China adapts surveying, mapping, delivery drones to enforce world’s biggest quarantine and contain coronavirus outbreak

China’s government, in enforcing the world’s largest quarantine to contain the coronavirus outbreak, has adapted and co-opted industrial drones to help ensure that an estimated 50 million residents are kept at home and indoors across a dozen cities.
The software flying the drones made in Shenzhen is being rewritten to adapt their applications for disease detection and crowd management. The vehicles will use thermal sensors, high-definition zoom lenses, loudspeakers and chemical spray jets for disinfecting large areas, according to two makers of industrial drones.

Read more

Spain is the first European country to use agricultural drones to fight COVID-19

Spain has been one of the most deeply affected countries in the world by the coronavirus. As of today at 1:30 EDT, it’s had 102,136 cases and 9,053 deaths.

So the Spanish Military Emergency Unit is deploying agricultural drones to spray disinfectant around large outdoor areas as well as inside large vehicles.

The Spanish military is using both DJI’s AGRAS MG-1 and the DRONEHEXA XL by Spanish drone maker DroneTools. DJI’s drones make up 75% of the global drone market.

Read more

UniSA working on ‘pandemic drone’ to detect coronavirus

The drone will be fitted with a specialised sensor and computer vision system that can monitor temperature, heart and respiratory rates, as well as detect people sneezing and coughing in crowds, offices, airports, cruise ships, aged care homes and other places where groups of people may work or congregate.
The UniSA team led by Defence Chair of Sensor Systems  Professor Javaan Chahl, who holds a joint appointment DST, will work with Draganfly Inc, a North American drone technology company, to immediately start integrating commercial, medical and government customers.
Professor Chahl, working alongside Dr Ali Al-Naji and Asanka Perera, achieved global recognition in 2017 when they demonstrated image-processing algorithms that could extract a human’s heart rate from drone video.

Read more