On-demand UAV base station deployment for wireless service of crowded tourism areas


With the support of wireless network, tourists in tourism areas could enjoy various tourism information search and smart tourism–related services. However, due to the limited capacity of wireless networks, in peaking seasons, tourism area crowding in local areas could result in emergency and temporary wireless network congestion. While increasing infrastructure investment (e.g., densifying base stations) is desiring for peak seasons, it can be a waste of resource for significantly shrunk tourist arrival in off seasons. In response to the temporary network congestion offloading demand, this paper proposes an on-demand coverage solution based on unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) base stations. Firstly, taking the air-to-ground channel characteristic into account, we define the effective coverage radius, based on which the optimal altitude of UAV BS is derived. Then, to tackle the inherent challenge of irregular tourist distribution issue in tourism areas, an automatic UAV BS deployment algorithm is designed to determine the minimal number of UAV BSs and their two-dimensional coordinates simultaneously. Simulation results show that the proposed solution could realize efficient UAV BS on-demand deployment.

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    See past news in China: (1) Tourists gather in Hongyadong, an Internet celebrity attraction: there is no signal when the phone is crowded, https://society.huanqiu.com/gallery/9CaKrnQhKdS; (2) 600,000 people in West Lake and 400,000 people in Shenzhen Bay! No cell phone signal, toilet lined up for 1 h, https://news.hexun.com/2019-05-03/197056356.html; (3) A scenic spot in Wuhan issued a red warning for tourists overwhelmed with mobile phones without signal, https://hb.qq.com/a/20180715/005536.htm


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This work was supported by the Philosophy and Social Science Projects in Universities of Jiangsu Province under Grant No. 2020SJA0790 and the 13th Five-Year Plan of Jiangsu Educational Science under Grant No. C-c/2020/03/20.

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Correspondence to Lijie Yin.

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Yin, L., Zhang, N. & Tang, C. On-demand UAV base station deployment for wireless service of crowded tourism areas. Pers Ubiquit Comput (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00779-020-01515-y

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  • Wireless communication
  • Network congestion
  • Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)
  • Base station automatic deployment
  • On-demand coverage