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The WITAS UAV Project (1997 - 2005)

This project was fully supported by the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation.

WITAS (pronounced vee-tas) is an acronym for the Wallenberg Information Technology and Autonomous Systems Laboratory at Linköping University. UAV is an acronym for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. The WITAS UAV Project was an eight year project (1997-2005) with the long term goal of designing, specifying and implementing the IT subsystem for an intelligent autonomous aircraft and publishing basic research relevant to this goal.

The project encompasses the design of a command and control system for a UAV and its integration in a suitable deliberative/reactive architecture; the design of high-level cognitive tasks, intermediate reactive behaviors, low-level control-based behaviors and their integration with each other; the integration of sensory capabilities with the command and control architecture, in particular the use of an active vision system; the development of hybrid, mode-based low-level control systems to supervise and schedule control behaviors; the signal to symbol conversions from sensory data to qualitative structures used in mediating choice of actions and synthesizing plans to attain operational mission goals; and the development of the systems architecture for the software architecture intended to be embedded on a physical UAV platform.

The project also encompasses the design and development of the necessary tools and research infrastructure required to achieve the goals of the project. This would include the development of model-based distributed simulation tools and languages used in the concurrent engineering required to move incrementally from software emulation and simulation to the actual hardware components used in the final product.

The intended operational environment is over widely varying geographical terrain with traffic networks and vehicle interaction of varying degrees of density. Possible applications are emergency services assistance, monitoring and surveillance, use of a UAV as a mobile sensory platform in an integrated real-time traffic control system, and other civil applications.

We have also purchased two Yamaha RMAX's from Yamaha Motor Company, Ltd. A large part of the project experimentation is being performed using the RMAX's.

For a more detailed overview of the project, please see the article:

Advanced Research with Autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
Doherty, P.
Proceedings on the 9th International Conference on Principles of Knowledge Representation and Reasoning.
Extended abstract for Plenary Talk.

The WITAS Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Project.
Doherty, P. et al.
Proceedings of the 14th European Conference on Artificial Intelligence, 2000.

Please proceed to the WITAS UAV Project home page for additional details. This project is no longer active.

Page responsible: Patrick Doherty
Last updated: 2014-04-30