Add-on tech lets drones detect and avoid obstacles in all directions

- Ben Coxworth | New Atlas

In order for them to fly beyond line-of-sight of their users, drones have to be constantly "aware" of potential hazards surrounding them on all sides. That's where the Casia 360 system comes in, as it's designed to give 360-degree vision to existing drones.

Designed by San Francisco-based company Iris Automation, the setup is claimed to be both low-power and compact. It consists of an array of five long-range optical cameras along with two onboard processing modules, all of which are mounted on either a multicopter or fixed-wing drone.

Working in conjunction with third-party autopilot systems, Casia 360 is reportedly able to detect other aircraft in all directions. It uses computer vision algorithms to classify them, and to analyze factors such as their location, airspeed and heading. If it's determined that a collision is imminent, the remotely-located human operator is alerted, plus the drone's autopilot system is triggered to autonomously take evasive measures.

The whole rig weighs a claimed 2,152 g (4.7 lb) if housed within an optional enclosure, or 1,904 g (4.2 lb) if mounted as is.

An initial production run has already sold out, but back-orders can be placed and pricing can be determined via the link below.

Source: Iris Automation

Original article at New Atlas, here.

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