Friday, December 25, 2015

How's your new quadcopter present?

North Dakota; hotspot for drones!

"For years, entrepreneurs have come here to farm and to drill for oil and natural gas. Now a new, tech-savvy generation is grabbing a piece of the growing market for drone technology and officials want to help them do it here, where there is plenty of open space and — unlike in other sparsely populated states — lots of expertise already in place.
Silicon Valley has the big money and know-how, Mr. Muehler and others say, but North Dakota can take unmanned aerial vehicles, as they prefer to call drones, from a fast-growing hobby to a real industry. And just as Silicon Valley got its start with a combination of military contracts, entrepreneurs and cooperative universities, they believe they can do the same with drones."

I was vacationing in North Dakota a few months ago and heard a local talk show discussing the future of drones in the area. They were quite upbeat and excited about what all drones can do, including helping farmers map out their fields for water and fertilizer needs.  I don't know how much wind they have up there (it was nice when I was there), but they do have a lot of open range.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Cheap starter quadcopter for Christmas!

Monday, December 14, 2015

time to register your quadcopter with the FAA

"Remote-controlled aircraft that weigh at least 9 ounces flown by hundreds of thousands of hobbyists across the country will have to be registered starting Dec. 21, the Federal Aviation Administration announced Monday.
The owner – whether it’s a new purchase or a drone that’s been flying for years – will have to register a name, a physical address and an email address with the FAA, as recommended Nov. 21 by a task force of manufacturers, retailers, pilots and hobbyists. Existing owners will have to register by Feb. 19, 2016, and new buyers will have to register before their first flight."

I'll bet manufacturers will be skirting right up to that 9 oz. limit now.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Let the Races begin! Drone Prix

"Dubai will host the first 'World Drone Prix' in March, which organisers say will be the world's biggest drone race, with a grand prize of $1 million.
Speaking at the last day of the World Air Games at Skydive Dubai's Palm drop zone, Minister of Cabinet Affairs Mohammed Abdullah Al Gergawi said that the upcoming Drone Prix represents the future of air racing and drone technology."

This is cool.   There have already been such races, but this will no doubt establish some ground rules and such.  I'm wondering how best it will be to watch such events; live, online?

how to catch a drone

Radio Wave Gun
Force Field

Well.... I think we have a ways to go yet for defending from drones.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Drone wars in Japan

"Sources told the Japan Times that Tokyo’s Metropolitan Police Department is even intending to set up a special anti-drone unit for identifying and taking down suspicious-looking UAVs spotted in the capital. The report said the unit would use “a large drone” with a net to capture UAVs caught flying in areas like airports, a comically crude solution for a country brimming with tech know-how. If the story is indeed true, many will wonder why the authorities aren’t going for a high-tech solution like thisor this, instead.
Drone operators can apply for permission to fly in restricted areas, with regulators examining each application on a case-by-case basis. Rule breakers could be fined up to 500,000 yen ($4,100).
Masahiro Kobayashi, an Osaka-based lawyer with experience in drone-related cases, told the Japan Times that while some of the new laws are acceptable, restricting the use of toy devices as light as 200 grams was unfair, as is the move to stop people flying their machines in pretty much all urban locations."

Seriously?  Catch another drone in a net?  

Saturday, December 5, 2015

A quadcopter that also flies underwater!

"Behold the Naviator, a new drone built by researchers and students at Rutgers University. As the portmanteau moniker would suggest, the bot is at home both in the water and in the air. This remotely controlled quadcopter can transition from flight to underwater mode and back seemingly with ease.
The Office of Naval Research commissioned this project in the hope of creating a new vehicle capable of rapid deployment for a multitude of missions. For example, a combination quadcopter-sub could inspect bridge foundations, investigate undersea pollution, or perform search-and-rescue operations."

Not many situations call for this ability but it's pretty cool!