Are flexible frames the future of crash-proof drones?
Forget about expensive obstacle avoidance systems, a team of researchers has built a prototype drone with a rubbery, flexible frame that deforms harmlessly in a crash, then snaps itself back into shape ready to fly again in an instant.
Multicopters really are one of the more significant technologies of our time. In a short time, these insanely agile, stable and inexpensive flight platforms have already made a sizeable contribution to filmmaking, agriculture and industry, as well as being a ton of fun.
But as a system, they have a serious weakness: they’re easy to crash, and they don’t typically crash well. It’s a tough issue to get around, so much so that some drones now ship with large prop guards, while others pack clever obstacle avoidance technology.
But a group of researchers from Floreano Lab, NCCR Robotics and EPFL has put forward another potential solution: drones with rubbery, deformable arms that attach magnetically to a central frame. Continue reading about the flexible drone.
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