Credit: Pavel Odinev/Skoltech
Skoltech researchers have developed an effective — and pretty dramatic — way for positioning a swarm of rescue or research drones. The operator wears a virtual reality helmet and a tactile interface to imitate shooting a bow to guide each drone toward its intended position with a series of shots. The technique is enhanced by deep reinforcement learning, which serves to prevent the robots from colliding with each other.
“Steve Jobs radically changed our idea of an intuitive interaction with the digital world when he championed touch screens and gestures. The goal of our research is even more ambitious in that it seeks to address the challenge of how to enable a user with no drone piloting experience to deploy an entire swarm within mere seconds,” commented the study’s principal investigator, Skoltech Associate Professor Dzmitry Tsetserukou, who heads the Intelligent Space Robotics Laboratory.
“Right now, there aren’t that many interfaces for deploying a swarm of drones,” the study’s lead author, Skoltech MSc graduate Ekaterina Dorzhieva, commented. “A joystick is convenient for controlling one drone, but once you have a whole swarm, you either need multiple operators or very complex software with code that explicitly accounts for a lot of stuff in a nonintuitive way. We offer an alternative to this.”
The alternative solution presented by the researchers from the Institute’s Engineering Center is a tactile interface proposed by Skoltech PhD student ?Miguel Altamirano Cabrera and inspired by LinkTouch, an earlier design created by Tsetserukou in Japan.
The operator (video) wears a virtual reality helmet, a pair of gloves with markers, and a tactile interface. A motion capture system incorporating several IR cameras is set up around the “shooter” to track the positions of the gloves and drones. The tactile interface allows the wearer to feel the tension of the virtual bowstring based on how far from each other the gloves are and use this feedback to adjust the distance to the location they are about to deploy a drone to. Meanwhile, the VR helmet keeps visualizing the ballistic trajectory of the drone in real time. When the operator is satisfied with the trajectory, they unclench the fist. This is registered by the camera, locking the trajectory and sending the drone to traverse it.
Once the destination is reached, some conventional form of control has to take over, guiding the drone on its mission, which might involve a rescue operation, natural resource management, forest fire detection, vegetation index-based crop monitoring, pollution detection, infrastructure inspection or maintenance.
“The benefit of using an arrowlike ballistic trajectory is that it feels natural for a person, and that way a human operator can quickly find a way to deploy drones while avoiding obstacles. It’s a fairly natural task for humans,” Dorzhieva said. “You could use software to set the coordinates for drones to travel to, but then they would have to figure out the path that avoids the obstacles on their own, and that means each machine must be equipped with a camera.”
There are two more twists to this. First, using virtual reality tech means the operator does not have to be anywhere close to the actual location where the swarm is being deployed. Whatever harsh conditions the drones are built to withstand — raging fire, radioactive contamination, freezing temperatures in a remote location, etc. — the VR helmet could be used to simulate operator presence on location and position the robots. Also, once you put virtual reality and bow shooting together, there’s clearly potential for the entertainment and video game industry. Second, the new method is bolstered by reinforcement learning, enabling the drones to foresee possible collisions with each other and adapt the trajectories they are on accordingly.
Original Article: Virtual bow deploys drone swarm in a series of shots
More from: Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology
The Latest on: Drone swarm launch
- Manned Unmanned Warfareon December 5, 2022 at 3:00 am
Predicted CPA one six zero nautical miles.” Guar waited to see that the Lieutenant had understood then added, “Surface and Air Engagement Teams manned and ready.” The LT nodded, turning to the ...
- Drones of the future: 4 drone market trends for mindful entrepreneurson December 1, 2022 at 7:00 am
This is the fantastic revenue figure predicted for the drone market by 2030. And considering its development pace, I presume this forecast to come true. Drones are already being used to improve a ...
- The Tiny and Nightmarishly Efficient Future of Drone Warfareon November 24, 2022 at 1:34 am
A swarm of 103 micro-drones designed by MIT with a wingspan ... that would give rogue states or terrorist groups the means to launch devastating attacks or assassinations anywhere in the world.
- Military Drones Global Market Report 2022: Drone Swarms Present Lucrative Growth Opportunitieson November 23, 2022 at 4:36 am
Drone swarm technology is growing its popularity in the military drones market due to its cost efficiency and high fire-power. Drone swarms are a large group of small drones that coordinate with ...
- Elbit's micro-suicide drone swarms can hunt enemies in urban combaton November 22, 2022 at 8:22 am
The drones then buzz around, like a swarm of bees, and identify enemy targets and help the soldiers who got bogged down defeat the enemy. Drones have become more popular for the same reason as ...
- These Israeli Urban Battlefield Assassin Drones Are Nightmare Fuelon November 17, 2022 at 5:47 am
In all cases, McKean noted that a 2nd lieutenant or a soldier of lesser rank could plan the mission, launch, and operate a drone swarm with little to no outside assistance. “We were able to get ...
- Changing aerial warfare: Drone swarms overwhelm missile defences in Ukraineon November 17, 2022 at 2:49 am
However, for the time being, drones—small, sluggish, inexpensive, and simple to shoot down but so common that they arrive in swarms—might pose the greater threat. On October 10, Russian ...
- Army now launches hunt for drones for Para-Special Forceson November 14, 2022 at 5:41 pm
They include kamikaze drones, armed drone swarms, logistics drones, surveillance quadcopters for infantry battalions and the like. For artillery regiments, the Army is going in for indigenous ...
- Drone swarms, solar-powered UAVs and congested air space management: the US Army’s experiment in the deserton November 14, 2022 at 4:35 pm
Drone swarms and wolf packs may be sharing the sky ... where friendly forces can retrieve the contents. The launch aircraft is able to remain in safer airspace as the cargo drifts toward waiting ...
- Drone Swarm Launcher Truck Displayed At China’s Big Arms Expoon November 6, 2022 at 11:22 am
Based on the machine translations, the system is designed to serve as a light and highly maneuverable loitering drone swarm launcher. The munitions come in individual launch canisters for easy ...
via Bing News
The Latest on: Drone swarm launch
[google_news title=”” keyword=”drone swarm launch” num_posts=”10″ blurb_length=”0″ show_thumb=”left”]
via Google News