June 26 - 30, 2004
Saturday to Wednesday
Seattle, Washington, USA




LBP - Late Breaking Papers


Incremental Evolution of Autonomous Controllers for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles using Multi-objective Genetic Programming



Gregory J. Barlow
Choong K. Oh
Edward Grant



Autonomous navigation controllers were developed for fixed wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) applications using incremental evolution with multi-objective genetic programming (GP). We designed four fitness functions derived from flight simulations and used multi-objective GP to evolve controllers able to locate a radar source, navigate the UAV to the source efficiently using on-board sensor measurements, and circle closely around the emitter. We selected realistic flight parameters and sensor inputs to aid in the transference of evolved controllers to physical UAVs. We used both direct and environmental incremental evolution to evolve controllers for four types of radars: 1) continuously emitting, stationary radars, 2) continuously emitting, mobile radars, 3) intermittently emitting, stationary radars, and 4) intermittently emitting, mobile radars. The use of incremental evolution drastically increased evolution's chances of evolving a successful controller compared to direct evolution. This technique can also be used to develop a single controller capable of handling all four radar types. In the next stage of research, the best evolved controllers will be tested by using them to fly real UAVs.




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