BBTM: New life for old ATM paradigms
This paper investigates algorithmic questions related to the possibility of managing UAV traffic with beacon-based navigation, which we dub BBTM - Beacon-Based Traffic Management. The specific problem addressed is: How to install the minimum number of beacons in a mountainous terrain to ensure connectivity among a given set of UAS terminals on the terrain? BBTM is relevant for low-cost UAVs operating in remote areas not on time-critical missions, and may also be used as a backup system for better-equipped UAS in case the precise positioning or control information is lost, spoofed or jammed. We give algorithms for the beacon tower placement and evaluate their performance both on synthetic and real-world terrain data; the experiments suggest that our solutions can be used to efficiently quantify costs of establishing direct-visibility routing networks for UAS management.