The Design Challenges of Drone Swarm Control

Fabrice Saffre (Corresponding author), Hanno Hildmann, Hannu Karvonen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review

21 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

It is widely recognised that swarms are the likely next step for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) or drone technology. Although substantially increased autonomy for navigation, data collection and decision-making is very much part of the “collective artificial intelligence” vision, this expected development raises questions about the most productive form of interaction between the swarm and its human operator(s). On the one hand, low-level “micro-management” of every unit clearly nullifies many of the advantages of using swarms. On the other, retaining an ability to exercise some control over the swarm’s objectives and real-time behaviour is obviously paramount. We present two families of control methods, direct and indirect, that we believe could be used to design suitable, i.e. simultaneously intuitive, easy to use, powerful and flexible, Graphical User Interfaces (GUI) that would allow a single operator to choreograph a swarm’s actions. Simulation results are used to illustrate the concept and perform a quantitative performance analysis of both control methods in different scenarios. Human factors aspects related to drone swarm control are identified and both control methods are discussed from the human operator’s usage point of view. We conclude that the direct approach is more suitable over short time-scales (“tactical” level), whilst indirect methods allow to specify more abstract long-term objectives (“operational” level), making them naturally complementary.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEngineering Psychology and Cognitive Ergonomics, HCII 2021
EditorsDon Harris, Wen-Chin Li
PublisherSpringer
Pages408-426
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-77932-0
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-77931-3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
Event18th International Conference on Engineering Psychology and Cognitive Ergonomics, EPCE 2021, held as part of the 23rd International Conference, HCI International 2020 - Virtual, Online
Duration: 24 Jul 202129 Jul 2021

Publication series

SeriesLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume12767 LNAI
ISSN0302-9743

Conference

Conference18th International Conference on Engineering Psychology and Cognitive Ergonomics, EPCE 2021, held as part of the 23rd International Conference, HCI International 2020
CityVirtual, Online
Period24/07/2129/07/21

Keywords

  • Autonomous systems
  • Direct control
  • Drone swarms
  • Human factors
  • Indirect control
  • Self-organisation

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The Design Challenges of Drone Swarm Control'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this