Nonlinear region of attraction analysis for flight control verification and validation

Abhijit Chakraborty, Peter Seiler, Gary J. Balas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


Current practice for flight control validation relies heavily on linear analyses and nonlinear, high-fidelity simulations. This process would be enhanced by the addition of nonlinear analyses of the flight control system. This paper demonstrates the use of region of attraction estimation for studying nonlinear effects. A nonlinear polynomial model is constructed for the longitudinal dynamics of NASA's Generic Transport Model aircraft. A polynomial model for the short period dynamics is obtained by decoupling this mode from the nonlinear longitudinal model. Polynomial optimization techniques are applied to estimate region of attractions around trim conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-345
Number of pages11
JournalControl Engineering Practice
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was partially supported under the NASA Langley NRA contract NNH077ZEA001N entitled “Analytical Validation Tools for Safety Critical Systems” and the NASA Langley NNX08AC65A contract entitled “Fault Diagnosis, Prognosis and Reliable Flight Envelope Assessment.” The technical contract monitors are Dr. Christine Belcastro and Dr. Suresh Joshi, respectively.


  • Flight control
  • Nonlinear analysis
  • Region of attraction
  • Validation and verification


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