Consensus-based and network control of fixed wing unmanned aerial vehicles

Jaimes Betancourt, Aldo Sergio
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This thesis presents the design of a testbed of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). The main objective is to design and test flight control algorithms and swarm control techniques. The results obtained give confidence to continue expanding and improving the designed testbed.

During the last years, research in the field of cooperative control of swarm of robots and specially UAV have been developed due to increment of UAV applications not only military but civilian. In order to develop research in the field of swarm of UAV this project identifies three problems. First, the development of a testbed for UAV, in this stage of the project the efforts were focused on implementing a ground station and customizing a radio controlled airplane. Second, Network Control studies the control not only of a plant, but the control of different plants or robots over a network. Because of that the implementation of an ad hoc network and a protocol for the swarm of UAV is studied. Finally, a Consensus Control algorithm for cooperative control of UAV is proposed.

The testbed currently enables us to perform waypoint navigation using a Global Positioning System (GPS). The protocol communication designed for the ad hoc network has proved to be reliable for our application and can be expanded to be used with different number of agents. The algorithm of Consensus Control has been analyzed and tested in simulation. Future work will allow implementing the Consensus Control as centralized control or distributed control using the ad hoc network.

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Consensus Control, Network Control, Swarm Control, UAV
Electrical and Computer Engineering