An emerging urban challenge will be the proliferation of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) or drones, as their usage grows and drones fill the urban skies. Urban airspace will include many more Uninhabited Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), and related accidents and mishaps will also increase. Applications of UAVs in urban environments include photography and film-making, security monitoring, real estate, construction, property and infrastructure inspections, leisure, public safety (fires, natural disasters, investigations), traffic, and much more. Emerging UAV applications include last-mile drone delivery services. This paper discusses urban scenarios where drones are more ubiquitous. Monitoring and related safety of these UAVs will be increasingly important. Though multi-modal purpose-built drone tracking and monitoring systems will be the most effective solution for detection and tracking of these RPAS, during the transition to more regular drone use in urban areas and in everyday urban applications, a more rapid-deployment and agile detection system is needed that does not require installation of hardware. In this paper, sensory substitution is presented as an approach to use ambient and pre-existing microphones and AI techniques to detect the presence of RPAS. Preliminary results show promise for this agile IoT method as a key solution to this emerging urban challenge.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Agile IoT, Detection, RPAS, Sensing, UAVs, Urban
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1109/DCOSS.2019.00103
Conference 15th Annual International Conference on Distributed Computing in Sensor Systems, DCOSS 2019
Citation
Russell, L. (Luke), Goubran, R, & Kwamena, F. (Felix). (2019). Emerging Urban Challenge: RPAS/UAVs in Cities. In Proceedings - 15th Annual International Conference on Distributed Computing in Sensor Systems, DCOSS 2019 (pp. 546–553). doi:10.1109/DCOSS.2019.00103