Innovations That Matter

Testing the pandemic drone | Photo source Draganfly

'Pandemic drone' could spot those who are infected

Health & Wellbeing

A drone is being developed that could detect coronavirus symptoms using special sensors and computer vision

Spotted: In the current climate, one of the major problems in controlling a pandemic such as COVID-19 is not knowing who is infected and how widespread the disease is in your area. The University of South Australia and Canada-based drone technology specialist, Draganfly Inc., have teamed up to develop a “pandemic drone”. The technology uses special sensors and computer vision to detect those that are infected with respiratory diseases.

Remote sensing and computer algorithms are more practical ways of detecting the virus. This new drone works in crowds, which could include offices, airports, cruise ships, and care homes, and is able to monitor a person’s temperature, heart rate and respiratory rate, and detect sneezing and coughing.  

This technology was originally unveiled in 2017, when the team demonstrated its ability to measure heart and breathing rates, and analyse human movements to detect coughing and sneezing at a distance of up to 10 metres with a drone, and within 50 metres from fixed cameras.

Explore more: Health & Wellbeing Innovations | Mobility & Transport Innovations

Email: candy.gibson@unisa.edu.au

Website: unisa.edu.au

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