Scientific everyone | UAV intelligent behind the push hand: flight control technology of this decade

produced | Sina science and technology “scientific everybody,” the author | Qi Juntong, deputy director of the Institute of Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Tianjin University, Professor, (Tianjin) Co., Ltd., founder of a flight ITES / CEO
Sci-fi movie in the UAV “UAV” – another person to play bad words 10 years ago that he is engaged in unmanned aerial vehicles, all attracted doubts and admiration of the eyes, “doubt” Is the eyes of everyone “Hollywood blockbusters”, “special forces” such a thing you a twenty Lang when the guy is also capable? “Praise” is able to listen to my science two unmanned aerial machine instantly feel that he is tall on a lot. 10 years later today said that the cause of their own unmanned aerial vehicles, even the mother skin also laughed and said “is also very good, next door uncle grandfather grandchildren yesterday is still downstairs fly it.” More aggrieved is engaged in a lifetime of military unmanned aerial vehicles engineers, fear of family meeting was asked, “give you a big nephew get a play?” “Next month your cousin married, let’s engage in a aerial shot how “ the popularity of the show, so that UAVs began to fly into the homes of ordinary people for such a decade,” UAV “from a well-known words into a well-known words, behind the fast technology Iterations, the rapid influx of capital, the expert interpretation of the transition and the people of the urgent desire for new things. Its meaning and includes the foreign generally referred to as “UAV” also includes “Drone”. The old man’s understanding of the “unmanned aerial vehicle” basically stuck in the word “Drone” – “buzzing around”, “good toy”, “can not just fly”, “model”, high technical maturity , The intelligence, reliability requirements are relatively low. “UAV” in foreign countries are more used in military, police, special industry applications on the UAV, the system is more complex, the reliability, intelligence requirements are relatively higher. UAVs are diverse, and today we are mainly engaged in breaking off the vertical takeoff and landing unmanned aerial vehicles flying control that something, behind the UAV also refers to the single rotor, multi-rotor, vertical takeoff and landing fixed wing, etc. Class with vertical takeoff and landing function of the UAV (after all, this amount of large, with more). 10 years ago, eight people who engage in unmanned aerial vehicles are eight air, pneumatic, mechanical origin, more consideration is how to make the aircraft stable fly up , Fly faster, fly higher. Nowadays, with the development of chips, artificial intelligence and large data technology, UAVs have started the trend of intelligentization, terminalization and clustering. A large number of graduates who have graduated from automation, mechanical electronics, information engineering and microelectronics UAV development tide, a few years time so that UAV from the people away from the military application of flying into the homes of ordinary people, so that layman can be a short study can also be stable and reliable flight entertainment. Undeniably, the development of flight control technology is the biggest promoter of this decade of unmanned aerial vehicles. Looking back at history, flight control technology development is divided into two schools, three origins. UAV has become a war can not ignore the power of the first table to the Soviet Union, Europe and the United States as the representative of the two technical systems. High-tech development originated in the military, the development of flight control is no exception, a war, World War II and then to the war in Iraq, whether it is the Soviet Union or Europe and the United States, have started the unmanned transformation of the aircraft and the new development Man-machine work. The Soviet state extended the man-machine control research and development technology system directly to the UAV, the early flight control hardware using the fighter’s flight control computer, the control algorithm has been used to identify the sub-mode identification, modeling, control method. Popularity is to pass the wind tunnel, mechanism modeling and other methods, know the aircraft in the takeoff, hover, low speed, medium speed, high speed, landing and other parameters under different flight conditions, in different states design the corresponding controller. During the flight of the aircraft, the control method or control parameters are constantly switched to ensure that the aircraft is in an ideal state. The advantage of this genre is that the hardware is verified by long-term flight. The control algorithm can prove the stability of the system in the design mode. The disadvantage is that the hardware is silly and can not predict all the flight states that can be experienced during the actual flight. Compared to the Soviet Union directly used the fighter technology system, Europe and the United States is forward in the middle of the last century began to layout the forefront of technology exploration and accumulation (DARPA is the representative of various programs), support research institutions, universities explore a lot of new UAV-specific flight control hardware and algorithms. DARPA, an administrative body of the US Department of Defense, is responsible for the development of high-tech projects for military purposes. Of the small and medium-sized unmanned aerial vehicle flight test, the formation of the embedded computer as the core of the hardware to adaptive control algorithm for the flight control system. In fact, Europe and the United States and the Russian factions in the difference between the largest in this! Europe and the United States to a large extent to give up the traditional modal segment control, no need for different flight status modeling, parameter identification, but to take on-line identification, that is, in the process of aircraft flight through the online identification theory, The controller itself to determine their own status, parameters, etc., according to the information response to switch the different control strategy or control parameters. The advantage of this genre is that the system is small and lightweight, shortens the development process of the new UAV, and further enhances the intelligence. The disadvantage is that it takes a long time to accumulate the theoretical technology and can not prove the stability of the global system to a certain extent The But no matter what, the development of flight control has become one of the important enabling technology, so that the US military UAV has become the world’s leading, other countries have to follow suit. Then talk about the three kinds of flight control – “fixed-wing flight control”, “open source flight control”, “self-control flight control.” People who have done UAV people know that flight control is not good! But the face of the market at every turn on the “high reliability”, “military level”, “self”, outsiders do not know how this group is out of the flight control outThe Do they say reliable? Understand these three origins, after you talk with the fly control, must let him think you are “old driver.” More than a decade ago to engage in vertical takeoff and landing unmanned aerial vehicle is the main source of “fixed-wing flight control”, in fact, fixed-wing UAV is the real ancestors of UAV, more than 100 years ago, people have already installed fighter simple The controller tries to complete unmanned investigation and bombs. So why is the manned aircraft or unmanned aerial vehicles are the first fixed-wing mature, vertical takeoff and landing of the late it? From the structural point of view, the fixed-wing aircraft are static stability system, just as we drive, hand away from the steering wheel for a few seconds, the fixed-wing aircraft are not too vertical and take off the aircraft too much rotation, vibration components, pneumatic is also relatively simple; The car can still go straight, compared to static instability is the vertical takeoff and landing aircraft need to adjust the joystick all the time, a slight negligence will crash. These two aspects are mainly difficult to control, so that the vertical takeoff and landing control of the aircraft is very difficult. This feature also makes the team from the fixed-wing flight control in response to the vertical takeoff and landing flight seems helpless, the accumulation of fixed-wing flight control strategy can learn from the significance of the direct use of the original airspeed to control often lead to fatal The crash machine. All the way to open source flight control representative – APM again talk about “open source flight control.” This may be the market to see the most number of flight control, and its from the “DIY DRONE” period, the beginning is to meet Europe and the United States “geeks”, “Created” for the dream of free flight. Had a very good thing, but also a turning point here! However, the word “geeks” was played badly in China! The lack of sharing and dedication of the Chinese “geeks” who quickly all kinds of open source fly control direct commercialization of money. More creepy is that such “goods” not only sold to the Chinese players, even worse also sold to agriculture, electricity, and even police use of such industry users! It is not known that this unspecified natural “semi-finished product” has a natural lack of genes: 1) hardware devices are not reliable, large-scale verification. The design of open source flight control is intended for geeks second development or enthusiasts DIY “semi-finished products”, the hardware selection is often used for mobile terminals or other robotic consumer devices, intended to reflect the overall system architecture and control Low cost, did not take full account of temperature, environment, vibration, bulk supply and other product process; 2) software technology system redundancy is serious, lack of resources. For the sake of versatility, the current open source flight control is suitable for almost all types of aircraft, the communication protocol reserves a large number of load fields, occupies almost all of the system resources, etc., these features will cause excessive redundancy of the underlying program, Control strategy, communication protocol segment, lack of memory and computing resources, follow-up development will continue to “deal with” the state, resulting in product instability. Finally chatter a chatter “self-study flight control” thing. At present, several well-known UAV companies are from the Institute of flight control started, basically have experienced more than 10 years of technical precipitation, why? Because … … 10 years ago also have open source flying control! These teams are capacitive resistors one by one painted on the board, the code line of a line of code to the screen. The development process is often modular construction, such as the first development of sensor acquisition, servo / motor control, and then debug the independent channel from the heading, speed, high, pitch, roll and so on to stabilize the aircraft, followed by stable hover, here Has been a big step forward, and finally flight routes, you can set the track point in accordance with the automatic flight. At this point the basic completion of the “self-study flight control,” the basic process, here look just a few lines of words, our flight control lions who have to go through at least a few years time, or all the smooth case! Self-study flight control is time-consuming and labor-intensive, but the benefits are due to the full understanding of hardware and software, follow-up development and improvement will be greatly accelerated, encounter any problem improvement speed will be greatly accelerated. It is also because of these reasons, the effective accumulation of early lay the current number of well-known UAV company’s rapid development. “Cohabitation of the market” – how to determine a good fly control? Question came, what is good flying control? How to choose flight control? Measure the flight control “good or bad” mainly to consider four aspects: adaptation, stability, function, service. Adaptation – the current number of UAV manufacturers have their own flight control technology less, most manufacturers go a design, research and development, production body, the purchase of mature flight control, and finally open up the market channels of the road, which is conducive to the company’s fast Start and occupy the market high ground. However, different manufacturers of different design ideas for different users, to adapt to different scenes, resulting in aircraft aircraft vary widely. From a single rotor to a multi-rotor, from the four-axis to eight-axis, from open to the channel, from the oil to the electric, if you choose a flight control can not only quickly adapt to their own design of the aircraft, but also to ensure that fly And stable and good, you must feel that the success of not far, and would like to laugh. If the same aircraft can take your company different types, different aircraft together to get, it really want to laugh out loud, so not only can improve research and development efficiency, but also reduce maintenance costs. Stable – compared to two years ago, now the flight control has been basically stable, the market is also mature, there is no trial of the basic customers will not be shot. Can try to see how stable and reliable? Here you can use the “three look” know-how: “a look at” the company’s production capacity, with an annual output of at least 1,000 sets of various types of processes, quality management, testing system to basic pass, sound; “two look” device screening, Of the product, especially the need to “zero” management of product device screening is very important, need to examine the company in the device screening process, screening rate, to determine the stability of the underlying device; “three look” test environment, flight control products are “zero tolerance “Failure products, at least need to go through the module-level testing, product-level testing, system-level testing. Although the product form is flying control, but must go through the machine after the installation of the flight test and then dismantling recovery to the factory. Have to say that the above test if you think that the normal sampling that can be wrong! To full inspection! Full inspection! Full inspection! Function – have to admit that the current flight control can notKnown as fully mature, fried rate is generally at a high level of 3% -20%, but can not stop our relentless pursuit of the function. In general, “open source flight control” due to the rich ecology, for the external functional response to a faster response; and “self-study flight control” for more customization of the functional requirements for the system development cycle shorter. In addition to the basic flight function, the main functions include: 1) high-precision positioning and control, that is, we commonly known as differential GPS; 2) terrain changes in the automatic tracking, mainly used in farmland spraying; 3) automatic obstacle avoidance function, Can ensure that the flight process does not cause damage to the aircraft; 4) flight planning customization, the customer can use the process of the definition of AB flight, designated area coverage flight, flight intermittent flight; 5) handheld terminal mission planning and monitoring, , PAD, notebook and other equipment issued by the mission and real-time task monitoring; 6) remote monitoring and analysis, through the mobile operator network in the remote off-site flight monitoring and analysis of operating status and failure. Service – the first three to determine the good or bad control of the key words we can understand that when it comes to service a lot of people will be puzzled. In fact, this is really a particularly important factor, especially for the B side of the customer. In the case of agricultural plant protection, for example, the operation season of farmland is from March to October, while the peak season is mainly concentrated in the period from May to August. It needs high strength, heavy load, uninterrupted operation, large temperature difference, high humidity and complicated environment Of the farmland all kinds of failures are inevitable. Quality service needs 7×24 hours to provide uninterrupted technical support, accessories updates, commissioning guidance, in order to allow users to minimize losses, access to benefits, and these professional services only flight control manufacturers can do the best. “A decade of sword” – how difficult is the development of flight control in the end? If the “flight control is one of the core technology of UAV”, I think no one will deny, and the reality is that most UAV manufacturers do not fully grasp the technology, we can not see the importance of it? Not also! In fact, many manufacturers have tried independent research and development, but the vast majority are due to the accumulation of technology is weak, the reliability is not high, the technical iteration slow and other factors and give up halfway, from the heart to say “engage in flight control really very difficult” The First look at the status of UAV flight control technology, from easy to difficult basic divided into three levels: “flight”, “perception”, “interaction”. The first level of “flight” refers to the UAV to understand their own state on the basis of stable control, through the ground personnel remote control, mobile side set up routes or remote instructions to complete the scheduled flight of the automatic flight, which is the entry control of flight control, Well this level can complete some basic tasks, such as the remote area of ​​remote reconnaissance. Can be applied in agriculture, logistics, inspection and other complex environment how to do? Can the building escape? Can I find the right place to land? No, it must rise to the second level of “perception”. Perception level refers to the UAV not only understand their own state, the external environment through the sensor well known. Sensing through the sensor selection, digital filtering, multi-sensor data fusion, based on the perception of path planning and other technologies, so that unmanned aerial vehicles in complex environments to complete the task and fly freely. Flight control level practice to this should be almost right? and also? Yes! Have you ever wondered how today’s UAVs are technically similar to those of the ground robot 50 years ago – a stable walk, crossing the obstacle and recording the shooting scene. Now the ground robot will not only “perception”, complex “interactive” ability to let them complete such as bomb disposal, for the battery of such a job capability. Why can not the UAV “interact”? Why can not the air for the sampling of dangerous goods, transmission lines damage the maintenance of the equipment replacement, the goods automatically crawl and transport? “Nothing is Impossible”! Interaction is based on the perception, in understanding the external environment after the environment in the objectives of the process of interaction. In accordance with this way classification, the current unmanned aerial vehicles in the basic level of 1.5, then the development of flight control in different technical level in the end where? How to overcome these difficulties? First look at the “flight”. Vertical takeoff and landing unmanned aerial vehicle is the biggest control of its static instability characteristics, similar to the fingertips gently hold up a chopstick, must keep adjusting the attitude, the position can be balanced. The fastest response speed of about 5 times per second, while the unmanned aerial vehicle in order to achieve excellent control performance, the need for 300 times per second perception and calculation, any one of the calculation error or the results of the calculation of the crash is the machine crash task to stop The A complete set of complete control of the device is close to 1000, is a complex mobile phone several times, down to the OEM Andrews machine to Apple, crash for the user just to re-add a sigh thing, and for unmanned aerial vehicles can not accept The These components must first ensure that their normal operation, followed by the electrical and communication between the normal, after assembly to go through a variety of tests, the impact of vibration of the body, and finally asked to endure the wind and sun and aging process! Emma, ​​so hard! Want to “fly” do a good job, first a set of perfect scalable hardware system architecture, with a strong computing power and high bandwidth bus communication capabilities; followed by the device according to flight needs in accordance with commercial, industrial, military different grades of choice; In the real-time embedded operating system to build with their own and the environment adaptability of the control algorithm; Finally, before use for temperature, pressure, vibration, electromagnetic compatibility, flight performance and other full-subject product testing. Sci-fi movie in the human-machine perception may soon become a reality to see “perception”. Human beings always like to use their own standards to measure other things, in our minds in the Hollywood blockbuster capacity should be easy to do. As everyone knows, how many years have human evolution experienced today’s rich sense of perception and thinking, the history of robots? If so, the speed of the robot is much faster. People feel the world mainly rely on to see, the eyes have a very high resolution, auto zoom, auto focus, auto white balance, auto iris … … a variety of automatic, and the current unmanned aerial vehicle used to understand the camera and computing power than people Ability is still hundreds of thousands of miles itThe Intelligent introduction of other sensors, such as laser, sonar, radar, etc., the characteristics of each sensor is different, the need for these streaming media, discrete matrix and other structured and unstructured data together to form a concerted effort, physics, mathematics, electronics, circuits Knowledge is missing! It is not impossible to do a good job of “perception”, first for the application of the environment variables, complexity, accuracy requirements, response time sensor sensor hardware selection and combination; followed by the initial data, deep data integration; Based on the results of perception and the kinematic and kinetic characteristics of the aircraft to carry out the task, the path of the heavy planning. “Interactive” level, think about it! May wish to let our minds open, one day a large area of ​​power outages, unmanned aerial vehicles through the inspection found a transmission line damage, when the aircraft stretched out the robot grasp, skilled waste removal, remove spare parts, replacement, winding insulation Tape, put back the tool, fly back to base to complete the task. Seemingly inconspicuous process, but because all operations are in the air and very difficult. We have seen in the space station maintenance tasks on the astronauts, underwater operations of the submarine, any of their actions are very difficult, because they are in a suspended state, any force will produce a reaction force lead to positioning, operation The uncertainty. UAV air interaction is also similar to the target contact process will have a reaction to the impact of flight smooth, and the impact of flight attitude will lead to changes in operating force, into a vicious circle. To achieve effective interaction in the air first in the time-varying environment to carry out accurate predictive perception, to determine the system after the reaction of the state; secondly to consider through the overall modeling or decoupling control to eliminate the operation of the arm itself on the aircraft And finally make sure that the external force / torque has the least impact on the aircraft during the contact and movement of the manipulator with the target, and realize the interactive task. “Dare to ask where the way” – flight control of the next decade of technological development eloquent thousands of words, with 10 years of accumulated review of the history of flight control, how to choose, technical difficulties and solutions to ideas, if later look 10 Year, the future of the flight control will be the core? What is the trend of technology development? Hardware SoC. System on Chip (SoC) invasion of UAV flight control is the two years of things, Qualcomm, Intel, Infineon, Huawei, and so on through the investment, the acquisition of consumer UAV team or business to enter the market. Flight control SoC has chosen the consumer unmanned aerial vehicles as a breakthrough, mainly due to the large number of such UAVs, for the SoC to bring the input and output better; the other hand, consumer unmanned aerial vehicles than commercial unmanned aerial vehicles The application environment is more ideal, the reliability, the average trouble-free time requirements lower. And through the form of equity and UAV enterprises in depth because the traditional chip manufacturers only the ability of hardware, and UAV enterprises in the depth of the combination of software and custom development, here also shows the difficulty of flight control software, international Of the big business is also difficult to get. And the future of flight control hardware SoC can not be stopped, but in the field of consumption outside the need for longer time market training and technical iterative process, in solving the above problems, SoC will bring great cost reduction, more Of the flight control companies will be more focused on the application layer, data technology development. Software modularity. Hardware SoC will bring about the standardization of hardware structure, for the software upgrade iteration provides a better ecology, different developers can be between the standard through the underlying driver support and communication protocol to share the software code. (Which sounds a bit like the current open source flight control, YES!) Different sensor processing programs, different flight control algorithms, different task planning modules, different diagnostic software will be defined as modular procedures, these modules will be paid by paying or other forms of flying Control software business model, greatly reducing the difficulty of the development of new features, will focus more attention to the task layer or business layer. The system is terminated or will affect the future of each person .jpg system. The current UAV system application or the aircraft as a core asset, all the human, financial and material resources are around the aircraft itself, is expected to use the UAV people feel the joy of people or create value in production. At present this stage is a bit like the 80’s people use Big Brother, when a baby but did not play its big role; and now the phone has been terminal, only the terminal around the world, people from the terminal to obtain global information But also contribute their own value. The future of unmanned aerial vehicles in various applications is more like a series of terminal equipment Busa, flight control as the core of the UAV will play an important role in the terminal process, both in consumption, agriculture, inspection and other fields, flying Control will become the core of the data terminal, a large number of flight status, task data, load status will be recorded, returned, distributed, users or other stakeholders will pay through the business model and other useful information. Communication network. UAV developed for hundreds of years, the vast majority of cases of communication are point-to-point direct contact, whether it is early remote control box or model remote control, whether it is portable computer ground station or handheld terminal task manager, High power through LF (low frequency) to HF (high frequency) and even to UHF (UHF) and other bands for point-to-point communication. With the US GPS strategy, can be carried out by satellite all kinds of unmanned aerial vehicles and other terminal network, but its current bandwidth, cost and other issues can not be widely promoted in commercial. With the slowdown in the growth rate of smart phones and UAV terminal trends, mobile operators are also keen to capture the business opportunities, have introduced for the application of mobile unmatched mobile communications solutions. This program is currently using mature commercial 2G, 3G, 4G network, through the definition of packages, the development of patch SIM card components, antenna custom, etc., so that the UAV as a terminal access to commercial networks. Although there are some factors such as network instability and incomplete coverage, but with the increase of UAV data, the rapid development of mobile communication technology and the increase of man-machine control pressure, in the near future with the operator’s flight Control network trend is unstoppable. UAV + large data or will bring a brand new industry change data to visualize. In the era of large data, no one denies the importance of raw data. UAV + big data shouting for some time, but the current terminal has just started, the network is not completely landing, data sources and other factors, UAV large data age has not really come UAV data and other large data is the biggest difference between the vertical depth of the industry. Without regard to the premise of consumer entertainment applications, UAV applications have dozens of applications, and each have their own, deeper barriers to the industry model, the possibility of integration of data in different areas of different possibilities Big. A fly control of the 100 thinking cloud platform is based on UAV Internet of things, large data and cloud computing thinking to build the UAV operating management platform, the current Pescue platform has been able to achieve UAV mission data Visualization, with the widespread use of UAVs and the rapid growth of operational mission data, the future will also achieve operational tools, operating programs and operational effects of data visualization, UAV commercial applications to provide more refined management solutions. In the future development process of UAV should not be vividly emphasized the significance of large data, but also through the flight control data collection ability to obtain high frequency of effective information analysis, to bring the value of the industry to bring “visual” data, direct For the industry. “Science everyone” column Contributors E-mail: Contributions Please indicate the name, unit, position

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