Amazon’s secret drone-testing facility, drones to the rescue in North Carolina, and drones joining the fight against the Zika Virus are just a few of the stories featured in this week’s SomeDrones.com Weekly Drone Review.
The government of Rwanda has begun its medical drone delivery program. The delivery system, which was established by U.S. firm Zipline, seeks to transport blood samples, plasma, and coagulants to rural areas, according to the BBC. The fixed wing delivery drones have a range of up to 90 miles per mission.
At Recode, April Glaser reviews the various initiatives to develop power systems that increase the endurance of small unmanned aircraft.
At the Associated Press, Cara Anna explores the various medical delivery drone initiatives taking shape across Africa.
The team that developed the Solar Impulse manned solar plane is now developing a high-altitude long-endurance solar-powered drone. (Swiss Info)
An Australian remote sensing services agency is developing a drone to measure carbon in vegetative matter. (Phys.org)
The British government has ordered a series of collision tests to study the effects of a drone colliding with a manned airplane. (Daily Mail)
Intel has unveiled the Falcon 8+, a commercial drone for inspection operations. (The Verge)
Facebook plans to test an experimental radio unit on a small drone over its Menlo Park, California headquarters. (Business Insider)
Drone-maker Hover unveiled the Passport, a compact consumer drone. (TechCrunch)
Russian defense firm United Instrument Manufacturing Corporation has unveiled a microwave-based counter-drone system that can disable drones at distances of up to half a mile. (Daily Mail)
A U.S. startup called Airspace has developed a drone that autonomously hunts rogue drones and disables them with a tethered net. (Gizmodo)
Robotics firm The Kobi Company is developing a landscaping ground robot that can autonomously clear snow, mow lawns, and blow leaves. (ZDNet)
A designer has unveiled a 3D-printed add-on that optimizes DJI Phantom drones for search and rescue missions. (TechCrunch)
Swiss commercial drone maker senseFly has unveiled the eBee Plus, the newest variant of its fixed-wing mapping drone. (Unmanned Systems Technology)
An Israeli startup has developed a radar system that enables drones to autonomously detect and avoid potential obstacles. (Business Insider)
Yamaha is now marketing the Fazer RG2, an unmanned helicopter used for commercial operations. (FlightGlobal)
Two U.S. companies, WeRobotics and Vayu, were awarded funding from USAID to develop drone technology systems to counter the Zika virus.
A drone hobbyist in North Carolina helped authorities find and rescue a man trapped by the recent floods. (North Carolina News)
Recode examines the many entities using drones in the response to Hurricane Matthew.
Authorities in West Australia have announced a three-month trial of drones to spot sharks and other dangers at popular beaches. (News.com.au)
Amazon gave reporters from The Cambridge News in the U.K. a tour of its secret drone delivery program testing site.
Meanwhile, Amazon has launched a delivery drone design competition for children aged 6 to 11 in Cambridgeshire, England. The winners will receive a tour of Amazon’s delivery drone test site. (Business Insider)
Telecom provider AT&T is set to begin using drones to find signal weak spots at sports stadiums and inspect wireless towers.
Ride-sharing firm Uber used drones as flying billboards for an advertising campaign in Mexico. (BGR)
President Barack Obama inspected a small commercial drone at a recent science expo held at the White House. (ABC News)
China’s PowerVision Technology Group reported over $15 million in presales of the PowerEgg drone. (Press Release)