Dynamics Modeling and L1 Adaptive Control of a Transport Aircraft for Heavyweight Airdrop
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AbstractThe longitudinal nonlinear aircraft model with cargo extraction is derived using theoretical mechanics and flight mechanics. Furthermore, the nonlinear model is approximated by a semilinear time-varying system with the cargo disturbances viewed as unknown nonlinearities, both matched and unmatched types. On this basis, a novel autopilot inner-loop based on the LQR and L1 adaptive theory is developed to reject the unknown nonlinear disturbances caused by the cargo and also to accommodate uncertainties. Analysis shows that the controller can guarantee robustness in the presence of fast adaptation, without exciting control signal oscillations and gain scheduling. The overall control system is completed with the outer-loop altitude-hold control based on a PID controller. Simulations are conducted under the condition that one transport aircraft performs maximum load airdrop mission at the height of 82 ft, using single row single platform mode. The results show the good performance of the control scheme, which can meet the airdrop mission performance indexes well, even in the presence of ±20% aerodynamic uncertainties.