Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Robert Klenke


This work is part of ongoing research conducted at Virginia Commonwealth University relating to unmanned aerial vehicles. The primary objective of this thesis was to develop a flexible, high-performance autopilot platform in order to facilitate research on advanced flight control algorithms. A dual FPGA-based system architecture utilizing a stacked, multi-board design was created to meet this goal. Processing tasks were split between the two FPGA devices, allowing for improved system timing and increased throughput. A combination of analog and digital filtering techniques were employed in the new system, resulting in enhanced sensor accuracy and precision compared to the previous generation autopilot system. Several important improvements to the safety and reliability of the overall system were also achieved.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

December 2010

Included in

Engineering Commons