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Proceedings Paper

Development of a low-cost autonomous minihelicoptor for power line inspections
Author(s): Jaime Del-Cerro; Inaki Aguirre; Antonio Barrientos
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Paper Abstract

Nowadays, one of the possibilities of performing inspections of electrical power lines is using visual inspections from video records taken from a camera situated on a commercial helicopter. This task is very dangerous because the flight must be done at very low altitude and close to the cables. It is also expensive because it is necessary to use a commercial helicopter and at least two qualified operators. This paper describes the system architecture and vehicle control of the prototype that is being developed by the robotic group of DISAM at “Universidad Politécnica de Madrid” for unmanned aerial inspection of electrical power lines. Artificial system vision is needed to obtain the information for the vehicle guidance by automatic detection of the cable lines and generating 3D coordinates. Navigation is performed using an inertial measurement unit to obtain the attitude of the craft. The information from the vision system is used to correct the helicopter trajectories. Helicopters exhibit highly non-linear systems with strongly coupled modes. They are very difficult to model and control. In this paper, a model of the minihelicopter is adjusted and controlled using a Linear Quadratic Gaussian (LQG) controller for pitch and roll movements and a PID one for yaw

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 March 2001
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 4195, Mobile Robots XV and Telemanipulator and Telepresence Technologies VII, (2 March 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.417291
Show Author Affiliations
Jaime Del-Cerro, Univ. Politecnica de Madrid (Spain)
Inaki Aguirre, Univ. Politecnica de Madrid (Spain)
Antonio Barrientos, Univ. Politecnica de Madrid (Spain)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4195:
Mobile Robots XV and Telemanipulator and Telepresence Technologies VII
Matthew R. Stein; Howie M. Choset; Douglas W. Gage; Matthew R. Stein, Editor(s)

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