Singapore approves robotic drones to fly over city
Automated industrial drones start-up Airobotics has received the world’s first approval to fly over a major metropolis. As part of Singapore’s response to protect public health during the coronavirus crisis, the Home Team Science & Technology Agency (HTX) of Singapore has partnered with Airobotics, through its local partner, SJ Defence, the defence arm of Surbana Jurong (SJ) Group.
Airobotics has developed a pilotless drone solution, said to be the first of its kind in the global market. The company provides an end-to-end, fully automatic solution for collecting aerial data and gaining invaluable insights. The industrial-grade platform is available on-site and on-demand, enabling industrial facilities to access premium aerial data in a faster, safer, more efficient way.
HTX is using Airobotics’ drone technology to augment Singapore Police Force’s (SPF) efforts in policing during this period to fly above a major industrial estate area to track anomalies such as congregations of people during the Circuit Breaker Period in Singapore. The technology complements police operations by using real-time aerial data broadcasted by automated drone technology to accelerate the feedback process and help the SPF make better informed decisions. To support the drone operations, SJ Defence provides logistics management, operations coordination and ground safety observers.
“We are proud to work with HTX to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” said Ran Krauss, CEO and Co-Founder of Airobotics. “What started off as a vision has now become a reality. We are one step closer to making drones an everyday reality in cities.”
“HTX is currently trialling the system in real operations, collecting critical operating data, for evaluating the feasibility of using this advanced technology to perform remote viewing of wide and difficult-to-access areas, in a safer and more cost-efficient way,” said Cheng Wee Kiang, Director of Robotics, Automation and Unmanned Systems Centre of Expertise at HTX. “The Airobotics system could provide the additional dimension of capability to augment our frontline.”
As a completely automatic unmanned aerial system, Airobotics enables governments and industrial companies to leverage the power of drones without the need for a human operator. The Airobotics platform provides professionals with the ability to run missions automatically, to monitor, inspect, survey and secure urban areas, as well as large industrial facilities.
The Airobotics automatic platform is comprised of three parts: ‘Optimus’, a large, high-capacity drone capable of flying 45-minute missions while carrying a 1 kg mission-specific payload; an ‘Airbase’, a completely automated base station from which the Optimus drone launches and lands on its own, without any human intervention; and an integrated, dynamic software that enables users to control and manage missions with one click.
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