Evaluation of the Haltere as a Biologically-Inspired Inertial Rate Sensor
AIR FORCE RESEARCH LAB EGLIN AFB FL MUNITIONS DIRECTORATE
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Since as early as the 1940s, specialized structures on dipteran insects have been recognized as necessary for inertial measurement associated with basic flight stability. These structures, called halteres, have been suggested to act as vibrating structure gyroscopes, measuring strains proportional to Coriolis accelerations. As a miniature, robust means for stabilizing flight, this biological inertial measurement system is not only of interest to biologists, but also to designers of biomimetic robotic systems. However, the accuracy with which a pair of halteres can reconstruct the full body rate vector had not been clearly ascertained in previous studies. In addition, only one potential mechanism to decouple the rate components, using frequency decomposition of the haltere mechanical response, has been generally adopted. The purpose of this paper is to present an evaluation of the halteres as a rate measurement sensor through dynamic simulation of the halteres across a full range of body angular rates. Based on this analysis, a simple alternative mechanism is proposed for decoupling the body rate components, and, assuming the use of this proposed mechanism, an error analysis is presented for the halteres as a three dimensional linear rate measurement system.
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