Drones

Intel wants inspired minds to hop onboard with its new developer drone

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich displays the Aero Ready To Fly drone at the company's developer forum
Intel CEO Brian Krzanich displays the Aero Ready To Fly drone at the company's developer forum
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Intel announced the Aero drone at its Developer Forum in San Francisco this week
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Intel announced the Aero drone at its Developer Forum in San Francisco this week
The Aero drone also comes preloaded with AirMap, an airspace management app that tells pilots where it is safe to fly
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The Aero drone also comes preloaded with AirMap, an airspace management app that tells pilots where it is safe to fly
Intel first showed its RealSense technology at CES this year onboard a Typhoon H (pictured here)
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Intel first showed its RealSense technology at CES this year onboard a Typhoon H (pictured here)
The Yuneec Typhoon H is fitted with Intel's RealSense technology
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The Yuneec Typhoon H is fitted with Intel's RealSense technology
Intel CEO Brian Krzanich displays the Aero Ready To Fly drone at the company's developer forum
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Intel CEO Brian Krzanich displays the Aero Ready To Fly drone at the company's developer forum
Aero is a fully assembled quadcopter that runs on the newly-announced Aero compute board
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Aero is a fully assembled quadcopter that runs on the newly-announced Aero compute board

Intel has dabbled in drones in the past, building impressive obstacle avoidance software and even claiming the world record for the most drones to be flown in synchronized flight. But now the company is looking to be a driving force behind the technology's rise, announcing a ready-to-fly drone called Aero that really is a software development kit designed to push the boundaries of unmanned flight.

Intel announced the Aero drone at its Developer Forum in San Francisco this week, alongside an all-in-one VR headset and its new tiny Joule computer. Aero is a fully assembled quadcopter that runs on the newly-announced Aero compute board, a playing card-sized device powered by an Atom quad-core processor that handles storage, communications and input/outputs.

Aero is a fully assembled quadcopter that runs on the newly-announced Aero compute board
Aero is a fully assembled quadcopter that runs on the newly-announced Aero compute board

This combines with an optional Vision Accessory Kit, which includes an 8-megapixel camera, VGA camera and Intel's RealSense R200 camera, to give software developers flexibility to explore potential applications for drones. Aero will also come equipped with Intel's RealSense Technology, which uses the drone's cameras, processor and sensors to create a model of a 3D environment.

Intel first showed off this technology at CES this year onboard a Typhoon H, a hexacopter built by electric aircraft-maker Yuneec. Obstacle avoidance technology is something that has popped up on some consumer models, such as the DJI Phantom 4, but with the ability to detect obstacles and plot alternative courses RealSense sounded like it might be a step up.

A planned demonstration is one thing, (even if it did involve dodging falling trees) but picking out obstacles in the real world is another. The good news is that the Typhoon H with RealSense is now available to buy at US$1,899, so we will soon learn how this technology stacks up with consumers at the joysticks.

The Aero drone also comes preloaded with AirMap, an airspace management app that tells pilots where it is safe to fly and notifies them of things like wildfires and weather patterns. Intel says that the Aero drone will be available at the end of the year, but there is no word yet on pricing. The Aero compute board on can be preordered separately for $399.

Source: Intel

3 comments
Daishi
I also read that Intel licensed ARM chips and will be making them.
Mivoyses
While I enthusiastically support the expanding role of UAV's, it bothers me that tech weenies are trying so hard to make them entirely self guided. Are we so lazy that we need to build machines to do all our work for us? Whatever happened to the "quiet dignity of labor"? Can we no longer take pride in performing a task to the best of our ability? Or can we no longer take pride in excelling at a skill? The more we build autonomaus machines the more we minimize our own individual contributions. I was at an air show last year and there was a tent with students from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University who were showing off their drones. They were so proud of the fact that they were pushing "man" out of the picture. I asked one of the students why they were doing this and would it not be wise to leave a person in the loop. His response was, "No. We don't want people in the loop because people make mistakes." He didn't have a response when I asked him about the "person" who wrote the program for his drone possibly making a "mistake."
Firehawk70
@Mivoyses21, if they don't do it, someone else will. Skynet is coming, like it or not.
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