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Submission + - Stick catching drones (no really) (

garymortimer writes: "Mind blowing stuff from the talented folks at the ETH flying machine arena another worthy entrant to UAS Got Talent. Great Friday video.

This video shows two quadrocopters capable of not only balancing an inverted pendulum, but also of launching it off the vehicle and catching it again."


Submission + - DARPA drone has load placing arm (

garymortimer writes: "The research team designed and developed a low-cost vision system to estimate the target’s position relative to the hovering vehicle in real time. This vision system enables the UAV to search and find the target for the emplacement autonomously and then perform the action.

DARPA’s precision emplacement technology demonstration paves the way for precise long-range delivery of small payloads into difficult-to-reach environments."


Submission + - Activists' drone shot out of the sky for fourth time (

garymortimer writes: "“I had more control than I anticipated,” he said. “I couldn’t believe it didn’t just drop out of the sky.”

Photos provided by the animal rights group show the multicopter smoking on the ground, with its lithium polymer battery supply smoldering. Another photo shows the drone’s video camera smashed. The drone, dubbed “Angel,” was a Cinestar 8 octocopter estimated at $4,000.

This wasn’t the first time SHARK has been shot out of the sky. This is the fourth drone that the group has lost while investigating pigeon shootings. One drone landed on club property, and is the subject of an ongoing lawsuit.

“It’s becoming a regular occurrence because the police refuse to do anything,” Hindi said."


Submission + - UAV Solar Turbine to deliver 30 to 90 days of flight ( 1

garymortimer writes: "What if you had the opportunity to help fund a product that can CHANGE THE WORLD?

The AirShip V2 Solar Turbine is designed to provide critical new capabilities in a reliable and more affordable manner; all while consuming no fossil fuels and emitting no carbon emissions. Its reduced carbon footprint is defined by multiple stages:

Solar film nanotechnology
Clean tech solar turbine manufacturing
Renewable solar electric power for long flying time
AirShipTG has designed a Solar Turbine engine that is more efficient, non-polluting and inexpensive to use than any other small UAV propulsion system in the market. It is an industry game-changing revolutionary approach to ultralite UAV propulsion that eliminates the carbon footprint. It reduces UAV aircraft weight and eliminates the need to carry onboard fuel because of the introduction of renewable solar energy with rechargeable ultra-capacitors."


Submission + - Dragonfly spy drone fits in a hand Georgia Tech (

garymortimer writes: "The TechJect Robot Dragonfly is a multi-engineering design. It requires everything from aerodynamics, machine design, mechatronics, electronics, communication systems, flight control software, user-interfaces and much more. We’ve put in a lot of work to bring harmony to chaos and bring the dragonfly to life; however, getting something robust enough to endure the elements, strong enough to outlast crashes and accidents; smart enough so everyone can operate them easily; and finally cheap enough so everyone can afford one, we have to professionally manufacture the robot bugs; which is an expensive proposition."

Submission + - Korean suicide combat unmanned air vehicle (

garymortimer writes: "Electric ducted fan (EDF) and rudder elevator the claimed performance figures for KAI’s new guided weapon seem slightly optimistic.

A maximum speed that ranges between 350-400km/h (189-216kt), says KAI. It navigates using GPS and a data link, and the company refers to it as a “suicide combat unmanned air vehicle”.

“After [the Devil Killer] moves to the target point along the pre-programmed route, which is designated with navigation points, the operator can identify targets through the forward-looking camera image and then commence either a manual or automatic strike,” says KAI."


Submission + - Navy drones that miss things like birds do. (

garymortimer writes: "In the lab, researchers set up an artificial forest with tall pipes serving as trees at Harvard University’s Concord Field Station. Birds and a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)-built UAV are wired with small digital video cameras and motion-capture technology similar to that used in Hollywood. Both are studied in parallel to compare and learn from performance as the research progresses. A goal is to move to flight in a real forest by the program’s end.

The idea is not to copy the birds but to incorporate lessons about how they navigate and use dynamic obstacle avoidance methods into a system that can make real-time decisions that take into account its surroundings. For example, researchers already have discovered a theoretical speed at which the probability of a collision is high in forests with an average distribution of trees; if a UAV stays below that threshold, the probability of an accident lowers dramatically. The program also has begun to reveal the types of flight strategies used by birds in these environments."


Submission + - Drones for Peace $100 journalist UAV (

garymortimer writes: "DronesForPeace provides the key capabilities of a surveillance drone at a world changing price; $100 drones distributed in bulk by journalists to crowdsource the video coverage of a natural or political disaster.

DronesForPeace proliferates aerial video in the same way cell phone cameras provided the story on the ground in recent events like the Arab spring.

Like a robotic carrier pigeon, we carry the footage miles away from the conflict to those who can spread the message."


Submission + - Facial Recognition From Small Drone Video Imagery (

garymortimer writes: "Hood Technology announces new facial recognition capability utilizing stabilized airborne video imagery in small, tactical unmanned aerial vehicles (Small-UAVs).

According to Hood Tech’s Dr. Andy von Flotow, “NIIRS 8 imagery is no longer enough to stay ahead of expectations; we are now recognizing faces and reading license plates from stand-off ranges beyond audible detectability. To achieve this, we have developed new imagers and have completely reinvented our stabilization methods. Our stabilization is now good enough that we can select a specific door when pointing a laser.”"


Submission + - Laser Powers Lockheed Martin's Stalker drone For 48 Hours (

garymortimer writes: "Lockheed Martin (LMT) and LaserMotive, Inc., recently demonstrated the capabilities of an innovative laser power system to extend the Stalker Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) flight time to more than 48 hours. This increase in flight duration represents an improvement of 2,400 percent.

Stalker is a small, silent UAS used by Special Operations Forces since 2006 to perform intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions."


Submission + - Clone Wars, Iran's new drones revealed (

garymortimer writes: "A documentary shown last week in Iran of the Great Prophet 7 exercises reveals a couple of new UAS. One a shameless copy of the Israeli Hermes 450 and another sharing a passing resemblance to the Insitu Integrator. Earlier this week the US Marines ordered more Integrators so the design must be sound!

The first platform shown is the now infamous “Pahad” which is thought to have been used in Syria against opposition forces."

Take your work seriously but never take yourself seriously; and do not take what happens either to yourself or your work seriously. -- Booth Tarkington