The I3S (Laboratoire d'Informatique, Signaux et Systèmes de Sophia Antipolis) is a leading French academic research unit of the University of Nice-Sophia Antipolis (UNSA). The research teams are structured into four departments: COMRED, GLC, MDSC and SIS. They cover, almost continuously, all the spectrum of computer science, electrical engineering, automatic control and robotics. The CONDOR team (CONtrol of Drones and Observation for Robotics) from the department SIS (Signal, Images, Systèmes) is concerned with this project. The team's major part of research focuses on aerial robots and in particular on the application of observation and control theories in aeronautical context. The team is a pioneer in the domains of modeling and control, filtering, robot vision, and state estimation. Its know-how is undeniable and recognized nationally and internationally. The CONDOR team published more than 75 scientific articles (18 journal papers) in the last four years and in the best journals and conferences of Automatic Control and Robotics. A large part of the theoretical results was integrated on different French drones (HoverEye of Bertin Technologies, X4-Flyer of the CEA, Infotron IT series). Moreover CONDOR participated in numerous projects related to the control of drones, both as contractor and as partner.
What motivates us
We will develop a novel user interface for aerial robotic systems to enable the operation of a UAV by untrained pilots in industrial or constrained environments. A force-feedback joystick will be used to provide the operator with a haptic control interface to the system. This will allow the operator to feel disturbances such as wind gusts and resistance to motion in the direction of obstacles. Various modes of operation will provide partitioned teleoperational/autonomous control to aid the user for tasks such as visual fixation on a target (maintain a target in view), walls and floor following, return to base, etc. The teleoperation control will also be augmented with obstacle avoidance algorithms, emergency procedures and strategies for loss of communication.