Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Gary B. Lamont, PhD


Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are rapidly becoming a critical military asset. In the future, advances in miniaturization are going to drive the development of insect size UAVs. New approaches to controlling these swarms are required. The goal of this research is to develop a controller to direct a swarm of UAVs in accomplishing a given mission. While previous efforts have largely been limited to a two-dimensional model, a three-dimensional model has been developed for this project. Models of UAV capabilities including sensors, actuators and communications are presented. Genetic programming uses the principles of Darwinian evolution to generate computer programs to solve problems. A genetic programming approach is used to evolve control programs for UAV swarms. Evolved controllers are compared with a hand-crafted solution using quantitative and qualitative methods. Visualization and statistical methods are used to analyze solutions. Results indicate that genetic programming is capable of producing effective solutions to multi-objective control problems.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number