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Flight Data Recorder for acquisition of flight test data in a ultra light aircraft

Flight Data Recorder for acquisition of flight test data in a ultra light aircraft


A flight data recording system was developed for an ultralight aircraft. The aircraft was instrumented to record data from certification flight tests and for mathematical modeling of the aircraft.
A set of instruments was integrated:

  1. AHRS module that includes an IMU and a GPS fused with a Kalman filter to obtain the estimated values ​​of the position, velocity and attitude of the aircraft.
  2. Air data system consisting of a five-hole pitot tube and air data processor that estimates the values ​​of air speed and the angles of attack and sideslip.
  3. An eight-channel high resolution analog to digital converter (24-bit), in conjunction with potentiometric sensors for measuring the position of the aircraft controls.
  4. An embedded processor with high computational and storage capacity, with Intel i7 dual-core processor, 16GB of RAM, 512GB SSD. This processor runs the software developed for the acquisition and processing of data from sensors in real time on the real-time operating system RT Linux.
  5. An embedded processor integrated with the digital analog converter, as an intelligent sensor of the position of the aircraft controls.

The data acquisition and processing software was developed to record the data received from the sensors in real time, with a flexible command interface that allows easy configuration, programming and implementation of the necessary communication links according to the required tests. This software was developed in C, as a service in the Linux RT operating system that starts automatically when the computer is turned on.
The equipment was integrated into a compact box that includes the processor, a battery pack, the AHRS system, an on/off switch, a terminal block for the potentiometric sensors of the aircraft controls, connectors for the batteries and the air data processor that is located near the pitot tube installation.
The equipment was installed and flight tested on a QuickSilver GT500 ultralight aircraft and is expected to be used in further research on mathematical modeling and identification of aircraft parameters.



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