Interstellar Drones

In a recent article on the website, DailyMail, the development of extraterrestrial drones is discussed. On a distant Jupiter moon, Europa, there is believed to be oceans. NASA scientists and engineers are working to develop submersible drones that can gather data and detect microbial life by operating in these icy waters. A major requirement for these drones will be for them to operate autonomously and manage their own resources. Only time will tell if these drones will accomplish the mission NASA hopes for.

3D Printers and Embedded Electronics

In the article “Engineers 3D Print First Fully Functional Drone With Embedded Electronics & Aerospace-Grade Material”( http://www.3dprintpulse.com/?open-article-id=5863467&article-title=engineers-3d-print-first-fully-functional-drone-with-embedded-electronics—aerospace-grade-material&blog-domain=3ders.org&blog-title=3ders)  a recent 3D printing innovation is explored. Normally, embedding electronics in 3D prints is a challenge due to the high temperatures used during the printing process (160C). However, Philip Keane, an NTU PhD candidate, modified and embedded commercial grade electronics at key stages throughout the printing of the drone. The drone design is able to support 60kg of suspended weight, and “stands as the first fully operational quadrocopter to be 3D printed in ULTEM 9085 – a high strength, lightweight FDM material certified for use in commercial aircrafts – all in a single step”. While it does state in the article that the “entire process proved to be meticulous”, it did have a successful ending. In total, printing the drone took 14 hours, with 3 individual pauses to embed the necessary electronic equipment. Now that embedding electronics within 3D prints is an option, what future innovations are coming? Only time will tell.

Smart Bulbs at Risk?

In a recent article on the website, govtech.com, the idea of cybersecurity for smart light bulbs is discussed. With regard to ZigBee and Z-Wave protocol, researchers have found major security flaws in smart light bulbs. Tests conducted on Phillips Hue light bulbs showed that they were able to be ‘infected’ with a code that can spread from lightbulb to light bulb. This is done by having a drone fly within a close proximity and transmit to the light bulbs and then control them remotely. How will companies in the IoT business combat these potential security breaches? Will this slow the growth of the IoT industry? What negative impacts will be felt?

A New Hope

In a recent article on the website, sfchronicle.com, the development of a new type of commercial drone aimed at upgrading the construction industry is discussed. As of late, 3D Robotics has seen huge losses in its consumer drone products and hopes that its shift to the commercial sector will aid in its turnaround. Their new drone, Site Scan, is marketed as a technology that will move the construction industry out of the paper era and into the digital era. Will 3D robotics be able to make the transition? What challenges may they face? What must they do differently from their last drone to be successful?

Drone Patrol

In a recent article on the website, Digital Trends, a new type of drone based home security system is discussed. Drones are being used more and more in our day to day lives and these drones are providing extra security for our homes and families. Hi-tech sensors can be placed around the perimeter of your property and will provide updates and alerts based on what is going on within your property. You can then choose to further investigate these problems further, by deploying a drone for surveillance footage. Only time will tell if these becomes the next step in home security systems. Would you buy this? Will this type of system keep home invasions to a minimum? How reliable are these sensors?

Connecting for the Future

In a recent article on the website, Readwrite, the initiative to turn Singapore into a smart nation by 2025, is discussed. With the merging of two government agencies, Singapore has created IMDA to oversee the evolution of the country into a smart, connected nation. IMDA hopes to use IoT, drone technology, virtual reality, connected grids and other new technologies to bring Singapore to the forefront of the globally connected world. Singapore hopes to leverage its flexible economy, non-bureaucratic business environment, and experience with innovation and technology to accomplish these ambitious goals.

Hurting or Helping?

In a recent article on the website, wcsh6.com, the newly passed FAA regulations regarding drones is discussed. These new laws are considered to be very strict and address issues of operation over private property and people, line of sight, altitude, and airspeed. With more and more users joining the airspace it has become necessary in recent years for the FAA to regulate this space for the use of drones. How may these new regulations affect the drone industry? Will these laws discourage people from using drones? It what ways will these regulations positively impact the drone industry/community?