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With the catastrophic injury and damage being caused by natural disasters such as the current hurricanes hitting the United States and the Caribbean, a rapid disaster relief is essential as every minute counts. Immediately after the hurricane, the quick and accurate survey of the disaster in order to assess the damage is also important.
A new drone technology to help is now tested by the nonprofit foundation of UPS package delivery service and the Red Cross.
The UPS Foundation and the Red Cross hope to use drone technology to identify who needs help more quickly—and while disasters are still unfolding.
The new pilot program, which also includes drone manufacturer CyPhy Works, will use tethered drones to assess damage after natural disasters in the United States.
According to mashable.com, the first test will take place over the course of a week in one of the areas in Louisiana or Texas affected by flooding from Hurricane Harvey.
CyPhy Works’ drone system will fly up to 400 feet above ground with a 30X zoom camera to identify which homes experienced water damage before floodwaters recede. The tethered drone is powered by a generator and can fly for days at a time.
According to the company’s website, its rugged aerial platorms are designed for customers in defense, public safety, and commercial industries.
“It’s essential that public and private organizations work together to find new and innovative solutions to support and enhance recovery efforts after a natural disaster strikes,” UPS Foundation President Eduardo Martinez said in a statement.
“Accurately and quickly assessing the impact is a critical step to help save lives and lay the groundwork for eventual recovery and rebuilding.”
The Red Cross has been involved in another project in the unmanned aircraft field – its unmanned aircraft team was recently supplied with FlightHorizon systems to provide air safety and situational awareness for UAV collision avoidance in support of disaster relief operations after the Harvey hurricane hit Houston, Texas. See article on this anti-collision system.
Drones and other autonomous systems will be showcased at the AUS&R 2017 – the fifth unmanned systems airshow – the conference, exhibition and the land, air and naval unmanned systems demonstrations.
The event, organized by, will take place on September 18th, 2017 at the Lago Conference Center in Rishon LeZion.