Drones


Dubai joins race to become first city with flying taxis

Daily Mail

Dubai has showcased a flight for what it said would soon be the world's first drone taxi service under an ambitious plan by the United Arab Emirates city to lead the Arab world in innovation. The flying taxi developed by German drone firm Volocopter resembles a small, two-seater helicopter cabin topped by a wide hoop studded with 18 propellers. Dubai has showcased a flight for what it said would soon be the world's first drone taxi service under an ambitious plan by the United Arab Emirates city to lead the Arab world in innovation Meant to run without remote control guidance and with a maximum flight duration of 30 minutes, it comes with plenty of fail-safes in case of trouble. Meant to run without remote control guidance and with a maximum flight duration of 30 minutes, it comes with plenty of fail-safes in case of trouble.


Secret Service is not prepared for high-tech threats

Daily Mail

Lockheed Martin released footage from tests with its laser weapon system, revealing how'Athena' can deliver an invisible killing blow to take down an enemy drone. Army bosses hope the radical weapon will give protection against threats such as swarms of drones or large numbers of rockets and mortars. Athena uses Lockheed Martin's company's 30-kilowatt Accelerated Laser Demonstration Initiative (ALADIN) to optimize efficiency and lethality, according to the firm. Athena uses Lockheed Martin's company's 30-kilowatt Accelerated Laser Demonstration Initiative (ALADIN) to optimize efficiency and lethality, according to the firm Army bosses hope the radical weapon will give protection against threats such as swarms of drones or large numbers of rockets and mortars.


Pentagon launches $700M programme to combat ISIS drones

Daily Mail

In response, the Pentagon has launched a $700 million (£517 million) cash programme to combat ISIS' lethal fleet of drones. The Pentagon has launched a $700 million (£517 million) cash programme to combat ISIS' lethal fleet of drones. The tests last month at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico saw firms including Lockheed Martin and Boeing test technologies including laser guns and high-tech nets to take down enemy drones. Called Skynet, these anti-drone 12 gauge shotgun shells release a five foot net to trap the drone's propellers causing it to fall from the sky The US Air Force has contracted AMTEC Less Lethal Systems to use their technology to take down drowns.


Lost city of Alexander the Great is found in Iraq

Daily Mail

Undefeated in battle, he had carved out a vast empire stretching from Macedonia and Greece in Europe, to Persia, Egypt and even parts of northern India by the time of his death aged 32. Experts believe Qalatga Darband (pictured)- which translates from Kurdish as'castle of the mountain pass' - is on the route Alexander the Great took to attack Darius III of Persia in 331 BC An abundance of terracotta roof tiles and Greek and Roman statues suggests the city, which now has a thriving wine trade, could have been created by Alexander. Experts processed their drone footage and increased the colour contrasts to show rectangular buildings hidden beneath fields of crops. Experts processed their drone footage and increased the colour contrasts to show rectangular buildings hidden beneath fields of crops.


Building 31 powers back up

MIT News

Professor Jonathan How from the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AeroAstro) describes the space as "one of the largest custom-designed, dedicated spaces for robotics research that I am aware of in academia." Building 31, officially known as the Sloan Laboratories for Aircraft and Automotive Engines, originally opened in 1928 as a single-story home for MIT's internal combustion engine research, funded by General Motors CEO Alfred P. Sloan Jr., Class of 1895. AeroAstro Professor Zoltán Spakovszky, director of the Gas Turbine Lab, which has been an anchor tenant of Building 31 since 1947, says: "The refurbished engine test cells and upgraded motor drive system for our de Laval wind tunnel and air system will greatly support our research." As students, faculty, and staff make their way back into the refurbished building over the coming weeks, excitement is high.


Ruling gives FAA more power over drones than local governments

Engadget

When it comes to drone regulations, the FAA's rules trump anything local governments conjure up. Newton resident Michael Singer filed the lawsuit in a bid to eliminate some of the city's rules that don't align with the FAA's, including having to register with every municipality it has to fly over and to maintain an altitude of 400 feet and above over private and Newton city property. US District Judge William G. Young explained that "Newton's choice to restrict any drone use below this altitude (400 feet) thus works to eliminate any drone use in the confines of the city, absent prior permission. Since we're still figuring out which drone rules and regulations work, the judge's decision could influence similar cases and even local authorities' decisions regarding drone use in the future.


Autonomous drone network prepares to fly over Switzerland

Daily Mail

Developer Matternet, based in Menlo Park, California, has said it plans to tackle UK and German markets next if its Swiss service goes well. The drones will launch from stations that automatically replace the batteries and cargo, which are boxed by humans before flight and retrieved using a smartphone by scanning a QR code. The drone docks on top of the station and can carry up to 2 kilograms (4.4 lbs) The flying robots have a top speed of 70 kilometres per hour (43.5 mph) and can reach 20 kilometres (12.4 miles) on a single charge. US developer Matternet, based in Menlo Park, California, has said it plans to tackle UK and German markets next if its Swiss service goes well.


Airware's Commercial Drone Fund

#artificialintelligence

Commercial drones are shaping and changing many industries around the world and the commercial drone space is rapidly growing, but there are still many challenges to overcome and gaps in the ecosystem to enable drones to be used at scale for jobs that were previously too dangerous, costly or difficult, and applications yet to be imagined. The Commercial Drone Fund was established to support businesses that are developing technologies and services that are critical to scaling the use of commercial drones across a variety of applications.


The Sky's No Limit

@machinelearnbot

Terwilliger – an Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Worldwide assistant professor of aeronautics and program chair for the Master of Science in Unmanned Systems degree in the College of Aeronautics – investigates outreach and engagement efforts between airports and the unmanned aerial systems (UAS) operational communities. Richard Stansbury, an associate professor and unmanned and autonomous systems engineering master's program coordinator at Embry-Riddle's Daytona Beach Campus in Florida, serves as the university's primary investigator on the project, while Terwilliger leads stakeholder engagement efforts and more. After graduation, he worked for more than 10 years in aviation and aerospace – leading integration testing, simulation and training development – and he developed documentation as a software/test engineer at Rockwell Collins Simulation and Training Solutions and ENSCO, Inc. Named Embry-Riddle Worldwide Campus Faculty Member of the Year (2013-2014), Terwilliger served as the lead for the Real World Design Challenge Development Team (2013-2015). He currently chairs the UAS subcommittee for the National Business Aviation Association's Business Aviation Management Committee, and he sits on the editorial board for the Journal of Unmanned Aerial Systems.


'Trump looking to loosen Obama limits on drone strikes'

Al Jazeera

The officials added that proposed drone attacks and raids would no longer undergo high-level vetting. NBC News cited officials at intelligence agencies, the Pentagon, Congress and the White House, who all requested anonymity to discuss the classified programme. The international human rights organisation Reprieve has found that since Trump took office in January this year, at least 30 civilians have been killed in ground raids and drone strikes in Yemen, where the US is not formally at war. In one week in March, the Trump administration conducted some 40 strikes in Yemen, including 25 on a single day.