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2 DOF Helicopter

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The 2 DOF Helicopter experiment provides an economical test bed to understand and develop control laws for vehicles with dynamics representative of a tethered rigid body helicopter, spacecraft or underwater vehicle.


Product Details

The 2 DOF Helicopter emulates a helicopter configuration with a main rotor and anti-torque tail rotor. The front propeller controls the pitch axis – rotating the center of the body about the horizontal. The back propeller controls the yaw axis – the angle about the vertical base. Both axes are measured using high-resolution encoders. The slip ring mechanism on the vertical axis allows the body to freely rotate about the yaw angle, by eliminating the need for any wires to connect the motors and encoders to the base.

  • Two degrees of freedom
  • Propellers are driven by high-quality MICROMO and Pittman DC motors
  • High-resolution optical encoders
  • Slip ring allows infinite motion about the vertical and yaw axis
Device mass 3.46 kg
Device height (ground to top of base) 45 cm
Helicopter body mass 1.39 kg
Helicopter body length 48 cm
Base dimensions ( W × L) 17.5 cm x 17.5 cm
Pitch encoder resolution (in quadrature) 4096 counts/rev
Yaw/travel encoder resolution (in quadrature) 8192 counts/rev
Pitch angle range 75 (± 37.5 deg)
Yaw angle range 360 deg
Pitch force thrust constant 0.22 N/V¹
Yaw pitch thrust constant 0.43 N/V¹
Propeller diameter 20.3 cm
Propeller pitch 15.2 cm
Pitch/front motor resistance 0.83 Ω
Pitch/front motor – current-torque constant 0.0182 Nm/A
Yaw/back motor resistance 1.60 Ω
Yaw/back motor – current-torque constant 0.0109 Nm/A
  • Derivation of simple dynamic model
  • State space representation
  • State feedback control with feed-forward and integral anti-windup
  • LQR control design
  • Control parameters tuning

The following additional components are required to complete your workstation, and are sold separately:

For Simulink

  • QUARC® add-on for MATLAB®/Simulink®
  • Quanser VoltPAQ-X2 linear voltage amplifier
  • One of the following DAQ devices:
    • Quanser Q2-USB
    • Quanser Q8-USB
    • Quanser QPIDe


  • Quanser Rapid Control Prototyping (Q-RCP) Toolkit® add-on for NI LabVIEW™
  • Quanser VoltPAQ-X2 linear voltage amplifier
  • One of the following DAQ devices:
    • NI CompactRIO with two Quanser Q1-cRIO modules
    • NI myRIO with Quanser Terminal Board
    • Quanser Q2-USB
    • Quanser Q8-USB
    • Quanser QPIDe

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