A novel drone-sharing solution : on-demand UAV sensing model

  • Ziqi Guo

    Student thesis: Master's Thesis


    Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have increasingly attracted great attention in remote sensing
    for 3D aerial mappings over the past decade. UAVs are feasible to fly through a target sensing
    area with little or no human intervention in the practical fieldworks. In addition, UAVs can
    travel across hazardous, dangerous, or uninhabited areas, due to their flexibility and long-range
    flight capacity. However, there are several major challenges in running UAV-enabled sensing
    missions by casual users. First of all, the current capital price of UAV devices and their corresponding
    sensors are still expensive. Secondly, it requires professional UAV flight training and
    licenses for the remote sensing operation. Third, UAV sensing needs deep technical knowledge
    and various algorithms for flight trajectory planning, energy consumption, and data gathering.
    To address the aforementioned constraints, this thesis proposes a drone-sharing solution and
    aims to make UAVs accessible for everyone. We establish an on-demand UAV sensing model
    that connects UAV service providers with potential users. The proposed system works as a service
    by delivering a sensing request from the UAV service user to the service provider. In particular,
    the sensing request includes the geometry information of the target areas. In addition,
    the on-demand system can calculate the flight parameters, total coverage area, and estimated
    sensing price. The system will also assign the sensing task to a UAV service provider. Once
    the user completes the online payment, the flight mission is run by the UAV service provider
    based on the recommend flight trajectory sent by the system. Finally, the collected dataset are
    delivered to the users during or after the flight mission. Meanwhile, the calculated operational
    cost is sent to the UAV provider. The flight mission is then set as completed.
    This thesis also proposes a UAV platform that is specifically designed for the on-demand
    UAV sensing. A detailed UAV platform implementation is introduced, which provides practical
    system implementation and validation. Moreover, standard operating procedures and setup
    guidelines are discussed and provided for the on-demand UAV sensing. Last but not least, we
    propose a user-friendly interface, which illustrates the connections among the internal modules
    of the system from the user’s perspective.
    In summary, this thesis provides a drone-sharing solution to minimize the capital price of
    UAVs, on-board sensors, and their accessories. Furthermore, it will close the gap between
    UAV sensing and end-users. With the proposed on-demand UAV sensing, casual users are
    able to collect quality videos or images from their target areas without preliminary aviation or
    aerodynamic knowledge.
    Date of Award2021
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorMohammad Abualsheikh (Supervisor), Roland Goecke (Supervisor) & Damith Herath (Supervisor)

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