2015 – DARPA FLA (Fast Lightweight Autonomy)

Press Coverage:

Project Description: DARPA’s FLA program aims to develop and test algorithms that could reduce the amount of processing power, communications, and human intervention needed for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to accomplish low-level tasks, such as navigation around obstacles in a cluttered environment. If successful, FLA would reduce operator workload and stress and allow humans to focus on higher-level supervision of multiple formations of manned and unmanned platforms as part of a single system.

My Role: I work on several ROS nodes that run on the robot. One such contribution is a ROS node that subscribes to a position controller, reads a state estimate of the robot, handles all the frame conversions, and sends transformed attitude commands over a serial link to the flight controller. In, addition, I assist with sensor characterization and selection. I am also responsible for the majority of the mechanical design of the robot, including the development of vibration suppression mounting for many of the sensors.

Penn’s FLA Robot at Joint Base Cape Cod. (January 2016)
  • Undergraduate Research
  • Software: LINUX, ROS, C++
  • Hardware: Solidworks, Laser Cutting, 3D Printing
  • Developed At: GRASP Laboratory (2015 - Current)