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the classic kite's autonomy and energy basis (summary)

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  • dave santos
    In the KiteLab Group Low-Complexity AWE view, the most fundamental science and engineering applies- - Control Autonomy is acknowledged in the feedback loops
    Message 1 of 3 , May 28, 2013
      In the "KiteLab Group" Low-Complexity AWE view, the most fundamental science and engineering applies-
       
      - Control Autonomy is acknowledged in the feedback loops of inherent kite flight stabilities (even meeting the "four rules" of robot autonomy in Wikipedia).
       
      - Energy production and application is acknowledged in the basic fact of heavier than air kite flight, which requires power.
       
      - Developing these natural qualities to the greatest extent possible from classic kiting models is a heuristically sound foundation for layering further controls and energy extraction features.
       
      - This classic kite foundation is the most consistent with the KIS philosophy in AWE.
       
      - Only careful calculation and proper testing validates these principles. Market success is the final test.
       
      Note- Virtually all other schools of AWE overlook these principles as fundamental.



       
    • Joe Faust
      To practice the concepts of autonomy for AWES, may we dissect some explicit systems to see if our community is well or poorly applying autonomous and
      Message 2 of 3 , May 28, 2013
        To practice the concepts of autonomy for AWES, may we dissect some explicit systems to see if our community is well or poorly applying "autonomous" and "autonomy" ?

        Some questions surrounding AWES  autonomy:                     (please add questions that might clarify)
        • An AWES that requires ground control via radio control or wired control with humans sitting (or standing or running) making decisions about the launch-flight-land session seems not to be autonomous.  Is that your understanding?
        • Has the claim regarding autonomy by Dave Santos been carefully peer reviewed yet for validity and sound application of "autonomy"?
        • Has the recent claim by Makani Power been peer reviewed yet for validity and sound application of "autonomy"?
        • ?

        =============
        The following clip is not necessarily with any authority, but provided only to tease in aspects regarding autonomy, so that we might grow a consensus about what we will mean when we call out "fully autonomous" to each other and to the public about AWES: 

        From "space craft" text in a wiki: 

        Autonomy is an increasing feature of space systems with two objectives

        • Mandatory for new functions:
        e.g. several spacecraft in formation flight adjust their relative positions so that interferometric measurements with wide basis can be performed
        • Cost reduction:
        e.g. failure detection and recovery by spacecraft system without ground station involvement reduces Up-/Downlink usage and reduces operational costs on ground.

        An Autonomous Space Craft might make certain decisions for itself based on imagery observation and a pre-programmed algorithm that will determine the only possible logical outcome and then perform that task without having to ask controllers NAND NOR AND types of parameters. Autonomy in Space does not relate to the socio-political definitions, here we are talking about a device that can make basic or convoluted decisions based on LOGIC (in an electronic usage) - see X37b Military Space Plane for an example

        To have true Autonomy however a device (or entity) would need to have a longer leash being able to complete complex missions without human intra direction. Such a system would say further automate the other elements of the total process making the whole of the "system" larger by including more devices that multicommunicate with each other without involving ground based technicians or communications. (the military might not want to send possibly interceptable signals to and from said same)

        For example: If they automated the ground based tracking and control sending and or included additional satellites and/or space planes OR other devices (autonomous air and seacraft) the X37b Missions could someday become totally Autonomous.

        • Basically: Send it on a mission and recover it when it lands.
        • Obviously Autonomy here too has its authority hierarchy whereby command override

        is in effect. If the ground controllers want to they can take control of the space craft at any time. A typical mission though will be preprogrammed and perform as directed and land.. OR perform a task WHILE and/or UNTIL (in a software sense) a condition is met (say a signal sent from the ground) IF/THEN Land the Un-Manned SpaceCraft without further direction from the ground. The systems so happen to interact but that is not a necessary condition for autonomy. As each device becomes more and more autonomous the total network becomes more and more intelligent and at the same time secure

      • dave santos
        Joe,   Of course there is no formal peer review for Forum claims, which are ideally novel testable conjectures in support of RAD (rapid AWE dev). Let me
        Message 3 of 3 , May 28, 2013
          Joe,
           
          Of course there is no formal peer review for Forum claims, which are ideally novel testable conjectures in support of RAD (rapid AWE dev). Let me be more explicit about the claim that a classic single-line kite is highly autonomous (some more than others). 
           
          Allow first that specific mechanical automata are well established as cybernetic, with a definite canonical autonomy (a feedback-loop), for example, the Watts Governor. Kites are even richer cybernetic devices.
           
          The kite yaw feedback loop is mediated by a tail, snowplow-stability, and/or pendulum mass, and reacts with good control performance to chaos (turbulence). Pitch is subject to self-adjusting elevation (adapting to velocity), sometimes by an elastic aft bridle (AoA modulation). The field azimuth DOF is autonomous weather-cocking. One can count quite a few feedback loops in many clever kite designs.
           
          Thus the kite senses its environment, mixes its inputs, and calculates its responses by embodied computation, which is expressible as a state machine. Coherent flight is the goal state. To come down in lulls is a logical operation, as even Aristotle reasoned. Some kite types even self-relaunch, like sleds and various "3D" types. All in all, this is an exceptional degree of robust flight autonomy, and quite well documented.
           
          Complex "Autonomy" is not a fixed precise idea, but evolves. No cybernetic system is known to be fully autonomous. Humans, for example, need mothers, culture, and ecosystems to perform logical often supervisory functions. At the other extreme of complexity, "autonomy" as a concept goes deep into thermodynamics and information theory.
           
          In short, the classic kite is a paleo-robot of the most wonderful sort,
           
          daveS
           


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