axis at the tip of the wing (tilt rotor configuration) and with the rotor axis at the center of the wing (compound helicopter configuration). A wing with boundary-layer control was also tested to evaluate the effect of leading and trailing edge upper surface blowing on the wing download. A computationally efficient, semi-empirical theory was developed to predict the download on the wing. Finally, correlations between the theoretical predictions and test data are presented.
Ozdemir, Gurbuz Taha
A conventional helicopter has limits on performance at high speeds because of the limitations of main rotor, such as compressibility issues on advancing side or stall issues on retreating side. Auxiliary lift and thrust components have been suggested to improve performance of the helicopter substantially by reducing the loading on the main rotor. Such a configuration is called the compound rotorcraft. Rotor speed can also be varied to improve helicopter performance. In addition to improved performance, compound rotorcraft and variable RPM can provide a much larger degree of control redundancy. This additional redundancy gives the opportunity to further enhance performance and handling qualities. A flight control system is designed to perform in-flight optimization of redundant control effectors on a compound rotorcraft in order to minimize power required and extend range. This "Fly to Optimal" (FTO) control law is tested in simulation using the GENHEL model. A model of the UH-60, a compound version of the UH-60A with lifting wing and vectored thrust ducted propeller (VTDP), and a generic compound version of the UH-60A with lifting wing and propeller were developed and tested in simulation. A model following dynamic inversion controller is implemented for inner loop control of roll, pitch, yaw, heave, and rotor RPM. An outer loop controller regulates airspeed and flight path during optimization. A Golden Section search method was used to find optimal rotor RPM on a conventional helicopter, where the single redundant control effector is rotor RPM. The FTO builds off of the Adaptive Performance Optimization (APO) method of Gilyard by performing low frequency sweeps on a redundant control for a fixed wing aircraft. A method based on the APO method was used to optimize trim on a compound rotorcraft with several redundant control effectors. The controller can be used to optimize rotor RPM and compound control effectors through flight test or simulations in order to
Barth, Andrew; Mamich, Harvey; Hoelscher, Brian
The first test flight of the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle presented additional challenges for guidance, navigation and control as compared to a typical re-entry from the International Space Station or other Low Earth Orbit. An elevated re-entry velocity and steeper flight path angle were chosen to achieve aero-thermal flight test objectives. New IMU's, a GPS receiver, and baro altimeters were flight qualified to provide the redundant navigation needed for human space flight. The guidance and control systems must manage the vehicle lift vector in order to deliver the vehicle to a precision, coastal, water landing, while operating within aerodynamic load, reaction control system, and propellant constraints. Extensive pre-flight six degree-of-freedom analysis was performed that showed mission success for the nominal mission as well as in the presence of sensor and effector failures. Post-flight reconstruction analysis of the test flight is presented in this paper to show whether that all performance metrics were met and establish how well the pre-flight analysis predicted the in-flight performance.
Ruttledge, D. G. C.
An eclectic approach was taken to a study of the integration of digital flight and propulsion controls for helicopters. The basis of the evaluation was the current Gen Hel simulation of the UH-60A Black Hawk helicopter with a model of the GE T700 engine. A list of flight maneuver segments to be used in evaluating the effectiveness of such an integrated control system was composed, based on past experience and an extensive survey of the U.S. Army Air-to-Air Combat Test data. A number of possible features of an integrated system were examined and screened. Those that survived the screening were combined into a design that replaced the T700 fuel control and part of the control system in the UH-60A Gen Hel simulation. This design included portions of an existing pragmatic adaptive fuel control designed by the Chandler-Evans Company and an linear quadratic regulator (LQR) based N(p) governor designed by the GE company, combined with changes in the basic Sikorsky Aircraft designed control system. The integrated system exhibited improved total performance in many areas of the flight envelope.
Sobel, Kenneth; Joshi, Suresh (Technical Monitor)
In recent years, fault tolerant flight control systems have gained an increased interest for high performance military aircraft as well as civil aircraft. Fault tolerant control systems can be described as either active or passive. An active fault tolerant control system has to either reconfigure or adapt the controller in response to a failure. One approach is to reconfigure the controller based upon detection and identification of the failure. Another approach is to use direct adaptive control to adjust the controller without explicitly identifying the failure. In contrast, a passive fault tolerant control system uses a fixed controller which achieves acceptable performance for a presumed set of failures. We have obtained a passive fault tolerant flight control law for the F/A-18 aircraft which achieves acceptable handling qualities for a class of control surface failures. The class of failures includes the symmetric failure of any one control surface being stuck at its trim value. A comparison was made of an eigenstructure assignment gain designed for the unfailed aircraft with a fault tolerant multiobjective optimization gain. We have shown that time responses for the unfailed aircraft using the eigenstructure assignment gain and the fault tolerant gain are identical. Furthermore, the fault tolerant gain achieves MIL-F-8785C specifications for all failure conditions.
Blanken, Chris L.; Lusardi, Jeff A.; Ivler, Christina M.; Tischler, Mark B.; Hoefinger, Marc T.; Decker, William A.; Malpica, Carlos A.; Berger, Tom; Tucker, George E.
A cooperative study was performed to investigate the handling quality effects from reduced flight control system stability margins, and the trade-offs with higher disturbance rejection bandwidth (DRB). The piloted simulation study, perform on the NASA-Ames Vertical Motion Simulator, included three classes of rotorcraft in four configurations: a utility-class helicopter; a medium-lift helicopter evaluated with and without an external slung load; and a large (heavy-lift) civil tiltrotor aircraft. This large aircraft also allowed an initial assessment of ADS-33 handling quality requirements for an aircraft of this size. Ten experimental test pilots representing the U.S. Army, Marine Corps, NASA, rotorcraft industry, and the German Aerospace Center (DLR), evaluated the four aircraft configurations, for a range of flight control stability-margins and turbulence levels, while primarily performing the ADS-33 Hover and Lateral Reposition MTEs. Pilot comments and aircraft-task performance data were analyzed. The preliminary stability margin results suggest higher DRB and less phase margin cases are preferred as the aircraft increases in size. Extra care will need to be taken to assess the influence of variability when nominal flight control gains start with reduced margins. Phase margins as low as 20-23 degrees resulted in low disturbance-response damping ratios, objectionable oscillations, PIO tendencies, and a perception of an incipient handling qualities cliff. Pilot comments on the disturbance response of the aircraft correlated well to the DRB guidelines provided in the ADS-33 Test Guide. The A D-3S3 mid-term response-to-control damping ratio metrics can be measured and applied to the disturbance-response damping ratio. An initial assessment of LCTR yaw bandwidth shows the current Level 1 boundary needs to be relaxed to help account for a large pilot off-set from the c.g. Future efforts should continue to investigate the applicability/refinement of the current ADS-33
Calise, A. J.; Rysdyk, R. T.; Leonhardt, B. K.
The initial design and demonstration of an Intelligent Flight Propulsion and Control System (IFPCS) is documented. The design is based on the implementation of a nonlinear adaptive flight control architecture. This initial design of the IFPCS enhances flight safety by using propulsion sources to provide redundancy in flight control. The IFPCS enhances the conventional gain scheduled approach in significant ways: (1) The IFPCS provides a back up flight control system that results in consistent responses over a wide range of unanticipated failures. (2) The IFPCS is applicable to a variety of aircraft models without redesign and,(3) significantly reduces the laborious research and design necessary in a gain scheduled approach. The control augmentation is detailed within an approximate Input-Output Linearization setting. The availability of propulsion only provides two control inputs, symmetric and differential thrust. Earlier Propulsion Control Augmentation (PCA) work performed by NASA provided for a trajectory controller with pilot command input of glidepath and heading. This work is aimed at demonstrating the flexibility of the IFPCS in providing consistency in flying qualities under a variety of failure scenarios. This report documents the initial design phase where propulsion only is used. Results confirm that the engine dynamics and associated hard nonlineaaities result in poor handling qualities at best. However, as demonstrated in simulation, the IFPCS is capable of results similar to the gain scheduled designs of the NASA PCA work. The IFPCS design uses crude estimates of aircraft behaviour. The adaptive control architecture demonstrates robust stability and provides robust performance. In this work, robust stability means that all states, errors, and adaptive parameters remain bounded under a wide class of uncertainties and input and output disturbances. Robust performance is measured in the quality of the tracking. The results demonstrate the flexibility of
Snell, S. A.; Hess, R. A.
Techniques for the design of control systems for manually controlled, high-performance aircraft must provide the following: (1) multi-input, multi-output (MIMO) solutions, (2) acceptable handling qualities including no tendencies for pilot-induced oscillations, (3) a tractable approach for compensator design, (4) performance and stability robustness in the presence of significant plant uncertainty, and (5) performance and stability robustness in the presence actuator saturation (particularly rate saturation). A design technique built upon Quantitative Feedback Theory is offered as a candidate methodology which can provide flight control systems meeting these requirements, and do so over a considerable part of the flight envelope. An example utilizing a simplified model of a supermaneuverable fighter aircraft demonstrates the proposed design methodology.
Gilson, Richard D.; Abbott, David W.
Advanced avionics through flight management systems (FMS) coupled with autopilots can now precisely control aircraft from takeoff to landing. Clearly, this has been the most important improvement in aircraft since the jet engine. Regardless of the eventual capabilities of this technology, it is doubtful that society will soon accept pilotless airliners with the same aplomb they accept driverless passenger trains. Flight crews are still needed to deal with inputing clearances, taxiing, in-flight rerouting, unexpected weather decisions, and emergencies; yet it is well known that the contribution of human errors far exceed those of current hardware or software systems. Thus human errors remain, and are even increasing in percentage as the largest contributor to total system error. Currently, the flight crew is regulated by a layered system of certification: by operation, e.g., airline transport pilot versus private pilot; by category, e.g., airplane versus helicopter; by class, e.g., single engine land versus multi-engine land; and by type (for larger aircraft and jet powered aircraft), e.g., Boeing 767 or Airbus A320. Nothing in the certification process now requires an in-depth proficiency with specific types of avionics systems despite their prominent role in aircraft control and guidance.
Painter, John H.
The purpose is to develop algorithms and architectures for embedding artificial intelligence in aircraft guidance and control systems. With the approach adopted, AI-computing is used to create an outer guidance loop for driving the usual aircraft autopilot. That is, a symbolic processor monitors the operation and performance of the aircraft. Then, based on rules and other stored knowledge, commands are automatically formulated for driving the autopilot so as to accomplish desired flight operations. The focus is on developing a software system which can respond to linguistic instructions, input in a standard format, so as to formulate a sequence of simple commands to the autopilot. The instructions might be a fairly complex flight clearance, input either manually or by data-link. Emphasis is on a software system which responds much like a pilot would, employing not only precise computations, but, also, knowledge which is less precise, but more like common-sense. The approach is based on prior work to develop a generic 'shell' architecture for an AI-processor, which may be tailored to many applications by describing the application in appropriate processor data bases (libraries). Such descriptions include numerical models of the aircraft and flight control system, as well as symbolic (linguistic) descriptions of flight operations, rules, and tactics.
Onken, R.; Rediess, H.A.
A simple airborne flight management descent algorithm designed to define a flight profile subject to the constraints of using idle thrust, a clean airplane configuration (landing gear up, flaps zero, and speed brakes retracted), and fixed-time end conditions was developed and flight tested in the NASA TSRV B-737 research airplane. The research test flights, conducted in the Denver ARTCC automated time-based metering LFM/PD ATC environment, demonstrated that time guidance and control in the cockpit was acceptable to the pilots and ATC controllers and resulted in arrival of the airplane over the metering fix with standard deviations in airspeed error of 6.5 knots, in altitude error of 23.7 m (77.8 ft), and in arrival time accuracy of 12 sec. These accuracies indicated a good representation of airplane performance and wind modeling. Fuel savings will be obtained on a fleet-wide basis through a reduction of the time error dispersions at the metering fix and on a single-airplane basis by presenting the pilot with guidance for a fuel-efficient descent.
the redundancy level, fault isolation], v(oting, a~id switching capability of the computer. On the basis of relative cost and fliqht safety reliability ...The reasoning for the sinqle fail operative preference is as follows: a. Flight safety reliability is provided by the direct electiLcal link and is...not a function of AFCS redundancy level. b. The mission reliability for the defined baseline mission is essentially equivalent for a dual or SFO AFCS
Wilson, John C. (Inventor); Kelley, Henry L. (Inventor); Crowell, Cynthia A. (Inventor)
A system for improving yaw control at low speeds consists of one strake placed on the upper portion of the fuselage facing the retreating rotor blade and another strake placed on the lower portion of the fuselage facing the advancing rotor blade. These strakes spoil the airflow on the helicopter tail boom during hover, low speed flight, and right or left sidewards flight so that less side thrust is required from the tail rotor.
Jane Wang, Z.
Resolved computation of two dimensional insect hovering shows for the first time that a two dimensional hovering motion can generate enough lift to support a typical insect weight. The computation reveals a two dimensional mechanism of creating a downward dipole jet of counterrotating vortices, which are formed from leading and trailing edge vortices. The vortex dynamics further elucidates the role of the phase relation between the wing translation and rotation in lift generation and explains why the instantaneous forces can reach a periodic state after only a few strokes. The model predicts the lower limits in Reynolds number and amplitude above which the averaged forces are sufficient. (c) 2000 The American Physical Society.
Gregory, Irene M.; Xargay, Enric; Cao, Chengyu; Hovakimyan, Naira
This paper presents results of a flight test of the L-1 adaptive control architecture designed to directly compensate for significant uncertain cross-coupling in nonlinear systems. The flight test was conducted on the subscale turbine powered Generic Transport Model that is an integral part of the Airborne Subscale Transport Aircraft Research system at the NASA Langley Research Center. The results presented are for piloted tasks performed during the flight test.
The Mission Control Center Shuttle (MCC) Shuttle Orbital Flight Test (OFT) Data System (OFTDS) provides facilities for flight control and data systems personnel to monitor and control the Shuttle flights from launch (tower clear) to rollout (wheels stopped on runway). It also supports the preparation for flight (flight planning, flight controller and crew training, and integrated vehicle and network testing activities). The MCC Shuttle OFTDS is described in detail. Three major support systems of the OFTDS and the data types and sources of data entering or exiting the MCC were illustrated. These systems are the communication interface system, the data computation complex, and the display and control system.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and industry are moving towards a more flexible, user oriented air traffic control system. The question is: does this point to a natural evolution or revolution in the world of the air traffic controllers? The National Airspace System is by all accounts the safest in the world. How will we sustain this record of performance with increased flexibility and user involvement? How will controllers and pilots react to a new more dynamic paradigm? Is the current state of automation, modeling, and analysis what is needed to make Free Flight a reality? How will the FAA insure that all human factors questions are answered before implementation? How will we quantify the impact of unanswered questions and their influence on safety? These, and many more questions need to be answered to ensure that the benefits promised by Free Flight are realized by all parties. The National Air Traffic Controllers Association supports the new concept. Yet, we are seriously concerned about the actual implementation of Free Flight's various components.
Snell, S. Antony; Garrard, William L., Jr.; Enns, Dale F.
This paper describes the use of nonlinear dynamic inversion for the design of a flight control system for a supermaneuverable aircraft. First, the dynamics to be controlled were separated into fast and slow variables. The fast variables were the angular rates and the slow variables were the attitude angles. Then a nonlinear inversion controller was designed for the fast variables. This stabilized the longitudinal short-period and improved the lateral-directional responses over a wide range of angle of attack by making use of a combination for aerodynamic surfaces and thrust vectoring control. Outer loops were then closed to allow the pilot to control the slow dynamics, the angle of attack, side-slip angle and the velocity bank angle. Nonlinear inversion was also used to design of the outer loop control laws. The dynamic inversion control laws were compared with more conventional, gain-scheduled control laws and were shown to yield much better performance.
Mcruer, D.; Johnston, D.; Myers, T.
Superaugmented aircraft are an important subclass of actively controlled, highly augmented aircraft. The aircraft without augmentation is unstable; the control system not only redresses the stability and control imbalance, but also provides effective vehicle dynamics that differ in kind from those associated with conventional aircraft. In this paper, the longitudinal properties of highly unstable aircraft and typical superaugmented control systems used to remedy their dynamic deficiencies are explored generically. The topics considered include: (1) Basic flight control system architectures suitable to reduce or completely alleviate the unstable aircraft characteristics. (2) The primary dynamic characteristics and regulatory properties of typical superaugmented aircraft control systems, including governing factors in the linear system, dominant mode characteristics, and fundamental stability margin properties. The total available gain range factor is presented as a basic measure that relates degree of instability, control system limitations, and key control system adjustments. (3) Some flying qualities features for superaugmented aircraft with rate command/attitude hold, extended bandwidth, and attitude command configurations.
Tahmasian, Sevak; Woolsey, Craig A.
A combination of vibrational inputs and state feedback is applied to control the flight of a biomimetic air vehicle. First, a control strategy is developed for longitudinal flight, using a quasi-steady aerodynamic model and neglecting wing inertial effects. Vertical and forward motion is controlled by modulating the wings' stroke and feather angles, respectively. Stabilizing control parameter values are determined using the time-averaged dynamic model. Simulations of a system resembling a hawkmoth show that the proposed controller can overcome modeling error associated with the wing inertia and small parameter uncertainties when following a prescribed trajectory. After introducing the approach through an application to longitudinal flight, the control strategy is extended to address flight in three-dimensional space.
Carlin, C. M.; Hastings, W. J.
The propulsion flight control integration technology (PROFIT) program was designed to develop a flying testbed dedicated to controls research. The preliminary design, analysis, and feasibility studies conducted in support of the PROFIT program are reported. The PROFIT system was built around existing IPCS hardware. In order to achieve the desired system flexibility and capability, additional interfaces between the IPCS hardware and F-15 systems were required. The requirements for additions and modifications to the existing hardware were defined. Those interfaces involving the more significant changes were studied. The DCU memory expansion to 32K with flight qualified hardware was completed on a brassboard basis. The uplink interface breadboard and a brassboard of the central computer interface were also tested. Two preliminary designs and corresponding program plans are presented.
Winkler, H. E.
This paper describes the overall design of the Shuttle Orbiter Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS). The Orbiter ECLSS consists of six major subsystems which accomplish the functions of providing a habitable pressurized cabin atmosphere and removing gaseous contaminants, controlling the temperature of the cabin and vehicle components within acceptable ranges, providing fire detection and suppression capability, maintaining a supply of potable water, collecting and removing metabolic waste materials, and providing utilities and access for extravehicular activity. The operational experience is summarized for the 45 space flights accomplished to date during which the Orbiter ECLSS has been demonstrated to perform reliably, and has proved to have the flexibility to meet a variety of mission needs. Significant flight problems are described, along with the design or procedure changes which were implemented to resolve the problems.
Narducci, Robert; Kreeger, Richard E.
A high fidelity analysis method is proposed to evaluate the ice accumulation and the ensuing rotor performance degradation for a helicopter flying through an icing cloud. The process uses computational fluid dynamics (CFD) coupled to a rotorcraft comprehensive code to establish the aerodynamic environment of a trimmed rotor prior to icing. Based on local aerodynamic conditions along the rotor span and accounting for the azimuthal variation, an ice accumulation analysis using NASA's Lewice3D code is made to establish the ice geometry. Degraded rotor performance is quantified by repeating the high fidelity rotor analysis with updates which account for ice shape and mass. The process is applied on a full-scale UH-1H helicopter in hover using data recorded during the Helicopter Icing Flight Test Program.
Ravi, Sridhar; Crall, James D; McNeilly, Lucas; Gagliardi, Susan F; Biewener, Andrew A; Combes, Stacey A
Airflow conditions close to the Earth's surface are often complex, posing challenges to flight stability and control for volant taxa. Relatively little is known about how well flying animals can contend with complex, adverse air flows, or about the flight control mechanisms used by animals to mitigate wind disturbances. Several recent studies have examined flight in the unsteady von Kármán vortex streets that form behind cylinders, generating flow disturbances that are predictable in space and time; these structures are relatively rare in nature, because they occur only the immediate, downstream vicinity of an object. In contrast, freestream turbulence is characterized by rapid, unpredictable flow disturbances across a wide range of spatial and temporal scales, and is nearly ubiquitous in natural habitats. Hummingbirds are ideal organisms for studying the influence of freestream turbulence on flight, as they forage in a variety of aerial conditions and are powerful flyers. We filmed ruby-throated hummingbirds (Archilochus colubris) maintaining position at a feeder in laminar and strongly turbulent (intensity ∼15%) airflow environments within a wind tunnel and compared their mean kinematics of the head, body, tail and wing, as well as variability in these parameters. Hummingbirds exhibited remarkably stable head position and orientation in both smooth and turbulent flow while maintaining position at the feeder. However, the hummingbird's body was less stable in turbulent flow and appeared to be most sensitive to disturbances along the mediolateral axis, displaying large lateral accelerations, translations and rolling motions during flight. The hummingbirds mitigated these disturbances by increasing mean wing stroke amplitude and stroke plane angle, and by varying these parameters asymmetrically between the wings and from one stroke to the next. They also actively varied the orientation and fan angle of the tail, maintaining a larger mean fan angle when flying in
Noest, Robert; Wang, Z. Jane
Insect have an amazing ability to control their flight, being able to perform both fast aerial maneuvers and stable hovering. The insect's neural system has developed various mechanism by which it can control these flying feats, but we expect that insect morphology is equally important in facilitating the aerial control. We perform a computational study using a quasi-steady instantaneous flapping flight model which allows us to freely adapt the insect's morphological parameters. We picked a fruit fly as the basis for the body shape and wing motion, and study the effect of changes to the morphology for a range of wing stroke amplitudes. In each case we determine the periodic flight mode, with the period equal to a single wing beat, and do a Floquet stability analysis of the flight. To interpret our results we will compare the changed morphology to related insects. We discuss the implications of the insects location on the stability diagram.
Nixon, Mark W.; Langston, Chester W.; Singleton, Jeffrey D.; Piatak, David J.; Kvaternik, Raymond G.; Bennett, Richard L.; Brown, Ross K.
A team of researchers from the Army Research Laboratory, NASA Langley Research Center (LaRC), and Bell Helicopter-Textron, Inc. have completed hover-cell and wind-tunnel testing of a 1/5-size aeroelastically-scaled tiltrotor model using a new active control system for stability augmentation. The active system is based on a generalized predictive control (GPC) algorithm originally developed at NASA LaRC in 1997 for un-known disturbance rejection. Results of these investigations show that GPC combined with an active swashplate can significantly augment the damping and stability of tiltrotors in both hover and high-speed flight.
Pérez-Arancibia, Néstor O; Ma, Kevin Y; Galloway, Kevin C; Greenberg, Jack D; Wood, Robert J
In this paper, we present experimental results on altitude control of a flying microrobot. The problem is approached in two stages. In the first stage, system identification of two relevant subsystems composing the microrobot is performed, using a static flapping experimental setup. In the second stage, the information gathered through the static flapping experiments is employed to design the controller used in vertical flight. The design of the proposed controller relies on the idea of treating an exciting signal as a subsystem of the microrobot. The methods and results presented here are a key step toward achieving total autonomy of bio-inspired flying microrobots.
Sahin, Mehmet; Dilek, Ezgi; Erzincanli, Belkis
The parallel large-scale unstructured finite volume method based on an Arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian (ALE) formulation has been applied in order to investigate the near wake structure of a hovering Drosophila flight. DISTENE MeshGems-Hexa algorithm based on the octree method is used to generate the all hexahedral mesh for the wing-body combination. The mesh deformation algorithm is based on the indirect radial basis function (RBF) method at each time level while avoiding remeshing in order to enhance numerical robustness. The large-scale numerical simulations are carried out for a flapping Drosophila in hover flight. The λ2-criterion proposed by Jeong and Hussain (1995) is used for investigating the time variation of the Eulerian coherent structures in the near wake. In addition, the Lagrangian coherent structures is also investigated using finite-time Lyapunov exponents (FTLE) fields. The present simulations reveal highly detailed near wake topology for a hovering Drosophila. This is very useful in terms of understanding physics in biological flights which can provide a very useful tool for designing bio-inspired MAVs. The authors acknowledge financial support from Turkish National Scientific and Technical Research Council (TUBITAK) through project numbers 111M332 and 214M293.
environment of the Panamanian rainforest at extremely low light intensities. Overall, our findings demonstrate that that the visual system of diurnal...controlling flight in the complex environment of a dark rainforest . The relatively low ground speed of Megalopta suggests that these bees use temporal...interesting because in the complex environment of the Panamanian rainforest at extremely low light intensities. Our results showed that, despite the
Throndsen, E. O.
The Lockheed L-1011 automatic flight control systems - yaw stability augmentation and automatic landing - are described in terms of their redundancies. The reliability objectives for these systems are discussed and related to in-service experience. In general, the availability of the stability augmentation system is higher than the original design requirement, but is commensurate with early estimates. The in-service experience with automatic landing is not sufficient to provide verification of Category 3 automatic landing system estimated availability.
Multisensory mechanisms of gaze stabilization and flight control 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 5d. PROJECT NUMBER 5d. TASK NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S...email: firstname.lastname@example.org Imperial College South Kensington Campus London SW7 2AZ “ Multisensory Mechanisms of Gaze... Multisensory Integration, and Efference Copies in Behaving Animals 2.5 State-dependent Processing in LPTCs 2.6 Characterization of Head Movements in the
Report proposes use of shape-memory-alloy actuators, instead of hydraulic actuators, for aerodynamic flight-control surfaces. Actuator made of shape-memory alloy converts thermal energy into mechanical work by changing shape as it makes transitions between martensitic and austenitic crystalline phase states of alloy. Because both hot exhaust gases and cryogenic propellant liquids available aboard launch rockets, shape-memory-alloy actuators exceptionally suited for use aboard such rockets.
Schmidt, D. K.
The topics of research in this program include pilot/vehicle analysis techniques, identification of pilot dynamics, and control and display synthesis techniques for optimizing aircraft handling qualities. The project activities are discussed. The current technical activity is directed at extending and validating the active display synthesis procedure, and the pilot/vehicle analysis of the NLR rate-command flight configurations in the landing task. Two papers published by the researchers are attached as appendices.
DISPLAYS COTOSE IRF MOTIONS I I T EALATIONl PILOT FEPERIANTAL. Figure 3-2. Overview of the VRA/Micro- DFCS System. mechanical linkage connecting to the...April 1979 CELEC T E D 1 .... 3 OCT 23 1980 DISTRIBUTIOD Sor . D : - U Approved for public . Distribution Uniirnitcd - UNC LASS SECURITY CLASSIFICATION...CLASSIFICATION OF Ywl PAGE(IWhen Data Enterod) ABSTRACT A microprocessor-based digital flight control system (Micro- DFCS ) is implemented in Princeton’s
Boskovic, Jovan D.; Knoebel, Nathan; Mehra, Raman K.; Gregory, Irene
In this paper we present an integrated approach to in-flight damage accommodation in flight control. The approach is based on Multiple Models, Switching and Tuning (MMST), and consists of three steps: In the first step the main objective is to acquire a realistic aircraft damage model. Modeling of in-flight damage is a highly complex problem since there is a large number of issues that need to be addressed. One of the most important one is that there is strong coupling between structural dynamics, aerodynamics, and flight control. These effects cannot be studied separately due to this coupling. Once a realistic damage model is available, in the second step a large number of models corresponding to different damage cases are generated. One possibility is to generate many linear models and interpolate between them to cover a large portion of the flight envelope. Once these models have been generated, we will implement a recently developed-Model Set Reduction (MSR) technique. The technique is based on parameterizing damage in terms of uncertain parameters, and uses concepts from robust control theory to arrive at a small number of "centered" models such that the controllers corresponding to these models assure desired stability and robustness properties over a subset in the parametric space. By devising a suitable model placement strategy, the entire parametric set is covered with a relatively small number of models and controllers. The third step consists of designing a Multiple Models, Switching and Tuning (MMST) strategy for estimating the current operating regime (damage case) of the aircraft, and switching to the corresponding controller to achieve effective damage accommodation and the desired performance. In the paper present a comprehensive approach to damage accommodation using Model Set Design,MMST, and Variable Structure compensation for coupling nonlinearities. The approach was evaluated on a model of F/A-18 aircraft dynamics under control effector damage
Stepanyan, Vahram; Krishnakumar, Kalmanje; Nguyen, Nhan; VanEykeren, Luarens
This paper addresses the problem of verifying adaptive control techniques for enabling safe flight in the presence of adverse conditions. Since the adaptive systems are non-linear by design, the existing control verification metrics are not applicable to adaptive controllers. Moreover, these systems are in general highly uncertain. Hence, the system's characteristics cannot be evaluated by relying on the available dynamical models. This necessitates the development of control verification metrics based on the system's input-output information. For this point of view, a set of metrics is introduced that compares the uncertain aircraft's input-output behavior under the action of an adaptive controller to that of a closed-loop linear reference model to be followed by the aircraft. This reference model is constructed for each specific maneuver using the exact aerodynamic and mass properties of the aircraft to meet the stability and performance requirements commonly accepted in flight control. The proposed metrics are unified in the sense that they are model independent and not restricted to any specific adaptive control methods. As an example, we present simulation results for a wing damaged generic transport aircraft with several existing adaptive controllers.
Li, Jianqing; Gao, Changsheng; Jing, Wuxing; Wei, Pengxin
In terms of the moving mass control technology, the configuration of internal moving masses is a key challenge. In order to reduce the complexity of configuring these moving masses in a flight vehicle, a combination bank-to-turn control mode with the single moving mass and reaction jet is proposed in this paper. To investigate the dynamics and the potential of the control mechanism, an attitude dynamic model with single moving mass is generated. The dynamic analysis indicates that the control stability, control authority and dynamic behavior of the pitch channel are determined by the mass ratio of the moving mass to the system and the difference between the mass center of the moving mass and the mass center of the vehicle body. Interestingly, control authority increases proportionally with increasing mass ratio and also with decreasing the magnitude of the static margin. To deal with the coupling caused by the additional inertia moment which is generated by the motion of the moving mass, an adaptive control law by using dynamic inversion theory and the extended state observer is designed. Also, a compensator is designed for eliminating the influence of the servo actuator's dynamics on attitude of the flight vehicle. Finally, the simulation results validate the quality of the proposed adaptive controller which ensures a good performance in the novel configuration with internal moving mass.
Burcham, Frank W., Jr.
There have been many cases in which the crew of a multi-engine airplane had to use engine thrust for emergency flight control. Such a procedure is very difficult, because the propulsive control forces are small, the engine response is slow, and airplane dynamics such as the phugoid and dutch roll are difficult to damp with thrust. In general, thrust increases are used to climb, thrust decreases to descend, and differential thrust is used to turn. Average speed is not significantly affected by changes in throttle setting. Pitch control is achieved because of pitching moments due to speed changes, from thrust offset, and from the vertical component of thrust. Roll control is achieved by using differential thrust to develop yaw, which, through the normal dihedral effect, causes a roll. Control power in pitch and roll tends to increase as speed decreases. Although speed is not controlled by the throttles, configuration changes are often available (lowering gear, flaps, moving center-of-gravity) to change the speed. The airplane basic stability is also a significant factor. Fuel slosh and gyroscopic moments are small influences on throttles-only control. The background and principles of throttles-only flight control are described.
Burcham, Jr., Frank W. (Inventor); Burken, John J. (Inventor); Le, Jeanette (Inventor)
A system for emergency aircraft control uses at least one engine and lateral fuel transfer that allows a pilot to regain control over an aircraft under emergency conditions. Where aircraft propulsion is available only through engines on one side of the aircraft, lateral fuel transfer provides means by which the center of gravity of the aircraft can be moved over to the wing associated with the operating engine, thus inducing a moment that balances the moment from the remaining engine, allowing the pilot to regain control over the aircraft. By implementing the present invention in flight control programming associated with a flight control computer (FCC), control of the aircraft under emergency conditions can be linked to the yoke or autopilot knob of the aircraft. Additionally, the center of gravity of the aircraft can be shifted in order to effect maneuvers and turns by spacing such center of gravity either closer to or farther away from the propelling engine or engines. In an alternative embodiment, aircraft having a third engine associated with the tail section or otherwise are accommodated and implemented by the present invention by appropriately shifting the center of gravity of the aircraft. Alternatively, where a four-engine aircraft has suffered loss of engine control on one side of the plane, the lateral fuel transfer may deliver the center of gravity closer to the two remaining engines. Differential thrust between the two can then control the pitch and roll of the aircraft in conjunction with lateral fuel transfer.
Olcer, Fahri Ersel
Recent developments on individual blade control (IBC) and physics based reduced order models of various on-blade control (OBC) actuation concepts are opening up opportunities to explore innovative rotor control strategies for improved rotor aerodynamic performance, reduced vibration and BVI noise, and improved rotor stability, etc. Further, recent developments in computationally efficient algorithms for the extraction of Linear Time Invariant (LTI) models are providing a convenient framework for exploring integrated flight and rotor control, while accounting for the important couplings that exist between body and low frequency rotor response and high frequency rotor response. Formulation of linear time invariant (LTI) models of a nonlinear system about a periodic equilibrium using the harmonic domain representation of LTI model states has been studied in the literature. This thesis presents an alternative method and a computationally efficient scheme for implementation of the developed method for extraction of linear time invariant (LTI) models from a helicopter nonlinear model in forward flight. The fidelity of the extracted LTI models is evaluated using response comparisons between the extracted LTI models and the nonlinear model in both time and frequency domains. Moreover, the fidelity of stability properties is studied through the eigenvalue and eigenvector comparisons between LTI and LTP models by making use of the Floquet Transition Matrix. For time domain evaluations, individual blade control (IBC) and On-Blade Control (OBC) inputs that have been tried in the literature for vibration and noise control studies are used. For frequency domain evaluations, frequency sweep inputs are used to obtain frequency responses of fixed system hub loads to a single blade IBC input. The evaluation results demonstrate the fidelity of the extracted LTI models, and thus, establish the validity of the LTI model extraction process for use in integrated flight and rotor control
Brown, Nelson A.
This viewgraph presentation reviews the F-15 Intelligent Flight Control System and Aeronautics including Autonomous Aerial Refueling Demonstrations, X-48B Blended Wing Body, F-15 Quiet Spike, and NF-15 Intelligent Flight Controls.
Smith, Irene Skupniewicz; Shi, Nija; Webster, Christopher
Flight controllers in NASA s mission control centers work day and night to ensure that missions succeed and crews are safe. The IT goals of NASA mission control centers are similar to those of most businesses: to evolve IT infrastructure from basic to dynamic. This paper describes Mission Control Technologies (MCT), an application platform that is powering mission control today and is designed to meet the needs of future NASA control centers. MCT is an extensible platform that provides GUI components and a runtime environment. The platform enables NASA s IT goals through its use of lightweight interfaces and configurable components, which promote standardization and incorporate useful solution patterns. The MCT architecture positions mission control centers to reach the goal of dynamic IT, leading to lower cost of ownership, and treating software as a strategic investment.
Velez, C. E.
An advanced satellite operations center (ASOC) is examined which features fourth generation computer hardware and a modern system and flight dynamics architecture. The functions of the ASOC include the command and control of a full spectrum of satellite types, orbit management for these satellites, attitude control, and satellite subsystems management. The ASOC will allow the handling of an increased volume of space traffic and will improve operations and indirectly reduce operating costs by centralizing the data processing element which includes the functions of real time, interactive control of space vehicles and ground resources from autonomous mission control centers (MCC), real time processing of telemetry, tracking and status data. Analysis and control functions include computer interactive planning and evaluation functions and centralized control of network resources via a Range Control Center (RCC).
Xu, Ming; Liang, Yuying; Tan, Tian; Wei, Lixin
This paper deals with the stabilization of cluster flight on an elliptic reference orbit by the Hamiltonian structure-preserving control using the relative position measurement only. The linearized Melton's relative equation is utilized to derive the controller and then the full nonlinear relative dynamics are employed to numerically evaluate the controller's performance. In this paper, the hyperbolic and elliptic eigenvalues and their manifolds are treated without distinction notations. This new treatment not only contributes to solving the difficulty in feedback of the unfixed-dimensional manifolds, but also allows more opportunities to set the controlled frequencies of foundational motions or to optimize control gains. Any initial condition can be stabilized on a Kolmogorov-Arnold-Moser torus near a controlled elliptic equilibrium. The motions are stabilized around the natural relative trajectories rather than track a reference relative configuration. In addition, the bounded quasi-periodic trajectories generated by the controller have advantages in rapid reconfiguration and unpredictable evolution.
Beckers, F.; Verheyden, B.; Morukov, B.; Aubert, Ae
baseline condition. Mean systolic blood pressure did not differ significantly before during and after space flight. In space both LF and HF were decreased compared the standing measurements pre- and post-flight. No evolution was present in BPV after return to Earth. Conclusion: During space flight autonomic modulation is characterised by a vagal predominance. Immediately after return to Earth overall autonomic modulation is extremely depressed. Vasomotor autonomic control is restored rather quickly after space flight, while the restoration of autonomic modulation of heart rate is very slow.
Carter, John F.
NASA Dryden Flight Research Center (DFRC) is working with the United States Navy to complete ground testing and initiate flight testing of a modified set of F/A-18 flight control computers. The Production Support Flight Control Computers (PSFCC) can give any fleet F/A-18 airplane an in-flight, pilot-selectable research control law capability. NASA DFRC can efficiently flight test the PSFCC for the following four reasons: (1) Six F/A-18 chase aircraft are available which could be used with the PSFCC; (2) An F/A-18 processor-in-the-loop simulation exists for validation testing; (3) The expertise has been developed in programming the research processor in the PSFCC; and (4) A well-defined process has been established for clearing flight control research projects for flight. This report presents a functional description of the PSFCC. Descriptions of the NASA DFRC facilities, PSFCC verification and validation process, and planned PSFCC projects are also provided.
Ito, Daigoro; Georgie, Jennifer; Valasek, John; Ward, Donald T.
This report addresses issues in developing a flight control design for vehicles operating across a broad flight regime and with highly nonlinear physical descriptions of motion. Specifically it addresses the need for reentry vehicles that could operate through reentry from space to controlled touchdown on Earth. The latter part of controlled descent is achieved by parachute or paraglider - or by all automatic or a human-controlled landing similar to that of the Orbiter. Since this report addresses the specific needs of human-carrying (not necessarily piloted) reentry vehicles, it deals with highly nonlinear equations of motion, and then-generated control systems must be robust across a very wide range of physics. Thus, this report deals almost exclusively with some form of dynamic inversion (DI). Two vital aspects of control theory - noninteracting control laws and the transformation of nonlinear systems into equivalent linear systems - are embodied in DI. Though there is no doubt that the mathematical tools and underlying theory are widely available, there are open issues as to the practicality of using DI as the only or primary design approach for reentry articles. This report provides a set of guidelines that can be used to determine the practical usefulness of the technique.
Hirsch, Deborah; Goldberger, Ellen
The term "helicopter parents" typically involves parents--most often, mothers--who "hover" over their children to shelter them from stress, resolve their problems, and offer unwavering, on-the-spot support and affirmation. The recipients of this attention are the generation who have had their play dates managed and have been…
Reeder, John P; Tapscott, Robert J
The source of an appreciable pitching-moment difference between left and right hovering turns for a tandem helicopter is described. The difference in pitching moment results from the difference in rotational speed of the counter rotating rotors with respect to the air while the helicopter is turning.
Scheme for the Reconfigurable Flight Control System ------------------------ 54 4.1 Pitch Stability Augmentation System and Normal "g" Command System...64 4.4 Yaw Stability Augmentation System with Washout Circuit ------------------------------- 67 4.5 p-command System...Longitudinal Flight Control System. The design of a longitudinal flight control system with pitch stability augmentation system and normal g command
...; Electronic Flight Control System Mode Annunciation. AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT... electronic flight control system. The applicable airworthiness regulations do not contain adequate or...). Novel or Unusual Design Features The GVI will have a fly-by-wire electronic flight control system....
Csank, Jeffrey T.; Chin, Jeffrey C.; May, Ryan D.; Litt, Jonathan S.; Guo, Ten-Huei
Aircraft engines can be effective actuators to help pilots avert or recover from emergency situations. Emergency control modes are being developed to enhance the engines performance to increase the probability of recovery under these circumstances. This paper discusses a proposed implementation of an architecture that requests emergency propulsion control modes, allowing the engines to deliver additional performance in emergency situations while still ensuring a specified safety level. In order to determine the appropriate level of engine performance enhancement, information regarding the current emergency scenario (including severity) and current engine health must be known. This enables the engine to operate beyond its nominal range while minimizing overall risk to the aircraft. In this architecture, the flight controller is responsible for determining the severity of the event and the level of engine risk that is acceptable, while the engine controller is responsible for delivering the desired performance within the specified risk range. A control mode selector specifies an appropriate situation-specific enhanced mode, which the engine controller then implements. The enhanced control modes described in this paper provide additional engine thrust or response capabilities through the modification of gains, limits, and the control algorithm, but increase the risk of engine failure. The modifications made to the engine controller to enable the use of the enhanced control modes are described, as are the interaction between the various subsystems and importantly, the interaction between the flight controller/pilot and the propulsion control system. Simulation results demonstrate how the system responds to requests for enhanced operation and the corresponding increase in performance.
Moua, Cheng; McWherter, Shaun H.; Cox, Timothy H.; Gera, Joseph
The Quiet Spike (QS) flight research program was an aerodynamic and structural proof-of-concept of a telescoping sonic-boom suppressing nose boom on an F-15 B aircraft. The program goal was to collect flight data for model validation up to 1.8 Mach. The primary test philosophy was maintaining safety of flight. In the area of stability and controls the primary concerns were to assess the potential destabilizing effect of the spike on the stability, controllability, and handling qualities of the aircraft and to ensure adequate stability margins across the entire QS flight envelop. This paper reports on the stability and control methods used for flight envelope clearance and flight test results of the F-15B Quiet Spike. Also discussed are the flight test approach, the criteria to proceed to the next flight condition, brief pilot commentary on typical piloting tasks, approach and landing, and refueling task, and air data sensitivity to the flight control system.
Penney, Heather D; Hassall, Christopher; Skevington, Jeffrey H; Lamborn, Brent; Sherratt, Thomas N
Palatable (Batesian) mimics of unprofitable models could use behavioral mimicry to compensate for the ease with which they can be visually discriminated or to augment an already close morphological resemblance. We evaluated these contrasting predictions by assaying the behavior of 57 field-caught species of mimetic hover flies (Diptera: Syrphidae) and quantifying their morphological similarity to a range of potential hymenopteran models. A purpose-built phylogeny for the hover flies was used to control for potential lack of independence due to shared evolutionary history. Those hover fly species that engage in behavioral mimicry (mock stinging, leg waving, wing wagging) were all large wasp mimics within the genera Spilomyia and Temnostoma. While the behavioral mimics assayed were good morphological mimics, not all good mimics were behavioral mimics. Therefore, while the behaviors may have evolved to augment good morphological mimicry, they do not advantage all good mimics.
Wie, Bong; Du, Wei; Whorton, Mark
This paper describes the fundamental principles of launch vehicle flight control analysis and design. In particular, the classical concept of "drift-minimum" and "load-minimum" control principles is re-examined and its performance and stability robustness with respect to modeling uncertainties and a gimbal angle constraint is discussed. It is shown that an additional feedback of angle-of-attack or lateral acceleration can significantly improve the overall performance and robustness, especially in the presence of unexpected large wind disturbance. Non-minimum-phase structural filtering of "unstably interacting" bending modes of large flexible launch vehicles is also shown to be effective and robust.
Morello, S. A.
With the advent of airline deregulation and increased competition, the need for cost efficient airline operations is critical. This paper summarizes past research efforts and planned research thrusts toward the development of compatible flight management and air traffic control systems that promise increased operational effectiveness and efficiency. Potential capacity improvements resulting from a time-based ATC simulation (fast-time) are presented. Advanced display concepts with time guidance and velocity vector information to allow the flight crew to play an important role in the future ATC environment are discussed. Results of parametric sensitivity analyses are also presented that quantify the fuel/cost penalties for idle-thrust mismodeling and wind-modeling errors.
Knudson, Matthew D.; Colby, Mitchell; Tumer, Kagan
Dynamic flight environments in which objectives and environmental features change with respect to time pose a difficult problem with regards to planning optimal flight paths. Path planning methods are typically computationally expensive, and are often difficult to implement in real time if system objectives are changed. This computational problem is compounded when multiple agents are present in the system, as the state and action space grows exponentially. In this work, we use cooperative coevolutionary algorithms in order to develop policies which control agent motion in a dynamic multiagent unmanned aerial system environment such that goals and perceptions change, while ensuring safety constraints are not violated. Rather than replanning new paths when the environment changes, we develop a policy which can map the new environmental features to a trajectory for the agent while ensuring safe and reliable operation, while providing 92% of the theoretically optimal performance
Stevens, Richard; Burcham, Frank W., Jr.
If normal aircraft flight controls are lost, emergency flight control may be attempted using only the thrust of engines. Collective thrust is used to control flightpath, and differential thrust is used to control bank angle. One issue is whether a total loss of hydraulics (TLOH) leaves an airplane in a recoverable condition. Recoverability is a function of airspeed, altitude, flight phase, and configuration. If the airplane can be recovered, flight test and simulation results on several transport-class airplanes have shown that throttles-only control (TOC) is usually adequate to maintain up-and-away flight, but executing a safe landing is very difficult. There are favorable aircraft configurations, and also techniques that will improve recoverability and control and increase the chances of a survivable landing. The DHS and NASA have recently conducted a flight and simulator study to determine the effectivity of manual throttles-only control as a way to recover and safely land a range of transport airplanes. This paper discusses TLOH recoverability as a function of conditions, and TOC landability results for a range of transport airplanes, and some key techniques for flying with throttles and making a survivable landing. Airplanes evaluated include the B-747, B-767, B-777, B-757, A320, and B-737 airplanes.
Warrick, Douglas R; Tobalske, Bret W; Powers, Donald R
Aerodynamic theory and empirical observations of animals flying at similar Reynolds numbers (Re) predict that airflow over hummingbird wings will be dominated by a stable, attached leading edge vortex (LEV). In insects exhibiting similar kinematics, when the translational movement of the wing ceases (as at the end of the downstroke), the LEV is shed and lift production decreases until the energy of the LEV is re-captured in the subsequent half-cycle translation. We here show that while the hummingbird wing is strongly influenced by similar sharp-leading-edge aerodynamics, leading edge vorticity is inconsistent, varying from 0.7 to 26 per cent (mean 16%) of total lift production, is always generated within 3 mm of the dorsal surface of the wing, showing no retrograde (trailing to leading edge) flow, and does not increase from proximal to distal wing as would be expected with a conical vortex (class III LEV) described for hawkmoths. Further, the bound circulation is not shed as a vortex at the end of translation, but instead remains attached and persists after translation has ceased, augmented by the rotation (pronation, supination) of the wing that occurs between the wing-translation half-cycles. The result is a near-continuous lift production through wing turn-around, previously unknown in vertebrates, able to contribute to weight support as well as stability and control during hovering. Selection for a planform suited to creating this unique flow and nearly-uninterrupted lift production throughout the wingbeat cycle may help explain the relatively narrow hummingbird wing.
Frost, Chad R.; Hindson, William S.; Moralez. Ernesto, III; Tucker, George E.; Dryfoos, James B.
Two unique sets of flight control laws were designed, tested and flown on the Army/NASA Rotorcraft Aircrew Systems Concepts Airborne Laboratory (RASCAL) JUH-60A Black Hawk helicopter. The first set of control laws used a simple rate feedback scheme, intended to facilitate the first flight and subsequent flight qualification of the RASCAL research flight control system. The second set of control laws comprised a more sophisticated model-following architecture. Both sets of flight control laws were developed and tested extensively using desktop-to-flight modeling, analysis, and simulation tools. Flight test data matched the model predicted responses well, providing both evidence and confidence that future flight control development for RASCAL will be efficient and accurate.
Mihaloew, James R.; Drummond, Colin K.
The United States is in the initial stages of committing to a national program to develop a supersonic short takeoff and vertical landing (STOVL) aircraft. The goal of the propulsion community in this effort is to have the enabling propulsion technologies for this type aircraft in place to permit a low risk decision regarding the initiation of a research STOVL supersonic attack/fighter aircraft in the late mid-90's. This technology will effectively integrate, enhance, and extend the supersonic cruise, STOVL and fighter/attack programs to enable U.S. industry to develop a revolutionary supersonic short takeoff and vertical landing fighter/attack aircraft in the post-ATF period. A joint NASA Lewis and NASA Ames research program, with the objective of developing and validating technology for integrated-flight propulsion control design methodologies for short takeoff and vertical landing (STOVL) aircraft, was planned and is underway. This program, the NASA Supersonic STOVL Integrated Flight-Propulsion Controls Program, is a major element of the overall NASA-Lewis Supersonic STOVL Propulsion Technology Program. It uses an integrated approach to develop an integrated program to achieve integrated flight-propulsion control technology. Essential elements of the integrated controls research program are realtime simulations of the integrated aircraft and propulsion systems which will be used in integrated control concept development and evaluations. This paper describes pertinent parts of the research program leading up to the related realtime simulation development and remarks on the simulation structure to accommodate propulsion system hardware drop-in for real system evaluation.
This concept allows control of high-performance stepper motors with minimal parts count and minimal flight software complexity. Although it uses a small number of common flight-qualified parts and simple control algorithms, it is capable enough to meet demanding system requirements. Its programmable nature makes it trivial to implement changes to control algorithms both during integration & test and in flight. Enhancements such as microstepping, half stepping, back-emf compensation, and jitter reduction can be tailored to the requirements of a large variety of stepper motor based applications including filter wheels, focus mechanisms, antenna tracking subsystems, pointing and mobility. The hardware design (using an H-bridge motor controller IC) was adapted from JPL's MER mission, still operating on Mars. This concept has been fully developed and incorporated into the MCS instrument on MRO, currently operating in Mars orbit. It has been incorporated into the filter wheel mechanism and linear stage (focus) mechanism for the AMT instrument. On MCS/MRO, two of these circuits control the elevation and azimuth of the MCS telescope/radiometer assembly, allowing the instrument to continuously monitor the limb of the Martian atmosphere. Implementation on MCS/MRO resulted in a 4:1 reduction in the volume and mass required for the motor driver electronics (100:25 square inches of PCB space), producing a very compact instrument. In fact, all of the electronics for the MCS instrument are packaged within the movable instrument structure. It also saved approximately 3 Watts of power. Most importantly, the design enabled MCS to meet very its stringent maximum allowable torque disturbance requirements.
Dobrokhodov, Vladimir; Kitsios, Ioannis; Kaminer, Isaac; Jones, Kevin D.; Xargay, Enric; Hovakimyan, Naira; Cao, Chengyu; Lizarraga, Mariano I.; Gregory, Irene M.
The paper addresses initial steps involved in the development and flight implementation of new metrics driven L1 adaptive flight control system. The work concentrates on (i) definition of appropriate control driven metrics that account for the control surface failures; (ii) tailoring recently developed L1 adaptive controller to the design of adaptive flight control systems that explicitly address these metrics in the presence of control surface failures and dynamic changes under adverse flight conditions; (iii) development of a flight control system for implementation of the resulting algorithms onboard of small UAV; and (iv) conducting a comprehensive flight test program that demonstrates performance of the developed adaptive control algorithms in the presence of failures. As the initial milestone the paper concentrates on the adaptive flight system setup and initial efforts addressing the ability of a commercial off-the-shelf AP with and without adaptive augmentation to recover from control surface failures.
Campbell, Stefan F.; Nguyen, Nhan T.; Kaneshige, John; Krishnakumar, Kalmanje
This paper expands on the hybrid control architecture developed at the NASA Ames Research Center by addressing issues related to indirect adaptation using the recursive least squares (RLS) algorithm. Specifically, the hybrid control architecture is an adaptive flight controller that features both direct and indirect adaptation techniques. This paper will focus almost exclusively on the modifications necessary to achieve quality indirect adaptive control. Additionally this paper will present results that, using a full non -linear aircraft model, demonstrate the effectiveness of the hybrid control architecture given drastic changes in an aircraft s dynamics. Throughout the development of this topic, a thorough discussion of the RLS algorithm as a system identification technique will be provided along with results from seven well-known modifications to the popular RLS algorithm.