drone swarm

drone swarm.jpeg

We are by now used to seeing people practising with drones in the park and think of them as the latest toy. But imagine a whole lot drones, laden with explosives, swarming on a target.  Drones are shedding the limitations of the past and can operate without the need for a guiding controller.  They can sense obstacles, home in on a target, and work with each other to keep the swarm on track. Each drone a drone swarm is in communication with every other drone so that if one senses an obstacle, that information is relayed to the swarm. In a sense, they can think collectively and do not need someone on the ground to think for them.

 And they are increasingly cheap.  The fact that they are small and agile makes them hard to shoot down.

 Of course they can be used for good purposes, such as firefighting, rescue missions, mapping, precision farming and all manner of good things. But they can also be loaded with explosives. That’s the problem.

ScienceSue ButlerComment