Real-time Implementation and Validation of a New Hierarchical Path Planning Scheme for UAVs via Hardware-in-the-Loop Simulation
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We develop a hierarchical path planning and control algorithm for a small fixed-wing UAV. Incorporating the hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) simulation environment, the hierarchical path planning and control algorithm has been validated through on-board, real-time implementation on a small autopilot. We present two distinct real-time software framework for implementation of the overall control algorithms including path planning, path smoothing, and path following. We especially emphasize the use of a real-time kernel, which shows effectiveness and robustness in accomplishing non-trivial real-time software environment. By a seamless integration of the control algorithms with a help of real-time kernel, it has been demonstrated that the UAV equipped with a small autopilot having limited computational resources manages to autonomously accomplish the mission control objective of reaching the goal while avoiding obstacles without human intervention.