target tracking, air vehicle, ground vehicle, coordination, cooperative control


In this paper, we present a framework for tracking a moving target in urban environments using UAVs in cooperation with UGVs. The framework takes into account occlusions between the sensor and the target. The target state is modeled using the dynamic occupancy grid and the target motion model is built using a second-order Markov chain. Based on the target occupancy grid, we design the path planning algorithm to maneuver the UAV and the UGV to configurations where they can detect the target with high probability. Simulation results show the framework is successful in solving the target tracking problem in urban environments. We also build an indoor hardware platform and successfully implement preliminary tracking algorithms on the platform. Results show the platform can be further used to test more advanced tracking algorithms like the proposed tracking framework.

Original Publication Citation

Owen, M., Yu, H., McLain, T., and Beard, R. Moving Ground Target Tracking in Urban Terrain Using Air/Ground Vehicles, IEEE Globecom 2010 Workshop on Wireless Networking for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, pp. 1816-1820, December 2010, Miami, Florida.

Document Type

Conference Paper

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Permanent URL






Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology


Mechanical Engineering

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor