Robotic Samara – MURI

Autonomous Flight of a Robotic Samara Micro-Air-Vehicle

Sponsor: MURI (ARO)
Collaborators: Dean Darryll Pines (PI), Evan Ulrich, Sean Humbert

This dissertation details the flight dynamics and control of a prototype mono-wing rotorcraft which mimics the passive transit of the species Acer diabolicum Blume. The asymmetric and all-rotating platform requires the development of a novel sensing and control framework. The rigid body dynamics are derived for a flight path consisting of a coordinated helical turn. The small perturbation equations of motion are used to calculate the forces necessary for flight along a trajectory recorded by a visual motion capture system. The result of this work is that the robotic samara is controllable in unpowered autorotation as well as hovering and directional flight.

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