by Oussama Bekkouche, Konstantinos Samdanis, Miloud Bagaa, Tarik Taleb
This article provides an overview of enhanced network services, while emphasizing the role of UAVs as core network equipment with radio and backhaul capabilities. Initially, we elaborate the various deployment options, focusing on UAVs as airborne radio, backhaul and core network equipment, pointing out the benefits and limitations. We then analyze the required enhancements in the SBA to support UAV services including UAV navigation and air traffic management, weather forecasting and UAV connectivity management. The use of airborne UAVs network services is assessed via qualitative means, considering the impact on vehicular applications. Finally, an evaluation has been conducted via a testbed implementation, to explore the performance of UAVs as edge cloud nodes, hosting an ACS function responsible for the control and orchestration of a UAV fleet.