Evaluating RTK GPS for UAV

Background: Real Time Kinematic (RTK) Global Positioning Systems (GPS) have been around since the late 1990s. RTK GPS offers centimeter level precision versus meter level precision of normal GPS. RTK GPS’ that can reasonably fit on an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle have been available since late 2013, and we decided to explore how ready and powerful […]


Cyber-Physical Co-Regulation of UAS

Among our current interests at the NIMBUS lab is creating a dynamic flight simulator, for drones, to be used as a test bed for control software designed for autonomous flight. The simulator is written in MatLab and will be used in the lab to test control algorithms and as well as new control techniques in […]


We are looking for a Lab Manager!

We are looking for a part-time lab manager. The primary duties for the lab manager include preparing and maintaining equipment, refining scripts and models, giving tours, building and running demos, enforcing certain processes, etc.  The person we are looking for needs to have technical experience relevant to the lab including basic programming skills and exposure […]


Summer 2016 Field Experiments

We conducted a whole lot of field experiments over the summer. First, we did two prescribed burns and a number of tests of the systems (without igniting fires). Here are a couple of videos to check out: We also conducted a experiments at the University of Oklahoma as part of the Cloud-Map project we are involved […]


Prescribed Fire Updates

This is one of my favorite pictures after our successful prescribed burn at Homestead National Monument, which shows all the people that were involved in the first ever prescribed fire ignition on public land by a UAS (can you guess which side is the fire crew and which side is us?). Recently, we had an article […]


Exporting ROS Bag Files to Matlab, v2.0

A while ago I wrote a post about bag2csv, which is a tool I wrote to import data from ROS bags to Matlab workspaces. This tool first converted the bag data to CSV files, and then read the CSV files into Matlab. We’ve discovered a lot of shortcomings to this approach since that post was written, and as […]


Prescribed Fire Ignitions at Homestead National Monument

We had an extremely successful test of our Unmanned Aerial System for Firefighting (UAS-FF) at Homestead National Monument last week. We worked with a group of over 15 firefighters from around the region to test the UAS we have developed in the Nimbus Lab. The firefighters used drip torches to create a “black” perimeter around the […]


FAA COA for prescribed burns by UAVs

Recently there have been a number of stories on our UAV that can ignite prescribed burns, including stories on slate, popular science, fire engineering, discovery, Washington Times, inverse, and others. The video that shows our system is all based on indoor flights, but we are excited to announce that we just got final approval from the FAA […]