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Volarious demonstrates drone that can accompany boats

Volarious has demonstrated a new tethered drone system that enables the DJI Mavic 2 drone to autonomously take off, follow, and land safely on small vessels.

Firefighters and police drone team has been using the V-Line tethered system for the Mavic 2 drone in a variety of situation on land. The Volarious product is called the V-Line boat mode.

It can also be used in coastline surveillance, search and rescue operations. A drone can take off, follow, and land on small vessels autonomously while providing a real-time elevated view of high resolution thermal and RGB images and video streams at the comfort of the cabin.

Many patrol boats used around the world close to shore has a small deck for launching and landing drones. This is a big challenge for an inexperienced pilot as one wrong move could mean that the drone falls into the water.

The alternative is to use the bare hands to catch the drone when it is near the vessel which puts the operator in harm’s way.

Wei Liang, founder of Volarious, says: “We built V-Line Boat Mode so that the whole process can be fully automated, from taking off to boat following to landing.

“This innovation allows users to expand operational capacity in activities like harbour and inland waterways patrol.”

To enable this automated feature, users require a unique 1.2-meter square landing pad and the Volarious app. With one click of the button, the drone will take off and follow the vessel, allowing surveillance from a high angle. This allows a small patrol boat to efficiently observe its surroundings as well as much taller vessels.

The V-Line system works especially well when paired with the new Mavic 2 Enterprise Advanced. The high-resolution thermal camera allows better observation of objects and people at night.

The system works even without the V-Line tether kit, allowing drones to be flown close to shore or vessels for detailed observation. During landing, advanced vision algorithms guide the Mavic 2 to accurate land back onto the vessel. It automatically compensates for the drift and rocking motion of the vessel.

Coupled with 5G connectivity, a low latency live stream from the drone can be sent back to a command centre, allowing for greater situational awareness and information sharing.

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