Bringing Electricity To The Developing World With Solar Powered Drones

Mobisol tests solar powered Drone Delivery Network (DDN)

In developing African regions, access to energy will dramatically change the lives of the off-grid population. Geman company Mobisol is testing its solar-charging drone infrastructure across East Africa. Mobisol's Solar Air Distribution drone delivery could help to transport their solar panels to rural destinations, since infrastructure in rural Africa is basically non existent and transport costs are expensive.

From fastcoexist:

Soon, Drones Will Be An Invaluable Search and Rescue Tool

Search and rescue teams spend a huge amount of manpower, time and money trying to find lost people in forests and mountain areas. If we could add drones to the mix, the reduction in time could mean the difference between life and death in some cases, not to mention the reduction in cost and effort. Let's just hope it doesn't encourage people to go off the beaten path more often!

Source :

Parrot Will 3D Print Your Designs and Sell Them In Its Store

Drone company Parrot, in collaboration with MyMiniFactory, is having a contest. If you've always told your friends that you think you can design parts just as well as, or better than, the company, now's your chance to prove it!

3D designers are encouraged to submit ideas for accessories to improve the new range of Parrot drones. The winners will receive up to $2,000 worth of prizes, the chance to have their 3D printable product sold in the official Parrot store, and the chance to work with the Parrot design team, too!


Sea Drones Could Help Us Scan the Oceans

Sea Drones Could Help Us Scan the Oceans

Football sized drones named Evie (Ellipsoidal Vehicle for Inspection and Exploration) are being developed at MIT by Sampriti Bhattacharyya's company Hydroswarm.
The drones are designed to work in packs and can be used for various tasks from mapping the ocean floor and locating wreckage to scanning ship hulls for contraband.

Image source: Hydroswarm
From the Guardian (

Bhattacharyya is developing the prototype of an underwater drone which she hopes will provide a cheap way to map vast swaths of the ocean and chart the underwater landscape.

Google Plans 5G Internet Via Solar Powered Drones

Google Plans 5G Internet Via Solar Powered Drones

Google has begun experimenting with millimeter wave-based internet in Virgin Galactic's Gateway to Space terminal at Spaceport America in New Mexico. Millimeter waves are believed to be capable of transmitting data 40 times faster than LTE and could become the technology behind 5G internet. 
Google plans to use solar powered drones, made by the Google Titan team, to deploy this new wireless Internet. This system is being called "SkyBender".
From The Guardian:

South Korea Hosts Largest Asian Drone Festival To Date

South Korea Hosts Largest Asian Drone Festival To Date

Yesterday, Drone Show Korea kicked off in Busan, South Korea. As the largest of its kind in Asia, and the first such event in Korea, the festival highlights the activity and scale of the Asian drone industry. Participants include 56 companies from four countries. At the show, Korea is showcasing one of its key technologies - the tiltrotor drone.

According to Yonhap:

Tiltrotor drones are capable of vertical takeoffs and landings like helicopters, but can shift their wings to fly like airplanes.
The Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI) and Korean Air worked together to develop the tiltrotor "KUS-VT" drone.

The Drone Racing League Raises $8M To Build The Sport of the Future

DRL: The Sport of the Future | Drone Racing League

A new company, The Drone Racing League (DRL) has secured $8M in the hopes of becoming the next NASCAR, MotoGP or F1 of drone racing. 
The drone racing scene has only existed for a few years. Rules and standards vary between organizers, so it can be hard to have fair races. The DRL aims to fix that.

From Quartz (

Top Funded Drone Companies To Watch This Year

Top Funded Drone Companies To Watch This Year

Let's face it. Being the best costs money. The chart highlights some very well funded drone manufacturing companies.
Companies like Intel, GE and Qualcomm have already been investing in drone tech. In 2016, the battle heats up as more companies hop on board to fund the most attractive companies.

A summary of the mature VC funded drone companies from Drone Industry Insights:

Mature VC-funded drone companies:

Megacopter Drone Breaks Payload Record by Lifting Over 130 Pounds

Drone Megacopter - Guinness World Records

Yet another drone has broken a Guiness World Record. This time, it's a beast called the Megacopter.

From Mashable:

The Megacopter, an aptly-named multicopter drone, has received the Guinness World Record for heaviest load lifted for a remote-controlled multicopter: 134.5 pounds.

The aluminum and plywood drone has 48 propellers that sound like an angry swarm of superbees. According to Guinness World Records, the Megacopter was made by Henning Pederson and students from the University of Oslo in Norway, and took 18 months to build. You can see the weights that are being lifted in the middle of the structure.

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