Invited Talk at AETOS

I was invited to give a talk at the 2nd AETOS international conference on “Research challenges for future RPAS/UAV systems“. The conference took place in Bordeaux, France, 9-10 September 2014 co-located with UAV Show 2014.
My talk was entitled “Communication and Cooperation in Multi-UAV Networks”, where I talked about our work on multi-UAV systems for civil applications, treating the multi-UAV system as a network of nodes that cooperate toward a common goal such as area coverage or search and rescue, where the team behavior is enabled via communication between the UAVs. Especially, I focused on planning in multi-UAV systems and evaluation of networking behavior via real-world experiments. Slides of my talk are available on request.

Paper accepted in IEEE Communications Magazine

Our paper “Application-Driven Design of Aerial Communication Networks,” is accepted in May 2014 issue of IEEE Communications Magazine.

The paper discusses the communication requirements for making applications of micro aerial vehicle (MAV) networks a reality. We extract key functionalities expected in an MAV network and map these functionalities into building blocks that we use to identify the expected communication needs. Our findings indicate that while certain requirements of
MAV applications can be met with currently available technology, further research is required to address the scalability, heterogeneity, safety, and security aspects of multi-MAV systems.

Paper accepted in IEEE VTC Spring 2014

Our paper “Neighbor Cardinality Estimation with Low-Power Transceivers: Implementation and Experimental Results,” is accepted in IEEE Vehicular Technology Conference- Spring 2014.

The paper provides a proof-of-concept and performance test of neighbor estimation algorithms with an implementation on low-power wireless sensor devices. We illustrate the challenges of implementing the recently proposed multi-feedback estimator (MFE)  on Z1 sensor devices. We compare the performance of MFE to that of simple neighbor counting.

Paper accepted in IEEE ICRA 2014

Our paper “Information Merging in Multi-UAV Cooperative Search,” is accepted in IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation 2014.

The paper investigates probabilistic information merging strategies for cooperative search using multiple UAVs. The objective is to determine the impact of cooperation and type/amount of information exchange on search time and detection errors. Local occupancy grids are used to represent target existence, to update its belief with local observations and to merge information from other UAVs. Our merging strategies perform Bayes updates of the occupancy probabilities while considering realistic limitations in
sensing, communication and UAV movement—all of which are important for small-scale UAVs.

Paper accepted in IEEE WCNC 2014

Our paper, “Experimental Performance Analysis of Two-Hop Aerial 802.11 Networks” is accepted in IEEE Wireless Communication and Networking Conference 2014.

The paper focuses on deployment of standard WLAN technology for different network setups over an aerial network. It is experienced that certain setups not only offer network range extension, but also much lower variance in throughput. It is also seen that the standard routing protocol for 802.11s mesh lacks vastly in its implementation when applied to multihop aerial networks. Thus, there is a need to evaluate alternative mesh routing protocols that cater for aerial communication network demands.

Successful experiments with multiple quadrotors

We have demonstrated a multi-UAV coverage scenario with three quadrotors working together to make an overview image of a large area. The vehicles were equipped with cameras and they followed pre-computed flight paths, taking high-quality pictures at certain points. The collected images were immediately transmitted to a ground station, where the mission progress could be readily overseen and changed if necessary.

Check out our multi-UAV system in action! The video was nominated for Best Student Video in AAAI (http://www.aaaivideos.org/2013/) and was awarded second place.