State Dependent Riccati Equation (SDRE) methods have the considerable advantages over other nonlinear control methods. However, stability issues can be arisen in SDRE based control system due to the lack of the global asymptotic stability property. Therefore, the previous studies have usually shown that local asymptotic stability can be ensured by estimating a Region of Attraction (ROA) around the equilibrium point. These estimated regions for stability may become narrow or the condition to keep the states in this region may be very conservative. To resolve these issues, this paper proposes a novel SDRE method employing an update algorithm to re-estimate the ROA when the states tend to move out of the stable region. The tendency is checked using a condition which is developed based on a new theorem. The theorem proves that it is possible to redesign the previous ROA with respect to the current states lying close to its boundary for ensuring the "non-local" stability along the trajectory without the need of solving SDRE at each time instant, unlike the standard SDRE approach. Therefore, the new theorem is now able to enhance the stability of the SDRE based closed-loop control system. The feasibility of the proposed SDRE control method is tested in both simulations and experiments. A validated 3-DOF laboratory helicopter is used for experiments and the control objective for the helicopter is to realise a preplanned movement in both elevation and travel axes. The results reveal that the proposed SDRE approach enables the controlled plant to track the desired trajectory as satisfactorily as the standard SDRE approach, while only solving SDRE when needed. The proposed SDRE method reduces the computational load for practical implementation of the control algorithm whilst ensuring the stability over the operational region. (C) 2019 The Franklin Institute. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.