Aircraft Deck Motion Compensation Design

Period of Performance: 09/23/2016 - 03/23/2017


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Systems Technology, Inc.
13766 Hawthorne Blvd. Array
Hawthorne, CA 90250
Firm POC
Principal Investigator


Improving boarding rates while enhancing safety of aircraft operations in the shipboard environment remains a constant challenge for the US Navy. Although significant recent advances have been made for manned shipboard flight operations, critical new technologies are needed for fixed and rotary wing unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). One particular need is for autonomous UAS to consistently and successfully board a ship in high sea state conditions. Thus, deck motion compensation (DMC) systems become a safety critical element of the autonomous approach and landing. Ship motion is induced from maneuvering of the ship and disturbance inputs from the ocean and wind. The technical challenge emerges from the difficulty in estimating the ship response to inputs from all of these sources. Systems Technology and the Georgia Institute of Technology thereby propose to develop the Rotorcraft Unmanned Aerial System Deck Motion Compensation (RUAS-DMC) system that will use the Generalized Predictive Control approach integrated with an autonomous system controller to enhance boarding rates. While this method will be developed and demonstrated with a RUAS, ultimately in a Phase II flight test program, the DMC system will be completely general with applicability to fixed wing UAS and any autonomous controller.