This page compares MANET vs VANET vs FANET and describes difference between MANET,VANET and FANET. The term MANET refers to Mobile Ad hoc Network, VANET refers to Vehicular Ad hoc Network and FANET refers to Flying Ad hoc Network.


• A Mobile Ad hoc network is a wireless ad hoc network.
• In MANET, each node is willing to forward data to the other nodes.
• Each node act as both host and a router. The control and management operations are distributed among the nodes.
• It supports multi hop routing. Nodes can join or leave the network anytime.
• Routing protocols used are CGSR (Cluster Gateway Switch Routing called table driven routing), DSR (Dynamic Source Routing called on demand routing), hybrid routing (both proactive and reactive), backpressure routing etc.
• In MANET, GPS is generally used to receive the coordinates of a mobile terminal. Moreover GPS is sufficient to determine location of the nodes.
• When GPS is not available, beacon nodes or proximity based techniques are used such as in dense foliage areas.
• Advantages: Works without any infrastructure, offers high mobility, provide access to information and services regardless of geographic area, inexpensive, network can be setup at any place and at any time.


• It uses moving vehicles as nodes in order to form mobile network. It converts each vehicle into wireless router or node which allows one vehicle to connect with the other from 300 m to 1 Km range.
• The major components of VANET are OBU (On Board Unit), RSU (Road Side Unit) and TA (Trusted Authority). OBUs are installed in vehicles to provide wireless communication. RSUs are installed on intersections as infrastructure to provide internet or information access to vehicles in their radio coverage range. AS unit takes care of authentication of users by configuring secure parameters in OBU units.
• Based on infrastructure and Ad hoc environment, VANET communication modes are V2V, V2I and I2I.
• VANET offers improvement in driving experience and safety in transportation.
• In VANET, navigation grade GPS receiver with accuracy of about 10-15 m is used for route guidance. Assisted GPS (AGPS) or Differential GPS (DGPS) methods with some type of ground based reference stations can provide range corrections with accuracy of about 10 cms.
• Advantages :Offers high mobility, more bandwidth ( thousand Kbps), higher range ( upto 600m), high reliability and so on.

Image Credit : ResearchGate GmbH


• It is a subclass of MANET.
• FANET can be made of swarm of small flying vehicles enabled with camera, sensor and GPS system.
• Here network is formed by using UAVs which offers long range, clear LOS propagation and environment resilient communication.
• In FANET, UAVs are placed at same plane or organized at varying altitudes. Here each UAV does self control when required and also aware of nearby flying UAVs to avoid collision.
• FANET requires highly accurate localization data with smaller time intervals. GPS provides position information at 1 sec interval which may not be sufficient for some of the FANET protocols. Hence in FANET, each UAV is equipped with GPS and IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) to offer position to other UAVs at any time. IMU can be calibrated by GPS signal and hence it can provide UAV position at quicker rate.

Tabular Difference between MANET, VANET and FANET

Following table mentions difference between MANET, VANET and FANET types.

Characteristics MANET VANET FANET
Node Mobility Low High Very High
Node Speed Lower (~ 6 Km/h) Medium to high (~ 20 to 100 Km/h) RW-UAV : Medium (50 Km/h), FW-UAV: High (100 Km/h)
Mobility Model Random Regular Regular for predetermined paths, but special mobility models for autonomous multi-UAV systems.
Node Density Low High Very Low
Topology Change Slow Fast Fast
Radio propagation model Close to Ground, LoS is not available for all cases Close to Ground, LoS is not available for all cases LoS is available for most of the cases
Power consumption and network lifetime Energy efficiency protocols Not needed Energy efficiency for mini UAVs but not needed for small UAVs.
Computational Power Limited High High

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