Trajectory Planning for an Unmanned Quadrotor

Martín A. Pucheta, Nicolás Alberto, Claudio J. Paz, Gonzalo Perez-Paina


The quadrotor is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) popular for its low-cost and broad range of application fields, inspection in harvesting environments, surveillance, cinematographic filmation, amongothers. Most of these applications are easily achieved if a set of predefined programmed trajectories or tasks are selected from a database of automatic tasks safety performed inside the limit cycle and compatible with actuators bounds. This paper presents two controllers that simultaneously coordinates the position and orientation motions of a quadrotor. The first controller is based on Euler angles and the secondon quaternions. The equations of motion for the quadrotor are computed and simulated using Euler angles by means of a first-order reduction of the nonlinear Newton-Euler equations. This simulator of the plant is used to supply the observed state to simulate both controllers. The generation of trajectories with bounded derivatives on the velocities is used to provide continuous actions on the actuators and also prevent their saturation, enabling the minimization of trajectory tracking errors and reducing or avoiding the overshooting. Finally, the simulation for three kinematic tasks, a circle, a 8-shape, and a square trajectory are shown to test the controller behaviors and adjust their gains.

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