Communication and Control in Collaborative UAVs: Recent Advances and Future Trends

The recent progress in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) technology has significantly advanced UAV-based applications for military, civil, and commercial domains. Nevertheless, the challenges of establishing high-speed communication links, flexible control strategies, and developing efficient collaborative decision-making algorithms for a swarm of UAVs limit their autonomy, robustness, and reliability. Thus, a growing focus has been witnessed on collaborative communication to allow a swarm of UAVs to coordinate and communicate autonomously for the cooperative completion of tasks in a short time with improved efficiency and reliability. This work presents a comprehensive review of collaborative communication in a multi-UAV system. We thoroughly discuss the characteristics of intelligent UAVs and their communication and control requirements for autonomous collaboration and coordination. Moreover, we review various UAV collaboration tasks, summarize the applications of UAV swarm networks for dense urban environments and present the use case scenarios to highlight the current developments of UAV-based applications in various domains. Finally, we identify several exciting future research direction that needs attention for advancing the research in collaborative UAVs.

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