AR.Drone used to inspect damaged Christchurch cathedral

From News 3 in New Zealand, news that engineers are using a Parrot AR.Drone to inspect the inside of the Christchurch cathedral damaged in the earthquake:

It's a type of toy called a ‘quadricopter’ and was bought from Dick Smith. Controlled by an iPad, it can fly and film. Opus engineers have put a polystyrene reinforcing around it. The drone recently crept its way inside the cathedral for a test flight. The whole area's too dangerous for engineers to get close.

“Even if we lost it in the building ‘cause we're never quite sure with the wi-fi range or the battery life, but if it turned out to be a suicide mission it's a $500 one not a far more serious one,” says Opus engineer Nicholas Dawe.

Apart from a little bother getting in, the drone was able to fly round inside and show the heavy dust that's fallen on the seats below.

Video from inside the cathedral is here.

 

[via Multi-Rotor news]

Views: 480

Comment by Ritchie on June 18, 2011 at 10:32am
That is the sort of publicity the Parrot AR.Drone needs not the ridiculous stunts. Good to see hobby becoming professional.
Comment by S.G. Sutter on June 18, 2011 at 9:18pm

I fully agree, Ritchie.  Thanks for sharing this, Chris!  It's impressive what that little gizmo can do.

 

This reminds me of a William Gibson (Neuromancer, etc) quote: "The street finds its own uses for technology."

Comment by Jack Crossfire on June 19, 2011 at 12:39am
Disaster relief, 10 minutes at a time.
Comment by Kirill on June 19, 2011 at 11:04am
Nice to see the application of drones. I believe, in the nearest future we will hear more and more about such events.

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