System integration of a miniature rotorcraft for aerial tele-operation research

Jonathan Andersh, Bernie Mettler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


This paper describes the development and integration of the systems required for research into human interaction with a tele-operated miniature rotorcraft. Because of the focus on vehicles capable of operating indoors, the size of the vehicle was limited to 35 cm, and therefore the hardware had to be carefully chosen to meet the ensuing size and weight constraints, while providing sufficient flight endurance. The components described in this work include the flight hardware, electronics, sensors, and software necessary to conduct tele-operation experiments. The integration tasks fall into three main areas. First, the paper discusses the choice of rotorcraft platform best suited for indoor operation addressing the issues of size, payload capabilities, and power consumption. The second task was to determine what electronics and sensing could be integrated into a rotorcraft with significant payload limitations. Finally, the third task involved characterizing the various components both individually and as a complete system. The paper concludes with an overview of ongoing tele-operation research performed with the embedded rotorcraft platform.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)776-788
Number of pages13
Issue number5
StatePublished - Aug 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work has been supported in part by the National Science Foundation through Grants #IIP-0726109, #CNS-0708344, #CNS-0821474, #IIP-0934327, and #IIP-1032018.


  • Embedded systems
  • Indoor navigation
  • Miniature rotorcraft


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