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Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency

Onboard model-based control and stochastic design technology

Recent progress in onboard sensors and information systems are encouraging the application of advanced flight control technologies which make the most of the information obtained. Flight control systems will also be charged with unprecedented missions and environments such as future high-speed transport and the aerial exploration of other planets. It is also necessary to establish systematic method in designing flight control systems capable to adapt various mission requirements.

In the development of large systems, it is standard to repeat short designing cycles from concept design stage to manage risks effectively, while increasing credibility and reducing overall costs. Another recent approach is to develop small unmanned aircraft systems that enable flight demonstration with limited resources. The challenge here is how to design flight control systems in shorter periods of time effectively and automatically.

The purpose of this research is to develop a flight control system of great operational flexibility that covers a wide range of flight envelope from the takeoff and landing phase to the cruising phase with high speeds and high altitude, and that supports route modification in case of emergencies or changes in weather conditions. The system will be realized by taking advantage of information obtained from kinetic and dynamic models in onboard computers. Monte Carlo optimization that takes into account errors and uncertainties will be applied to evaluate flight performance and flight control systems more efficiently. Through this research, an effective tool for system design will be developed to increase the credibility and effectiveness of the system.