Jun 28, 2017 08:29 AM EDT
A group of researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has developed a new prototype drone that can both fly and drive. The MIT researchers released a prototype of the system utilizing the driving and flying drones.
The researchers built the drones in MIT's research institute, Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). An MIT graduate student, Brandon Araki, is one of the researchers who conceptualized the flying and driving drones. Araki stated that drones being used today are limited and these drones cannot maneuver on the ground. Araki figured out that by placing wheels on the drones, the drones become more mobile.
Nonetheless, a driving drone can travel via land and can fly when necessary is a good way to be more efficient. Drones shifting from land to air can help the unmanned aerial vehicle prolong its battery life as driving on land takes less energy compared to flying, Recode reported.
The new technology could have a major impact on transportation. Wherein, the drones could be flying into disaster areas and can help transport objects or individuals. While the research is currently developing the unmanned aerial vehicle, the new technology could be a huge development for flying cars, Mashable reported.
MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory director Daniela Rus, stated that while there are still big challenges to scaling up to actually transport humans in flying vehicles, the research team is inspired by the potential of the flying cars to offer people fast and a traffic-free transportation.
In spite of that, the primary goal of the CSAIL researchers was not to design a flying car. Director Rus and her research team just wanted to make the unmanned aerial vehicle more efficient by having their drones flying over obstacles. But, the achievement of the CSAIL researchers would become markers along the way of the flying car.
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