In today’s world, we hear the buzzing of drones everywhere. Some people use them for recreational purposes or some have already created a profession out of it. Here the question comes, what is a drone? How I can fly one? We will explain here some basics of drones and its application.
Furthermore, a drone is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). We can control drones remotely and they have varied applications. Drones primarily came into existence due to its application in the military. The military use drones for surveillance. However, the use of drones is not limited only to the military, its now expanding rapidly to other sectors as well.
In addition, the drones can fly themselves using onboard computers. In simple terms, it’s a guided unmanned aerial vehicle that has its own brain. The drones have a lot of capabilities and now they are in the mainstream as they are easy to use and handle.
The drones are very simple to fly and generally made up of composite materials. The drone set up typically includes a UAV, a ground controller and some system of communication between the ground controller and UAV.
In addition, we can add to the drone’s capability by adding more equipment. This equipment may include cameras, GPS, navigation systems, even a mechanical arm, or missiles and many more.
Generally, commercially available drones are light in weight and portable. We can control it using a controller and have a very basic range. The military drones are somewhat big in size and can fly a longer distance. The compact commercial drones can be launched by hand but it also requires some skill.
Furthermore, the construction of the drone varies according to its application. However, basic components remain the same. These components include the body, the power source (batteries/gasoline), the onboard computer, an actuator, a bunch of sensors, software, communication system and flight controls.
How does a drone work?
First of all, the drone is a flying machine and hence, it requires some skills to fly it. It looks a bit simple due to Joystick and GPS but the underlying mechanism is complex.
Furthermore, connectivity is a major part when it comes to flying a drone. We can control the drone by using a tablet or a smartphone. The pilot gets a view of the surrounding by an onboard camera. The apps come handy to control the drone. They also help to know battery levels. The app can also tell us the usable distance, and height. You can also set up a drone path by using the GPS coordinates.
In addition, the rotors play an important job of climbing and moving forward. Rotors are nothing but propellers that are attached to motors. When the pilot increases the speed of the rotor, it creates an upward thrust and it climbs up. However, when the pilot reduces the speed the drone descends.
The important character of the drone is hovering capability. During hovering, two rotors rotate clockwise while the other two rotate counterclockwise to balance the drone. When any two rotors increase the spin the drone achieves horizontal motion. So, the direction of horizontal motion entirely depends on the spin of the rotors.
Furthermore, the drone also comes with accelerometer and altimeter. The altimeter continuously feeds the information about drone’s height while the accelerometer feeds about its direction and speed. This critical information is important during landing. The sensors ensure a safe landing.
The cameras also play a very critical role as when the drone is out of sight you need to entirely depend on the camera feed. The feed from the camera ensures easy flying in out of reach or dangerous areas.
Application of drones
The application of drones is vast and still, we need to explore more about its potential as it is a new technology. The important advantage of the drone is that it is easy to fly. The pilot doesn’t need to worry about other complexities of flying like thrust and balance.
Surveillance and reconnaissance is the major and primary application of drones. Drones also play a crucial role in disaster management. It plays an important role in research for gathering information. They also help to build GIS mapping or land mapping and agriculture.
Furthermore, small drones with the camera provide great video footage with different angles. We can also take help of them in search and rescue missions. The drones also help for inspecting difficult some to reach locations like high voltage electric lines. In future, we may use drones to deliver goods or even our groceries.
In conclusion, drones simply change the way we explore our world. The endless applications give you more surveillance power and still, we have a lot more to explorer. Thanks to modern drones.
Image Courtesy: DJI
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