First Results in Autonomous Landing and Obstacle Avoidance by a Full-Scale Helicopter

Sebastian Scherer, Lyle J. Chamberlain, and Sanjiv Singh
ICRA, May, 2012.


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Abstract
Currently deployed unmanned rotorcraft rely on carefully preplanned missions and operate from prepared sites and thus avoid the need to perceive and react to the environment. Here we consider the problems of finding suitable but previously unmapped landing sites given general coordinates of the goal and planning collision free trajectories in real time to land at the “optimal” site. This requires accurate mapping, fast landing zone evaluation algorithms, and motion planning. We report here on the sensing, perception and motion planning integrated onto a full-scale helicopter that flies completely autonomously. We show results from 8 experiments for landing site selection and 5 runs at obstacles. These experiments have demonstrated the first autonomous full-scale helicopter that successfully selects its own landing sites and avoids obstacles.

Keywords
UAV, helicopter, landing, obstacle avoidance, LIDAR

Notes
Associated Project(s): Low-Flying Air Vehicles

Text Reference
Sebastian Scherer, Lyle J. Chamberlain, and Sanjiv Singh, "First Results in Autonomous Landing and Obstacle Avoidance by a Full-Scale Helicopter," ICRA, May, 2012.

BibTeX Reference
@inproceedings{Scherer_2012_7016,
   author = "Sebastian Scherer and Lyle J. Chamberlain and Sanjiv Singh",
   title = "First Results in Autonomous Landing and Obstacle Avoidance by a Full-Scale Helicopter",
   booktitle = "ICRA",
   month = "May",
   year = "2012",
}