UAV-to-UAV Communication Establishing a Leader-Follower Formation
Keywords:Electrical and Electronic Engineering, UAV communication
The UAV-to-UAV communication project aimed to research, implement, and review a communications structure capable of establishing a leader-follower formation between multiple unmanned aerial vehicles. With the intention of creating a scalable and extensible system with consumer grade devices to create an accessible swarming solution this research and development process explored and implemented methodologies of drone swarm control that allow operators greater command over groups of UAVs whilst only communicating with a single access point. This lens was chosen to increase the accessibility of drone swarm solutions for enthusiast and entry level consumers who require the technology but are unable to make large investments into more costly options which provide similar behaviour natively. As such, the system explored is composed of multiple consumer grade UAVs paired with Raspberry Pi devices which form a common managing mesh network while providing processing power for supplied in flight commands. These mesh network nodes are combined with a developed ground controller application that transmits commands into the network to be broadcasted and actioned across connected devices to allow for the intended formation flying. This framework achieves the goal of departing from the standard operation of individual connections between drones and corresponding ground controllers whilst maintaining the desired accessibility and affordability compared with other contemporarily available solutions.