An Autonomous Blimp

  • Gordon Wyeth
  • Ivan Barron


This paper describes the design of a lighter than air autonomous robot and its natural landmark navigation system that operates in three dimensions. The robot has successfully flown the University banner at science shows and open days under public scrutiny. The robot is nearly 2m long and 0.8m wide, making the robot suitable for use in indoor environments. The robot may be programmed to fly a course by giving the robot a sequence of landmarks and trajectories. In addition, the robot may be programmed to look for landmarks that indicate a navigational error. Error landmarks are then paired with correction trajectories so that the robot can resume normal navigation. The navigational planner shares messages with a set of low level reactive controllers that perform the necessary trajectory generation. This paper describes the hardware considerations for building an indoor autonomous blimp, and supplies details of the landmark navigation system. Results from the robot are supplied and extensions suggested.


Neutral Buoyancy Sonar Sensor Navigation Software Controller Board Block Layout 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gordon Wyeth
    • 1
  • Ivan Barron
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringUniversity of QueenslandAustralia

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