Navigation based on computer version technology, which has the characteristics of strong independence, high precision and is not susceptible to electrical interference, has attracted more and more attention in the filed of UAV navigation research. Early navigation project based on computer version technology mainly applied to autonomous ground robot. In recent years, the visual navigation system is widely applied to unmanned machine, deep space detector and underwater robot. That further stimulate the research of integrated navigation algorithm based on computer version technology. In China, with many types of UAV development and two lunar exploration, the three phase of the project started, there has been significant progress in the study of visual navigation. The paper expounds the development of navigation based on computer version technology in the filed of UAV navigation research and draw a conclusion that visual navigation is mainly applied to three aspects as follows.(1) Acquisition of UAV navigation parameters. The parameters, including UAV attitude, position and velocity information could be got according to the relationship between the images from sensors and carrier’s attitude, the relationship between instant matching images and the reference images and the relationship between carrier’s velocity and characteristics of sequential images.(2) Autonomous obstacle avoidance. There are many ways to achieve obstacle avoidance in UAV navigation. The methods based on computer version technology ,including feature matching, template matching, image frames and so on, are mainly introduced. (3) The target tracking, positioning. Using the obtained images, UAV position is calculated by using optical flow method, MeanShift algorithm, CamShift algorithm, Kalman filtering and particle filter algotithm. The paper expounds three kinds of mainstream visual system. (1) High speed visual system. It uses parallel structure, with which image detection and processing are carried out at high speed. The system is applied to rapid response system. (2) The visual system of distributed network. There are several discrete image data acquisition sensor in different locations, which transmit image data to the node processor to increase the sampling rate. (3) The visual system combined with observer. The system combines image sensors with the external observers to make up for lack of visual equipment. To some degree, these systems overcome lacks of the early visual system, including low frequency, low processing efficiency and strong noise. In the end, the difficulties of navigation based on computer version technology in practical application are briefly discussed. (1) Due to the huge workload of image operation , the real-time performance of the system is poor. (2) Due to the large environmental impact , the anti-interference ability of the system is poor.(3) Due to the ability to work in a particular environment, the system has poor adaptability.