Policy Support for Autonomous Swarms of Drones

Abstract In recent years drones have become more widely used in mil- itary and non-military applications. Automation of these drones will be- come more important as their use increases. Individual drones acting autonomously will be able to achieve some tasks, but swarms of au- tonomous drones working together will be able to achieve much more complex tasks and be able to better adapt to changing environments. In this paper we describe an example scenario involving a swarm of drones from a military coalition and civil/humanitarian organisations that are working collaboratively to monitor areas at risk of flooding. We provide a definition of a swarm and how they can operate by exchanging messages. We define a flexible set of policies that are applicable to our scenario that can be easily extended to other scenarios or policy paradigms. These policies ensure that the swarms of drones behave as expected (e.g., for safety and security). Finally we discuss the challenges and limitations around policies for autonomous swarms and how new research, such as generative policies, can aid in solving these limitations.
  • Alan Cullen (BAE)
  • Erisa Karafili (Imperial)
  • Alan Pilgrim (BAE)
  • Chris Williams (Dstl)
  • Emil Lupu (Imperial)
Date Sep-2018
Venue 2nd Annual Fall Meeting of the DAIS ITA, 2018