Electronically Towed Micro Vehicles

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Title: Electronically Towed Micro Vehicles
Author: Sanders, Keith
Advisors: Dr. Larry Silverberg, Committee Member
Dr. M. K. Ramasubramanian, Committee Chair
Dr. Eric Klang, Committee Member
Abstract: In recent years, tremendous advancements have been made in the area of intelligent vehicle systems, autonomous vehicles, and remote navigation. Applications of such advancements vary from highway transportation systems, to military convoys, to unmanned exploration of dangerous environments. The evident benefits of these intelligent vehicle systems include more efficient travel, transportation of multiple vehicles by a single driver, and remote exploration of hazardous or otherwise dangerous terrain. The purpose of this research is to develop and implement an electronically towed micro vehicle system using a 1/10 scale R/C car as the platform. The system will use minimal external sensors and will be capable of following a lead vehicle through various maneuvers at various speeds. The scope of the project includes modifying an R/C car for autonomous control by a microprocessor, establishing a wireless link between two vehicles for direct communication, and developing a control algorithm that will enable the towed vehicle to follow a leader operated by radio control. The towed vehicle will rely on information transmitted from the leader as well as from on board sensors to determine the path of the leader and follow accordingly. Several experimental tests have been conducted to test the performance and determine the limits of the system. The results of these experiments demonstrate a working leader follower system implemented on 1/10 scale vehicles. Future development and research will be aimed at implementing this system on full scale automotive vehicles for transportation or military applications.
Date: 2003-09-25
Degree: MS
Discipline: Mechanical Engineering
URI: http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/resolver/1840.16/1290

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