inis 21(27): e3

Research Article

Formation Control Algorithms for Multiple-UAVs: A Comprehensive Survey

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  • @ARTICLE{10.4108/eai.10-6-2021.170230,
        author={Hai T. Do and Hoang T. Hua and Minh T. Nguyen and Cuong V. Nguyen and Hoa TT. Nguyen and Hoa T. Nguyen and Nga TT. Nguyen},
        title={Formation Control Algorithms for Multiple-UAVs: A Comprehensive Survey},
        journal={EAI Endorsed Transactions on Industrial Networks and Intelligent Systems},
        keywords={Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), formation control, distributed, centralized, consensus, intelligent, behavior},
  • Hai T. Do
    Hoang T. Hua
    Minh T. Nguyen
    Cuong V. Nguyen
    Hoa TT. Nguyen
    Hoa T. Nguyen
    Nga TT. Nguyen
    Year: 2021
    Formation Control Algorithms for Multiple-UAVs: A Comprehensive Survey
    DOI: 10.4108/eai.10-6-2021.170230
Hai T. Do1, Hoang T. Hua1, Minh T. Nguyen1,*, Cuong V. Nguyen2, Hoa TT. Nguyen3, Hoa T. Nguyen1, Nga TT. Nguyen1
  • 1: Thai Nguyen University of Technology (TNUT), Viet Nam
  • 2: Thai Nguyen University of Information and Communication Technology (ICTU), Viet Nam
  • 3: School of Intelligent Mechatronics Engineering, Sejong University, Seoul, South Korea
*Contact email:


Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have been widely deployed in many applications such as transportation, data collection, monitoring, or tracking objects. Nowadays, numerous missions require UAVs to operate in a large area or to complete missions in a stringent period of time. Using a single UAV may not meet theperformance requirements because of its small size and limited battery. In this situation, multiple Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) have emerged as an effective measure that can address these limitations. A group ofUAVs cooperatively working together could offer a solution that is more efficient and economical than usinga powerful UAV alone. To better utilizing the multiple-UAVs system, control of formation UAVs is a critical challenge that needs to overcome. Therefore, formation control has become an active research topic that gains great attention from researchers. Extensive research efforts have been dedicated to studying the formation control problem with numerous control protocols which have been proposed. This paper reviews the profound studies on formation control in literature. Each approach is investigated based on different criteria, which highlights its distinct merits and demerits. The comparison is provided to facilitate the readers in their future researches in the field of formation control. Finally, some open challenges and research directions are also discussed.