This paper proposes a novel observer-based controller for Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) designed to directly receive measurements from a Vision-Aided Inertial Navigation System (VA-INS) and produce the required thrust and rotational torque inputs. The VA-INS is composed of a vision unit (monocular or stereo camera) and a typical low-cost 6-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) equipped with an accelerometer and a gyroscope. A major benefit of this approach is its applicability for environments where the Global Positioning System (GPS) is inaccessible. The proposed VTOL-UAV observer utilizes IMU and feature measurements to accurately estimate attitude (orientation), gyroscope bias, position, and linear velocity. Ability to use VA-INS measurements directly makes the proposed observer design more computationally efficient as it obviates the need for attitude and position reconstruction. Once the motion components are estimated, the observer-based controller is used to control the VTOL-UAV attitude, angular velocity, position, and linear velocity guiding the vehicle along the desired trajectory in six degrees of freedom (6 DoF). The closed-loop estimation and the control errors of the observer-based controller are proven to be exponentially stable starting from almost any initial condition. To achieve global and unique VTOL-UAV representation in 6 DoF, the proposed approach is posed on the Lie Group and the design in unit-quaternion is presented. Although the proposed approach is described in a continuous form, the discrete version is provided and tested. Keywords: Vision-aided inertial navigation system, unmanned aerial vehicle, vertical take-off and landing, stochastic, noise, Robotics, control systems, air mobility, observer-based controller algorithm, landmark measurement, exponential stability.
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