The Flight Dynamics and Control Toolbox

Latest news

November 20, 2005

The web-form used on the feedback page has been inactive since a couple of weeks. I have tried to replace it by a new simple php or cgi form, but for some reason I can't get this working (probably because my knowledge in interactive internet applications is severely lacking). So I have decided to offer just an e-mail address instead. If you have not been able to contact me through the webform lately, please try again via e-mail; as always, your feedback is very much appreciated.

The news archive (the main use of my weblog) is also currently broken; I'll see if I can fix it, but I may decide to remove it too. Apart from that I'm afraid there's not much news. Don't expect any significant FDC announcements until after I have moved to my new home, which will probably be somewhere in January or February 2006.

September 15, 2005

The third beta version of FDC 1.4 is now available for download. It incorporates the bug reports by Yongliang Chen, regarding the SYSTPROP utility and the labelling of RESPLOT plots (see the problems page for more details). In addition, the ACTRIM utility now defaults to the body-fixed reference frame (previously: stability reference frame), which should yield better results, and its user-input code has been slightly improved.

Further FDC progress is still proceeding slowly, which has everything to do with me moving to my new home in Amsterdam a couple of weeks from now. I also still have much troubles in keeping up with all the FDC-related e-mails I keep receiving every week. I probably haven't answered quite a few of them lately; my sincere apologies for the inconvenience. Please let me re-iterate that I very much value your feedback, even if you didn't received a personal anwer.

May 25, 2005

Good news: draft version 7 of the FDC 1.4 report is finally available. It includes the new chapter 12, which describes the support utilities for the toolbox, and fixes some spelling errors in the other chapters. However, there is still a lot of work to do before the report is finished. Chapter 11 is still missing; it will contain information about the analytical functions of the toolbox. The next chapters will describe some open loop examples and the Beaver autopilot theory, simulation, and analysis. Stay tuned, expect slow but steady progress.

Meanwhile, I am still struggling to keep up with my e-mail; apologies if your questions haven't been answered (yet).

May 21, 2005

The second beta version of FDC 1.4 has just been released. It does not differ significantly from the previous version, but several helptexts have been corrected (some information was obsolete or contained minor errors) or otherwise polished and some minor changes in the program were made. Nothing spectacular; this is mainly a wrap-up of minor issues found when writing the FDC 1.4 report.

April 30, 2005

I'm afraid I am struggling with some sort of "writers block" regarding the FDC report; I haven't made much progress lately. Also, the backlog of unanswered e-mails is starting to get truly enormous. My sincere apologies for all of you who are waiting for an answer to your questions: your feedback is still very much appreciated, but for the time being I am going to stop providing active support for this software, at least until I get the FDC report back on track.

February 13, 2005

Draft version 6 is up for download. This version finally includes the new chapter 6, a major re-write of chapter 4 from the FDC 1.2 report that presents the theory behind the analytical tools. With this new addition, draft 6 offers a complete theoretical overview of the mathematical models and tools, an introduction to FDC 1.4, a complete block-reference, and several appendices with additional information.

The todo-list is slowly getting shorter, although there is still a lot of work to be done. The next step will be to include the Matlab function reference and a chapter with examples of open-loop analysis, which will involve at least two more draft versions. Thereafter, the autopilot case-study will be included. In the meantime, it is highly recommended to download this draft version, as the current chapters already provide a major improvement (in my humble opinion) over their FDC 1.2 counterparts. Feedback is highly appreciated!

January 25, 2005

I have just uploaded the fifth draft version of the FDC 1.4 report. It contains the missing radio-navigation block-reference, and fixes several lay-out glitches in the other chapters. Also, the introduction to chapter 5 has been re-written, and some minor details have been clarified. Work on the analytical tools chapters is progressing, so stay tuned. :)

December 17, 2004

The fourth draft version of the FDC 1.4 manual can now be downloaded. It contains two new block-reference chapters, providing detailed information about the Simulink implementations of the nonlinear aircraft model and the wind and turbulence models, respectively. Also included is a new appendix, describing the workspace outputs from the aircraft and radio-navigation models. The software introduction chapter and the model parameter appendix have been refined and slightly enhanced, and some minor details in other chapters have been clarified.

With this draft, the chapters that deal with the system modelling, both with regard to the theory and the implementation in Simulink, have been finished, except for the radio-navigation block-reference chapter and the Beaver autopilot case-study. The next challenge will be to include theoretical and practical descriptions of the analytical tools, and a reference guide for the supporting Matlab functions. This won't be finished soon, but at least the current draft report will already provide enough information for you to get started with FDC 1.4 beta 1. Please let me know what you think, and stay tuned for more!

November 12, 2004

I have decided to publish an 'official' beta-version of FDC 1.4, called 'beta 1'. I hadn't planned to do this, because I wanted to wait until the FDC 1.4 report was almost ready, but given the delays in the writing of this report, and FDC 1.3 becoming increasingly dated in today's Matlab environment, I have decided not to wait any longer. So as of today, beta 1 can be downloaded here. It may still be a beta, but it is definitely better than FDC 1.3, so don't be afraid to try it. As always, I'm looking forward to your feedback!

News archive

Older news articles from this website are still available in my weblog: Notice that the weblog is still in beta-status, although it is already functional. In the future, the weblog will also be used to post other useful information that would be off-topic on this website.