Helicopter Basic Equations of Motion

  • Ioannis A. RaptisEmail author
  • Kimon P. Valavanis
Part of the Intelligent Systems, Control and Automation: Science and Engineering book series (ISCA, volume 45)


The objective of this Chapter is to provide the basic equations of motion of the helicopter, when the helicopter is treated as a rigid body. The equations of motion are derived by implementing Newton’s second law that deals with vector summations of all forces and moments as applied to the helicopter relative to an inertial reference frame. However, for practical reasons, analysis may be significantly simplified if motion is described relative to a reference frame rigidly attached to the helicopter. When this is the case, the equations of motion are derived relative to this non-inertial, body-fixed frame. The end result of this Chapter is the complete state space representation of the helicopter equations of motion in the configuration space.


Configuration Space Rotation Matrix Euler Angle Inertial Frame Main Rotor 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and, Department of Computer Science, School of Engineering and Computer ScienceUniversity of DenverDenverUSA

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