Dr Kieran T Wood

  • BS8 1TR


Research output per year

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Personal profile

Research interests

Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), a.k.a. ‘drones’ are quickly becoming a useful research tool with many applications for environmental monitoring. My research focuses on the design and operations of UAS in environments that are inhospitable to life: at this time volcanic and nuclear sites. Long-range UAS are an ideal solution to monitoring and surveying in these situations since a human operator can remain in a safe location while the vehicle is at risk. My previous Ph.D. work focused on autonomous indoor flight for small multi-rotor type vehicles, whilst my current post-doc role explores the use of both larger multi-rotors and fixed-wing types.

For effective monitoring at long-range in extreme environments, the vehicle must be semi-independent; able to operate with minimal human supervision. This presents a significant control and automation challenge since measurement payloads are most effective when in close proximity to their target. I investigate the vehicle design and control algorithms needed to reliably and accurately position the vehicle and its sensor payload.

A key part of my work is enabling safe beyond visual line-of-site (BVLOS) flights. This is achieved through regular outdoor flight testing and field applications. Updates from my research and flight operations can be found on Twitter @DrKieranWood.

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Research Output

Radiological Mapping of Post-disaster Nuclear Environments Using Fixed-wing Unmanned Aerial Systems: A Study from Chernobyl

Connor, D. T., Wood, K., Martin, P. G., Goren, S., Megson-Smith, D., Verbelen, Y. S. R., Chyzhevskyi, I., Kirieiev, S., Smith, N., Richardson, T. S. & Scott, T. B., 17 Jan 2020, In : Frontiers in Robotics and AI. 6, 14 p., 149.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

Open Access
  • 1 Citation (Scopus)
    69 Downloads (Pure)

    Determining the three-dimensional structure of a volcanic plume using Unoccupied Aerial System (UAS) imagery

    Wood, K., Albadra, A., Berthoud, L., Calway, A., Watson, M., Thomas, H., Richardson, T., Liu, E. & Chigna, G., 16 Nov 2019, In : Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research. 106731.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

  • 1 Citation (Scopus)
    2 Downloads (Pure)

    Distributed pressure sensing–based flight control for small fixed-wing unmanned aerial systems

    Wood, K., Araujo-Estrada, S., Richardson, T. & Windsor, S., 3 Jul 2019, In : Journal of Aircraft. 56, 5, p. 1951-1960 10 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    Open Access
  • 1 Citation (Scopus)
    242 Downloads (Pure)