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Deep Reinforcement Learning Based Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Control Using 3D Hand Gestures

Fawad Salam Khan1,4, Mohd Norzali Haji Mohd1,*, Saiful Azrin B. M. Zulkifli2, Ghulam E Mustafa Abro2, Suhail Kazi3, Dur Muhammad Soomro1

1 Faculty of Electrical and Electronics (FKEE), Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia, Parit Raja, 81756, Malaysia
2 Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS, Seri Iskandar, 32610, Malaysia
3 Faculty of Engineering Science and Technology, Isra University, Hyderabad, 71000, Pakistan
4 Department of Innovation, CONVSYS (Pvt) Ltd., 44000, Islamabad, Pakistan

* Corresponding Author: Mohd Norzali Haji Mohd. Email:

Computers, Materials & Continua 2022, 72(3), 5741-5759.


The evident change in the design of the autopilot system produced massive help for the aviation industry and it required frequent upgrades. Reinforcement learning delivers appropriate outcomes when considering a continuous environment where the controlling Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) required maximum accuracy. In this paper, we designed a hybrid framework, which is based on Reinforcement Learning and Deep Learning where the traditional electronic flight controller is replaced by using 3D hand gestures. The algorithm is designed to take the input from 3D hand gestures and integrate with the Deep Deterministic Policy Gradient (DDPG) to receive the best reward and take actions according to 3D hand gestures input. The UAV consist of a Jetson Nano embedded testbed, Global Positioning System (GPS) sensor module, and Intel depth camera. The collision avoidance system based on the polar mask segmentation technique detects the obstacles and decides the best path according to the designed reward function. The analysis of the results has been observed providing best accuracy and computational time using novel design framework when compared with traditional Proportional Integral Derivatives (PID) flight controller. There are six reward functions estimated for 2500, 5000, 7500, and 10000 episodes of training, which have been normalized between 0 to −4000. The best observation has been captured on 2500 episodes where the rewards are calculated for maximum value. The achieved training accuracy of polar mask segmentation for collision avoidance is 86.36%.


Cite This Article

F. Salam Khan, M. Norzali Haji Mohd, S. Azrin B. M. Zulkifli, G. E Mustafa Abro, S. Kazi et al., "Deep reinforcement learning based unmanned aerial vehicle (uav) control using 3d hand gestures," Computers, Materials & Continua, vol. 72, no.3, pp. 5741–5759, 2022.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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