Mathematical modeling and control of a tilt-rotor aircraft

Xinhua Wang, Lilong Cai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents a novel model of large-size tilt-rotor aircraft, which can operate as a helicopter as well as being capable of transition to fixed-wing flight. Aerodynamics of the dynamic large-size tiltrotors based on blade element method is analyzed during mode transition. For the large-size aircraft with turboshaft engines, the blade pitch angles of the rotors are regulated to vary according to the desired level of thrust, and the following expressions are formulated explicitly: rotor thrust and blade pitch angle, drag torque and blade pitch angle. A finite-time convergent observer based on Lyapunov function is developed to reconstruct the unknown variables and uncertainties during mode transitions. The merits of this design include the modeling of dynamic large-size tilt-rotor, ease of the uncertainties estimation during the tilting and the widely applications. Moreover, a switched logic controller based on the finite-time convergent observer is proposed to drive the aircraft to implement the mode transition with invariant flying height.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)473 - 492
Number of pages20
JournalAerospace Science and Technology
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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