Effective UAV patrolling for swarm of intruders with heterogeneous behavior

Ali Moltajaei Farid, Lim Mei Kuan, Md Abdus Samad Kamal, KokSheik Wong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


The phenomenal growth in the utilization of commercial unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones leads to an urgent need for new approaches to ensure safety in the sky. Effective aerial surveillance requires patrolling swarms to react according to the various behaviors demonstrated by intruding swarms, but existing approaches are not practical when dealing with a large number of drones. Specifically, predicting the behaviors or planned paths of the intruding swarms is highly challenging as intruders may perform evasive strategies to avoid detection. Therefore, this work utilizes heuristic search strategies and investigates how various intruder behaviors affect the search performance. To investigate the search performance, a swarm versus swarm simulator is developed. Using the simulator, first, a comparative study is performed to evaluate how intruders’ behaviors can affect the performance of the patrolling swarm. Subsequently, three approaches, including single-objective optimization, multi-objective optimization, and Lévy flight, are compared in terms of their detection performance in a bounded space. The results suggest that multi-objective optimization outperforms both single-objective optimization and Lévy flight-based approaches. Furthermore, our results show that intruders have a lower chance of being tracked when moving in a dense crowd, and this finding reaffirms the schooling behaviors of fish. In a specific simulation scenario, the total percentage of detection is above 90%. However, the detection percentage is highly related to other factors such as search space, number of patrolling UAVs, and the intruders’ behaviors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1673-1688
Number of pages16
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 8 Feb 2023


  • swarm UAVs
  • swarm search

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