Regular Papers

International Journal of Control, Automation, and Systems

Published online June 27, 2024

https://doi.org/10.1007/s12555-023-0588-z

© The International Journal of Control, Automation, and Systems

Fault Tolerant Flight Control for the Traction Phase of Pumping Airborne Wind Energy Systems

Tareg Mohammed, Espen Oland, and Lorenzo Fagiano*

Abstract

A fault-tolerant control approach is proposed, for a pumping airborne wind energy system (AWES) comprising a tethered fixed-wing aircraft with integrated propellers for vertical take-off and landing (VTOL). First, the flight control design for the traction phase of the system, when the tethered aircraft has to fly in loops using the rudder, is presented. Then, the presence of the propellers, that are normally not used in the traction phase, is exploited to obtain a fault tolerant controller in case of rudder malfunctioning. The approach detects a possible discrete control surface fault and compensates for the loss in actuation by using the VTOL system. A sophisticated model of the system is used to analyse the performance of the proposed technique. The main finding is that the approach is able to handle abrupt rudder faults with high tolerance.

Keywords Airborne wind energy, fault-tolerant control, flight control, high-altitude wind, nonlinear control.

Article

Regular Papers

International Journal of Control, Automation, and Systems -0001; ():

Published online November 30, -0001 https://doi.org/10.1007/s12555-023-0588-z

Copyright © The International Journal of Control, Automation, and Systems.

Fault Tolerant Flight Control for the Traction Phase of Pumping Airborne Wind Energy Systems

Tareg Mohammed, Espen Oland, and Lorenzo Fagiano*

Abstract

A fault-tolerant control approach is proposed, for a pumping airborne wind energy system (AWES) comprising a tethered fixed-wing aircraft with integrated propellers for vertical take-off and landing (VTOL). First, the flight control design for the traction phase of the system, when the tethered aircraft has to fly in loops using the rudder, is presented. Then, the presence of the propellers, that are normally not used in the traction phase, is exploited to obtain a fault tolerant controller in case of rudder malfunctioning. The approach detects a possible discrete control surface fault and compensates for the loss in actuation by using the VTOL system. A sophisticated model of the system is used to analyse the performance of the proposed technique. The main finding is that the approach is able to handle abrupt rudder faults with high tolerance.

Keywords: Airborne wind energy, fault-tolerant control, flight control, high-altitude wind, nonlinear control.

IJCAS
July 2024

Vol. 22, No. 7, pp. 2055~2340

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pISSN 1598-6446