Published on February 7th, 2015 | by Varuna Singh2
The Top 5 National UAE Drone Projects (Update: Winner announced!)
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum was present at today’s UAE Drones for Good event and we got a chance to witness the event in his presence.
Update: The Winning team that will take with them AED 1 million is Wadi Drones. Congratulations to you guys.
The event today ended by some great conversations with the teams and their plans for the future.
The event was not just for international organisations, but government and Dubai Police were present too showcasing their ideas.
We are live at the UAE Drones for Good competition, which is becoming the World Cup of drones. If you are interested even remotely in drones, this is the event to focus on. After about 800 worldwide submissions from 57 countries, the semi-finalists have been chosen in 3 different categories.
A Drone is an Unmanned Aired Vehicle. Keeping aside its controversies, there are some facts in this disruptive transportation and access medium. As the Award site states, there is an $8 to $10 billion projected economic impact of drones by 2025. That translates to over 100,000 anticipated worldwide jobs created by drones that are ten times cheaper than helicopters and other ways.
So what are the uses of drones apart from battle? Well, we are about to see a bunch of innovations. However at this point, it’s important to step back a bit and see what models the drone industry might disrupt.
“We want to reach to people before they reach us. We want to save time, to shorten distances, to increase effectiveness and to make services easier.”
This was said by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, VP and Prime Minster of the UAE and the ruler of Dubai. We have a clear indication on how this subject is to be addressed.
We have seen drones making its foray in transportation, navigation and deliveries. However there are many applied science applications and even health possibilities. Here are the top 5 selected ideas from yesterday’s Semi Finalists. These ideas will be pitching and presenting again today to win the grand prize of AED 1 million.
1. Health Sector Drones
“All drones can be utilized as portable pharmacies”
The idea behind Health Sector drones is to provide pharmaceutical needs directly to the point of alert. The drone is able to provide immediate medicines and a way to even communicate with the ambulance and nearest hospitals. This drone will also be able to move and transfer blood to the house of the patient in need.
We got a quick look at this drone at the event where it was showcased along with other interesting robotics courtesy of Emirates robotics a group specializing in new robotics including 3D printing as well.
Great event ! Not to be missed #UAEd4g نبارك لفريق #طائرة_الصحة على التأهل إلى المرحله النهائية في مسابقة الإمارات للطائرات بدون طيار لخدمة الإنسان عقبال المركز الأول بإذن الله غدا المرحلة الحاسمه لاتفوتوا العرض التقديمي الأخير لطائرة الصحة في تمام الساعة (11:30 صباحا ) بمدينة دبي للإنترنت @mishal35 @saeedalnazari
The health drone is able to provide a person in need with required medical assistance before ambulances get there. The drone can also provide medicines and tools at a crash site. This quick assistance can save some lives. If needed blood can also be transferred from clinic to homes and the general public. The Health Sector drone got a score of 74.6% The highest score in the national category.
2. Automated Parking System
Ever been annoyed at this guy? We might not see people like these anymore. With Automated parking system drone, we saw it guiding the cars pretty well and efficiently. This drone is fully automated and assists in paid parking as well. This drone will also report car park violators.
My favorite one is the fully automated parking system. Very efficient, very practical and a smart way to use the drones to make our lives much easier. Well done! #drones4good #Dubai #UAE #UAEd4g @uaed4g A photo posted by منى الحَيمود (@mouna_elhaimoud) on
Sanad (support in Arabic) is a drone built by an engineer at Dubai Police. In fact, Dubai Police showcases this octa-copter at GITEX last year. Sanad means support in Arabic and it can fly up to 1 km and lift about 40-50 kg of weight.
The reason for choosing 8 fans instead of four or six is about control and speed. Having octa-copter setup enables heavier lifting and better speed and control.
This does come at a cost and this keeps the battery of Sanad at about 40-50 minutes.
— UAE Drones for Good (@uaeD4G) February 7, 2015
Sanad can be controlled via an iPad and it was traditionally designed to watch over Dubai waters. It has security and monitoring purposes too.
A video posted by Mansour Abdulkarim (@falconeyesap) on
Sanad drones got a score of 72.6 % keeping them at a good 3rd place.
4. Wadi Drones
Wadi (Valley in arabic) drones motive is purely environmental. They aim to track and scan areas of the nation to enable better detection of Wadies flora and fauna. Wadi drones comes from the New York University Abu Dhabi and their aim is to document the vast diversity of the UAE's wildlife.
This drone does not look like a traditional drone with its fans and choppers. It is a fixed width drone with one propeller. This drone also works in extreme conditions monitoring the landscape with motion sensor cameras and wireless communications for data transmission. Wadi drones got a score of 72.6% putting them at 4th.
5. Site Inspector Drone
The site inspector drones' purpose is reduce the dangers in construction for both the workers and people around them. It also increases efficiency by monitoring activity. This site inspection drone is fully autonomous. That means it can navigate around a construction site on its own and provide a live feed of the site itself to a representative. Actions can be made that can result in lives being saved and problems detected early on. The region has gotten some attention on the construction workers safety and this drone aims to lower risk and accidents due to construction sites.
This drone idea is from Khalifa University Robotics Institute that has the previously discussed idea on fog dissipation and cloud seeding.
Site inspector drones got a score of 67.1 % putting them at 5th place.
The winner of the UAE Drones for Good Award in the National category will be announced soon, so stay tuned.
What do you guys think of drones in the UAE, and in the Middle-East in general? Do let us know in the comments.