PhD Studentship: Multiple drone audiovisual (AV) shooting and cinematography intelligence

University of Bristol - Electrical and Electronic Engineering

The project: This is an exciting opportunity to conduct research in the area of multiple drone audiovisual (AV) shooting, drone cinematography intelligence and multidrone visual information analysis, notably for shooting sports events. The studentship is funded by the Horizon 2020 project MULTIDRONE (MULTIple DRONE platform for media production).

Research on using multiple drones for AV shooting is at an early stage, with many key issues still open. Possible research topics include:

  1. a) Creation of a taxonomy of shot types for various scenarios, including novel techniques for shot composition, specific to multidrone applications.
  2. b) Determination of the optimal shooting parameters (position/viewpoint, orientation, relative motion between platforms, camera parameters etc.) for a range of typical and new shot types.
  3. c) Analysis of the quality of the shot data and determination of associated tolerances on the optimum parameters in (a).
  4. d) Novel path planning and camera control techniques to ensure the ability of the drone team to follow prescribed cinematographic shooting rules and, e.g., avoid entering into each other’s principal camera field-of-view, in conjunction with target tracking.
  5. e) Post-production and evaluation of the resulting video content from actual drone flights.

The project will require a mix of theoretical and programming skills. You will specify, research, implement, evaluate the developed multidrone SW algorithms and software and integrate/test them on the multidrone platform. You will liaise with Multidrone partners for integration and testing. You will attend regular research team meetings.

You will join UoB Visual Information Lab (VI-Lab), a large research group with long-standing track record on computer vision and a variety of other areas, supported by Bristol Robotics Lab. This will provide you with access to world-leading laboratory facilities state-of-the-art computing equipment and unique software capabilities.

You will be expected to support the activities of the VI-Lab, including contributing to the supervision of MSc Research students, to contribute to project deliverables and reports, to write research papers on the outcomes of your research and be able to present your research at international conferences and project meetings.

How to apply: Please make an online application for this project at Please select Electrical and Electronic Engineering (PhD) on the Programme Choice page and enter details of the studentship when prompted in the Funding and Research Details sections of the form with the name of the supervisor, Ioannis Pitas.

Candidate requirements: A degree in electrical/electronic engineering, computer science, mathematics, physics, other engineering, or similar numerate discipline. The project requires knowledge and skills in software development (primarily C/C++ or other OOP languages) and interest in the research and development of computer vision and image processing methods.

Funding: Scholarship covers full UK/EU (EU applicants resident in Europe for three years) PhD fees and a tax-free stipend in the range £14,296-£18,000, depending on qualifications. Funding is for 24 months. It may extend up to 27 months. The successful applicant’s PhD registration will last for three years, however, with a further year for writing up. Applicants must be prepared to cover the cost of their tuition fees and living costs for the third year.

Contacts: For informal enquiries please email Prof. Ioannis Pitas ,

For general enquiries, please email

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