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Submission + - Drone Dragonfly takes to the air. (

garymortimer writes: "These people from Festo are really beyond clever.

The mechanics of dragonfly flight are unique: dragonflies can manoeuvre in all directions, glide without having to beat their wings and hover in the air. Their ability to move their two pairs of wings independently enables them to slow down and turn abruptly, to accelerate swiftly and even to fly backwards.

A natural model for flight

With the BionicOpter, Festo has applied these highly complex characteristics to an ultra-lightweight flying object at a technical level. For the first time, there is a model that can master more flight conditions than a helicopter, plane and glider combined.

In addition to controlling the flapping frequency and the twisting of the individual wings, each of the four wings features an amplitude controller. This means that the direction of thrust and the intensity of thrust for all four wings can be adjusted individually, thus enabling the remote-controlled dragonfly to move in almost any orientation in space. The intelligent kinematics correct any vibrations during flight and ensure flight stability both indoors and outdoors."


Submission + - Drone drops GPS, navigation by vision alone. (

garymortimer writes: "This technology, developed in the Autonomous Systems Laboratory at ETH Zurich, has two weighty advantages compared with GPS-based flying robots. First, it works both in the open air and in enclosed spaces. The second is that the flying robots can navigate where GPS fails; for example, due to the density of buildings. The camera-based technology allows for a more accurate positioning of the aircraft than is possible with GPS, explains the project coordinator, Davide Scaramuzza. Depending on the environment, GPS errors can be as great as 70 metres — much too imprecise when several flying robots are in close proximity to each other in the air."
The Military

Submission + - Swedish Soldiers tree climbing to get drones back. (

garymortimer writes: "Swedish soldiers are to be taught how to shimmy up trees in the proper fashion in case they need to salvage unmanned drones caught in canopies.

Members of the airborne unit, which operates Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) in Afghanistan (among other places), will take a course in advanced tree climbing on request of the headquarters in Stockholm."


Submission + - Rent-a-Drone you fly it! German start up (

garymortimer writes: Its a novel idea, but does it have a future? From as little 190 Euros an hour a German start up aims to provide coverage in Switzerland Germany and Austria. The small electric multi rotor platforms would need to have bullet proof control systems to be handed to anybody. The main thrust of the companies website seems to be to promote a franchise operation for keen users to buy into. I can't see that aviation regulators would be very happy with untrained operators flying wherever they like.

From the Rent-a-Drone website:-

As part of the extension of rent-a-drone, we offer you the opportunity to partner to be. You will receive a protected zip code area and develop your market with your own UAV (purchase or lease). You support us with a centrally controlled advertising and marketing department, which also gives you orders. Furthermore, we keep you with training, regular partner meetings and relevant documents to date.

You can “rent-a-drone” partners act as both a part-time, or you can build targeted new foothold on a career.

As an aerial photographer of the new generation, you convince your clients not only by pure photography, but also by the possibility of video footage from the air to create and deliver dynamic image data can thus.

Have we piqued your interest?

Space is to place as eternity is to time. -- Joseph Joubert