Borders in drones
Arthur Erickson is co-founder of Helio Agro Drones, a company that develops and manufactures agricultural drones in the United States. I asked him what is the most exciting frontier for drones? What really excites me about being an engineer? We have batteries coming that already exist in labs, in academia. They have different formulations than your typical lithium ions that you currently see on drones and cell phones. Now they have stuff like lithium, sulfur, they have aluminum iron, which is not lithium based at all. And these newer batteries get thousands of cycles. They fly for hours, even with heavy payloads. So right now a big problem for a lot of farmers is that I have a different perspective, but a lot of farmers find, at least in theory, impractical to have multiple batteries for the drone that you trade throughout the day. It becomes a rhythm and a science once you’re actually there. So I don’t think it’s too bad, but a lot of farmers have this problem. So I think the introduction of this new battery technology coming in the next few years here is going to make drones even more appealing to a wider audience, because now you can’t even make that case as an adopter, as a farmer saying, Oh, I don’t think it’s very practical to have multiple batteries on hand now. You will only have one or maybe two batteries for an entire day of flight. And I think that’s just going to open up the market wide. So there’s already a lot of people getting great feedback and value for these drones, but it’s going to be a lot more convenient, even more valuable to these future technology users. To see Ericsson’s drones in action. Google Helio Agro drone. It’s Hylio.