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**1 - 1**of**1**### FLIGHT PATH PLANNING OF UAV BASED ON ATMOSPHERIC ENERGY HARVESTING

, 2010

"... âˆ—Signatures are on file in the Graduate School. This thesis presents an approach to planning long distance soaring trajectories which exploit atmospheric energy to enable long distance, long duration flights by small and micro unmanned aerial vehicles. It introduces the energy map, which computes th ..."

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âˆ—Signatures are on file in the Graduate School. This thesis presents an approach to planning long distance soaring trajectories which exploit atmospheric energy to enable long distance, long duration flights by small and micro unmanned aerial vehicles. It introduces the energy map, which computes the minimum total energy required to reach the goal from an arbitrary starting point while accounting for the effect of arbitrary wind fields. The energy map provides the path to the goal as a sequence of way points, the optimal speeds to fly for each segment between way points and the heading required to fly along a segment. Since the energy map is based on the minimum total energy required to reach the goal it immediately answers the question of existence of a feasible solution for a particular starting point and initial total energy. The results obtained from energy map are compared with other generic trajec-tory planners, namely A*. The A * algorithm used uses a cost function which is the weighted sum of energy required and remaining distance to goal. The effect