Trends in Unmanned Vehicles; Air, Land, Sea and Space


The Military drones in the 1970s ushered in a new era of unmanned aerial vehicles. Of course one could say that the German V-1 and V-2 Rockets inspired the first unmanned drones in the Military. Today we see rapid advances in underwater unmanned vehicles and unmanned ground vehicles. Today robotics is pushing the envelope of these technologies and making the unmanned micro air vehicles smaller. Currently there are micro air vehicles that are about the size of large insects and even these small sizes will come down over time, as sensors, electronics and technologies miniaturize.

The potential number of applications for mini-flying machines is truly incredible. Of course the Military Applications for MAVs or Micro-Air Vehicles is rather obvious. The Intelligence Industry could also use such technologies; “The Fly on the Wall” surveillance system? Of course with these new technologies will come new tactics and usher in a new era of swarm theory to guide its usage and applications; borrowing ideas from nature and insects on how best to increase performance.

Indeed there are many commercial private sector applications for MAVs such as chasing insects from fields to save on the use of pesticides or interacting with Bird Migrations, which might have Bird Flu as they fly over? Maybe even steering Locust Plagues away from important agricultural regions as well? As sensors these units might provide insight and track wildlife movements, man made pollution or weather patterns. The applications are truly endless. MAVs will be a very important technology in the future and could potentially save millions of lives.

I thank you for investing your time in reading this article and hope you will enjoy this thinking on this topic and discussion as we take this subject to a much higher level to propel thought and open your mind to the future of MAVs. Perhaps this article is of interest to propel thought in 2007?

“Lance Winslow” – Online Think Tank forum board. If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; Lance is an online writer in retirement.

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