Engineering a single adept robot is in itself a feat. When several robots in motion inhabit the same space, more challenges arise. Multi-robot scenarios are becoming more common with the advancement of autonomous vehicles (AVs) and use of drones for various applications, as well as the current uses of robots to help curb the COVID-19 pandemic. The most obvious pitfall to having more than one robot navigate a space is that they could collide. In the case of self-driving cars, the vehicles must make spur of the moment changes to their trajectories to stay en route, prevent an accident or both.
Drone companies saw a record number of deals last year. On a quarterly basis, Q1'17 was the most active quarter historically for deals, reaching 32 investments worth $113M. Within the space, terrestrial imagery, infrastructure inspection, and delivery have emerged as some of the primary use cases for drone technology. Using CB Insights data, we identified over 70 leading private companies in the drones space and categorized them into the twelve main categories in which they operate. We define drones broadly to include software and hardware companies developing technologies related to unmanned aerial, marine, and/or land vehicles designed for unstructured environments.
Metallica's European WorldWired tour, which opened to an ecstatic crowd of 15,000 in Copenhagen's sold-out Royal Arena this Saturday, features a swarm of micro drones flying above the band. Shortly after the band breaks into their hit single "Moth Into Flame", dozens of micro drones start emerging from the stage, forming a large rotating circle above the stage. As the music builds, more and more drones emerge and join the formation, creating increasingly complex patterns, culminating in a choreography of three interlocking rings that rotate in position. Unlike previous drone shows, this performance features indoor drones, flying above performers and right next to throngs of concert viewers in a live event setting. Flying immediately next to audiences creates a more intimate effect than outdoor drone shows.
Aircraft maker Airbus is turning to smart industrial drones, data analytics and machine learning to make aircraft inspections easier and faster. One day while working on a shiny new Airbus A350 aircraft, Ronie Gnecco figured it was time to build a better relationship between drones and passenger airplanes. His bold idea to use flying robots for aircraft safety inspections worked so well it has -- among other projects -- it inspired aircraft manufacturer Airbus to move deeper into the industrial drone revolution. Within a couple of years, the company's intelligent unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) systems could be used for safety inspections at airports around the world, making planes safer with more on-time flight departures. To make that happen, Gnecco said it will require pioneering efforts from technology experts, regulators and airport authorities from around the world.