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Alexander F avatar image
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Alexander F asked Joerg Vogel commented

How can i create my own transporter as UAV? What is the best way to do that?

Hello guys,

i`m new to flexsim. In my modle i want deliver boxes between queues and i want to do this with a quadrocopter (drone), wich lift off from the first queue to an specific height and travel at shortest way to the destination queue, come down, lift off and fly back. Now i tried it with a BasicTE but it don`t works. How can i implement that? Or maybe is there an other way to create such transporter or have someone solved this problem maybe with an helicopter?
In my model i have now the problem that i can`t set only the z location and the x, y location is not set automatical to the current position of the uav. Also the lift off animation don`t works. Is there a poibility to change the flight heigh in the properties window, like by the crane?

I hope someone can help me to solve my problem.simpleuavmodle.fsm

FlexSim 17.1.4
transportercranenavigationcreate individual taskexecuter
simpleuavmodle.fsm (3.5 MiB)
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Joerg Vogel avatar image
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Joerg Vogel answered Joerg Vogel commented

In such a scenario where you are looking for a taskexecuter moving in a plane of A Star module and visually acting additionally in the height over the plane you can add an animation or a kinematic to the taskexecuter. A kinematic is a feature which manipulates the movement of objects. In your case I would add a draw surrogate object into the taskexecuter, move the item to the draw surrogate and set a kinematic to change the height of the draw surrogate object. The draw surrogate gets the shape of the drone. The taskexecuter shape is hidden. The taskexecuter performs the travel in the boundary plane of the A Star module while the draw surrogate object shows the flight height of the drone above the taskexecuter.

An animation is a less clever kinematic. It acts more like a movie you start at an event. If you look into the second tutorial in the manual of the animation tool you can see that you can link an animation object to an item. If the shape of the item changes you have to copy the size and shape of the item to the object representing it by source code while you start the animation in your model.

Perhaps you can check a completely different standard taskexecuter: the transporter. Perhaps works the forklift height controlled by the vertical offset travel z coordinate for your needs. Otherwise you can test destination objects which are able to place items into a height like a rack. After you have loaded the item at a low level you can manipulate the offset travel in the manner that you let rise the fork at the start of the travel, then let you travel the transporter to the destination and then let you drop the transporter in its z coordinate place offset ratio back to the start level. At the end of the so adjusted tasksequence you move the item to destination object where you set the location to the coordinates you like in the receiving object. To get the correct look you changes the shape of the fork and set the other shape parts of the forklifter to invisible or hidden. The destination must incorporate the max. flight height. You can use this height with the task type placeoffset to let the transporter move the forklift to a ratio between the start and end level value of the offset travel from load station to the unload station.

The last approach that comes into my mind is to set the parameter travel height of the forklift inside the tasksequence the tasktype setnodenum or generally setting the value to the maximum flight height in the parameters of the transporter. In this approach you have to test which methods you can use to enhance the travel time to let the forklift rise or drop before the transporter starts or ends the travel. Maybe you can achieve this by diverting the transporter to a location with the tasktypes TRAVELTOLOC or TRAVELRELATIVE. Or if you can speed up the kinematics of the fork in the kinematics tree node of the transporter or its parameters in the properties.

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Update to the different approaches:

The task types TRAVELTOLOC and TRAVELRELATIVE let travel the transporter to a different height, not the fork alone. A rack is a suitable object to force the transporter to lift the fork with the task type PLACEOFFSET. I have attached a small example to show this approach. The Tasksequence is adjusted in the OnReceiveTasksequence Trigger of the Transporter. The last location of the item is set in the rack in OnEntry Trigger of the rack. The individual shapes of the transporter are easy to set in the Editor for Visuals / Animation in the general tab of the properties window of the transporter.

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Joerg Vogel avatar image
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Joerg Vogel answered

You can use the crane. You can switch off the visible structure of the crane. Then you change the shape of the hook to a quadrocopter. You find the structure in the general properties under the edit button for the visuals/animation. If you click on the eyes in the window Animations and Components you switch off the structure elements. You can add yourself components to animate the rotors.

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Alexander F avatar image
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Alexander F answered Joerg Vogel commented

Now i have changed my model and tried it with the crane. But now when i activate the Star-Navigation, my uav (hook) travels on the ground and not in the air. Only the cranes without navigation-option travels on the right way. I don`t know why or how i can change that. I hope someone can help me.

And the option of the BasicTE when i set the location then travels the vehicle every time to this fixed location but i want that the vehicle on his current position (queue) only change the z-position and not the x and y-position. i hope now its clear what i mean.

To the understanding one more, I would use the barriers to mark areas where the uav can not fly. uavmodle.fsm


uavmodle.fsm (242.6 KiB)
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@Alexander F, I think your first question has been answered. The current answer is in fact a new question and you should ask this as a new one with the features you are going to use.

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Alexander F avatar image
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Alexander F answered Mischa Spelt commented

Thank you for your answer, but i can`t use the crane because i want use more than one UAV in the model and i want also use the UAVs for more than 1 route. Have someone an other idea or solution?

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Have you tried the solution? Because unless you have a dynamic number of UAVs you can just add more than one crane, right? And cranes are not restricted to what they can reach based on where the beams are, normally it looks weird if you send them outside your bounds but if you make that invisible anyway it does not matter.

You can also go for your BasicTE solution, I don't understand what you mean by "In my model i have now the problem that i can`t set only the z location and the x, y location is not set automatical to the current position of the uav." - you can make it travel to wherever you want if you give it a TRAVEL_TO_LOC task sequence, right?

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Up to 12 attachments (including images) can be used with a maximum of 23.8 MiB each and 47.7 MiB total.