Comprehensive energy consumption model for unmanned aerial vehicles, based on empirical studies of battery performance

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Journal Article
IEEE Access, 2018, 6 pp. 58383 - 58394
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© 2018 IEEE. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are fast gaining popularity in a wide variety of areas and are already being used for a range of tasks. Despite their many desirable features, a number of drawbacks hinder the potential of UAV applications. As typical UAVs are powered by on-board batteries, limited battery lifetime is identified as a key limitation in UAV applications. Thus, in order to preserve the available energy, planning UAV missions in an energy efficient manner is of utmost importance. For energy efficient UAV mission planning, it is necessary to predict the energy consumption of specific UAV manoeuvring actions. Accurate energy prediction requires a reliable and realistic energy consumption model. In this paper, we present a consistent and complete energy consumption model for UAVs based on empirical studies of battery usage for various UAV activities. We considered the impact of different flight scenarios and conditions on UAV energy consumption when developing the proposed model. The energy consumption model presented in this paper can be readily used for energy efficient UAV mission planning.
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