TAG: Drones

Five Technologies We’ll See In The Next 10 Years

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Step aside, solar power and 3D-printing — there are a few technologies who want a say in what the future might look like. Many researchers don’t expect 3D-printing to reach its full potential for the next 15 – 20 years, but we’ve started making major progress on how we manufacture things, and solar power has been around for decades. So what are the “next big things” you haven’t heard of yet? Here are five amazing technologies that’ll soon become as common as smartphones: 1. 4D-Printing It’s not 2D…it’s not even 3D…it’s the ultra amazing, super cool 4D! You’re probably thinking… read more

Probing The Antarctic With Drones

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We need drones.¬†It’s a subject of much debate in the U.S., as well as around the globe, with 2014 expected to be a huge year for the drone industry as they work to convince us of their relevance. Drones have the potential to be so much more than fire-and-forget weapons of war. Their scientific and commercial applications are unparalleled in certain areas, and they aren’t as scary as many in the media have the lead the public to believe. Just recently, a 37-kilogram drone was used by research teams in the Antarctic tundra to map the ice with radar soundings…. read more

Five Reasons We Actually Need Personal Drones

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In just over a year, an estimated 7,500 drones will fly over U.S. airspace, all of them regulated by the FAA. Currently, an estimated 10,000 hobby drones occupy the skies, although by law they’re not allowed to fly above a 400 ft ceiling, nor can they collect video and data for commercial use (although I trust that last part about as much as I trust that the FBI isn’t watching me write this via webcam right now. Whoops). Still, despite the controversial future for drones, there’s still room for them to take up special places in our hearts. We actually… read more

A drone for you, and a drone for me

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By the year 2015, drones will be allowed to take to the skies above standard U.S. airspace. The FAA estimates that approximately 7,500 drones will flood the skies when the law goes into effect. Already, colleges that offer courses in drone piloting have filled up with applicants hoping to become part of the 1st generation of private drone pilots, with salaries expected to stretch into the six-figure range. So what are drones good for, and should you be worried? To answer your first question, drones are particularly great at a wide range of dangerous flying, such as surveillance over areas… read more

Drones to Deliver Textbooks in Australia

Drones to Deliver Textbooks in Australia

Renting a textbook for university courses can make a lot of sense, as the outright purchase price for a book that only gets used for one semester can be quite high. Textbook rentals typically come by post or are picked up in person, but for some Australian college students, the textbooks they rent from Zookal in the near future could be delivered by a drone. Textbook rental company Zookal already rents out several hundred books every day, either shipping them to students or allowing them to pick them up in person. However, a partnership with a commercial drone service called… read more

Solar Powered Drone Acts as “Atmospheric Satellite”

Solar Powered Drone Acts as "Atmospheric Satellite"

The future of communications and satellite imagery may belong to a new breed of aircraft – solar powered drones that can stay at high altitudes for up to five years at a time. Functions that previously relied on low-orbit satellites could gradually be transitioned to these lower cost “atmospheric satellites” that can fly at altitudes between 60,000 and 70,000 feet above the Earth. Titan Aerospace is currently building a long-endurance solar drone, the Solara 50, which is expected to launch next year, with plans for a bigger version in the works. The Solar 50 features a 50 meter wingspan and… read more

Hurricane WiFi

Editorial Attribution - Anton Oparin / Shutterstock.com

As Hurricane Sandy battered the Northeast, power outages wreaked havoc on telecommunications networks,¬†knocking out cell phone usage by the millions. If a future hurricane triggers similar failures, regulators say they have a potential solution with floating wireless antennas from balloons or drones. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is exploring the use of such airborne technology to restore communications after disasters. Beaming 3G or Wi-Fi signals from the sky may be especially useful to emergency responders in the immediate aftermath of a hurricane. Though not as severe as Hurricane Katrina, the damage to telecommunications networks after Hurricane Sandy was significant. After… read more