How autonomous drones could help make cities even ‘smarter’


The smart cities of tomorrow will no doubt benefit from the help of autonomous drones. — AFP Relaxnews

The rise of 5G and modern communication systems should, in the long run, favor the development of autonomous drones, deployed at the service of the community. In the context of the smart cities of the future, these drones could be used to monitor, analyse and manage numerous parameters. However, advances in technology and legislation will be needed to make this happen.

Often envisioned as a future means of delivery, drones are currently finding all kinds of applications, often driven by reasons of safety or security, but they are always managed from the ground by humans. In the near future, many fully autonomous models could be assigned new missions, thanks in particular to the 5G network.

In the future, in the context of the smart and resilient city, drones will have multiple roles. They will be able to leave and then return to their base automatically, to recharge, and in the meantime fulfill various missions, such as inspecting new infrastructure, monitoring certain neighborhoods or simply mapping the city. In a whole range of fields, they will be much more efficient and faster than humans are today.

For this, 5G connectivity, now fully deployed in the largest urban areas, will play a key role. One of the major advantages of 5G is its very low latency, facilitating real-time communication between different connected devices. In addition, a 5G connection can enable the rapid transfer of data sent by a drone, starting with live images.

For the time being, neither the technology nor the legislation allows this type of unmanned aerial device to fly over cities. In the United States, however, tests are being conducted near New York on a dedicated territory by the Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Research Alliance (NUAIR). The goal is to deploy unmanned aircraft safely in national airspace, without risk of collision or interference. – AFP Relaxnews

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