Drone Navigates Obstacles Like an Insect

2016-07-21

Drone Navigates Obstacles Like an Insect
Physics student Darius Merk has used an insect-inspired algorithm to develop a drone that can navigate around obstacles. His research could prove particularly useful in a natural disaster.

How do you send a drone on a reconnaissance mission in a hard-to-reach area without it getting stuck in the rubble? The drone could of course be remotely controlled, but you could lose contact with the device if it went behind a wall. EPFL physics student and robot enthusiast Darius Merk has found another solution – one that is inspired by insects’ vision and that he developed in EPFLs Laboratory of Intelligent Systems for his Masters project.

The drone is completely autonomous and can detect obstacles in order to avoid a collision. Unlike human sight, the drone does not use stereoscopic vision to determine depth and distance. “Using cameras to simulate the human eye requires a lot of computing power,” says Merk. For this, the drone would need to have a small on-board computer, which would make it difficult to miniaturize.

So Merk came up with a drone that can see like insects with their faceted eyes. Insects find their way by using their optical flow to assess how an image moves, with a distant object moving more slowly than a closer one, explains Merk. A drone that sees like an insect requires only two 15g cameras one at the front and one at the back to get a 360-degree view of the terrain. The device uses very little computing power, so it could potentially be reduced to around 10cm in size.

The technologywould be extremely handy in a natural disaster, as it could be used to help rescuers and to scout the terrain. The drone is light, autonomous and capable of getting round obstacles it will be able to follow a programmed course in order to bring back videos and images of areas that are hard to reach.

Category:  UAV


Remote GeoSystems Conducts BVLOS Geospatial Video Pipeline Inspection in China

2019-08-23
Remote GeoSystems Conducts BVLOS Geospatial Video Pipeline Inspection in China
Remote GeoSystems, Inc., a global provider of immersive geospatial video, photo and data recorders and reporting software for survey and inspection, and Xi’an ARTEL Technology, Inc., Chinas leading developer/operator of beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) inspection UAVs, are pleased to announce the successful deployment of complementary geospatial data systems for long distance day and night drone pipeline patrol operations.

Avion Unmanned Wins Multi-State Contract To Provide Unmanned Aircraft System Services For The Public Sector

2019-08-23
Avion Unmanned Wins Multi-State Contract To Provide Unmanned Aircraft System Services For The Public Sector
Huntsville, AL – Avion Unmanned, the Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) division of Avion Solutions, Inc., was recently awarded Contract E194-79435 by the Commonwealth of Virginia. This contract opens the door for Avion Unmanned to provide UAS services to state and local government agencies in all 50 states.

Maiden Flight for Russian 6-Tonne Altius-U

2019-08-20
Maiden Flight for Russian 6-Tonne Altius-U
The Russian Defence Ministry has posted a video of the maiden flight of a 6-tonne Altius-U drone, capable of being in the air for more than 24 hours.

Taiwan Displays Anti-Radiation Loitering Munition

2019-08-20
Taiwan Displays Anti-Radiation Loitering Munition
Taiwan’s National Chung-Shan Institute of Science & Technology (NCSIST) – the countrys principal defence science research and development agency showcased the production-ready version of the Chien Hsiang anti-radiation loitering munition and its mobile launcher vehicle for the first time at the 2019 Taipei Aerospace & Defense Technology Exhibition (TADTE), which was held in Taipei from 15 to 17 August.


EHang to Build Autonomous Drone Network to Cover Chinese Metropolis

2019-08-15
EHang to Build Autonomous Drone Network to Cover Chinese Metropolis
Residents of Chinese metropolis Guangzhou can soon expect to see autonomous drones flitting over the city after drone manufacturer EHang announced the launch of its first urban air mobility pilot city program this past week.

Now Australian Military Also Bans DJI Products

2017-09-26
Now Australian Military Also Bans DJI Products
Australia’s Department of Defence has established “revised operating procedures” for small unmanned aircraft, an action that follows a U.S. Army directive to its units in August to stop using drones manufactured by Chinas DJI because of cyber vulnerabilities.

Chinas Tengoen Unveils Armed UAVs

2017-09-26
Chinas Tengoen Unveils Armed UAVs
Chinese company Tengoen unveiled a series of armed reconnaissance unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) at the 14th China–ASEAN Expo in Nanning from 12 to 15 September, including two fixed-wing and two vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) UAVs.

Intel Launches Aerial Data Analytics Platform

2017-09-11
Intel Launches Aerial Data Analytics Platform
The newly announced Intel Insight Platform is a cloud-based data processing, analytics and reporting service that allows customers to store, share, and manage the rich data that commercial drone systems provide.

AUDS Counter-Drone System Enhanced for Vehicle Deployment and to Defeat Swarm Attacks

2017-09-11
AUDS Counter-Drone System Enhanced for Vehicle Deployment and to Defeat Swarm Attacks
The AUDS counter-UAS defence system has been enhanced for deployment on military and commercial security and surveillance vehicles and with new technology to more effectively defeat swarm attacks by malicious unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), including long-range winged drones.

Disguised Drones Boost Wildlife Management

2017-09-04
Disguised Drones Boost Wildlife Management
Wildlife management is getting a little more scientific. Saxon Remote Systems, a manufacturer of unmanned aerial systems in McPherson, is flying into the market with technology to make current wildlife management methods easier and more precise.


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