Jun 1, 2015
Remotely operated control towers
It's a fact that small airports don't have many flights, because they don't have a adequate control tower system, and they don't have a adequate tower because these facilities don't have many flights.
Well, the paradygm is about to change. The swedish government and SAAB have developed the groundbreaking Remote Tower Services (RTS) system, wich will allow small runways to get more traffic without a serious finantial investment.
The Swedish Civil Aviation Administration tested the RTS system in the end of April, when the first plane landed at Örnsköldsvik Airport, but it was controlled from the LFV Remote Tower Centre, 123 km away in Sundsvall.
This is the result of ten years of development, made by both parts in the project.
RTS uses a system of cameras and sensors that beam data to a remote control facility in real time, where it is displayed on monitor screens and air traffic controllers operate normally – as if they were at the field in a conventional tower. According to the developers, RTS can control several airports or supplement large ones; operate on demand, at flexible hours, or around the clock.
Selfies from above
Drones are hip. They are also expensive, complicated to control and require dedicated hardware.
Well, PhoneDrone is here and let's your smartphone fly. In fact PhoneDrone is a revolutionary product that allows anyone with a smartphone to enjoy their own personal flying robot. Not only does the smart phone have flight planning software so that anyone can fly the PhoneDrone, the phone is on-board so that you have pictures taken directly with your phone. And it follows you wherever you might go.
First of all, using a free app on the phone, users can enter a flight path which the PhoneDrone will then autonomously follow. Alternately, if they have access to another smartphone or tablet (iOS or Android), they can keep that one with them and use it to manually pilot the drone via Wi-Fi – they'll also be able to watch live streaming video from the drone's phone camera while doing so.
Finally, again using a second mobile device that's on their person, users can fly the drone in Follow Me mode. In this case, the phone in the aircraft will lock onto the signal of the second device, and then automatically pilot the drone to keep it above that device as it moves.
The PhoneDrone is available from its creators, Indiana-based xCraft, and can be purchased from USD$199 via Kickstarter. You can even print the framework with a home 3d Printer. Compatible with iOS and popular Android devices.
Turn your ideas into gold
Gold, copper, nickel or palladium. Orbit1 will metallize your design, empowering you with the Midas touch from your tabletop. Developed by taiwanese company Monolith Studio, this is a great step forward in the 3D printing world.
With Orbit1 your designs of metalic objects can now have the metal look. Companies and creator alike can prototype their creations in a fast and easy manner, increasing design time and easing the entire manufacture process.
While the price of 3D printers has come down significantly over the last few years, the same cannot be said for metal printing. Orbit1 aims to provide hobbyists and small businesses with an affordable way of finishing objects measuring up to 200 x 150 mm (7.8 x 5.9 in) with a coating of copper, nickel, palladium or gold. Furthermore, it's also efficient, coating objects in metal for just US$2/g.
Coating objects with the Orbit1 is a three-step process. First, users need to thoroughly clean the object they wish to coat, before evenly spraying it with proprietary conductive paint. Once placed inside Orbit1, the machine laser-scans the object and configures itself automatically, before the user launches the process using the iOS or Android companion app.