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Control of a Quadcopter Aerial Robot Using Optic Flow Sensing
AuthorHurd, Michael B.
AdvisorLeang, Kam K.
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This thesis focuses on the motion control of a custom-built quadcopter aerial robot using optic flow sensing. Optic flow sensing is a vision-based approach that can provide a robot the ability to fly in global positioning system (GPS) denied environments, such as indoor environments. In this work, optic flow sensors are used to stabilize the motion of quadcopter robot, where an optic flow algorithm is applied to provide odometry measurements to the quadcopter's central processing unit to monitor the flight heading. The optic-flow sensor and algorithm are capable of gathering andprocessing the images at 250 frames/sec, and the sensor package weighs 2.5 g and has a footprint of 6 cm2 in area. The odometry value from the optic flow sensor is then used a feedback information in a simple proportional-integral-derivative (PID) controller on the quadcopter. Experimental results are presented to demonstrate theeffectiveness of using optic flow for controlling the motion of the quadcopter aerial robot. The technique presented herein can be applied to different types of aerial robotic systems or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), as well as unmanned groundvehicles (UGV).