Journal of Systems Engineering and Electronics ›› 2021, Vol. 32 ›› Issue (5): 1014-1022.doi: 10.23919/JSEE.2021.000086

• New Developments on FDD and FTC Techniques • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Event-triggered leader-following formation control for multi-agent systems under communication faults: application to a fleet of unmanned aerial vehicles

Juan Antonio VAZQUEZ TREJO1,2,*(), Adrien GUENARD3(), Manuel ADAM-MEDINA2(), Jean-Christophe PONSART1(), Laurent CIARLETTA3(), Damiano ROTONDO4(), Didier THEILLIOL1()   

  1. 1 Research Center for Automatic Control of Nancy, University of Lorraine, Nancy F-54000, France
    2 Electronic Engineering Department, National Institute of Technology of Mexico, Cuernavaca Morelos 62490, Mexico
    3 Lorraine Research Laboratory in Computer Science and Its Applications, University of Lorraine, Nancy F-54000, France
    4 University of Stavanger, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Stavanger 4021, Norway
  • Received:2020-12-24 Online:2021-10-18 Published:2021-11-08
  • Contact: Juan Antonio VAZQUEZ TREJO;;;;;;
  • About author:|VAZQUEZ TREJO Juan Antonio was born in 1990. He received his B.S. degree in computer systems engineering at the Technological Institute of Zacatepec, Morelos, Mexico in 2013. He received his M.S. degree in automatic control at the National Research and Technological Development (CENIDET) in 2017. He obtained his Ph.D. degree in automatic control at CENIDET and the University of Lorraine in 2021. His current research interests include multi-agent systems and fault-tolerant control. E-mail:||GUENARD Adrien was born in 1985. He is a research engineer at the Center for Automatic Control of Nancy (CRAN) with twelve years of experience in robotics and cyber-physical systems. He has been involved in many research projects with applications on mobile robots, UAVs, aeronautics, and control design. He is now in charge of the robotic platforms and manages an engineering team at Lorraine Research Laboratory in Computer Science and its Applications. E-mail:||ADAM-MEDINA Manuel was born in 1966. He received his professional diploma degree in electronic engineering of instrumentation from the Minatitlan Institute of Technology in 1991, his M.S. degree in electronics engineering from the CENIDET, Cuernavaca, Mexico, in 1995, and his Ph.D. degree in engineering from Henri Poincare University, Nancy, France, in 2004. He is currently a professor with the Department of Electronic Engineering, CENIDET. His current research interests are health aware control systems, model-based fault detection and isolation method synthesis and active fault tolerant control system design for linear parameter-independent, linear parameter-varying, and multi-linear systems. E-mail:||PONSART Jean-Christophe was born in 1968. He received his Ph.D. degree in 1996 from the University of Savoie in Annecy, France, in nonlinear control of magnetic suspensions and its digital implementation aspects. In 1997, he participated in design and implementation of real time controllers with digital signal processor architecture for an industrial company. He has been with the Research Center for Automatic Control of Nancy (CRAN) at the University of Lorraine since 1998 as an assistant professor. He is currently a full professor from 2016 at the University of Lorraine. His current interests include fault diagnosis and accommodation, and fault-tolerant control applied to linear parameter varying and nonlinear systems and UAV applications among others. E-mail:||CIARLETTA Laurentwas born in 1974. He is an associate professor in information technology and computer science, the School of Mines of Nancy, Lorraine University. His current research interests include ambient computing, pervasive computing, and ubiquitous computing. The focus of his research is UAV and the Internet of Mobile and Smart Things. E-mail:||ROTONDO Damiano was born in 1987. He received his Ph.D. degree (with honors) from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia, Spain, in 2016. Since February 2020, he has been an associate professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (IDE) of the University of Stavanger, in Norway. His main research interests include gain-scheduled control systems, fault detection and isolation and FTC of dynamic systems. E-mail:||THEILLIOL Didier was born in 1967. He is a research group co-leader at CRAN. He coordinates and leads national, European, and international R&D projects. He is currently an associate editor of ISA Transactions Journal, Journal of Intelligent and Robotic Systems and International Journal of Applied Mathematics & Computer Science. He was the General Chair and Program Chair of various international conferences sponsored by IEEE and IFAC. He is one of the steering committee members of European Advanced Control and Diagnosis and SysTol Association. His current research interests focus on health aware control framework based intelligent and classical model-based fault diagnosis method synthesis and active fault-tolerant control system design for linear time invariant, linear parameter varying, multi-linear systems, and reliability analysis. E-mail:


The main contribution of this paper is the design of an event-triggered formation control for leader-following consensus in second-order multi-agent systems (MASs) under communication faults. All the agents must follow the trajectories of a virtual leader despite communication faults considered as smooth time-varying delays dependent on the distance between the agents. Linear matrix inequalities (LMIs)-based conditions are obtained to synthesize a controller gain that guarantees stability of the synchronization error. Based on the closed-loop system, an event-triggered mechanism is designed to reduce the control law update and information exchange in order to reduce energy consumption. The proposed approach is implemented in a real platform of a fleet of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) under communication faults. A comparison between a state-of-the-art technique and the proposed technique has been provided, demonstrating the performance improvement brought by the proposed approach.

Key words: event-triggered, leader-following consensus, communication fault, formation control, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), experimental result