Autonomous Searching and Tracking of a River using an UAV Conference Paper uri icon


  • Surveillance operations include inspecting and monitoring river boundaries, bridges and coastlines. An autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) can decrease the operational costs, expedite the monitoring process and be used in situations where a manned inspection is not possible. This paper addresses the problem of searching and mapping such littoral boundaries using an autonomous UAV based on visual feedback. Specifically, this paper describes an exploration system that equips a fixed wing UAV to autonomously search a given area for a specified structure (could be a river, a coastal line etc.), identify the structure if present and map the coordinates of the structure based on the images from the onboard sensor(could be vision or near infra-red). Experimental results with a fixed wing UAV searching and mapping the coordinates of a 2 mile stretch of a river with a cross track error of around 9 meters are presented. ©2007 IEEE.

author list (cited authors)

  • Rathinam, S., Almeida, P., Kim, Z., Jackson, S., Tinka, A., Grossman, W., & Sengupta, R.

citation count

  • 87

publication date

  • July 2007