A Formulation and Heuristic Approach to Task Allocation and Routing of UAVs under Limited Communication Open Access Deposited
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Date Modified: 04/05/2017
Unmanned Air Vehicle (UAV) teams are anticipated to provide surveillance support through algorithms, software, and automation. It is desirable to have algorithms that compute effective and efficient routes for multiple UAVs across a variety of missions. These algorithms must be realizable, practical, and account for uncertainties. In surveillance missions, UAVs act as mobile wireless communication nodes in a larger, underlying network consisting of targets where information is to be collected and base stations where information is to be delivered. The role of UAVs in these networks has primarily been to maintain or improve connectivity while undervaluing routing efficiency. Moreover, many current routing strategies for UAVs ignore communication constraints even though neglecting communication can lead to suboptimal tour designs. Generating algorithms for autonomous vehicles that work effectively despite these communication restrictions is key for the future of UAV surveillance missions. A solution is offered here based on a variation of the traditional vehicle routing problem and a simple communication model. In this work, the new routing formulation is defined, analyzed, and a heuristic approach is motivated and described. Simulation results show that the heuristic algorithm gives near-optimal results in real-time, allowing it to be used for large problem sizes and extended to dynamic scenarios.
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