From automobiles and aircraft to ships and scooters, vehicles of all shapes and sizes are increasingly autonomous. They can navigate intricate paths, plan multi-faceted routes, react to unexpected events, and complete complex missions with limited input from human operators. Their societal and economic impact is already evident and growing rapidly. In 2020, over 200 automobile models can autonomously manage their speed and steering, mitigating traffic accidents and saving lives. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) have transformed precision agriculture, construction, photography, and surveillance. Their estimated economic impact now exceeds $127 billion. At the same time, open platforms for machine learning, artificial intelligence, and robotic control have democratized autonomy. Startups, researchers, and hobbyists can prototype autonomous vehicles to explore novel concepts, designs, and implementations.
As autonomous vehicles mature and become widely adopted, networked systems composed from multiple autonomous vehicles could represent the next technological evolution. Fleets of autonomous and networked vehicles could yield novel features, execution efficiencies, and synergistic capabilities otherwise unachievable with standalone designs. Imagine a traveler leaving her home in Seattle to vacation in Tokyo and the fleet of heterogeneous vehicles planning, coordinating, and executing her travel:
A car picks her up at home and delivers her to an airport.
A scooter gets her from the airport curbside to the plane.
An unmanned aircraft flies her to Tokyo.
An autonomous bus takes her to a hotel.
The fleet of vehicles can also adjust plans at runtime to improve efficiency (for example, by minimizing carbon and energy footprints) or to provide reliability guarantees in the presence of failures. To realize this type of system, we need research contributions toward autonomous and networked vehicles.
This special issue calls for research on various issues and solutions that can enable autonomous and networked vehicles. Topics of interest include (but aren’t limited to) the following:
Deployment experiences with multiple autonomous vehicles
Testbeds and benchmarks to evaluate and compare research frameworks
Assessing energy, availability, data consistency, reliability, and cost of autonomous vehicles
Secure-by-design approaches to connected autonomous vehicles
Storing and sharing data sensed by autonomous vehicles
Computer architecture issues for autonomous vehicles
Resource management for autonomous vehicles
Data models for sharing sensed data, AI models, and other runtime data
Characterization of network and compute demands for autonomous systems
Networking fabrics and topologies for mobile and autonomous systems
Mapping, localization, and controlling of autonomous vehicles
Software for system integration across autonomous devices
Secure and efficient service discovery over autonomous vehicles
All submissions must be original manuscripts of fewer than 5,000 words. All manuscripts are subject to peer review on both technical merit and relevance to IEEE Internet Computing’s international readership–primarily practicing engineers and academics who are looking for material that introduces new technology and broadens familiarity with current topics. We do not accept white papers, and papers that are primarily theoretical or mathematical must clearly relate the mathematical content to a real-life or engineering application. Manuscripts must be submitted to ScholarOne by the deadline in order to be considered for publication. Articles should be understandable by a broad audience of computer science and engineering professionals, avoiding a focus on theory, mathematics, jargon, and abstract concepts. Accepted papers will be lightly edited for grammar and formatting. To submit a manuscript, create or access an account on ScholarOne.