Visual Navigation of an autonomous drone
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In this thesis we have implemented and developed the necessary hardware and software solutions to transform a radio controlled quad copter into an autonomous drone. The main goal for this thesis was to safely land the drone by visual navigation on a given landing spot. To make this possible the we started with the assembly of a radio controlled quad copter from a almost-ready-to-fly kit (ARF) from AeroQuad. We then applied the necessary hardware to the drone by adding a web camera for visual abilities, an embedded computer for processing power and wireless access point for telemetry. We implemented computer vision algorithms the enable visual navigation and the linear Kalman filter to give robustness to the visual tracking and to cope with noisy sensor observation.A proportional-integral-derivative controller (PID controller) was developed to control the drones pose and fly to desired positions.These implementations was tested in experiments in a real-world environment and the results shows the drones ability to perform autonomous tasks based on visual navigation are presented in results.