Motor and Perception Constrained NMPC for Torque-controlled Generic Aerial Vehicles

M. Jacquet, A. Franchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)
123 Downloads (Pure)


This letter presents a perception-aware and motor-level non-linear model predictive control scheme for multi-rotor aerial vehicles. Our formulation considers both real actuation limitations of the platform, and realistic perception objectives for the visibility coverage of an environmental feature while performing a reference task. It directly produces the rotor-level (torque) inputs of the platform motors at high frequency, hence it does not require an intermediate unconstrained controller to work. It is also meant to be generic, by covering standard coplanar quadrotors as well as tilted-propeller multi-rotors. We propose an open-source fully onboard implementation of the method, capable of running at 500 Hz under the intermittent and noisy measurements of one or more cameras. The implementation is extensively tested both in simulation and in real experiments with two substantially different multi-rotor platforms, an underactuated and a fully actuated one, both equipped with two cameras, clearly demonstrating the practicability and high performance of the method.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)518-525
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Robotics and automation letters
Issue number2
Early online date17 Dec 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2021


  • aerialcore
  • murophen


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