Skydio drones get new autonomous subject tracking skill, Scout

skydio scout drone subject tracking

Skydio has launched Scout, a new autonomous flight skill that simplifies the tracking of moving subjects without actually needing to fly a drone.

Announced as part of the company’s 2022 summer software release, Scout is designed as a real-time situational awareness tool. Since its primary audience is first responders, police departments, and defense personnel, Scout is being offered only through Skydio 2/2+ Enterprise drones and Skydio X2 Enterprise aircraft.

What is Skydio Scout?

What the skill essentially does is that it allows Skydio drones to fly at a set distance and height from either the Enterprise remote controller or the Skydio Beacon while on the move. The drone, however, doesn’t need to “look” at the device it is tracking. You can position (and reposition) the camera in any direction, and the drone will still be able to manage to maintain a fixed distance from the controller/beacon. This kind of subject tracking relies on a strong GPS signal.

What can Skydio Scout be used for?

As a situational awareness tool, Skydio Scout can be used wherever you need a flying camera to move around with you. Some examples include:

Search and Rescue (SAR) operations: In time-critical SAR missions, Skydio Scout can complement the work of the ground search team with an overhead aerial view. This, Skydio says, would ensure more complete search coverage of the given area, and reduce the cognitive load of the drone operator so they can more closely focus on searching the scene and not flying the drone.

K9 Deployment: When deploying K9s for suspect apprehension, Skydio Scout can provide situational awareness when the dog leaves the line of sight of the handler. You can attach the Skydio Beacon to the K9’s vest and the drone will track its GPS location to stay with the dog, obviously managing obstacle avoidance on its own. The ground team can then be directed accordingly, ensuring that officers stay out of harm’s way.

Military convoys: If you’re a soldier in a vehicle convoy in an unfamiliar remote area, there’s always a possibility of driving through potentially dangerous regions and getting ambushed. In such a scenario, Skydio Scout can be used to position the drone ahead of the convoy and view what is over the next hill.

Read: Lawsuit challenging outdated NYC drone laws set to move forward

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