About this Course
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Subtitles: English

Skills you will gain

Motion PlanningRoboticsQuadcoperMatlab

Course 1 of 6 in the

100% online

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.


Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

2 hours to complete

Introduction to Aerial Robotics

Welcome to Week 1! In this week, you will be introduced to the exciting field of Unmanned Aerial Robotics (UAVs) and quadrotors in particular. You will learn about their basic mechanics and control strategies and realize how careful component selection and design affect the vehicles' performance. This week also provides you with instructions on how to download and install Matlab. This software will be used throughout this course in exercises and assignments, so it is strongly recommended to familiarize yourself with Matlab soon. Tutorials to help you get started are also provided in this week.

16 videos (Total 74 min), 4 readings, 2 quizzes
16 videos
State Estimation7m
Meet the TAs52s
Basic Mechanics4m
Dynamics and 1-D Linear Control10m
Design Considerations3m
Design Considerations (continued)4m
Agility and Maneuverability7m
Component Selection4m
Effects of Size4m
Supplementary Material: Introduction3m
Supplementary Material: Dynamical Systems3m
Supplementary Material: Rates of Convergence3m
4 readings
Setting up your Matlab programming environment10m
Matlab Tutorials - Introduction to the Matlab Environment10m
Matlab Tutorials - Programming Basics10m
Matlab Tutorials - Advanced Tools10m
2 practice exercises
5 hours to complete

Geometry and Mechanics

Welcome to Week 2 of the Robotics: Aerial Robotics course! We hope you are having a good time and learning a lot already! In this week, we will first focus on the kinematics of quadrotors. Then, you will learn how to derive the dynamic equations of motion for quadrotors. To build a better understanding on these notions, some essential mathematical tools are discussed in supplementary material lectures. In this week, you will also complete your first programming assignment on 1-D quadrotor control. If you have not done so already, please download, install, and learn about Matlab before starting the assignment.

19 videos (Total 117 min), 2 quizzes
19 videos
Axis/Angle Representations for Rotations14m
Angular Velocity9m
Supplementary Material: Rigid-Body Displacements6m
Supplementary Material: Properties of Functions3m
Supplementary Material: Symbolic Calculations in Matlab4m
Supplementary Material: The atan2 Function2m
Supplementary Material: Eigenvalues and Eigenvectors of Matrices5m
Supplementary Material: Quaternions2m
Supplementary Material: Matrix Derivative1m
Supplementary Material: Skew-Symmetric Matrices and the Hat Operator4m
Newton-Euler Equations6m
Principal Axes and Principal Moments of Inertia6m
Quadrotor Equations of Motion5m
Supplementary Material: State-Space Form4m
Supplementary Material: Getting Started With the First Programming Assignment3m
1 practice exercise
4 hours to complete

Planning and Control

Welcome to Week 3! We have developed planar and three-dimensional dynamic models of the quadrotor. This week, you will learn more about how to develop linear controllers for these models. With this knowledge, you will be required to complete the second programming assignment of this course, which focuses on controlling the quadrotor in two dimensions. We encourage you to start working on the assignment soon. This week ends with a discussion on motion planning for quadrotors.

9 videos (Total 65 min), 2 quizzes
9 videos
Time, Motion, and Trajectories (continued)9m
Motion Planning for Quadrotors12m
Supplementary Material: Minimum Velocity Trajectories from the Euler-Lagrange Equations2m
Supplementary Material: Solving for Coefficients of Minimum Jerk Trajectories5m
Supplementary Material: Minimum Velocity Trajectories3m
Supplementary Material: Linearization of Quadrotor Equations of Motion5m
1 practice exercise
4 hours to complete

Advanced Topics

Welcome to Week 4! So far, we have gone over the basics of developing linear controllers for quadrotors and motion planning. In this last week of the course, we will discuss some more advanced material on how to enable quadrotors to perform more agile maneuvers and to operate autonomously in teams. Note that the last programming assignment on quadrotor control in three dimensions uses material from the previous weeks. It is strongly recommended to start the assignment as soon as possible.

5 videos (Total 68 min), 2 quizzes
5 videos
Supplementary Material: Introduction to the Motion Capture System by Matthew Turpin9m
1 practice exercise
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Top reviews from Robotics: Aerial Robotics

By ITOct 23rd 2017

The course is very good.\n\nThe classes are well taught and show general concepts. It is necessary to do research on the internet, to solve the assignments. This is not a bad thing in my point of view

By STJun 9th 2018

I think this is very good course of aerial robotics research. Being a student of robotics, I feel that some of stuffs in this course needs a good background in control and mechanical engineering.



Vijay Kumar

Nemirovsky Family Dean of Penn Engineering and Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics
School of Engineering and Applied Science

About University of Pennsylvania

The University of Pennsylvania (commonly referred to as Penn) is a private university, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. A member of the Ivy League, Penn is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States, and considers itself to be the first university in the United States with both undergraduate and graduate studies. ...

About the Robotics Specialization

The Introduction to Robotics Specialization introduces you to the concepts of robot flight and movement, how robots perceive their environment, and how they adjust their movements to avoid obstacles, navigate difficult terrains and accomplish complex tasks such as construction and disaster recovery. You will be exposed to real world examples of how robots have been applied in disaster situations, how they have made advances in human health care and what their future capabilities will be. The courses build towards a capstone in which you will learn how to program a robot to perform a variety of movements such as flying and grasping objects....

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you enroll in the course, you get access to all of the courses in the Specialization, and you earn a certificate when you complete the work. Your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

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