Date of Award

12-2015

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Computer Engineering

Advisor

Groff, Richard E

Committee Member

Walker, Ian D

Committee Member

Burg, Timothy C

Abstract

The main goal of this thesis is to develop a drone-based parking lot monitoring system using low-cost hardware and open-source software. Similar to wall-mounted surveillance cameras, a drone-based system can monitor parking lots without affecting the flow of traffic while also offering the mobility of patrol vehicles. The Parrot AR Drone 2.0 is the quadrotor drone used in this work due to its modularity and cost efficiency. Video and navigation data (including GPS) are communicated to a host computer using a Wi-Fi connection. The host computer analyzes navigation data using a custom flight control loop to determine control commands to be sent to the drone. A new license plate recognition pipeline is used to identify license plates of vehicles from video received from the drone.

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