Outdoor flight testing of a pole inspection UAV incorporating high-speed vision

Sa, Inkyu, Hrabar, Stefan, & Corke, Peter (2014) Outdoor flight testing of a pole inspection UAV incorporating high-speed vision. Springer Tracts in Advanced Robotics, 105, pp. 107-121.

View at publisher

Abstract

We present a pole inspection system for outdoor environments comprising a high-speed camera on a vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aerial platform. The pole inspection task requires a vehicle to fly close to a structure while maintaining a fixed stand-off distance from it. Typical GPS errors make GPS-based navigation unsuitable for this task however. When flying outdoors a vehicle is also affected by aerodynamics disturbances such as wind gusts, so the onboard controller must be robust to these disturbances in order to maintain the stand-off distance. Two problems must therefor be addressed: fast and accurate state estimation without GPS, and the design of a robust controller. We resolve these problems by a) performing visual + inertial relative state estimation and b) using a robust line tracker and a nested controller design. Our state estimation exploits high-speed camera images (100Hz) and 70Hz IMU data fused in an Extended Kalman Filter (EKF). We demonstrate results from outdoor experiments for pole-relative hovering, and pole circumnavigation where the operator provides only yaw commands. Lastly, we show results for image-based 3D reconstruction and texture mapping of a pole to demonstrate the usefulness for inspection tasks.

Impact and interest:

4 citations in Scopus
Search Google Scholar™
1 citations in Web of Science®

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

155 since deposited on 26 Mar 2014
45 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 69212
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: UAV, Pole inspection, Vertical take-off, High-speed camera, Flight testing
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-07488-7_8
ISSN: 1610-7438
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Springer International Publishing Switzerland
Deposited On: 26 Mar 2014 22:10
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2014 03:34

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page