Drones pave the way forward in fight against potholes

  • TECH
  • Monday, 16 Jul 2018

FILED - Pothole-fixing drones are part of a larger effort from researchers in Leeds University to use robotics to create self-repairing cities that no longer require street works. Photo: Sebastian Kahnert/dpa

That mood-ruining irritation felt by drivers after unexpectedly hitting a pothole may soon be a thing of the past, as researchers look to the skies to pave a new way forward.  

A research team at the University of Leeds in Britain is working on drones that can autonomously identify, fix and prevent cracks in the road surface with the help of cameras and a 3D printer.  

Referred to as “Perceive and Patch”, the research project aims to develop a discreet and cheaper alternative to the use of road-workers to fill potholes, which can be both disruptive to traffic and costly for authorities.  

In England and Wales, potholes have caused a huge strain on the local budgets, with over £1bil (RM5.31bil) being spent on almost 18 million potholes in the last decade, according to the Annual Local Authority Road Maintenance survey.  

The drones are part of a larger effort from the university to use robotics to create self-repairing cities that no longer require street works.  

Led by University of Leeds' Professor Phil Purnell, the project will also develop drones to “perch” like birds to detect and repair faults in the city (e.g. broken streetlights) and robots to inspect and protect utility pipes.  

“We want to make Leeds the first city in the world to have zero disruption from street works,” says Purnell. — dpa

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
Subscribe now to our Premium Plan for an ad-free and unlimited reading experience!

drones; potholes


Next In Tech News

As Indians take up online games, gambling fears grow
Australian court dismisses suit against Google over personal data use
US women sue Elon Musk’s Twitter alleging discriminatory layoffs
Exclusive-India's Snapdeal to shelve $152 million IPO amid tech stocks rout
Elon Musk says Twitter will tell users if they’ve been ‘shadowbanned’
US sues to block Microsoft’s blockbuster buyout of gaming giant Activision
Google Ad Manager outage costs big websites ad sales
Your boss is debating whether or not you can watch the World Cup at work
How video games could help fight dementia in dogs
Are scams more common on certain social media sites?

Others Also Read