Innovating: Four Ways Drones Are Contributing To Fight Covid-19
While humanity celebrated the beginning of a new decade of success and development in Wuhan, China – an important travel hub housing over 11 million people – had a virus slowly brewing amongst its markets and street corners. What would next become known as COVID-19 (and frequently referred to as the Wuhan Virus or Coronavirus) was finally extensively announced and understood as a potential risk to the lives of many and the health of the world economy.
With the traditional celebrations of the Chinese New Year around the corner, the nation had to take action. The Chinese government immediately prolonged the holidays to reduce travel and made a radical decision to execute the most massive quarantine in human history over this Wuhan. Meanwhile, industry leaders have embraced new remote work solutions and systems to minimize the impact of the virus on the economy.
Similarly, officials have worked alongside the private industry to seek new technologies that can help fight the spread of the Coronavirus. Public and private institutions from China have used drones for important public safety purposes, and even found new ways drones can be implemented to combat viruses.
Inspection and Broadcast
As we have observed in search and rescue missions over the planet – from spanning deserts to towering cliffs – drones have become essential tools for visualizing extensive areas and communicating in difficult areas.
These same abilities have been crucial to oversee and communicate in dense, urban regions during the panic. By using drones, officers can more effectively scan an area and transmit a message, such as putting on your mask or staying inside if the area is infected.
Delivery of Critical Supplies
Seeing the risk of a pandemic, local authorities have regularly urged citizens to restrict their exposure and remain in their homes. This has put a strain on packaging and food delivery systems, which are themselves a possible vector of infection. Even though drone package deliveries aren’t at full scale yet – with only a few exceptions in the United States and the Dominican Republic – they have proven to be an effective and contactless way to hand off critical medical supplies.
Most drones can be conveniently changed with a payload drop system to deliver packages, without risk to both parties. Drones are usually made using light composite materials and coaxial cables to reduce weight and increase maneuverability. They are equipped with a different state of the art technology such as infrared cameras, GPS, and laser.
Disinfecting Common Areas
In an effort to sanitize public locations and limit the further spread of COVID-19, local health authorities have proved ways to use agriculture spraying drones to disinfect these areas effectively. Previously used for agriculture, these spraying drones are filled with disinfectants instead of pesticides controlled to spray the complete public area.
While the process of simple temperature checks before admitting visitors into the buildings has proven to be effective overall, it represents an important risk for the workers supervising the whole process.
To reduce this risk, some organizations are utilizing drones provided with infrared cameras to test temperature measurements.
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