July 23, 2013 Leave a Comment
Watch NOVA “3D Spies of WWII” at 8 p.m. Wednesday, July 24 on Wisconsin Public Television.
It’s almost funny how unmanned drones are just now making it into mainstream media. The concept of a scouting plane has been around since day one and the technology on the manned versions advanced in leaps and bounds each decade. Going from mere aerial views to photographs to 3D photographs and eventually to actual satellite mapping of environments. It was really only a matter of time until we started seeing these advanced spying marvels out flying around without a pilot.
They almost started out as toys if you think about it. Crews would rig up a camera to small plane or helicopter and fly it over a region and collect the images when it returned. The key differences now are they’re more like mini jets, they’re heavily armed, the cameras are much more advanced and the pilot may be on the other side of the planet. These new drones have been flying high for years, but are just starting to catch everyone’s attention. Why? Most likely because the FAA regulations will be changing in 2015 and we may start seeing the use of drones more and more on (or over) U.S. soil.
Hundreds of larger police stations have already begun planning to use drones once they become available to help locate, track and combat crime. There are even a few Universities out there offering Bachelor’s programs for drone pilots as the demand begins to spike. Theorists have even started to boast that by 2025, there’s a good chance people in larger cities may be getting pulled over by unmanned drones rather than police cars… let’s just say the future is sure to be interesting.