Everyday world witness a new drone applications. They are spreading like crazy so that shortly, almost everyone will think about owning one. So, if you are thinking about starting business, you may think about a new creative application and get use of the rapid expansion of these flying objects.
Here, we will list the current main drone applications and services. But first, let us know what is a drone?
What is a drone?
Drone is simply a flying robot. (In our previous article about Robots, we talked about the expansion and uses of robots). Another name for drones is unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). It flies without a pilot. Alternatively, it is controlled remotely by humans on land, or it flies automatically by computer systems installed onboard.
In history, working on drones started early last century. The main motivation was the military purpose. As 20th century witnessed many wars, especially World Wars 1 & 2, armies were seeking unmanned aircrafts for handling dangerous missions without the risk of human loss. Accordingly R&D focused on continuous improving for drones. Later on, drones appeared to have multiple civil applications as well.
Marilyn Monroe was assembling drones
Not everyone knows that the famous Marilyn Monroe started her career in field of drones. During World War 2, Marilyn was working in factory for making Radio Controlled drones. Then, it happened that an army photographer visited the factory. He took some shots for marilyn. When published, she found the way to fame and the opened the doors to Hollywood.
Main drone applications:
Here is a list of major 10 drone applications for different sectors
1. Military Drones
This is one of the earliest drone applications. As mentioned, the main motivation for drones was the military operations. Therefore, drones now take essential roles in armies. There are several drone uses in military. Some countries have armed drones for attacking and bombing enemy targets. Moreover, many armies are using drones as surveillance drones for intelligence missions or for monitoring country borders.
2. Monitoring drones
The mobility of drones makes them more efficient than fixed cameras. In the same time, they are more cost efficient than traditional helicopters. Therefore authorities started to use drones to monitor traffic in streets and water ways. In case of large protests, drones allow them to easily monitor the situation from air.
When there is a natural incident like tsunami, earthquakes or Volcanic eruptions, drones can help authorities monitor what is happening in affected areas.
Locations like environmental protectorates can use drones to monitor activities in whole area. That is to ensure no one is breaking rules.
There are much more drone applications for monitoring. and there is a room for new innovative ideas as well.
3. Aerial Photography & Videography Drones
A widely spreading drone application is photography.
Next time you attend an event like a festival, car race, open air party or even a wedding, you may find a drone flying around and capturing shots and videos for the attendees.
Some photographers use drones to capture amazing aerial shots for the city. They shot major landmarks, main streets and famous touristic locations. Without drones, they wouldn’t be able to take these shots unless they rent a helicopter.
Owners of Real-estate projects are now able to market their projects by taking nice photos and videos for their units from by drones.
4. Delivery Drones
If you order something from amazon, you may receive it by a drone coming to your location.
Drone has the advantage of avoiding traffic. They fly directly to the target without stopping at traffic lights or get stuck in congested streets. Therefore, companies started to use drone for delivering packages to their customers.
Amazon Prime Air Drones
Amazon started using Amazon Prime Air drones for delivering small packages directly to shopper locations. The drone can deliver packages that weigh up to 5 pounds (about 2.3 kg) in 30 minutes or less and travel up to 10 miles. Amazon started testing this service in USA, Canada, UK & Denmark.
5. Emergency Drones
In emergency situations when response time is critical to save lives, drones can be helpful. Currently, some countries have Drone Ambulance. This drone flies directly to patients avoiding all the traffic and significantly reducing response time. The drone is equipped with basic tools to provide first aid services. With remote guidance, people around the patient can act quickly and do urgent steps to save life.
Rwanda Blood Transfer Drones
In Rwanda, they use drones to transfer blood to remote areas. as a result, they reduced the time to transfer blood from four hours to 15 minutes. Accordingly, drones help in saving lives.
6. Mapping & Photogrammetry – Aerial Camera Drones
If we need to produce a map for a certain region, one of main ways to produce maps is using Aerial photos. That is when a plane equipped with cameras fly and capture images for the target region. After some processing for the images, we get a map for the region.
Therefore, for those working in the GIS field, they will get use of this technology.
7. Telecom Drones
3G & 4G wireless services are depending on Base Stations towers. It takes sometime set up the place and install the tower for providing wireless services. Currently, we can use drones as base stations that can provide wireless services anywhere in no time.
In case of organizing an event, or a sudden disaster, it is applicable to send a drone to the target location to work as a temporary base station. The drone can park in the air and get the power from solar energy. Accordingly, we can quickly establish telecom coverage to the requested spot and serve residents there.
Recently, Facebook announced its project for using solar powered drones to deliver internet to remote areas. Target is availing internet so that everyone on plant has access to internet.
8. Inspection Drones
What if there is a need to inspect a telecom base station, electricity tower, wind turbine, or a tall building? Usually, this is done by sending a man who climbs the tower or the building to do the inspection. Because it is a risky mission, drones can do that mission instead of humans. Drones can fly to requested spot and transmit all the info.
9. Media Drones
If you are managing a news channel, and you want a reporter to cover a story taking place somewhere, the quickest way is to send a drone. Then, drone will send a live streaming that you can broadcast.
Recently, CNN announced they will have drones for taking aerial footage that will be used for their channel coverage.
10. Weather Drones
Drone can fly with needed equipment used for weather forecast. In case of a storm, scientists are now able to send a drone directly into the storm. Then, they will receive measures such as temperature, pressure, humidity and wind velocity. Accordingly, they can predict how storms develop.
Starting Drone Business
Initially, building your own drone is possible. If you google it, you will find many websites and videos about drone components and how to build it. Alternatively, you can buy it. Although, price varies according to capabilities, you can buy a drone with camera for less than $400. Then, you can start doing some business with your drone. you can get creative and think about more drone applications and more drone uses that can be valid for business.
In case you will buy a drone, this link may be helpful.
Otherwise, you may get a job as a drone operator, who control drone from earth. Starting annual salary for drone operator in USA is around $50 K. however, that will require some training and a having a certificate/license. Depending on your region, you may find locations providing the required training.
A writer & GIS consultant … Studied the Management of Technology … dreaming of a better world.