From construction and wildlife surveillance to military use, the future really does look rosy for these little flying vehicles. And with advances in technology and hardware happening near enough every week, let’s look at just where they might be heading:
Drones in the construction industry:
For the past few years drones have been used within the construction industry, predominantly since they can provide data and insight in a much more efficient way than man or a helicopter. With the use of drones, construction companies can deploy resources round the building site in a way that reduces any potential issues and hazards, minimizes costs and significantly reduces project delays.
The unmanned aerial vehicles fly over construction sites and with the use of technology and thermal surveying, provide the builders with data that can help them to make 3D structural models, topographical maps and volumetric measurements. With a fast-growing population the world over, the demand for homes and other buildings is on the rise, making construction an industry that is increasingly at the forefront of technology.
Drones have been used more and more for military purposes, especially since the CIA used them in a strike targeting Bin Laden back in 2002. In fact, they have been used in more than 500 strikes, with pilots in so-called ‘safe zones’ operating them hundreds of miles away from the conflict or action.
In 2016, drone tests were reportedly conducted involving a whopping 103 unmanned aerial vehicles, in what is commonly referred to as a ‘micro-drone swarm test’. It’s somewhat frightening to think how much damage a drone can do when being piloted by someone sat at a computer screen in a safe area.
Drones and medicine:
In a completely different way to how drones are being used for military purposes, they are also being used as vehicles for carrying lightweight medicines and samples to areas that are far from civilisation or hard to reach. In Malawi, for example, drones are already being used for this purpose, and there plans for this to happen in many other countries around the globe. The drones can be launched using coordinate mapping and should safely reach their predetermined destinations with no problems.
In an extraordinary feat of robotic technology, a drone is currently being designed that is made from cardboard and dissolves once the 2 pounds of medicine that it’s carrying have been delivered to its destination. The trickiest components of this amazing new drone have proved to be electrical; getting the parts to decompose quickly once the mission has been completed.
So, as far as the future of drones is concerned, you really do need to watch this space as changes are happening faster than most of us could ever have predicted.