The Exyn does not rely on existing infrastructure, such as GPS, to complete a mission
Spotted: Philadelphia-based Exyn Technologies has developed an autonomous drone designed to collect data from difficult-to-access and GPS-denied locations. The company was developed out of the GRASP Laboratory, a robotics research programme at the University of Pennsylvania.
Exyn’s drones are guided by the company’s proprietary software, which allows both pilot control and autonomous flight, depending on the situation. Each drone is completely self-contained and does not need to maintain communication with a base station to operate. Perhaps most importantly, the Exyn does not rely on existing infrastructure, such as GPS, to complete a mission. To achieve this, the drones come equipped with an array of on-board sensors, including LIDAR, cameras and inertial sensors.
The company’s focus is on what it calls “digitally starved industries” — those that operate in environments that are too severe or dangerous to allow access to data. For example, in underground mining, it is difficult to measure and track the results of drill-and-blast exercises. This is because the cavities (‘stopes’), created by blasting are too dangerous for humans to enter. Exyn says its drones can enter and map the stopes rapidly, and without risk to human life.
In the past few years, there has been an explosion in the number of industries that now use drones. At Springwise, we have seen drones created for uses as diverse as searching for avalanche victims and carrying fire-fighting equipment.