Any talk of unorthodox drone use is bound to encourage topics such as medicine delivery, pizza delivery, and Amazon’s use of drones. However, we find all of this to be tame and not to push the envelope. In these applications, there are issues of traffic management, precise navigation, and logistics. Important no doubt, but pushing the envelope? I think not.
Here are some areas of use where we do believe the envelope has been pushed.
Drones are going where few have gone before. Storm chasers are using them to discover the internals of tornados and understand why some super thunderstorms produce tornados while others do not. An excellent article in the Scientific American explains the project. There was also a Kickstarter Project supporting the activity – this appears to be closed now. The drone looks like a little B-2 bomber and is designed to be sucked in like a piece of storm debris. Data from the drone is available to anyone researching storms.
Studying Lava Flows
Studying the internals of the earth is important and scientists have struggled for years to get close to volcanoes and their spectacular showers. This is a real burning issue. Data collection has become far easier using drones that are being used to record video, collect rock samples, and analyze volcanic smoke and ashes. A press release by the University of Bristol tells how a close study of a volcano using research drones revealed information about it that was not known before.
We sometimes hear about shark attacks at beaches with injuries or fatalities. Australia is experimenting with a large drone called the Little Ripper (cost: $250,000) that has software that can detect sharks and humans in the water. The drone carries an inflatable life raft, shark repellant, and a first aid kit. Hopefully, even if the Little Ripper succeeds, they won’t shut down Baywatch!
And finally, here is how the bad guys use drones. A prisoner in South Carolina was supplied with wire cutters so that he could escape. He did. Luckily, he was captured just short of the Mexican border, but not before he had traveled 1,200 miles in just two days. Must have had aerial help to move that fast.
David King Chief Technical Officer
Serving as the Chief Technology Officer, David is responsible for the discovery and implementation of new technologies that yield competitive advantages while working closely with Executive Management to develop strategies to increase revenue and performs cost-benefit and return-on-investment analysis.
In October 2005, David joined AEgis Technologies as Director of the Simulation Development Group. During that time, David helped formulate the direction of AEgis’ software development efforts to ensure maximum reusability, thereby speeding ongoing development while reducing costs. His focus is technology transfer to commercial products and product development. Under his leadership, the Simulation Development Group developed and fielded over 8000 UAS training systems across the DOD. David has held the title of Vice President, Simulation Development and most recently, Executive Vice President, Technology Solutions Division.
With more than 25 years in the Modeling, Simulation, and Training industry – and having served in product design and development, technology advancement, project management, and leadership positions. David is a recognized leader and innovator in the MS&T industry, having co-founded, matured and sold a two-man start-up company into a highly-successful small business (CG2, Inc.) in just seven years with no outside venture capital or investments. In addition to being recognized locally as an “Outstanding Small Business” for three consecutive years by the Madison County Chamber of Commerce.
Before co-founding CG2, David spent eight years in the US Army in missile-related fields. He worked for Electronic Associates Inc. and later AMTEC Corporation at Redstone Arsenal, Huntsville, AL, on a broad range of projects including the Sensor Vision III Real-Time IR Scene Generator, JAVELIN, STINGER, CHAPARRAL BAT, AIT, and THAAD HWIL simulations.
Specialties: Modeling, Simulation and Training. Hardware in the Loop, real-time simulations.