Drones are becoming popular worldwide, not just for use in industry and by government organisations, but as a pleasurable pastime for the hobbyist. We shall explore their many uses to understand whether we should consider them as a good thing or a bad thing.
What is a Drone?
By strict definition, a drone is an aircraft that is unmanned and can fly autonomously. This means that the aircraft can fly without the aid of a human. However, that only means that there is no human inside it. This is because it will not be large enough to house them. As far as its controls go, there will, of course, be someone controlling the device from the ground. Directing it to where they want it to go. This could be a highly skilled operator from industry, or a hobbyist honing their skills every time that they practise with their new toy.
With regards to the smallest drones, named UAVs, or nano-unmanned aerial vehicle systems, they measure just 6.6 inches across and weigh no more than 33 grams. They have a range of 1.24 miles and can reach speeds of 13.3 mph. These types of drones will fly for 25 minutes on a single charge.
Thinking larger, Boeing produced the prototype for a cargo drone capable of transporting an impressive 500 pounds of cargo. The DJI Agras MG-1, the largest of the consumer drones at the time of writing, could transport up to 22 pounds. This demonstrates that the capabilities are there to develop drones to reach all kinds of technological heights.
If you are looking for a drone for yourself, or your company, then there are companies on the internet, such as DJI, who can supply them.
What Can A Drone Be Used For?
Drones have a variety of uses. They can be used to perform aerial photography for use in film and journalism, reaching previously inaccessible places beyond the range of the zoom lens. For example, for filming wildlife high up on a mountain crag. They can be used by criminal justice departments for surveillance. Drones can be sent to the site of a disaster to gather valuable information where it may not yet be safe for humans to tread. They can have thermal sensors fitted to them and prove invaluable for search and rescue teams in determining if there is human life under a collapsed heap of rubble. Drones can be used in gas, oil, and mineral exploration, and in the construction industry. Increasingly, delivery firms are using drones to fulfil their promise of express shipping and delivery. For more information on how drones can be used for delivery, there is an article that you can read. From a purely fun point of view, you could join a drone racing circuit.
Are Drones Really Changing the World for The Better?
So, if they can save lives, drones must be a good thing. A lifesaver, even. If they can bring us photographs that we would not otherwise have, they can bring us closer to nature or the latest news in real-time. By delivering our parcels, they will not add to the stream of delivery lorries on the road. So, what started as a hobby for some, may at some time in our lives become our job. Drones may, in the future, be the tool that help us to do it. Government agencies and industry are certainly making use of drone technology already.
It must then now be difficult to think of a life, a world, without drones. Many might not have heard of a drone until they received one for Christmas but can now surely see the benefits that they can make to our everyday lives, if they have not already done so. On that basis, we really cannot do without drones.