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Lanča, L., Jakac, K., Ivić, S.

Model predictive altitude and velocity control in ergodic potential field directed multi-UAV search
arXiv, (2024),


Abstract: This research addresses the challenge of executing multi-UAV survey missions over diverse terrains characterized by varying elevations. The approach integrates advanced two-dimensional ergodic search technique with model predictive control of UAV altitude and velocity. Optimization of altitude and velocity is performed along anticipated UAV ground routes, considering multiple objectives and constraints. This yields a flight regimen tailored to the terrain, as well as the motion and sensing characteristics of the UAVs. The proposed UAV motion control strategy is assessed through simulations of realistic search missions and actual terrain models. Results demonstrate the successful integration of model predictive altitude and velocity control with a two-dimensional potential field-guided ergodic search. Adjusting UAV altitudes to near-ideal levels facilitates the utilization of sensing ranges, thereby enhancing the effectiveness of the search. Furthermore, the control algorithm is capable of real-time computation, encouraging its practical application in real-world scenarios.