Collaborative control of aerial robots (drones) for co-manipulating flexible objects (ropes)

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Σταματόπουλος, Μάριος Νεκτάριος
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Aerial robots like quad-copters and their ability to move freely into indoor and confined spaces is a cause of an advantage compared to other mobile robots. Though, they are not able to carry heavy payloads which leads to the need of having many of them collaborate in order to carry the final payload which is usually hanging in a string connecting them. The current literature is mostly focused on the control and the dynamics of these formations but the problem of them flying through confined environments and obstacles with holes without crashing and maintaining a successful lift has not been solved yet. So a path planning scheme is introduced which utilizes the full capabilities of the formation consisting of two drones carrying a rope. It is able to reduce the degrees of freedom for the planning from twelve to six which are the position and the yaw of the formation, the copters’ distance and the angle they form with the axis parallel to the ground. Both static planning through complex obstacles (tunnel, a wall with a small hole, etc.) and real-time planning with dynamically changing obstacles were carried out utilizing two mini quad-copters (Crazyflies). The experiments prove the feasibility of the structure in both cases and set the foundations for further use in bigger payloads and copters
Drones, Ropes, Path planning, Catenary