Journal of Applied Science and Engineering

Published by Tamkang University Press


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F. Y. Hsiao This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.1, H. K. Hsu1, C. L. Chen1, L. J. Yang2 and J. F. Shen3

1Department of Aerospace Engineering, Tamkang University, Tamsui, Taiwan 251, R.O.C.
2Department of Mechanical and Electro-Mechanical Engineering, Tamkang University, Tamsui, Taiwan 251, R.O.C.
3Primax Electronics Ltd, Neihu, Taipei, Taiwan, R.O.C.


Received: March 9, 2012
Accepted: May 10, 2012
Publication Date: September 1, 2012

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This paper investigates the potential to acquire flight information, including the spatial position and attitude, of a flapping-wing micro-aerial vehicle (MAV) utilizing a stereo-vision system. The flapping-wing MAV used in this paper is the Golden Snitch developed by the MEMS Laboratory in the Tamkang University. The Golden Snitch has wing span of 20 cm and weight of 8 g. Due to limited loading capacity, a conventional inertia measurement unit cannot be installed onboard. As a result, an external stereo-vision system is a potential solution to navigate a flapping-wing MAV. At beginning, techniques of image processing and stereo vision are briefly reviewed. Then, formulae to obtain flight information through the measurements of the stereo-vision system are derived. Four types of experiments are designed and accomplished to evaluate the performance of the system. Experiment results are provided to demonstrate the applicability and constraints of our algorithms.

Keywords: Flapping-Wing MAV, Stereo Vision, Image Processing, Attitude Determination, Autonomous Flight


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