Monday December 16, 2019
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Cicadas: Miniature drones can spy on enemy troops

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Image Courtesy: Discovery News

By NewsGram Staff Writer

US military scientists have designed a miniature drone, Cicada, which can be used on civil missions and in wars. Cicada stands for Covert Autonomous Disposable Aircraft.

“The “micro air vehicle” is named after the insect that inspired its invention, the Cicada, which spends years underground before appearing in great swarms, reproducing and then dropping to the ground dead,” according to Discovery News.

AFP reported that it is designed to be smaller, cheaper and simpler than any other robotic aircraft but is still able to carry out a mission in a remote battlefield.

Aaron Kahn, a flight controls engineer at the Naval Research Laboratory, told the news agency, “The idea was why we can’t make UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) that have the same sort of profile.”

“We will put so many out there, it will be impossible for the enemy to pick them all up,” he added.

The prototype model has cost just a thousand dollars, and Kahn also stated that the cost could come down to as low as $250 a piece.

Despite of its small size, the Cicada drone can fly at about 46 miles (74 kilometers) per hour and is fairly silent, as it has no engine or propulsion system.

Daniel Edwards, an aerospace engineer at the Naval Research Laboratory, said, “It looks like a bird flying down,” adding that the drone is “very difficult to see”.

The researchers have said that these miniscule-drones can be used for a multitude of missions, from weather forecasting or monitoring traffic on a remote road, beyond the enemy lines to eavesdropping on enemy troops.

Kahn said, “You equip these with a microphone or a seismic detector, drop them on that road, and it will tell you ‘I heard a truck or a car travel along that road.’ You know how fast and which direction they’re traveling.”

“They are robotic carrier pigeons. You tell them where to go, and they will go there,” Edwards told AFP.

Edwards added that despite their toy-like appearance, the Cicada drones are surprisingly robust.

“They’ve flown through trees. They’ve hit asphalt runways. They have tumbled in gravel. They’ve had sand in them. They only thing that we found that killed them was desert shrubbery,” he said.

The news agency reported that academics and almost every branch of government have expressed an interest in the Cicada program, including some intelligence agencies.

“Everyone is interested. Everyone,” Edwards concluded.

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Research Says, Drones can Deliver Medicines Faster During Rush Hours

The researchers found that during rush hours drones could reach critically ill patients three minutes faster than paramedics

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The researchers found that Drones arrived faster than ambulances when transportation times were compared during peak rush hour in Brooklyn, New York. Pixabay

Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles, have the potential to save lives by delivering medicines faster than ambulances in crowded cities, especially during peak rush hours, new research has found.

“Drones, when used appropriately, represent the ideal marriage between enhanced pre-hospital care and telemedicine for our future,” said lead author Mark Hanna.

“This may prove to be profound in the unique pediatric setting.”

The researchers found that drones arrived faster than ambulances when transportation times were compared during peak rush hour in Brooklyn, New York.

If drones were equipped with two-way communication and possible life-saving interventions, they could save lives by responding to emergency conditions such as acute anaphylaxis, opiate overdose, asthma, cardiac arrest and sarin poisoning, said Hanna.

The analysis compared data for Emergency Medical Services and Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) flight data within a zip code in urban Brooklyn, finding the drone response faster than the standard EMS ambulance response, especially during peak rush hours.

The UAV flight data was collected during actual flights recorded while flying under US Federal Aviation Administration and New York City laws in a commercially available drone, Hanna said.

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Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles, have the potential to save lives by delivering medicines faster than ambulances in crowded cities, especially during peak rush hours, new research has found. Pixabay

The researchers found that during rush hours drones could reach critically ill patients three minutes faster than paramedics.

“Possible life saving interventions with first response associated with UAS can include acute anaphylaxis, opiate overdose, asthma, cardiac arrest, and sarin poisoning as these conditions have been associated with decreased mortality based on time to intervention by first responders,” said the research.

ALSO READ: Young Mothers Likely to Have Kids with ADHD: Study

The findings were scheduled to be presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics 2019 National Conference & Exhibition in New Orleans, Louisiana. (IANS)