Flying Rescue Drone Prototype to Provide Lifesaving Aid to Swimmers
November 12, 2013 12:45 PM
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Pars prototype rescue drone is faster than a human lifeguard in testing
Although drones are mainly in the news these days for the
, they can also be used to save lives. RTS earlier this year showed off a flying drone, Pars, which is designed to help rescue drowning victims. The prototype of that flying rescue robot is now being tested at the Caspian Sea near Iran.
The drone is designed to be able to independently find drowning victims in the ocean and then drop floating rings to them. Testing of the prototype drone kicked into high gear after six students drowned in the Caspian Sea this past July.
The robot is capable of dropping floating rings to multiple drowning victims during a single “mission”. In its intended usage scenario, the drone would provide quick relief to a trouble swimmer by dropping flotation rings, thus allowing the human rescuer to swim to the scene to provide further assistance without being hindered [en route] by the rescue devices.
The flying drone can stay aloft for 10 minutes and has a maximum speed of 10 m/s. The design of the drone gives it a useful range of 4.5 km.
More importantly, the designers are touting their rescue drone as superior alternative to a human lifeguard. In recent testing, a person that was “simulating drowning” 75 meters from the coastline was rescued by a human lifeguard in 91 seconds. However, the Pars drone was able to accomplish the feat in 22 seconds.
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11/12/2013 1:21:08 PM
That's true; but in most cases once you have a floatation device you're also no longer on the brink of death either. This is potentially a large step forward, but to replace human life guards it would need to go from dropping simple rings to dropping something powered capable of towing someone to shore.
If it's easy enough for an untrained person to operate it could serve as a major safety upgrade for unguarded beaches. Fly a ring with a transponder out to keep the person afloat and then send a 911 call to get the local water rescue team out with a boat/etc to haul the person back in.
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