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The application of an evolution-based path planner for a UAV in long range flight through realistic wind fields is presented. The planner makes use of wind information obtained form actual weather databases. Horizontal wind variability in both 3-D space and time is taken into account for the planning of the complete path. Two additional features in the planner include a spherical Earth geometry for path generation and a UAV performance and fuel consumption model. The objective of the planner is to reduce fuel requirements for the entire flight. The planner is capable of making in-flight modifications to further refine or adapt its path to updated wind information. Simulation results for a flight from Honolulu, HI to Long Beach, WA with an Aerosonde aircraft are presented.
Digital Avionics Systems Conference, 2003. DASC '03. The 22nd (Volume:2 )
Date of Conference: 12-16 Oct. 2003