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Weekend Roundup

By AUVSI News posted 30-06-2017 12:20


This Week in the Unmanned Systems and Robotics World

An Oxbotica-developed autonomous vehicle called CargoPod is being used in London to deliver groceries to customers. The vehicle has eight pods on the back of it, and each pod has a crate that can hold three bags of groceries. After the vehicle is filled by human hands from a small distribution center, it sets off following a route to its drop-offs. Once the CargoPod arrives at its destination, the customer is alerted through a smartphone. That customer must then press a button on the vehicle to open the pod door, allowing them to collect their groceries. (MIT Technology Review)

Flathead Valley Community College (FVCC) in Kalispell, Montana will begin offering two new courses, called UAS for Commercial Operations, and Unmanned Aerial Mapping Systems, which are both aimed at teaching students how to use UAS. The courses, which will each be worth two credits, will fit into the school’s Geospatial Technology Certificate, which is a new offering from the school. FVCC will also offer another course, called Introduction to Drone Flight and Photography, through its Continuing Education program, but that course will not offer any credits. (Daily Inter Lake)

The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) is offering a free summer program, in which it will offer high school students that are deaf and hard of hearing the opportunity to explore different career options in the fields of science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM). The program will encourage students to get hands on experience with UAS and robotic technology, and provide them with information that can help them make a decision on a potential major as they begin to look at colleges. The program will also offer students the opportunity to build and fly their own 3-D printed UAS using a Raspberry Pi-based laptop, and they will also tour the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. (Electronics 360)

A STEM camp focused on unmanned vehicles gave middle and high school students in Florida the chance to learn first-hand about UAS, underwater vehicles and robots. Gulf Coast State College, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and the Panhandle Area Education Consortium teamed up to put the camp on, and the camp was also used to draw to attention to the unmanned vehicle system programs at Gulf Coast State and Embry-Riddle. (

Singapore’s Land Transport Authority (LTA) has announced that it is expanding autonomous vehicle (AV) testing trials outside of the One North district. The trials will expand to neighboring areas such as the National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore Science Park 1 and 2, Dover and Buona Vista. By expanding to these areas, the LTA is hoping that technology development will be accelerated, by giving AV trial participants the chance to experience more on-road scenarios. (Land Transport Authority)

Self-driving vehicles recently underwent road tests in Okinawa, which is a Japanese prefecture. During the tests, two four-seater electric carts equipped with routing technology drove near hotels and tourist facilities in Chatan, which is on the west coast of Okinawa Island. The tests were conducted by the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (and other firms), and according to the Institute, future tests will involve driverless microbuses, as they travel short distances in other regions. (The Japan Times)

Schiebel’s Camcopter S-100 UAS has undergone successful qualification flights for the French Navy. The trials, which took place in late May and early June, were conducted from the deck of the newest French Navy amphibious assault ship, called the Bâtiment de Projection et de Commandement Dixmude. During its trials, the Camcopter was operated by a French Navy crew, and it performed about 30 day and night takeoffs and landings from the vessel. (UPI)

A Singapore-based start-up called OTSAW Digital will supply the police force in Dubai with a self-driving vehicle, that will serve as a mobile surveillance unit. Named the O-R3, the vehicle is equipped with 360-degree cameras that “scan for wanted criminals and undesirables.” It can also charge itself automatically, and it includes an onboard UAS that can follow individuals to places where the vehicle can’t drive. Dubai will reportedly be the first city in the world to use the O-R3 for everyday patrols. (The Verge)

The Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay in California has announced that in partnership with a gadget rental company called Lumoid, it is launching a new Drone Academy for its guests. Through the academy, guests will get the opportunity to learn how to operate UAS, as well as capture aerial photography and video. The Drone Academy will start with an informational workshop led by Lumoid at the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay, and then move to nearby Pelican Point Beach, where guests will receive a hands-on UAS flight and aerial photography session. (Unmanned Aerial)

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Photo Courtesy of Oxbotica

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