Drones have become integral to the operations of numerous businesses and governmental organizations over the last few years. Drones are very useful in places where humans can’t get to or do things quickly and efficiently, from quick deliveries during rush hour to scanning an inaccessible military base.
Increasing work efficiency and productivity, reducing workload and production costs, increasing accuracy, refining service and customer relationships, and resolving security issues on a massive scale are just a few of the top uses drones provide. Drone technology adoption across industries has accelerated significantly as more businesses recognize its potential, scope, and global reach.
Whether controlled remotely or via a smartphone app, drones are capable of reaching the most inaccessible areas with little to no human intervention and with the least amount of effort, time, and energy. This is one of the main reasons they are being used all over the world, especially by the military, commercial, personal, and future technology sectors.
Drone technology has advanced and thrived in the last few years, from technologically manning sensitive military areas to luring hobbyists worldwide. They have been used by people, businesses, and governments, and they have found them to be very useful. Drones have a wide range of uses, including:
- Surveillance by law enforcement and border control
- Hurricane and tornado tracking and forecasting
- Aerial Photography for Journalism and Filmmaking
- Shipping and delivery on a priority basis
- Collecting data or supplying necessary supplies for disaster management
- Drones equipped with thermal sensors for search and rescue operations
- Inaccessible terrain and locations are mapped geographically.
- Inspections of building safety
- Crop monitoring with precision
- Transport of unmanned cargo
Hundreds of new uses for drones are being developed because of the money that is pouring into this promising field every day.
Military Use of Drone Technology
Drones are now primarily used for military purposes in today’s world. Drones have been an important part of military forces around the world for years, whether they are used as target decoys, in combat, for research and development, or for surveillance.
According to a recent report, military spending will continue to be the primary driver of drone spending in the coming years. Global militaries will spend $70 billion on drones by 2020, and these drones will play a critical role in resolving future conflicts and displacing human pilots.
Unmanned aerial vehicles will continue to be used in a variety of military operations due to their high utility in minimizing losses and enabling the execution of high-profile, time-sensitive missions.
Commercial Use of Drone Technology
Commercial use of drones is gaining attraction and has become the talk of the town, as multiple industries incorporate drones into their day-to-day operations. While the commercial drone industry is still in its infancy, it has begun to consolidate and attract significant investment from industrial conglomerates, semiconductor companies, IT consulting firms, and major defense contractors. For the time being, the industry is dominated by a small number of early-stage manufacturers in Europe, Asia, and North America.
As the cost of customizing commercial drones decreases, the door will open for new functionality in a wide variety of niche markets. In the not-too-distant future, sophisticated drones could be used to do things like fertilize crops, watch traffic accidents, survey hard-to-reach places, and even deliver pizzas.
At the end of the day, commercial drones have the potential to boost the US economy by $82 billion and create 100,000 jobs by 2025, according to AUVSI.
Civilian Uses of Drone Technology
The market for drone services in United States is increasing rapidly. As civilian drone sales increase, regulators and law enforcement agencies’ concerns about their safety tend to increase as well, given the history of drone collisions with airplanes and crashes into crowded stadiums. Drones come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, ranging from small, low-cost single-rotor devices to large, $1,000+ quadcopters equipped with GPS, multiple camera arrays, and first-person control. These devices are mostly for people who like to do things on their own, but they are very common and the market is growing.
Drone Technology of the Future
Drone technology is constantly evolving, and as a result, future drone technology is undergoing revolutionary advancements. There are seven possible generations of drone technology, according to experts. Most of the technology we use now comes from the fifth and sixth.
The following table summarizes the technology generations:
- 1st Generation: All-purpose remote control aircraft
- 2nd Generation: Static design, fixed camera mount, video and still photography recording capabilities, manual piloting control
- 3rd Generation: Features a static design, two-axis gimbals, high-definition video, basic safety models, and assisted piloting.
- 4th Generation: Revolutionary designs, three-axis gimbals, 1080P high-definition video or higher-value instrumentation, enhanced safety modes, and autopilot modes.
- 5th Generation: Transformative designs, 360° gimbals, 4K video or higher-value instrumentation, and intelligent piloting modes define
- 6th Generation: Commercial viability, safety, and regulatory compliance, adaptability of the platform and payload, automated safety modes, intelligent piloting models and full autonomy, and airspace awareness
- 7th Generation: Complete commercial viability, fully compliant safety and regulatory standards-based design, interchangeability of platforms and payloads, automated safety modes, enhanced intelligent piloting models and complete autonomy, complete airspace awareness, and auto action (takeoff, land, and mission execution)7th Generation of drones has already begun, with 3DRobotics announcing the world’s first all-in-one smart drone, Solo. Smart drones with built-in safeguards and compliance technology, intelligent accurate sensors, and self-monitoring are the next great leap forward in drone technology, bringing new opportunities to the transportation, military, logistics, and commercial sectors
Drones have enormous technological potential, and their applications will only expand in the future. Drones will become safer and more dependable as these technologies continue to evolve and grow. This would pave the way for their subsequent mass adoption, assuming that the strict USFAA regulations governing drone technology and use are relaxed somewhat.