ABSTRACT: In this work, we present a micro-avionics system structured around the controller area network (CAN) bus data backbone. The system is designed to be cross-compatible across our experimental mini-helicopters and ground vehicles, and it is tailored to allow autonomous navigation and control for a variety of different research test cases. The expandable architecture deploys a hybrid selection of COTS Motorola (MPC555) and Arm processor boards (LPC2294), each with different operating systems and coding techniques (such as rapid algorithmic prototyping using automatic code generation via Matlab/Real Time Workshop Embedded Target). The micro-avionics system employs a complete sensor suite that provides real-time position, orientation and associated time-rate information. As a part of the on-going fleet autonomy experiments, we present the design of a novel wireless SmartCan node. This wireless node allows seamless CAN Bus access of low-level sensor and operational data of other vehicles within close proximity.
Intelligent Vehicles Symposium, 2007 IEEE; 07/2007