Drone technology has been around for a few years now and chances are you have seen on humming around your suburb – especially around Christmas time.
While they are fun toys and a great way to get photos and vision from angles previously not possible, there are also many practical ways that these devices can be used within. For instance, they are already being trialled in a range of different applications, which are set to change the way these gadgets are used in the future. And some of these uses may not be what you would expect...
Performing agricultural tasks
There is so much work that can be done on the farm with a drone, and the future is looking extremely bright for this field of innovation. Currently, these devices are used to assess crops, ensure irrigation is reaching all quarters, spray pesticides, spot diseases and many, many other tasks. And in the near future, there’s looking to be plenty more on the cards.
Sell real estate
Drones give people a virtual inspection of homes, allowing them to view property remotely. For those that can’t make physical inspections, this presents a huge convenience, and boosts the potential for agents to convert these leads into actual buyers. Best of all, skilled pilots are able to not only show footage of the outside of properties, but take people on a bird’s eye view inside as well.
Drones are already being tested for their ability to construct things across a number of industries. For instance, the Swiss Institute of Technology has been working on the Aerial Construction Project, which has already seen drones build a 24-foot rope bridge between two structures.
As the technology advances and testing continues, drones will be able to play more active roles in building across the board.
Putting out fires
Getting to fires in large, metropolitan areas with towering skyscrapers can be a difficult task. We’re all familiar with ‘Elvis’ – the amazing bushfire emergency helicopter that frequents many regions across Australia. But in China, where there’s a very condensed population, they’re ramping things up by using drones to help put out fires in high rises even quicker.
In Australia, the technology is being trialled to tackle bushfires as well, though Elvis will still lead the charge for now.
As another example, Forestry Corporation in New South Wales is using drones to identify the location and scope of fires effectively. This allows them to manage their teams on the ground without a hitch.
A time when drones could deliver packages – and even food – to our doorstep is close at hand (if not already in play).
In one case, Dominos Pizza has already tried this technology, with a New Zealand couple becoming the first people in the world to have a pizza delivered by drone in 2016. The fast food giant is working with drone delivery company Flirtey to make this a mainstream reality, with faster and larger machines required to get the job done.
For retail, Amazon’s Prime Air service is another drone delivery service in the works, where testing has begun in the UK.
They are a vehicle, so why not race them?
Professional drone racing is already a thing with the US National Drone Racing Championships established in 2016 in the United States. The qualifiers are open to the public and pilots wear first-person goggles while flying their drones through a prepared circuit complete with obstacles.
It’s also being used as a fun way to engage high school students in science.