Rajesh Rajamani, Professor, Mechanical Engineering
This project focuses on the development of fault diagnostic systems that can monitor the health of all the sensors and actuators on an automated vehicle and identify the source of any fault that occurs. Both semi-automated vehicles (such as in adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping-type applications) as well as fully automated vehicles on dedicated automated highway systems are investigated. Two key research challenges are addressed in the project. First, since vehicle dynamic models can be highly nonlinear, a systematic fault diagnostics methodology is developed for nonlinear systems based on nonlinear observer design results. Second, the issue of obtaining analytical redundancy for sensors that measure inter-vehicle and vehicle-road variables is addressed. The difficulty in this task arises from the fact that each of these sensor measurements involve a second dynamic system, with no access being available to sensors of the other dynamic system. The experimental work plan in the project includes experimental implementation of the entire fault diagnostic system on a Volvo truck and a Navistar tractor-trailer at the MnRoad research facility. The project addresses an important aspect of vehicle/highway automation. The development of reliable fault diagnostic and fault handling systems is necessary in order to make vehicle automation viable. Educational objectives of the project include textbook and curriculum development.