The theory and practice of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) capture and control via Global Positioning System (GPS) signal spoofing are analyzed and demonstrated. The goal of this work is to explore UAV vulnerability to deceptive GPS signals. Specifically, this paper (1) establishes the necessary conditions for UAV capture via GPS spoofing, and (2) explores the spoofer’s range of possible post-capture control over the UAV. Both overt and covert spoofing strategies are considered, as distinguished by the spoofer’s attempts to evade detection by the target GPS receiver and by the target navigation system’s state estimator, which is presumed to have access to non-GPS navigation sensor data. Field tests demonstrate capture and momentary control of a rotorcraft UAV.

Cite and download the article:
A.J. Kerns, D.P. Shepard, J.A. Bhatti, T.E. Humphreys, "Unmanned Aircraft Capture and Control via GPS Spoofing," Journal of Field Robotics, 31(4): 617–636, 2014.