Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

Darcy Allison (Committee Member), Rory Roberts (Advisor), William Schley (Committee Member), Mitch Wolff (Committee Member)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME)


This thesis presents an automated design methodology for development of six degree-of-freedom aircraft controllers. The essential functions required of the controller design are 1) to provide sufficient inner loop compensation to guarantee dynamic stability and acceptable handling qualities over the full flight envelope, and, 2) to enable automated mission following capabilities through implementation of outer loop trackers. A hierarchical control architecture consisting of nested nonlinear dynamic inversion control loops is proposed as a means of achieving these top level objectives. Gain tuning based on an automated linearization methodology is then suggested. Next, an automated optimal control allocation algorithm is tested and implemented. The performance of the control allocator is explored by varying the user-specified secondary objective functions within the context of non-linear time domain six degree-of-freedom simulations. Sample results and recommendations for future improvements to the methodology are then provided.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering

Year Degree Awarded