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International Journal of Aerospace Engineering
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 3406256, 9 pages
Research Article

A Moving Frame Trajectory Tracking Method of a Flying-Wing UAV Using the Differential Geometry

College of Automation Engineering, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing 210016, China

Received 27 July 2016; Accepted 19 October 2016

Academic Editor: Mahmut Reyhanoglu

Copyright © 2016 Yi Zhu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The problem of UAV trajectory tracking is a difficult issue for scholars and engineers, especially when the target curve is a complex curve in the three-dimensional space. In this paper, the coordinate frames during the tracking process are transformed to improve the tracking result. Firstly, the basic concepts of the moving frame are given. Secondly the transfer principles of various moving frames are formulated and the Bishop frame is selected as a final choice for its flexibility. Thirdly, the detailed dynamic equations of the moving frame tracking method are formulated. In simulation, a moving frame of an elliptic cylinder helix is formulated precisely. Then, the devised tracking method on the basis of the dynamic equations is tested in a complete flight control system with 6 DOF nonlinear equations of the UAV. The simulation result shows a satisfactory trajectory tracking performance so that the effectiveness and efficiency of the devised tracking method is proved.