Coordination on Systems of Multiple UAVs

  1. David Alejo Teissière
Supervised by:
  1. José Guillermo Heredia Benot Director
  2. Aníbal Ollero Baturone Director

Defence university: Universidad de Sevilla

Year of defence: 2015

  1. Fernando Gómez Bravo Chair
  2. Iván Maza Alcañiz Secretary
  3. Eva Besada Portas Committee member
  4. José-Antonio Cobano-Suárez Committee member
  5. Luis Antidio Viguria Jiménez Committee member

Type: Thesis

Teseo: 392413 DIALNET lock_openIdus editor


The aim of this thesis is to propose methods to coordinately generate trajectories for a system of Autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). The first set of proposed techniques developed in this thesis can be defined as trajectory planning techniques. In this case, the objective is to generate coordinated flight plans for a system of UAVs in such a way that no collision are produced among each pair of UAVs. Besides, these techniques can be applied online in order to modify the original flight plan whenever a potential collision is detected. Amongst the developed algorithms in this thesis we can highlight the adaptation of evolutionary algorithms such as Genetic Algorithms and Particle Swarm, and the application of Optimal Rapidly Exploring Random Trees (RRT*) algorithm into a system of several UAVs with novel sampling techniques. In addition, many of these techniques have been adapted in order to be applicable when only uncertain knowledge of the state of the system is available. In particular, the use of the Particle Filter is proposed in order to estimate the relative position between UAVs. The estimation of the position as well as the uncertainty related to this estimation are then taken into account in the conflict resolution system. All techniques proposed in this thesis have been validated by performing several simulated and real tests. For this purpose, a method for randomly generating a huge test batch is presented in chapter 3. This will allow to test the behavior of the proposed methods in a great variety of situations. During the thesis, several real experimentations with fleets composed by up to four UAVs are presented. In these experiments, the UAVs in the system are automatically coordinated in order to ensure collision-free trajectories and thus guarantee the safety of the system. The other main topic of this thesis is the application of reactive methods for real-time conflict resolution. This thesis proposes a novel algorithm for collision resolution amongst multiple UAVs in the presence of static obstacles, which has been called Generalized-Optimal Reciprocal Collision Avoidance (G-ORCA). This algorithm overcomes several issues that have been detected into the algorithm 3D-ORCA in real applications. A remarkable characteristic of this thesis is that the developed algorithms have been applied as a part of more complex systems. First, a coordinated system for flight endurance extension of gliding aircrafts by profiting the ascending wind is presented. Second, a reactive collision avoidance block has been designed, developed and tested experimentally based in the aforementioned G-ORCA algorithm. This block has been integrated into a system for assembly construction with multiple UAVs.