Unmanned Systems Technology 036

34 A s large autonomous aircraft for heavy-lifting applications and urban air transport continue to be developed, and unmanned systems are increasingly used in place of humans when quarantines are in place, engineers must meet ever-higher targets for navigation and camera stabilisation accuracy. Developers of inertial measurement solutions have therefore had to work constantly to enhance the performance and reliability of their products, while re-engineering them to reduce their SWaP-C footprint. The overwhelming majority of these fall into the categories of micro-electro- mechanical systems (MEMS) or fibre optic gyros (FOGs). The former are typically perceived to hold the advantage in SWaP-C and bulk availability, while the latter are regarded as critical for Rory Jackson charts the recent advances in IMUs and gyros, and explains why the distinction between them is becoming ever-more blurred Steps in the right direction February/March 2021 | Unmanned Systems Technology The last few years have seen unprecedented advances in both MEMS and FOG IMUs, across range, bias, SWaP optimisation, manufacturability, modularity and more (Clockwise from top left, images courtesy of SBG Systems, Inertial Labs, VectorNav, and Advanced Navigation)