A Nonlinear Automatic Feedback Blade Controller for Improved Bulldozer Performance 750819

Underwater bulldozers have been built for development of the ocean floor. Yet it is impractical for a diver to operate an underwater bulldozer from within the vehicle. Remote control of a bulldozer is extremely difficult due to complicated relationships between vehicle inclination, blade cylinder deflection, and the terrain profile in front of the bulldozer. In this paper a nonlinear automatic feedback blade control system is designed to replace direct operator control of the blade.
To accomplish this design, mathematical models were developed for the vehicle dynamics and the hydraulic system dynamics of a typical bulldozer. Since both subsystem models are complicated nonlinear ones, the blade control system was designed using only a simplified hydraulic system model. The performance of the complete nonlinear system with the blade feedback control system added was then investigated using a hybrid computer simulation compared to available experimental data using a skilled operator.
Based on cutting accuracy for a simple cutting task, the simulated bulldozer system with the new proposed feedback blade controller performed at least as well as a skilled operator on dry land. This success appears to warrant further research and the development of an actual hardware prototype.


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