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Parametric System Identification of an Autonomous Sailing Boat


S. Comari

Semester Thesis, HS14 (10362)

Autonomous sailing is a promising new frontier within the field of research about unmanned vehicles. The interest this topic arouses is mainly related to its low power consumption thanks to its natural and clean source of propulsion: the wind. Automatic Control Lab (IfA) is investigating the subject by developing a 1-meter model sailing boat with the aim of taking part in the Robotics Sailing World Championship on behalf of ETH Zurich. Due to its high complexity, the whole project gathers contributions from many students' works in order to achieve a complete and operative design of the boat hardware and software. An optimal and robust control strategy is the key to successfully head the competition, but, as for any dynamic system, an accurate mathematical model is necessary to reach this goal. Relying on the generic structure provided by previous works inherent to this project, this semester thesis provides a non-standard approach to identify unknown parameters intrinsically related to the particular characteristics of our boat, 'Aeolus'. To this purpose we resorted to geometric considerations, carried out inclining tests and employed CFD simulators. Moreover, along the path, a new custom miniaturized force sensor has been engineered for an alternative method to analyse aerodynamics on the sails.

Supervisors: Tony Wood, Henrik Hesse, Sergio Grammatico, Roy Smith


Type of Publication:

(13)Semester/Bachelor Thesis

R. S. Smith

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% Autogenerated BibTeX entry
@PhdThesis { Xxx:2015:IFA_5151
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