Eye of the swarm: real-time analysis of factors affecting dynamic UAV pursuit of a moving target

Arnold, C. (2020) Eye of the swarm: real-time analysis of factors affecting dynamic UAV pursuit of a moving target. [USQ Project]

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Abstract

The increased use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) both of a commercial or consumer level has presented a problem of protecting nation- or company-critical sites from intelli-gence gathering, surveillance, or reconnaissance activities. Recent attacks and intrusions of restricted airspace by UAVs raise questions about how to tackle the problem of tracking autonomous malicious UAVs of increasing abilities. The use of consumer or commercial grade UAVs may provide an answer to the problem through implementing swarm formations and tactics to pursue a malicious UAV to its landing point, and thereby its operator. Swarms of UAVs can provide redundancy and group agility greater than an individual drone, as well as a larger tracking radius than fixed ground-based radars or expensive military-grade UAVs. The use of UAV swarms consisting of differing sizes and formations were examined to determine their effectiveness in pursuing a malicious UAV breaching restricted airspace. Based within a simulated environment, the modelling involved an analysis of the distance between the swarm and the malicious UAVs landing site at the end of the simulation. The effects of increasing the swarm size, the formation that the collective swarm takes, and the flight characteristics (speed, acceleration, flight path, etc.) of the malicious UAV were varied to test the relative strengths and weaknesses of the a swarm compared to the same number of UAV pursuers working independently.

The results show the use of collaborative formations decrease the final distance from the target, especially in swarms containing five or more UAVs. The cone formation proved to be the overall better choice of the two collaborative formations developed and tested. This formation provided the greatest resilience in adapting to increases in malicious UAV flight abilities, though in several cases the less processor-intensive surround method performed sufficiently better than the baseline to be considered useful in certain applications. The results from this project were utilised in a submitted, and accepted, peer-reviewed paper presented at the IEEE UEMCON 2020 conference.


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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Bachelor of Electrical & Electronic Engineering project.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering (1 Jul 2013 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering (1 Jul 2013 -)
Supervisors: Brown, Jason
Date Deposited: 22 Jul 2021 00:34
Last Modified: 19 Aug 2021 05:56
Uncontrolled Keywords: unmanned aerial vehicles; UAVs; swarm formations; UAV swarms
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/42844

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