Hybrid Projectile Transformation Condition Detection System for Extended Selectable Range 2013-01-2203
A Hybrid Projectile (HP) is a tube launched munition that transforms into a gliding UAV, and is currently being researched at West Virginia University. In order to properly transform, the moment of transformation needs to be controlled. A simple timer was first envisioned to control transformation point for maximum distance. The distance travelled or range of an HP can directly be modified by varying the launch angle. In addition, an internal timer would need to be reprogrammed for any distance less than maximum range due to the nominal time to deployment varying with launch angle. A method was sought for automatic wing deployment that would not require reprogramming the round. A body angle estimation system was used to estimate the pitch of the HP relative to the Earth to determine when the HP is properly oriented for the designed glide slope angle. It also filters out noise from an inertial measurement unit (IMU). An Extended Kalman Filter (EKF) was used to estimate the pitch of the HP while an algorithm determines when to deploy the wings. A parametric study was done to verify the optimum deployment condition using a Simulink aerodynamic model. Because range is directly related to launch angle, various launch angles were simulated in the model. By fixing the glide slope angle to −10° relative to the horizontal as a deployment condition for all launch angles, the range differed only by a maximum of 5% from the maximum possible range. The timer method was based on counting milliseconds from launch. Based on these findings, the body angle deployment condition provides the most flexible option to maintain maximum distance without the need of reprogramming.