Research Topic

Control of Cooperative Drones and Their Applications

About this Research Topic

Drones, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), were originally designed for military applications. But nowadays, they are used in almost all areas of human activity, for example, film-making, photography, agriculture, parcel delivery, mapping, wildlife monitoring, transportation, emergency response, ...

Drones, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), were originally designed for military applications. But nowadays, they are used in almost all areas of human activity, for example, film-making, photography, agriculture, parcel delivery, mapping, wildlife monitoring, transportation, emergency response, disinfection, and many others.

This increased number of drone applications has resulted in increasingly complex tasks assigned to them. Drones are now required to cooperate with other drones to increase task coverage, complete tasks faster, increase manipulation capability, increase endurance, provide redundancy, and be fault-tolerant. The possible applications for cooperative drones are asymptotically increasing and are fueled by the increased interest from hobbyists, technology enthusiasts, and researchers alike. The success of cooperative drones is critical in determining the efficacy of drones as an indispensable tool to support human activities.

This Research Topic addresses more sophisticated strategies for motion coordination, communication, and sensor data of cooperative drones. The setup can be a pair of drones collaborating to carry a shared load or a network of drones designed for increased area coverage. We seek to explore coordinated control and motion planning, obstacle avoidance with respect to dynamics obstacles including the other drones in collaboration, localization of each drone with respect to the rest of the drones in the network, communication, latency of communication, and integrity and reliability of sensor feedback.

When drones cooperate with each other, communication can be a critical aspect of successful coordination between vehicles that are independently moving in the air. This can open studies into more reliable sensors and communication systems, and better coordination strategies. When cooperative drones become part of a communication relay, flight endurance can become a critical issue. This can lead to studies on better batteries or better alternative sources of power.

When drones with arms cooperate with each other, cooperative manipulation for manipulator arms with drones as bases can be addressed. This includes the coordination between the arm and the drone base, as well as the collaboration between the arms whose bases can move in the full space.

Lastly, motion planning, localization, and mapping among cooperating drones will be addressed especially regarding the collision with other drones and the accuracy and consistency of GPS data.

We welcome articles relating to the control of collaborative drones and the drone applications that especially cater to cooperative control. Different applications can be found in this kind of setup including surveillance and mapping, search and rescue, goods transportation, agriculture, and communications network. Themes of interest include, but are not limited to:

• cooperative drones
• cooperative control strategies
• communication policies
• ​cooperative manipulation of drones with arms
• navigation, localization and mapping
• redundancy and failure tolerance
• interesting applications of collaborative drones

Topic Editor Kelly Cohen is the Founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors at company Genexia LLC. All other Topic Editors declare no competing interests with regard to the Research Topic subject.


Keywords: Cooperative Manipulation, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, Cooperative Control, Systems Communication, Cooperative Localization and Mapping, Cooperative Navigation


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

21 February 2022 Manuscript

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Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

21 February 2022 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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