Automatic Tuning of Motion Control System for an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle

University essay from Linköpings universitet/Reglerteknik

Abstract: The interest for marine research and exploration has increased rapidly during the past decades and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV) have been found useful in an increased amount of applications. The demand for versatile platform AUVs, able to perform a wide range of tasks, has become apparent. A vital part of an AUV is its motion control system, and an emerging problem for multipurpose AUVs is that the control performance is affected when the vehicle is configured with different payloads for each mission. Instead of having to manually re-tune the control system between missions, a method for automatic tuning of the control system has been developed in this master’s thesis. A model-based approach was implemented, where the current vehicle dynamics are identified by performing a sequence of excitation maneuvers, generating informative data. The data is used to estimate model parameters in predetermined model structures, and model-based control design is then used to determine an appropriate tuning of the control system. The performance and potential of the suggested approach were evaluated in simulation examples which show that improved control can be obtained by using the developed auto-tuning method. The results are considered to be sufficiently promising to justify implementation and further testing on a real AUV. The automatic tuning process is performed prior to a mission and is meant to compensate for dynamic changes introduced between separate missions. However, the AUV dynamics might also change during a mission which requires an adaptive control system. By using the developed automatic tuning process as foundation, the first steps towards an indirect adaptive control approach have been suggested. Also, the AUV which was studied in the thesis composed another interesting control problem by being overactuated in yaw control, this because yawing could be achieved by using rudders but also by differential drive of the propellers. As an additional and separate part of the thesis, an approach for using both techniques simultaneously have been proposed.

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