UAVs / Satellites / Blimps

  • DARPA seeks mobile apps to fly drones

    DARPA, the Pentagon’s research arm, is seeking a mobile app to improve sensors for drones and other military surveillance, reconnaissance, and intelligence vehicles. The agency is seeking smartphone app developers for its Adaptable Sensor System (ADAPT) program. The program uses a commercial development model to facilitate rapid delivery and configuration of sensor systems, which typically take three to eight years to develop, the agency said.

  • Autonomous deployment vehicles in flight tests

    The Autonomous Deployment Demonstration (ADD) program has successfully completed flight tests; the ADD concept is to enable small unmanned air vehicles (UAV) equipped with sensor payloads to be launched from aircraft (manned or unmanned), balloons, or precision guided munitions, and dispersed in selectable patterns around designated areas

  • Persistent undersea surveillance by autonomous robots

    The U.S. military plans to deploy squadrons of air, surface, and undersea robotic vehicles later this decade, and wants to make these vehicles more autonomous; researchers develop an algorithm that helps sea gliders decide when to spend more time looking at regions that have changes in activity or environmental factors; without the control algorithm, gliders paid equal attention to all areas and acquired less information

  • Increased use of UAVs leads to new job opportunities

    The growing importance of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) is producing new job opportunities across the United States, with more likely to come as drones enter the civilian realm; the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International estimates that 23,000 jobs could be added over the next fifteen years if drones are allowed in U.S. skies

  • Drones set to become ubiquitous in U.S. airspace

    Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) could soon become commonplace in U.S. civilian airspace with farmers using them to spray crops, police deploying drones to gather intelligence ,and utility companies using them to monitor oil, gas, and water pipelines; next January the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is set to release new regulations on the use of small drones in the United States

  • Irish police consider deploying drones

    Police in northern Ireland are considering deploying small surveillance drones to help combat crime and the dissident republican threat as an alternative to helicopters; with police suffering budget shortages, many agencies cannot afford the roughly £7 million, or $11 million, a year it takes to maintain a helicopter

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  • Surveillance plane to circle Lancaster ten hours a day

    Beginning in May, a Cessna 172 airplane will hover over the Lancaster, California for ten hours a day collecting intelligence and keeping an eye on residents; the surveillance program was recently approved by city leaders in an effort to fight crime, but the prospect of aerial surveillance has critics concerned about privacy violations

  • Drones and privacy

    With civilian unmanned surveillance drones now capable of listening in on cell phone conversations, monitoring Wi-Fi traffic, seeing into backyards and windows not visible from the street, and tracking a person’s movement privacy advocates are concerned that the rapid advances in technology could violate privacy rights

  • Montgomery County adds drone to arsenal

    For local police departments who do not have a helicopter unit or cannot afford one, small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are quickly becoming a cheap solution; the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office in Texas recently purchased the ShadowHawk, a small remote controlled helicopter manufactured by Vanguard Defense Industries

  • Advances in drone technology pose threat to U.S.

    Advances in UAV technology, in combination with innovations in drone airframe and propulsion system design, are now making it possible to build very small, inexpensive drones, and to control them using interfaces as simple as a touch screen, computer mouse, or joystick. These UAVs can be ideal terrorist weapons.

  • The morality of remote-controlled killing

    Israel has been using UAVs in its war against terrorists for a while now, and under President Barack Obama, the United has dramatically increased its use of UAVs in its fight against al Qaeda and its affiliates in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, and Sudan. This increasing use of UAVs has given rise to moral dilemmas, and debates are underway in the media and academia over the legitimacy and morality of such attacks.

  • Tiny robot can survey hard-to-reach places

    A flying robot the size of a dinner plate can zoom to hard-to-reach places; the tiny propeller-powered robots can be packed away into a suitcase; they have multiple cameras which enable them to see the world around them as they navigate their way through buildings

  • Proliferation of drones raises alarms

    Security analysts fear that with the increasing proliferation of unmanned aerial drone technology, terrorists could eventually begin using them to drop explosives or even biological weapons

  • U.S. Army to deploy “kamikaze” drones

    The U.S. Army is getting ready to add a “kamikaze drone” to its arsenal; the new drone is designed to hover quietly in the sky before it dive-bombs directly into a human target

  • Texas county police buys drone that can carry weapons

    The police in Montgomery County — and area north of Houston, Texas — is the first local police in the United States to deploy a drone that can carry weapons; the police says it will be used in chases of escaping criminals and tracking drug shipments