Intel's RealSense Technology Could Be Game-Changer for Drone Industry
Consumer drones are getting too much buzz these days. For just a few couple of years, it evolved from complex hobbyist's toy to consumer-ready gadgets with highly sophisticated cameras and controls. But these smart drones are still unable to autonomously avoid obstacles - an ability that would completely change the drone industry and make drone-based services much more effective, faster, and safer.
In addition, it's about to change with drone startup Ascending Technologies, which made a huge presence in the recent CES 2015 event. Ascending Technologies, a leading developer and manufacturer of industrial and research grade drones, will begin shipping its newest drone with an obstacle-detecting sensor later this year. The AscTec Firely drones are the latest product from Ascending Technologies, and they will ship with new autopilot technology and Intel's new RealSense 3D cameras. AscTec Firefly will use the latest obstacle avoidance technology jointly developed with it's partner Intel, and will use Intel's Atom processor to crunch data. The startup hopes that the new obstacle avoidance technology from Intel will add a new level of safety and efficiency to their future products.
Businesses and professional drone operators will also benefit from this huge breakthrough in drone operations. This technology will open the floodgate for a whole new wave of drone applications such as automatic goods delivery, power lines inspection, emergency medication, or even oil inspection.
German-based Ascending Technologies has been building drones since 2002, starting with their first toy quadcopters - the X-UFO. In the beginning, they focused mostly on hobby and toy products. Today, the startup is changing course. It's now focused on industrial applications, such as power lines, oil refineries, and much more
Autopilot technology could be increasingly useful for those kinds of applications, so Ascending Technologies has started to look for various solutions that are available on the market. Those solutions, however, are not enough. They also face the challenge of building their own solutions.
As part of the process, Giant Intel has come along in the nick of time, saving Ascending Technologies from the huge, isolated, and daunting task of building its own solutions. The timing is great for both companies. Intel is looking for a drone startup to work with, and Ascending Technologies need someone with deep pockets and tech acumen. Its a match made in heaven, and a new sign of life for Ascending Technologies.
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