International

Self-flying Skydio R1 can now be piloted using an Apple Watch

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Skydio has announced its self-flying R1 drone can now be controlled from an Apple Watch. The Californian-based company hopes the added autonomy will provide its users with increased usability ease and a more enjoyable in-flight experience. To do this, the firm has introduced the Skydio Apple Watch app, which allows an R1 pilots to direct the drone completely from their wrist. The Skydio Apple Watch app enables users to select a subject to follow, use the digital crown to rotate the drone and to change between cinematic skills. Adam Bry, CEO and co-founder of Skydio, said: “Full autonomy is the
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World’s largest transport drone successfully tested in China

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The world’s largest unmanned transport drone has completed its first successful test flight in China. The Feihong-98 (FH-98) can carry a payload of up to 1.5 tonnes, a number which equates to around 19 people. According to state-run China Daily the FH-98, which has been developed and modified by the China Academy of Aerospace Electronics Technology, made its successful flight at Baotou test site in North China's Inner Mongolia autonomous region on Tuesday. The UAV is a design adaption from the prototype of the Shifei Y5B, China’s first fully domestically-built transport aircraft which conducted its first flight in 1957. The
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Consider crowdfunding to benefit from customer investor insight, says research

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Entrepreneurs and start-up businesses across sectors have been urged to consider crowdfunding websites to fund their new companies, rather than just relying on traditional investors or venture capitalists. New research into crowdfunding from the UCL School of Management claims that listening to investors at the start of a new business ‘can make the difference between success and failure’. Former PhD student Philipp Cornelius, who is now an assistant professor at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and associate professor Bilal Gokpinar from the UCL School of Management, found that entrepreneurs that used online crowdfunding to raise capital benefited from the
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VIDEO: Drone footage used to capture aftermath of Storm Michael

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News organisations around the globe have been using drone footage to show the world the damage caused by Storm Michael. UAVs were also used by first responders and emergency services as part of the rescue mission. But, despite the value of drones in these situations, CDP reported yesterday on an FAA warning which told drone pilots to stay away from disaster hit areas so not to interfere with the rescue missions taking place. Watch this week's drone footage, as shown by NBC News, which captures the destruction caused by the Storm. https://youtu.be/hPJ6fhQ8-Tw Drones were used in a similar way in
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DJI announces global rollout of its Phantom 4 RTK

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DJI has announced the global rollout of the Phantom 4 RTK, its high-precision aerial survey drone. The Phantom 4 RTK combines centimetre-level navigation and positioning with a high-performance imaging system. The combination of both systems in the device aims to improve survey efficiency and accuracy while reducing operational difficulty and cost. Sunny Liao, director of enterprise, Europe at DJI, is looking forward to seeing drone pilots across the globe using the new technology, he said: “The Phantom 4 RTK was engineered to meet the specific needs of its users who have come to rely on DJI drones as powerful tools
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VIDEO: UAVOS successfully completes ApusDuo flight testing

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UAVOS has successfully completed the first stage of the flight tests of the 10-meter prototype of the High Altitude Pseudo Satellite (HAPS) ApusDuo. The 28m wide ApusDuo was manufactured as part of the development program of ApusDuo solar aircraft. The prototype was made for testing control algorithms, including take-off and landing and full-scale verification of HAPS aerodynamics. UAVOS, which has recently raised a round of finance from private investors in order to enhance its R&D, aims to reduce the go-to-market time for new solutions. Watch the video from flight testing here: https://youtu.be/eBxWUZUXCKQ
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Russian oil firm completes drone pipeline inspection testing

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Oil firm Messoyahaneftegaz has successfully carried out UAV testing to obtain information on the status of its pipelines. A joint venture between Rosneft and Gazprom, the company operates out of North Russia in the West Siberian Basin. The UAVs will also be used to allow specialists leading the development of the polar field, to quickly gather information on the condition of its onshore production infrastructure in hard-to-reach areas of the license area. Data of aerial photography, video monitoring and 3D-visualization of objects will be used in the work in an aim to increase safety and economic efficiency of the oil
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Startup launches crowdfunding campaign to change drone pilot gender gap

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US-based start-up Women who drone (WWD) has launched a crowdfunding campaign to help build and grow its global influence. The company wants to change the fact that less than 4% of certified drone pilots worldwide are female. Company founder and CEO, Elena Buenrostro, started the company on the back of support she received following drone footage she captured while on holiday. Since its beginning Women who drone has grown and now has brand ambassadors across the globe with the aim to inspire, educate and empower more women to learn to fly drones, obtain licenses, and join the drone industry. WWD
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Japan’s biggest drone firm acquires stake in European aerial robotics business

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Terra Drone has made its move in the European market after acquiring a stake in Inkonova, a Swedish aerial robotics firm for underground mining. The deal is comprised of a cash injection and changes to the management team, as well as technical, business development, and operational collaborations. Terra Drone did not disclose how much of the business it had acquired, except to say that it was a "significant" percentage. As part of the deal, Inkonova will supply Terra Drone with the core of its UAV technology, including anti-dust and waterproof platforms and infrastructure-denied autonomous navigation. Terra Drone on the other
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VIDEO: MSAB and URSA introduce new tech to acquire and analyse drone data

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The XRY Drone, introduced following a collaboration between MSAB and URSA, lets investigators extract and analyse data from popular drone models being used for illegal activity. The technology aims to reveal flight paths, origin, behaviour and other critical information that can identify operators. As part of the development process, URSA, a geospatial intelligence company, and MSAB, a global leader in mobile forensics, worked together to produce the device. The XRY Drone is a new member of the XRY line of products which are widely used law enforcement professionals to recover and view data from mobile phones and other mobile devices.
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