Words By: Robert Garbett
Robert Garbett, chief executive of Drone Major Group, explains how this technology covers a vast array of areas, from monitoring wildlife and pollution levels to replanting trees and mitigating wildfires.
“That is just the tip of the iceberg,” he tells me. “The applications for drones around environmental protection and monitoring are huge, it just goes on and on.”
Indeed, after just a little digging, I unearth thousands of environmental uses that the scientific community is just beginning to discover (see below).
“Whatever the environmental issue that you can think of, a drone can probably be used to help solve it,” Garbett adds. “The evolution of unmanned vehicle technology (UVT) is moving very quickly.”
This is one of the most exciting areas for the future of drone technology, with Garbett suggesting that the barriers limiting the reach of UVT are increasingly falling away. He describes how there are now 56ft drone catamarans that can travel across the world’s roughest seas for 100 miles carrying air drones, providing an integrated system to cope with various environments.
“That blurring of the lines between environments is the most exciting thing,” Garbett says. “These are not underwater drones, land drones or air drones – they are hybrids, and that is what we are going to see more and more of in the future.”
“You have to remember that a drone is any vehicle or aircraft that is autonomous or remote controlled, so that goes across the entire environment – the things that are possible are astonishing.”