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Autonomous Vision-Based Helicopter Flights Through Obstacle Gates

Andert, Franz and Adolf, Florian-Michael and Goormann, Lukas and Dittrich, Jörg Steffen (2009) Autonomous Vision-Based Helicopter Flights Through Obstacle Gates. Journal of Intelligent and Robotic Systems. Springer Netherlands. DOI: 10.1007/s10846-009-9357-3. ISSN 0921-0296.

Full text not available from this repository.

Official URL: http://www.springer.com/engineering/robotics/journal/10846


The challenge for unmanned aerial vehicles to sense and avoid obstacles becomes even harder if narrow passages have to be crossed. An approach to solve a mission scenario that tackles the problem of such narrow passages is presented here. The task is to fly an unmanned helicopter autonomously through a course with gates that are only slightly larger than the vehicle itself. A camera is installed on the vehicle to detect the gates. Using vehicle localization data from a navigation solution, camera alignment and global gate positions are estimated simultaneously. The presented algorithm calculates the desired target waypoints to fly through the gates. Furthermore, the paper presents a mission execution plan that instructs the vehicle to search for a gate, to fly through it after successful detection, and to search for a proceeding one. All algorithms are designed to run onboard the vehicle so that no interaction with the ground control station is necessary, making the vehicle completely autonomous. To develop and optimize algorithms, and to prove the correctness and accuracy of vision-based gate detection under real operational conditions, gate positions are searched in images taken from manual helicopter flights. Afterwards, the integration of visual sensing and mission control is proven. The paper presents results from full autonomous flight where the helicopter searches and flies through a gate without operator actions.

Document Type:Article
Title:Autonomous Vision-Based Helicopter Flights Through Obstacle Gates
AuthorsInstitution or Email of Authors
Andert, Franzfranz.andert@dlr.de
Adolf, Florian-Michaelflorian.adolf@dlr.de
Goormann, Lukaslukas.goormann@dlr.de
Dittrich, Jörg Steffenjoerg.dittrich@dlr.de
Date:21 August 2009
Journal or Publication Title:Journal of Intelligent and Robotic Systems
Refereed publication:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Publisher:Springer Netherlands
Keywords:Unmanned aerial vehicle; Autonomous helicopter flight; Image processing; Target recognition; Sensor fusion; Obstacle avoidance
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport (old)
HGF - Program:Aeronautics
HGF - Program Themes:L VU - Air Traffic and Environment (old)
DLR - Research area:Aeronautics
DLR - Program:L VU - Air Traffic and Environment
DLR - Research theme (Project):L -- no assignement
Location: Braunschweig
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Flight Systems > Unmanned Aircraft
Deposited By: Dr.-Ing. Franz Andert
Deposited On:21 Oct 2009 13:30
Last Modified:07 Feb 2013 20:13

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