Design and joint control of a conjoined biplane and quadrotor

S. Schröter, E.J.J. Smeur*, B.D.W. Remes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

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Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) have the potential to perform many different missions, some of which may require a large aircraft for endurance and a small aircraft for manoeuvrability in a building. This paper proposes a novel combination of a quadrotor and a hybrid biplane capable of joint hover, joint forward flight, and mid-air disassembly followed by separate flight. We investigate cooperative control strategies during joint flight that do not require any communication between the quadcopter and the biplane. This means that the two aircraft have their own independent control strategy based on their own sensors. Secondly, to avoid communication the biplane leads the flight and the goal for the quadrotor is to help in producing thrust and increasing stability. Three control strategies for the quadrotor are compared: a proportional angular rate damper, a proportional angular acceleration damper, and constant thrust without attitude control. Simulation and practical tests show that for intentional attitude changes of the biplane, the quadrotor rate- and angular acceleration damper strategies lead to a small performance degradation. However, the angular rate damper strategy for disturbance rejection has the lowest roll angle error and requires the smallest input command. The in-flight release is successfully tested in joint hover up to a forward pitch angle of -18 [deg].
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication13th international micro air vehicle conference
Place of PublicationDelft, the Netherlands
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Event13th International Micro Air Vehicle Conference - Delft, Netherlands
Duration: 12 Sep 202216 Sep 2022
Conference number: 13


Conference13th International Micro Air Vehicle Conference
Abbreviated titleIMAV2022


  • Hybrid MAVs
  • Incremental Nonlinear Dynamic Inversion
  • UAV


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