Precision agriculture has become increasingly important in modern farming practices, with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) playing a key role in improving the efficiency and sustainability of agricultural operations. This presentation focuses on two innovative approaches for enhancing the performance and efficiency of multirotor UAVs in precision agriculture.
The first approach proposes a methodological approach for designing a hybrid propulsion unit for multirotor aircraft by combining two different energy sources to overcome the limitations associated with purely electric energy sources. The proposed system is analyzed and modeled, and a suitable control strategy for the hybrid power system is designed and verified through computer simulations and experimentation.
The second approach involves the development of a modular autonomous robotic system, consisting of a multirotor UAV and docking station, that can be produced and applied in precision agriculture. The primary purpose of this system is to save time required to perform tasks and reduce environmental and soil pollution. Both approaches are analyzed and modelled, with suitable control strategies designed to optimize their performance.
Overall, both approaches offer innovative solutions for enhancing the performance and efficiency of multirotor UAVs in precision agriculture, with significant potential for improving the sustainability and productivity of modern agricultural practices.
Dr. sc. Matija Krznar
Matija Krznar (born 1987) obtained his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Mechatronics and Robotics in 2009 and 2010 respectively, at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture, University of Zagreb. In 2020, he defended his doctoral thesis entitled "Modelling and control of hybrid propulsion systems for multirotor unmanned aerial vehicles" at the same institution and was awarded a Ph.D. in the field of Mechatronics and Robotics, Mechanical Engineering. During his studies, he conducted research in the field of dynamics and control of electric drives, with applications in mechatronic systems for oil and gas drilling. After graduation, he worked in the real sector, and in 2015 enrolled in the postgraduate study of Mechatronics and Robotics at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture, University of Zagreb. Since 2019, he has been employed at the same faculty as an assistant at the Department of Robotics and Production System Automation, in the field of Mechanical Engineering. In 2021, he was elected to the scientific title of Research Associate.
He teaches courses in Electrical Engineering, Ship Electrical Engineering, Electrical Engineering for Aeronautics, Electronics, Microprocessor Control, Power Electronics, Development and Application of Microcontrollers, and Measuring Devices and Sensors. His current research interests include modelling the dynamics and synthesis of control systems for multirotor unmanned aerial vehicles with a focus on hybrid propulsion systems, as well as the development of embedded microcontroller systems. He is the author and co-author of one chapter in books, seventeen journal papers, two professional papers, and fourteen conference proceeding papers.
Dr. sc. Denis Kotarski
Denis Kotarski (b. 1986), earned his BSc, MSc, and Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture, University of Zagreb. He is currently employed at the Karlovac University of Applied Sciences, Department of Mechanical Engineering where he teaches undergraduate study courses: Fundamentals of automatic control, Robotics, and Mechatronic systems design. He works as an external associate at the Zagreb University of Applied Sciences, Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Mechatronics. He is currently the coordinator of research activities on a project funded by the EU: “Research and development of specialised multirotor unmanned aerial vehicles”. Denis Kotarski was elected to the Research Associate in 2022. Since February 2023, he works as a researcher on the EU project "Strengthening Research and Innovation Excellence in Autonomous Aerial Systems - AeroSTREAM" at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture, University of Zagreb. His current research interests include the design of a heavy payload multirotor aerial platform, as well as the development of fully actuated configurations.
Doc. Dr. sc. Petar Piljek
Petar Piljek (b. 1986) is an assistant professor at the Department of Technology at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture, University of Zagreb. He earned his BSc, MSc, and PhD degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the same institution, where he currently teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in mechanical technologies. Dr Piljek is also an external associate at the Zagreb University of Applied Sciences since 2021. In 2018, he became the Head of the Mechanical Deformation Laboratory at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture in Zagreb. He actively participated in the research projects of the Ministry of Science, Education, and Sport of the Republic of Croatia, as well as projects supported by the University of Zagreb, and he is currently the coordinator of research activities on two projects funded by the EU. Some of his current research interests include designing modular robotic platforms, exploring new additive manufacturing techniques, and developing of control algorithms for unmanned aerial vehicles. He has published over 30 scientific publications and has two pending patents.