A vision-based servoing technique is proposed for a 2 degrees-of-freedom (dof) model helicopter equipped with a monocular vision system. In general, these techniques can be categorized as image- and position-based, where the task error is defined in the image plane in the former and in the physical space in the latter. The 2-dof model helicopter requires a configuration-dependent feed-forward control to compensate for gravitational forces when servoing on a ground target. Therefore, a position-based visual servoing deems more appropriate for precision control. Image information collected from a ground object, with known geometry a priori, is used to calculate the desired pose of the camera and correspondingly the desired joint angles of the model helicopter. To assure a smooth servoing, the task error is parameterized, using the information obtained from the linearaized image Jacobian, and time scaled to form a moving reference trajectory. At the higher level, a Linear Quadratic Regulator (LQR), augmented with a feed-forward term and an integrator, is used to track this trajectory. The discretization of the reference trajectory is achieved by an error-clamping strategy for optimal performance. The proposed technique was tested on a 2-dof model helicopter capable of pitch and yaw maneuvers carrying a light-weight off-the-shelf video camera. The test results show that the optimized controller can servo the model helicopter to a hovering pose for an image acquisition rate of as low as 2 frames per second.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.