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This article presents the development and validation of an autonomous, gas sensitive microdrone that is capable of estimating the wind vector in real time using only the onboard control unit of the microdrone and performing gas distribution mapping (DM). Two different sampling approaches are suggested to address this problem. On the one hand, a predefined trajectory is used to explore the target area with the microdrone in a real-world gas DM experiment. As an alternative sampling approach, we introduce an adaptive strategy that suggests next sampling points based on an artificial potential field (APF). Initial results in real-world experiments demonstrate the capability of the proposed adaptive sampling strategy for gas DM and its use for gas source localization.
Date of Publication: March 2012