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Fry, S N (2009). Experimental approaches toward a functional understanding of insect flight control. In: Floreano, D; Zufferey, J C; Srinivasan, M V; Ellington, C. Flying insect and robots. New York, US: Springer, 1-13.

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This chapter describes experimental approaches exploring free-flight control in insects at various levels, in view of the biomimetic design principles they may offer for MAVs. Low-level flight control is addressed with recent studies of the aerodynamics of free-flight control in the fruit fly. The ability to measure instantaneous kinematics and aerodynamic forces in free-flying insects provides a basis for the design of flapping airfoil MAVs. Intermediate-level flight control is addressed by presenting a behavioral system identification approach. In this work, the motion processing and speed control pathways of the fruit fly were reverse engineered based on transient visual flight speed responses, providing a quantitative control model suited for biomimetic implementation. Finally, high-level flight control is addressed with the analysis of landmark-based goal navigation, for which bees combine and adapt basic visuomotor reflexes in a context-dependent way. Adaptive control strategies are also likely suited for MAVs that need to perform in complex and unpredictable environments. The integrative analysis of flight control mechanisms in free-flying insects promises to move beyond isolated emulations of biological subsystems toward a generalized and rigorous approach.


2 citations in Web of Science®
1 citation in Scopus®
Google Scholar™


Additional indexing

Item Type:Book Section, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Neuroinformatics
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
Deposited On:01 Mar 2010 11:02
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:59
ISBN:978-3-540-89392-9 (P) 978-3-540-89393-6 (E)
Publisher DOI:10.1007/978-3-540-89393-6_1
Related URLs:http://www.ini.uzh.ch/node/24407 (Organisation)

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