Expert View

Research and Development of Drones for Peace—High Power High Energy Supply Required

[+] Author and Article Information
Kaufui Vincent Wong

Mechanical and Aerospace
Engineering Department,
University of Miami,
Coral Gables, FL 33146

Contributed by the Advanced Energy Systems Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENERGY RESOURCES TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received August 27, 2014; final manuscript received October 2, 2014; published online November 7, 2014. Editor: Hameed Metghalchi.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 137(3), 034702 (May 01, 2015) (4 pages) Paper No: JERT-14-1275; doi: 10.1115/1.4028867 History: Received August 27, 2014; Revised October 02, 2014; Online November 07, 2014

Drones are useful in climate science, space research, energy and environmental research, surveillance to protect sensitive areas. Drones, including land autonomous vehicles (AV), are being recognized as being very useful in the 21st century, and their beneficial peaceful functions is one focus of this article. The technology of drones depends mainly on many branches of engineering, including but not limited to robotics, computer technology, avionics, air and space research, mechanics, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, heat transfer, energy and the environment. This work is also focused on the research and development of drones including AVs. In the area of mass transport systems (which needs to be encouraged and optimized with respect to energy consumed in this age of energy awareness), automation has been achieved but much still needs to be done. Sensors and computers needs to be developed to a high enough level where they can duplicate the senses of an experienced pilot or operator, backed up by a huge database storage of scenarios and follow-up actions that would avert accidents and damage. Some futuristic beneficial uses for drones have also been identified, indicating some directions for research and development. The other hugely important subfield for further work is energy supply for the drones. High power and high energy supply for a long duration is required.

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