Differential Flatness of Quadrotor Dynamics Subject to Rotor Drag for Accurate Tracking of High-Speed Trajectories

Abstract : In this paper, we prove that the dynamical model of a quadrotor subject to linear rotor drag effects is differentially flat in its position and heading. We use this property to compute feed-forward control terms directly from a reference trajectory to be tracked. The obtained feed-forward terms are then used in a cascaded, nonlinear feedback control law that enables accurate agile flight with quadrotors. Compared to state-of-the-art control methods, which treat the rotor drag as an unknown disturbance, our method reduces the trajectory tracking error significantly. Finally, we present a method based on a gradient-free optimization to identify the rotor drag coefficients, which are required to compute the feed-forward control terms. The new theoretical results are thoroughly validated trough extensive comparative experiments.
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Submitted on : Thursday, December 14, 2017 - 7:48:36 PM
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Matthias Faessler, Antonio Franchi, Davide Scaramuzza. Differential Flatness of Quadrotor Dynamics Subject to Rotor Drag for Accurate Tracking of High-Speed Trajectories. IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters, IEEE 2018, 3 (2), pp.620-626. ⟨hal-01658577v2⟩

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