Drones have been designed to fit in your pocket, to 3D print prototypes and to even carry expensive handbags on a runway. Now, huge drones are being built to clean wind turbines that could signal the future of human rescue methods.
28 motor quadcopters capable of lifting up to 400 pounds (180 kg) have been built by Latvia-based start-up, Aerones, who foresee the future of their endeavour amounting to much more than squeaky clean eco-propellants.
"While working on the drone we have thought a lot about safety", explains Jānis Putrāms, CEO of Aerones. "There is no single point of failure which means any part of the drone is allowed to fail and we could still land safely. There are also many other applications for our drone. One is firefighting, another is human rescue and also many sports applications."
The drones operate with a tether that keeps it from drifting while delivering power to the 28 onboard motors. When the drones are unplugged it can carry a payload for around 12 minutes.
Aerones is currently testing the system on private locations and in countries without regulatory issues. The company's plan is to offer a cleaning service to the turbine companies rather than sell the product directly to consumers, allowing them to continue to develop the drone hardware and software.
You can have a look at the promotional video below.