Station-keeping control of an unmanned surface vehicle exposed to current and wind disturbances
von Ellenrieder KD
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Field trials of a 4 m long, 180 kg, unmanned surface vehicle (USV) have been conducted to evaluate the performance of station-keeping heading and position controllers in an outdoor marine environment disturbed by wind and current. The USV has a twin hull configuration and a custom-designed propulsion system, which consists of two azimuthing thrusters, one for each hull. Nonlinear proportional derivative, backstepping and sliding mode feedback controllers were tested in winds of about 4-5 knots, with and without wind feedforward control. The controllers were tested when the longitudinal axis of the USV was aligned with the mean wind direction and when the longitudinal axis was perpendicular to the mean wind direction. It was found that the sliding mode controller performed best overall and that the addition of wind feedforward control did not significantly improve its effectiveness. However, wind feedforward control did substantially improve the performance of the proportional derivative and backstepping controllers when the mean wind direction was perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the USV. An analysis of the length scales present in the power spectrum of the turbulent speed fluctuations in the wind suggests that a single anemometer is sufficient to characterize the speed and direction of the wind acting on the USV.
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Qu H; von Ellenrieder KD (IEEE, 2015)Unmanned Surface Vehicles (USVs) have widespread commercial, scientific and military applications. In some of these applications station keeping is essential. Since USVs have a bigger surface/ weight ration than large ...
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