One of the things I get asked most often about by the press is for examples of non-military, non-police use of drones. Part of our function here at DIY Drones is to educate the public about civilian and peaceful uses of drones, so I'm always happy to reel off some examples, from agriculture to Hollywood (aside from the main reason we do it here, which is education and fun). Atmel has also created a great list of "18 ways that drones are being used today", which illuminates how broad their non-military applications are.
But to make it easier to get the word out, I've started a repository of such uses, below. I'll link to this post from the front page of DIY Drones. Please add your own examples and suggestions (including categories I may have missed) in the comments, and I'll update the post to include them as they come in.
Examples of Non-Military, Non-Police use of Drones
Search and Rescue
- Studying crane nesting
- Tracking elephants
- Ocean wildlife
- Stopping poachers
- Tracking Orangutans in Sumatra
- Plant biology
- Hurricane tracking
- Multispectral imaging of Florida Keys
- Tracking ocean debris
- Atmospheric research
- Academic research
- Journal of Remote Sensing special report
- Mapping archeological ruins, also here.
Human Rights Monitoring
And lots more in the comments below and at the DC Area Drone User group