student profile: Mr Benjamin Morrell


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Thesis work

Thesis title: Autonomous Navigation of Space-Based and Aerial Robots

Supervisors: Peter GIBBENS , Gregory CHAMITOFF

Thesis abstract:

We live in a three dimensional world, and are creating robots to operate in such an environment: moving and rotating in around complex obstacles. Space base robotics need to safely navigate around large spacecraft for inspections, and manoeuvre objects without collision for in-space construction. Similarly, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) with the capability to operate in close proximity to buildings and people require the ability to avoid obstacles while navigating through a 3D space. 
There is a challenge to develop the systems for these robots to navigate with 6 degrees of freedom autonomously and safely. The proposed approach; the Cohesive Autonomous Navigation System (CANS), is centred around a map of 3D rigid body features that are both landmarks for localisation, and obstacles for path planning. Images from a colour and depth are processed to extract regions of interest, which are then modelled as 3D rigid body features in a way conducive to both localisation, mapping and path planning. A Simultaneous Localisation and Mapping (SLAM) process uses these rigid body features in building up the central 3D map, whilst using the map to localise. The Admissible Subspace TRajectory Optimiser (ASTRO), then uses the map to plan the optimal position and attitude trajectory of the robot through the rigid body obstacles. 
The result is an efficient cohesion of the localisation, mapping and path planning components of Autonomous Navigation specifically designed for 3D operations. 
The algorithms are planned to be demonstrated and tested on board the SPHERES robots and a UAV system. 

Selected publications

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Journals

  • Morrell, B., Munk, D., Vio, G., Verstraete, D. (2014). Development of a Hypersonic Aircraft Design Optimization Tool. Applied Mechanics and Materials, 553, 847-852. [More Information]

Conferences

  • Kuether, D., Morrell, B., Chamitoff, G., Bishop, M., Mortari, D., Gibbens, P., Coen, M. (2016). Cohesive autonomous navigation system. AIAA Guidance, Navigation, and Control Conference, 2016 (Held at the AIAA SciTech Forum 2016), Red Hook, NY: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). [More Information]
  • Morrell, B., Read, J., Coen, M., Probe, A., Chamitoff, G., James, G. (2016). Future Mars exploration operational simulation: Research outcomes and educational benefit. 14th International Conference on Space Operations (SpaceOps 2016), Reston: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). [More Information]
  • Morrell, B., Chamitoff, G., Kuetherz, D., Coenx, M., Gibbens, P. (2016). Integration of 3D SLAM, rigid body landmarks and 3D path planning. AIAA Space and Astronautics Forum and Exposition (SPACE 2016), Long Beach: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).
  • Shi, J., Ulrich, S., Chamitoff, G., Morrell, B., Allen, A. (2016). Trajectory optimization for proximity operations around tumbling geometrical constraints via legendre polynomials. AIAA Guidance, Navigation, and Control Conference, 2016 (Held at the AIAA SciTech Forum 2016), Red Hook, NY: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). [More Information]
  • Morrell, B., Gibbens, P., Chamitoff, G. (2014). Application of a Trajectory Optimisation Algorithm for Dynamic Obstacle Avoidance and Multiple Vehicle Coordination. Fourth Australasian Conference on Unmanned Systems, Melbourne, VIC: Australian Association for Unmanned Systems.

2016

  • Kuether, D., Morrell, B., Chamitoff, G., Bishop, M., Mortari, D., Gibbens, P., Coen, M. (2016). Cohesive autonomous navigation system. AIAA Guidance, Navigation, and Control Conference, 2016 (Held at the AIAA SciTech Forum 2016), Red Hook, NY: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). [More Information]
  • Morrell, B., Read, J., Coen, M., Probe, A., Chamitoff, G., James, G. (2016). Future Mars exploration operational simulation: Research outcomes and educational benefit. 14th International Conference on Space Operations (SpaceOps 2016), Reston: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). [More Information]
  • Morrell, B., Chamitoff, G., Kuetherz, D., Coenx, M., Gibbens, P. (2016). Integration of 3D SLAM, rigid body landmarks and 3D path planning. AIAA Space and Astronautics Forum and Exposition (SPACE 2016), Long Beach: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).
  • Shi, J., Ulrich, S., Chamitoff, G., Morrell, B., Allen, A. (2016). Trajectory optimization for proximity operations around tumbling geometrical constraints via legendre polynomials. AIAA Guidance, Navigation, and Control Conference, 2016 (Held at the AIAA SciTech Forum 2016), Red Hook, NY: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). [More Information]

2014

  • Morrell, B., Gibbens, P., Chamitoff, G. (2014). Application of a Trajectory Optimisation Algorithm for Dynamic Obstacle Avoidance and Multiple Vehicle Coordination. Fourth Australasian Conference on Unmanned Systems, Melbourne, VIC: Australian Association for Unmanned Systems.
  • Morrell, B., Munk, D., Vio, G., Verstraete, D. (2014). Development of a Hypersonic Aircraft Design Optimization Tool. Applied Mechanics and Materials, 553, 847-852. [More Information]

Note: This profile is for a student at the University of Sydney. Views presented here are not necessarily those of the University.