2015 – DARPA FLA (Fast Lightweight Autonomy)
- DARPA Official Press Release: http://www.darpa.mil/news-events/2016-02-12
- Gizmodo: http://gizmodo.com/holy-hell-the-us-military-made-the-fast-quadcopter-ive-1758807512
- gizmag: http://www.gizmag.com/darpa-drone-autonomous-45-mph/41810/
- Popular Science: http://www.popsci.com/watch-this-darpa-quadcopter-fly-autonomously-at-45-mph
- The Verge: http://www.theverge.com/2016/2/12/10981740/darpa-drone-autonomous-flight-fla-program
- Engadget: http://www.engadget.com/2016/02/12/darpa-fla-drone-flight/
- Penn Press Release: https://news.upenn.edu/news/penn-s-grasp-lab-receives-55-million-fast-light-and-autonomous-flying-robots
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.