I am currently undertaking a PhD program in Complex Systems Simulation. The program includes a taught year equivalent to an MSc and three years of research, which I am completing from within the Computational Engineering Design Group.
My research involves the development of a platform for atmospheric research through multiple, autonomous, unmanned gliders. In order to acheive this, algorithms for the real-time optimisation of glider trajectories, within a decentralised, multi-agent system, are developed. Communication between aircraft allows for an intelligent swarm and is acheived via a mesh network of radio communication modules (XBee Pro S1).
A video was generated with a combination of bespoke Python scripts and Blender, an open source 3D graphics and animation software: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KgWbcVx-ggI
Here (Youtube video) an intelligent path planner autonomously calculates the optimal trajectories for multiple gliders, whose objective is to sample a volume of airspace as efficiently as possible. The case study aims to gather high resolution data for the mapping of wind fields over the island of South Georgia. Simulated wind field data, provided by the British Antarctic Survey, allows for a much more realistic simulation of flight.
Keywords: UAV, Genetic Programming, Space-filling, Swarm, Flight Dynamics Model, Atmospheric Research.
Professor, Engineering Sciences (FEE)
Lecturer, Engineering Sciences (FEE)