Drones, also called unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), have no human pilot onboard, and instead are either controlled by a person on the ground or autonomously via a computer program. These stealth craft are becoming increasingly popular, not just for war and military purposes, but also for everything from wildlife and atmospheric research to disaster relief and sports photography. Drones are becoming the eyes and ears of scientists by surveying the ground for archaeological sites, signs of illegal hunting and crop damage, and even zipping inside hurricanes to study the wild storms. You can even rent a personal drone to soar above the horizon and snap a photo or video. Our news and features will cover developments in drone technologies, innovative uses for drones and how drone use will impact society.
Even people who aren't diehard fans of the "Star Wars" films will likely remember C-3PO and R2-D2. These sci-fi creations provided a glimpse of how robots could be used in the future, but how close is the world to making its a real R2-D2?
A new report detailing the growth of the drone industry finds that over the next 10 years, the amount of money spent annually on drones and their accompanying technologies will likely double worldwide.
Electronics that dissolve on the battlefield and tiny, hummingbird-size drones that perform aerial reconnaissance are just a few of the sophisticated technologies the U.S. military is developing these days.