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Development of an autonomous flapping-wing aerial vehicle

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The flapping-wing aerial vehicle (FWAV) has appealed to more and more researchers recently owing to its outstanding performance in various domains and the development of some related technologies. The research on autonomous flight control of the FWAV involves many challenges and is still in nascent stages. In this work, we develop an FWAV with a mass of 14.1 g and build a vision-based experimental platform. A model-based controller is proposed on the basis of theory and simulation results prove its effectiveness. A PID control algorithm based on visual measurement is utilized to achieve the height-keeping control of the FWAV, and a software platform is designed to record the flight status determined using Euler angles and position information.

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This work was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 61522302, 61520106009, 61533008), Beijing Natural Science Foundation (Grant No. 4172041), and Fundamental Research Funds for the China Central Universities of USTB (Grant No. FRF-TP-15-005C1).

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Correspondence to Changyin Sun.

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He, W., Huang, H., Chen, Y. et al. Development of an autonomous flapping-wing aerial vehicle. Sci. China Inf. Sci. 60, 063201 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11432-017-9077-1

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  • flapping-wing aerial vehicle
  • autonomous robot
  • control design
  • vision-based control
  • unmanned aerial vehicle