MAV attitude determination by vector matching

Demoz Gebre-Egziabher, Gabriel H. Elkaim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


An attitude determination algorithm suitable for micro aerial vehicle (MAV) applications is developed. The algorithm uses Earth's magnetic and gravity field vectors as observations. The magnetic field vector measurements are obtained from a magnetometer triad. The gravity field vector is measured by fusing information from an accelerometer triad with GPS/WAAS (wide area augmentation system) velocity measurements. Two linearization and estimator designs for implementing the algorithm are discussed. Simulation and experimental flight test results validating the algorithm are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1012-1028
Number of pages17
JournalIEEE Transactions on Aerospace and Electronic Systems
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The work in this paper is the result of research sponsored by the Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) Institute at the University of Minnesota. The initial part of this research was conducted and the flight test data used to validate the algorithm’s performance was obtained from research sponsored by the Federal Aviation Adminstration (FAA) Satellite Program Office under Grant 95-G-005. The authors gratefully acknowledge the FAA, the Principal Investigator of this project (Dr. Per Enge, Stanford University) and Co-Principal Investigators (Dr. J. David Powell and Dr. Bradford Parkinson both Stanford University) for support and sharing the flight test data.


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