• DronesSafe Airspace in the Age of Drones

    Drones are becoming more and more ubiquitous, and are being used for everything from backyard fun to military operations. As the technologies for UAS continues to improve, so has the potential for them to be used in illegal and dangerous ways.

  • Search & rescueAutonomous Drones Could Speed Up Search and Rescue after Flash Floods, Hurricanes and Other Disasters

    By Vijayan Asari

    Rescuers already use drones in some cases, but most require individual pilots who fly the unmanned aircraft by remote control. That limits how quickly rescuers can view an entire affected area, and it can delay aid from reaching victims. Autonomous drones could cover more ground faster, especially if they could identify people in need and notify rescue teams.

  • DronesAn App for Safe Handling of Drones

    Nearly every day, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents come across drones that may have been used to facilitate the movement of illicit drugs or people across the southern border. These drones usually carry smuggled narcotics and often contain surveillance cameras; however, they could easily be modified to carry other threats or hazards.

  • DronesCan Drone Warfare in the Middle East Be Controlled?

    By Cathrin Schaer and Kersten Knipp

    Drone attacks are causing a crisis in the Mideast and experts are calling for a better regulatory regime. The drone attacks are part of a worrisome trend in the region: The escalating use of UAVs, both for surveillance purposes and to attack opponents, by countries in the region — but also by nonstate actors there, like militia groups in Iraq, Yemen and Syria, among others. But would more rules even have an impact in the region?

  • DronesDrone Popularity, Potential Risk Soar, So Too Should Preparedness

    Benign hobbyists often use drones, but these small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS) can be exploited for any number of illegal activities, thereby posing a significant threat to facilities related to critical infrastructure and national security.

  • DronesTracking Drones in Urban Settings

    As drones become more popular and more worrisome from a security standpoint, many projects have sought to engineer systems to spot them. Engineers are using machine learning and radar to detect drones in complicated urban settings.

  • China syndromeU.S. Government to Stop Buying Chinese-Made Drones

    By John Xie

    In its latest move to address national security threats posed by Chinese-made drones, the U.S. federal government’s purchasing agency no longer will purchase drones from Chinese manufacturers. China currently dominates the drone-manufacturing market. One Chinese company, DJI, which is the world’s largest drone maker, has a 76.8 percent share of the U.S. market.

  • DronesSwarming Drones Concept Flies Closer to Reality

    A swarm of twenty drones has recently completed the largest collaborative, military-focused evaluation of swarming uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAVs) in the U.K. The exercise was the culmination of the Defense Science and Technology Laboratory’s (DSTL) “Many Drones Make Light Work” competition

  • PolicingBaltimore Aerial Investigations Associated with Small Improvements in Solving Crimes

    A preliminary report about an effort to use aerial surveillance to aid police investigations in Baltimore finds that the effort was associated with small increases in the rate at which police solved serious crimes, but an overall evaluation of the program will require a wider review of citywide police efforts, according to a new report.

  • Drones & disastersAmateur Drone to Aid in Natural Disaster Damage Assessment

    It wasn’t long after Hurricane Laura hit the Gulf Coast Thursday that people began flying drones to record the damage and posting videos on social media. Those videos are a precious resource, say researchers at Carnegie Mellon University, who are working on ways to use them for rapid damage assessment.

  • DronesIt’s a Bird... It’s a Plane... It’s Superman? No: It’s a Flapping-Wing Drone

    A drone prototype that mimics the aerobatic maneuvers of one of the world’s fastest birds, the swift, is being developed by an international team of aerospace engineers in the latest example of biologically inspired flight. The 26 gram ornithopter (flapping wing aircraft) which can hover, dart, glide, brake and dive just like a swift, making them more versatile, safer and quieter than the existing quadcopter drones.

  • SurveillanceHow to Hide from a Drone – the Subtle Art of “Ghosting” in the Age of Surveillance

    By Austin Choi-Fitzpatrick

    Drones of all sizes are being used by environmental advocates to monitor deforestation, by conservationists to track poachers, and by journalists and activists to document large protests. But when the Department of Homeland Security redirects large, fixed-wing drones from the U.S.-Mexico border to monitor protests, and when towns experiment with using drones to test people for fevers, it’s time to think about how many eyes are in the sky and how to avoid unwanted aerial surveillance. One way that’s within reach of nearly everyone is learning how to simply disappear from view.

  • DronesAccurately Pinpointing Malicious Drone Operators

    Researchers have determined how to pinpoint the location of a drone operator who may be operating maliciously or harmfully near airports or protected airspace by analyzing the flight path of the drone.

  • DronesUsing Innovation, Technology for Drone Ideation Projectd

    Last fall, students in UAB professor Ramaraju Rudraraju’s software engineering class were tasked with a project to take part in ideation for practical uses of drones in farming environments. Through the project, they created a program to map out a farm and various flight patterns and controls for a drone. 

  • Pandemic drones“Pandemic Drones”: Useful for Enforcing Social Distancing, or for Creating a Police State?

    By Michael Richardson

    As COVID-19 restrictions tighten around the world, governments are harnessing the potential of drones. From delivering medical supplies, to helping keep people indoors – drones can do a lot in a pandemic. But these measures may be difficult to rollback once the pandemic passes. And safeguards will be needed to prevent unwanted surveillance in the future.