At UAV not Drone we like to feature organizations that are using unmanned aerial vehicles for the greater good and we have found a very interesting social network that is committed to serving humanitarian purposes, http://UAViators.org. They are self-described as “A global network of civilian/hobbyist UAV pilots who safely and responsibly fly UAVs to support peaceful, humanitarian efforts and their mission is as follows:
Our Mission is to bridge humanitarian and UAV communities internationally. We do this by supporting a global volunteer network of professional, civilian and responsible hobbyist UAV pilots who facilitate information sharing, coordination and operational safety in support of a broad range of humanitarian efforts.
After the leak of the document that would propose legislation for unmanned aerial vehicles on Saturday, February 14 2015, the FAA held a press conference the following day, on a Sunday, before a federal holiday, to unveil their 195 page proposal for regulating commercial UAVs (click here to view the full 195-page PDF document) or here to view a 2-page summary.
You know the scenario, you’re having an amazing flight, but you’ve got to land because you’re running low on electrons. But what if you could charge your craft while your’re flying, untethered? A Canadian company called Solace Power, in partnership with Boeing, are working to make wireless charging more efficient, and they demonstrate the way their prototype works in the video above, with the green light indicating that the multirotor is charging, mid-air. From TechCrunch:
Introducing the New York City Drone Film Festival, a sold out event created to highlight cinematography captured via your favorite flying platform, the “drone”. The screening will take place on March 7th, 2015, and they might add a second screening, so hold on your your hats. From their website:
Presenting the NoFlyzone, a community driven database of properties that will prevent “drones” from flying over your house. Actually, its just a site where you can submit your property without residence verification and somehow in the future, UAV manufacturers will use this data to prevent their craft from flying over your property. Just like DJI is doing for the White House. Oh, nevermind.
Gizmodo has very interesting piece where the compare the early computer club movements of the 70’s and 80’s with the “DIY Drone” movement that we see now a days. They interview Chris Anderson, former Wired Magazine editor and CEO of 3D Robotics.
Motherboard has a very interesting article/video on a bunch of guys who race their mini multirotors in the Bronx, in freezing weather. An interesting take on “drones”. Watch out the one of the guy’s comments regarding the FAA and how he isn’t afraid the the government agency banning “drones” because they say below 100 ft. Check it out.
One of the most talked about events of in the realm of UAVs in the recent months was the “Drone lands on the White House lawn” incident, which occured on Janurary 26, 2015. First, lets describe the events and the way the media reported on it.
In case you were under a rock last week, a DJI Phantom landed on the White House lawn after a drunk government employee decided to fly this roommate’s “drone” and it flew away. Here’s Jon Stewart’s political commentary on the subject. After all, Obama loves drones, why shouldn’t one land on his lawn?
Here is another excellent example of how UAVs can be used for the greater good: combating poachers in South Africa that kill rhinos for their horns. These horns are sought after because of their magical properties. A team from the University of Maryland’s Institute for Advanced Computer Studies uses mathematical models with satellite data along with different types of UAVs, fixed wing and multicopters, to track rhinos and inform the authorities of the location of poachers.
“Africa is too big to be simply launching small drones into the night sky with the hope of spotting rhinos or poachers by chance. This is where the analytical models come into play. Based on our models, we know, with near 90% certainty, where rhinos are likely to be on a particular night between 6:30 and 8:00, prime time for killings. At the same time, by mathematically recreating the environment when previous poachings have occurred, we have a very good idea of when and where poachers are likely to strike.”
The use of this technology has been proven to be very effective:
[…]and over the past 90 days, there has not been one single poaching incident. Four months ago, this region was losing several rhinos a week.
Check out the full article link below to read the full details.