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Special Issue "Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Sensor Networks"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Sensor Networks".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2020.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Juan Besada
Guest Editor
Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Interests: drone applications; data fusion; air traffic management; UAV traffic management
Dr. Ana Bernardos
Guest Editor

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In recent years, drone-embarked real-time sensing applications have bloomed, ranging from aerial surveillance to remote infrastructure state monitoring, terrain surveying, etc. Those applications demand robust and high-bandwidth communication coverage, even at remote areas, also imposing high computation demands, quite often in a distributed environment involving cloud and edged computing. Further, drone command and control, especially for beyond line of sight (BVLOS) applications, demands low-latency robust communication of telemetry, command orders, and quite often video for the remote pilot. Moreover, drones are gaining autonomy and capabilities to coordinate their operations, either to avoid conflicts or to perform missions cooperatively (i.e., drone swarms). Finally, new safety requirements are being imposed on drones’ operations, to be able to use them in higher-population areas. One of the most relevant requirements is the need to integrate themselves with UAV traffic management (UTM) systems, formed of a collection of distributed preflight and along-flight traffic coordination services demanding a bidirectional datalink to the drones and/or the pilots.

Summarizing, drones can be seen as aerial (mobile) IoT sensing platforms with different communication/coordination needs both for operating safely and for performing their very diverse intended missions.

The aim of this Special Issue is to solicit papers from academia and industry researchers with original and innovative works on all aspects of UAV sensor networks, ranging from communication architectures to sensing/information topologies and mission coordination, which review and report on the start-of-the-art, highlight challenges, and point to future directions.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  • 5G for UAV sensor networks
  • Ad hoc UAV sensor networks
  • Real-time Information processing in UAV sensor networks
  • Cooperative sensing for UAV sensor networks
  • UTM architectures, communication needs
  • Interaction with UAV sensor networks
  • Testbed, benchmark, and simulation studies in UAV sensor networks
  • Security and privacy issues in UAV sensor networks

Dr. Ana Bernardos
Dr. Juan Besada
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sensors is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • UAV sensor networks
  • drone applications
  • cooperative sensing

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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