In this paper we propose a novel cooperative bordersurveillance solution, composed of a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) deployed terrestrially to detect and track trespassers, and a set of lightweight unmanned aircraft vehicles (UAVs) in the form of quadcopters that interact with the deployed WSN to improve the border surveillance, the detection and investigation of network failures, the maintenance of the sensor network, the tracking of trespasser, the capture and transmission of realtime video of the intrusion scene, and the response to hostage situations. A heuristic-based scheduling algorithm is described to optimize the tracking mission by increasing the rate of detected trespassers spotted by the quadcopters. Together with the design of the electrical, mechanical and software architecture of the proposed VTail quadcopter, we develop in this paper powerless techniques to accurately localize terrestrial sensors using RFID technology, compute the optimal positions of the new sensors to drop, relay data between isolated islands of nodes, and wake up sensors to track intruders. The developed VTail prototype is tested to provide valid and accurate parameters’ values to the simulation. The latter is conducted to evaluate the performance of the proposed WSN-based surveillance solution.
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