Experimental Determination and Validation of sUAS Moments of Inertia
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Honors Theses; 2020
The rise in use of small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) in industry and research has resulted in a need to develop modeling and testing procedures which are feasible and cost effective for small-scale airframes. Computer models of these vehicles are based on a description of the underlying physical and aerodynamic characteristics of these vehicles which are often only roughly approximated in the design stage. One difficult to accurately obtain, yet highly important, physical characteristic of an aircraft is its inertia tensor. The aircraft’s inertia tensor is directly related to the dynamic motion about the pitch, roll, and yaw axes. Understanding this dynamic motion is the first step in control system design and validation. Utilizing previous work in experimental moment of inertia (MOI) testing and small-scale flight testing, this project developed a bifilar torsional pendulum capable of accurately and affordably measuring the inertia tensor of sUAS. In order to validate the bifilar pendulum measurements, flight tests were developed to experimentally obtain the MOI of the sUAS for comparison. Due to changes in Ohio State University policy after the outbreak of COVID-19, the planned flight tests could not be completed at this time. Future work should focus on the validation of the bifilar pendulum measurements along with determination and validation of MOI for non-primary axes.
Academic Major: Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering