The CSIRO’s long-standing UAV Challenge has borne fruit, with a hobbyist-built drone successfully searching for a dummy – representing a missing bushwalker – with no human intervention. The Canberra-built drone flew over the search area – 1.5 x 3 km – and successfully located the “Outback Joe” dummy. As the UAV Challenge notes, …
Great video here on the team's plan
The article doesn't mention that the winning Canberra time are open sourcing everything they do. In other words, their competitors next year will be able to build on another team's winning entry this year.
There is a great talk on the team's preparation by Andrew Tridgell of Samba fame at
Boys and their toys!
I want one.
How hard it would be to replace the bottle of water with an explosive?
Trivial I would imagine. You could swap it out with beers and bacon sarnies for that matter. It would seem a moot point given their accuracy though.
May I suggest dropping the water while in a steep dive, to improve accuracy. You could also put sirens on the thing reassure the lost traveller that water will soon be arriving.
Re: Improved accuracy
I suppose you would like it to have a fixed undercarriage, a curious crook in each wings, and designation JU87
Re: Improved accuracy
Drop the water attached to a brightly-coloured helium party balloon by about 10m of nylon monofilament. Just as long as the lost person can still walk, he'll find it without much trouble at a distance of a kilometer or more. So accuracy not needed, just lateral thinking.
Light hearted but relevant
I'm always supportive of these type competitions, they not only show how good some home / school projects can be, they also bring to the forefront the sort of things that volunteers put their lives on hold to achieve.
Searching for lost / missing persons is never easy for the searchers or the families, they always have to detatch themselves from the emotions of what they may discover
all credit to them
Why do I
Suddenly want to build a drone that can fly over the English channel?
*oh yeah, I have remembered. RC aircraft are difficult to track on RADAR and seem ideal for smuggling. Granted, it couldn't lift immigrants so people trafficking is out. But I reckon it bring other things.
I'd be a lot more interested in realizing the "smuggler's mule" device in Bruce Sterling's "Heavy Weather". It's basically a self-navigating gas-powered pogo stick, or perhaps one should say a monopedal kangaroo robot. Bounces its way across just about any terrain in 30-ft jumps. One seriously cool idea, with the sole drawback that it's hard to think of a legal use for it!
Re: "Smuggler's mule"
Isn't it obvious? Robo-Skippy!
"Quick boy, go get help!" put-put-put-BOING-BOING.
ukgnome: perhaps a submarine would be vastly more practical?
If this drone has proved that it can find Outback Joe, presumably Mk II will be the hover version and able to drop the water right next to Joe?
And at even higher accuracy, you can hit him on the head with it!!
You score more points for getting the water closer... but do you loose points for killing Joe with a water bottle impalement???
@Michael H.F. Wilkinson
That would merit a "Darwin Award - Remote Assistance" category.
Shortage of kangeroos/ collies/ dolphins?
SQUEEK SQUEEK CHIRP SQUEEK
"Whats that, Skippy? There's a hiker with a broken ankle? Five-point-four kilometres South-South-West of Shaggadingo Station, in a ditch behind the third bush on the right after that rock that looks like bit like Elvis?"
Re: Shortage of kangeroos/ collies/ dolphins?
"Bloody arse bandit!" - Skipinder the Punjabi kangaroo
I can't believe nobody's pointed this out.
But losing $40,000 because you dropped a bottle in the wrong place is one hell of a fine for littering!
Looks like they have the Hunter part down pat now.
Just add the Killer element from military sources, and all we need is the murderous AI to finish it all - and us with it.