Towards Practical Autonomous Flight Simulation for Flapping Wing Biomimetic Robots with Experimental Validation

by   Chen Qian, et al.

Tried-and-true flapping wing robot simulation is essential in developing flapping wing mechanisms and algorithms. This paper presents a novel application-oriented flapping wing platform, highly compatible with various mechanical designs and adaptable to different robotic tasks. First, the blade element theory and the quasi-steady model are put forward to compute the flapping wing aerodynamics based on wing kinematics. Translational lift, translational drag, rotational lift, and added mass force are all considered in the computation. Then we use the proposed simulation platform to investigate the passive wing rotation and the wing-tail interaction phenomena of a particular flapping-wing robot. With the help of the simulation tool and a novel statistic based on dynamic differences from the averaged system, several behaviors display their essence by investigating the flapping wing robot dynamic characteristics. After that, the attitude tracking control problem and the positional trajectory tracking problem are both overcome by robust control techniques. Further comparison simulations reveal that the proposed control algorithms compared with other existing ones show apparent superiority. What is more, with the same control algorithm and parameters tuned in simulation, we conduct real flight experiments on a self-made flapping wing robot, and obtain similar results from the proposed simulation platform. In contrast to existing simulation tools, the proposed one is compatible with most existing flapping wing robots, and can inherently drill into each subtle behavior in corresponding applications by observing aerodynamic forces and torques on each blade element.


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