A Guidance System for Tactical Autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Julius A. Marshall, Robert B. Anderson, Wen Yu Chien, Eric N. Johnson, Andrea L’Afflitto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This paper presents an original guidance system able to confer a tactical behavior to multi-rotor unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), such as quadcopters, that operate in potentially hostile, unknown, cluttered environments. By applying this guidance system, UAVs complete the assigned tasks, such as reaching a goal set, while minimizing both their exposure to opponents, whose location is unknown, and the predictability of their trajectories. A taxonomy of flight behaviors is provided to help users tuning those parameters that characterize the UAV’s level of cautiousness. This guidance system is supported by an original navigation system that exploits exclusively information gathered by onboard cameras and inertial measurement units. Numerical simulations and flight tests validate the applicability of the proposed guidance system in real-time, while performing all calculations aboard the UAV.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number71
JournalJournal of Intelligent and Robotic Systems: Theory and Applications
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Artificial Intelligence


Dive into the research topics of 'A Guidance System for Tactical Autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicles'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this