Free Online Class on 'Autonomous Navigation for Flying Robots'

Here's a very interesting (if challenging) online course that you can audit for free. It starts May 6th. I liked this bit:

Do I need to build/own a quadrotor?

No, we provide a web-based quadrotor simulator that will allow you to test your solutions in simulation. However, we took special care that the code you will be writing will be compatible with a real Parrot Ardrone quadrotor. So if you happen to have a Parrot Ardrone quadrotor, we encourage you to try out your solutions for real.

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Autonomous Navigation for Flying Robots

In this course, we will introduce the basic concepts for autonomous navigation with quadrotors, including topics such as probabilistic state estimation, linear control, and path planning.

About this Course

In recent years, flying robots such as miniature helicopters or quadrotors have received a large gain in popularity. Potential applications range from aerial filming over remote visual inspection to automatic 3D reconstruction of buildings. Navigating a quadrotor manually requires a skilled pilot and constant concentration. Therefore, there is a strong scientific interest to develop solutions that enable quadrotors to fly autonomously and without constant human supervision. This is a challenging research problem because the payload of a quadrotor is uttermost constrained and so both the quality of the onboard sensors and the available computing power is strongly limited.

In this course, we will introduce the basic concepts for autonomous navigation for quadrotors including topics such as probabilistic state estimation, linear control, and path planning. You will learn how to infer the position of the quadrotor from its sensor readings, how to navigate along a series of waypoints, and how to plan collision free trajectories. The course consists of a series of weekly lecture videos that we be interleaved by interactive quizzes and hands-on programming tasks. The programming exercises will require you to write small code snippets in Python to make a quadrotor fly in simulation.

This course is intended for graduate students in computer science, electrical engineering or mechanical engineering. The course is based on the TUM lecture “Visual Navigation for Flying Robots” which received the TUM TeachInf best lecture award in 2012 and 2013. The course website from last year (including lecture videos and course syllabus) can be found here:http://vision.in.tum.de/teaching/ss2013/visnav2013

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Comment by Greg Dronsky on April 7, 2014 at 2:31am

Signed in!

Comment by Gary McCray on April 7, 2014 at 9:06pm

A really super resource Chris,

Thank you for bringing it to our attention.

The videos from last year are excellent.

Best,

Gary

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