Date of Award

10-2018

Degree Name

MS in Aerospace Engineering

Department

Aerospace Engineering

Advisor

Eric A. Mehiel

Abstract

A UAV swarm is simulated using Horizon Simulation Framework. The asset utilized for the swarm agent is a simplified model of the MQ-1 Predator, a large fixed-wing aircraft. The simulated swarm utilizes a decentralized cooperative control approach to command the assets through the use of digital pheromones and a pheromone map. Each vehicle operates at steady-state flight conditions of 36 m/s with an altitude of 1,800 m, and utilize an LQR set-point controller to maneuver through the pheromone map. All pheromone and aircraft related models are written in Python to expand the HSF scripting capability and include airborne scenarios. The simulation study focuses in the variation of three parameters in the repelling pheromone model. The first two are the update and deposit parameters with values of 2, 10, and 18. The third is the threshold parameter with values of 1e-02, 1e-10, and 1e-18. The lower parameter values provide more time-on-target while the higher parameters allow the swarm to search the surrounding area by only visiting the grid-space once.

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