Research Projects

  • Development of Robust Control Methodology for Micro-Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, PhD Project, 2010- now
  • Universal Control Methodology Design and Implementation for Unmanned Vehicles, Final Year Project, 2009-2010


In this part, I will write about the UAV I have developed and am currently developing. Just a side note, the UAVs developed by NUS UAV Research Team are given names that ends with the word 'Lion', as Lion is NUS's mascot.


Developed by: Phang Swee King, Ong Jun Jie, Ronald Yeo

KingLion was designed to tackle the Singapore Amazing Flying Machine Competition (SAFMC) 2010, a task base UAV competition for all universities and polytechnics in Singapore. In the competition, UAVs are required to navigate by following a colored track, entering a doorway, flying through a loop and dropping a target in a closed environment (without GPS signals).

KingLion uses ESky Big Lama Co-Axial Helicopter as its bare platform, with upgraded brushless motors and blades. It's avionic system included a Gumstix Verdex Pro as main control algorithm processing unit, a Gumstix Overo Fire as vision processing unit, a Cross-Bow MNAV100CA inertia measurement unit, a web-base camera, a Max-Sonar EZ4 ultrasonic sonar sensor, a failsafe multiplexer, and a Futaba F617S receiver.

The main control software was modified from an open source autopilot program called Micro-Gear written by Curt Olson. There are 2 loops in the control structure, one for the velocity control (outer loop) and one for the attitude control (inner loop). For simplicity, all channels are assumed to be decoupled, and they are controlled by a Proportional-Integral-Differential (PID) controller separately. As for Navigation, the camera was installed facing downwards. Images from the camera will be processed on-board through our very own path detection and position estimation algorithm. A simple path planning algorithm will drive the UAV to follow the colored track.

KingLion has won the Best Performance Award for the highest point scored in SAFMC 2010. A video of KingLion can be viewed here. A poster on KingLion was made and is currently display in Engineering Dean's Office in NUS.