Using Cutting-Edge Unmanned System Platforms for Aiding Teaching and Research on Autonomous Control and Fault-Tolerant Control

Since 2007 and started from an NSERC Strategic Project Grant entitled “Cooperative UAV Systems with Increased Reliability in Severe Environments”, Concordia University has its started long-term and closed collaboration with Quanser on making use of Quanser’s cutting-edge unmanned systems on air (UAVs: QBall, QDrone) and ground (UGVs: QBot, QCar) for developing advanced Autonomous Control (AC), Fault-Tolerant Control (FTC), and Fault-Tolerant Cooperative Control (FTCC) techniques. Such platforms have been used for undergraduate and graduate course “Flight Control Systems” teaching since Fall 2010 and research works for applications to forest fires monitoring and detection, autonomous vehicles etc. for investigating concepts and carrying out research on Fault Detection and Diagnosis (FDD), FTC, and FTCC techniques. In this webinar, brief overall view on the challenges and latest developments on making unmanned systems smarter, safer, and more reliable & resilient in terms of Guidance, Navigation, and Control (GNC) of unmanned systems with also integration of Remote Sensing (RS) techniques for autonomous, efficient, reliable and secure applications to forest and environment monitoring and fires/damages/risks detection will be presented first, then some of new developments and current research works being carried out at our group will be introduced as the second part of the presentation. In particular, new developments on AC, FDD, FTC, and FTCC techniques towards autonomous and reliable applications to the forest fire monitoring tasks based on the use of QBall, QDrone and QCar will be presented. New developments for efficient and reliable detection of fires/damages/risks based on remotely sensed signals/images from onboard UAVs will also be presented.

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Presenter Bio:

Dr. Youmin Zhang is currently a Professor at the Department of Mechanical, Industrial and Aerospace Engineering and the Concordia Institute of Aerospace Design and Innovation (CIADI) at Concordia University, Canada. His main research interests and experience are in the areas of condition monitoring, health management, fault diagnosis and fault-tolerant control systems; cooperative guidance, navigation and control of unmanned aerial/space/ground/marine vehicles with applications to forest fires, pipelines, power lines, wind farms, solar panels arrays, environment, natural resources and natural disasters monitoring, detection, and protection by combining with remote sensing techniques; dynamic systems modeling, estimation, identification and advanced control techniques; and advanced signal processing techniques for diagnosis, prognosis, fault-tolerant and health management of safety-critical systems with application to renewable and hybrid energy systems and smart grids, and smart cities. He has published 8 books, over 550 journal and conference papers. He was awarded as a Concordia University Research Fellow in the Strategic Research Cluster ‘Technology, Industry and the Environment’ in 2018 in recognition of his outstanding research works and contributions. His research works on developments of unmanned systems with applications to forest fires detection and autonomous transportation have been reported by public media in national (CTV News, Radio-Canada International, Canadian Science Publishing), citywide (La Presse, Ville, Montreal), and organizational (Concordia News, Quanser Inc., Amtek Company) levels for several times. Dr. Zhang is a Fellow of Canadian Society of Mechanical Engineering (CSME), a Senior Member of AIAA and IEEE, President of International Society of Intelligent Unmanned Systems (ISIUS), Executive Committee Member of International Conference on Unmanned Aircraft Systems (ICUAS), Steering Committee Member of International Symposium on Autonomous Systems (ISAS), and a member of the Technical Committee for several international and national scientific societies. He has been an Editor-in-Chief, an Editor-at-Large, an Editorial Board Member, and Associate Editor of several international journals, including as a Board Member of Governors and Regional Representative (North America) for “Journal of Intelligent & Robotic Systems”, an Editorial Advisory Board Member of “International Journal of Intelligent Unmanned Systems”, an Associate Editor for “IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks & Learning Systems”, “IET Cyber-systems and Robotics”, “Unmanned Systems”, “Journal of Systems Science and Complexity”, “Chinese Journal of Aeronautics”, and “Security and Safety”, a Deputy Editor-in-Chief for “Guidance, Navigation and Control” etc. He has served as General Chair, Program Chair of several unmanned systems and renewable energy relevant international conferences, including as an Honorary General Chair of the Int. Conf. on Unmanned Aircraft Systems (ICUAS’21), held at Athens, Greece, June 15-18, 2021, Program Chair of the IEEE 4th Int. Conf. on Renewable Energy and Power Engineering (REPE), Beijing, Oct. 9-11, 2021 (, a General Chair of the 5th Int. Symp. on Autonomous Systems (ISAS), Hangzhou, Dec. 17-19, 2021 (, and a General Chair of the 2022 Int. Conf. on Unmanned Aircraft Systems (ICUAS’22) to be held at Dubrovnik, Croatia during June 21-24, 2022 ( More detailed information can be found at