A Comparison of Two Methods Used to Deal with Saturation of Multiple, Redundant Aircraft Control Effectors
Nelson, Mark David
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A comparison of two methods to deal with allocating controls for unattainable moments in an aircraft was performed using a testbed airframe that resembled an F/A-18 with a large control effector suite. The method of preserving the desired moment direction to deal with unattainable moments is currently used in a specific control allocator. A new method of prioritizing the pitch axis is compared to the moment-direction preservation. Realtime piloted simulations are completed to evaluate the characteristics and performance of these methods. A direct comparison between the method of preserving the moment direction by scaling the control solution vector and prioritizing the pitching moment axis is performed for a specific case. Representative maneuvers are flown with a highly unstable airframe to evaluate the ability to achieve the specific task. Flight performance and pilot interpretation are used to evaluate the two methods. Pilot comments and performance results favored the method of pitch-axis prioritization. This method provided favorable flight characteristics compared to the alternative method of preserving the moment direction for the specific tasks detailed in this paper. NOTE: An updated copy of this ETD was added on 09/28/2010.
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