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Bruce Crumley

Today

Emergency response solutions specialist Carbyne has teamed up with visual augmentation firm Edgybees to offer enhanced, real-time imagery during calamities. The service is designed to enrich live videos from drones and provide crisis managers with better, fuller information about developing emergencies their responders will be encountering.

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Residents and visitors of Ocracoke Island prize the calm and seclusion its remoteness affords. Yet that distance from off North Carolina’s coast also makes getting supplies to locals facing emergency extreme weather difficult – a problem drones may help Ocracoke solve.

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Arms and ammo are often said to be the lifeblood of fighting forces – one reason why militaries around the world have deployed uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAV) to re-supply troops locked in prolonged combat situations. But for wounded soldiers, actual plasma is even more important than munitions, which is why the UK’s Royal Navy is testing drone delivery of blood to battlefields. 

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July 23

The problem with being a world leader in any activity means everyone else on the planet will be working hard to take you down. Just ask China’s drone giant DJI, which has now been hit with a US lawsuit for patent violations in addition to other recent challenges it has had to battle.

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Despite the advent and surge of the COVID-19 virus commanding most of the world’s medical attention, pre-pandemic threats to life and health around the globe remain as active and dangerous as ever. In addressing one of those, Kenya has said it will begin using drones in its long and ongoing battle against malaria.

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Archer's eVTOL Maker plane
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One sure sign of a budding sector about to blossom for business is aspiring companies siccing corporate lawyers on each other. That’s exactly what’s happening now in a misappropriation lawsuit between electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) rivals Archer and Wisk Aero.

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July 22

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has granted $11.8 million to German small uncrewed aircraft systems (sUAS) company Quantum Systems to keep pace with spiking business demands. The Munich-based startup will use the funds to boost its small craft solution activities for mapping and surveillance clients, and pursue continued expansion according to strict environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria.

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Pouillon's church pre-drone cleaning
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Some stories provide great examples of “drones for good” activity. This one might be described more as “drones for God.” A small village in the southwest of France this week deployed a drone to clean the façade, roof, and bell tower of its church in a mission usually carried out by scaffolding-perched workers. The time and costs saved in that were nothing short of miraculous.

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Just part of the group of seals spooked to stampede by a drone
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Score it as multiple stupids in a single act. A drone pilot flying over a Scottish nature reserve provoked scores of protected seals to stampede in fear – filming the mass flight before circling back for an overhead selfie of his group. Now the cops are checking images from the internet upload to cite the flier for violation of laws prohibiting harassment of wildlife.

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July 21

Air-water-air technology gets major drone boost
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Chinese researchers are certainly on a roll in their development of breakthrough drone technology. Following a flurry of earlier innovations, experts in China have now unveiled a new drone that can reportedly attain similar underwater and aerial performance levels.

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When Matt Woods’s Mavic 2 Zoom took off from his Bondi Beach balcony, the amateur Australian pilot was hoping to add a nice new ocean video to his collection. Instead, the drone captured a spear-fisherman’s gripping 30-minute battle to fend off an aggressive shark until help arrived.

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Ah, what people won’t do to help addicts get their fix – including flying a drone to transport banned substances to the chemically addled in confinement.

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July 20

Is that real, or the tuna drone's winged cousin?
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British Navy officials are reacting to the looting of sunken World War II ships with promises to protect the graves of the hundreds of UK sailors who went down with those vessels. How will they do that? Possibly with a silent UK underwater manta ray spy drone.

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Bile from above: AS Roma drone sniper Mourinho
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European soccer coach José Mourihno has been called many, many things in his career ­– “innovative” being among the few printable descriptions. Now the man who ever so modestly once nicknamed himself “The Special One” is using drones to film soccer training sessions in the hopes they’ll help get some of his former winning mojo back.

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Global logistics giant DHL says it’s expanding its drone activities with middle-mile uncrewed aerial vehicle (UAV) deliveries. First flights of the same-day service are expected later this year.

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July 19

Sure looked like a quadcopter to me...
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In baseball they call it a “rookie error,” though famously salty-tongued Glaswegians are doubtlessly using other terms to describe it. A new cop in Glasgow’s police force called in for backup last week after somehow mistaking the planet Jupiter as a threateningly pursuing drone.

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Operators of the Emperor Valley Zoo in Trinidad and Tobago have had to issue a no-fly warning after a drone was spotted navigating an area housing the facility’s giraffes. That simple (and what should be obvious) message: buzz off.

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Scores of search and rescue workers at Miami’s Champlain Towers site have been nothing short of heroic in their hunt for victims buried by the building’s June 24th collapse. Among those are a team of Florida State University (FSU) drone experts gathering evidence at the condo disaster that may explain why the structure crumbled – and provide information on how similar failures may been avoided in the future.

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July 16

A home-grown drone services company has considerably accelerated New Zealand’s drive to plant a billion trees by 2028 through aerial drops of so-called “seed bombs.”

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Conservation group flies its Galápagos drone eradication of invasive rat mission over Polynesian atolls
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Drones are set to fly new missions over Pacific atolls, aiming to replicate their coup in the Galápagos archipelago earlier this year by eradicating invasive rats endangering the survival of indigenous wildlife. Topping that list of creatures the flights seek to protect are majestic green sea turtles, whose nests are raided by the voracious rodents.

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