SLIDESHOW

These radical drones hunt intruders, scale buildings, sniff out radiation, and more

Drones are soaring into the commercial sector, doing inspections, serving as security teams, and conducting analysis on the fly

Commercial UAV Expo Las Vegas
Credit: Magdalena Petrova
Las Vegas Commercial UAV Expo

Now in its second year, the Commercial UAV Expo in Las Vegas attracts companies who what to integrate drones into their workflows. Industries range from security, to construction, to surveying and mapping. Let's check out some of the drones that darted across our radar. 

Nightingale security drone
Credit: Magdalena Petrova
James Bond would want one of these bots

Nightingale Security is a San Francisco based company that specializes in the use of drones for facility surveillance. The drones are fully autonomous, with a 4 km operational radius, and are capable of carrying a number of sensors including infrared, thermal, and hazmat. Nightingale Security offers the drones as a monthly or annual service, including installation and maintenance of all hardware and software. 

R4 Roller drone
Credit: Magdalena Petrova
The drone that will roll with the flow

The R4 Roller by R4Robotics is the Spiderman of the drone world. Its roll cage allows it to scale buildings, hop up steps, and jump obstacles for maximum maneuverability. It's currently being used in law enforcement as well as in aerial inspections for gas and oil companies. 

Neo Octocopter with radiation sensor
Credit: Magdalena Petrova
This drone won't tolerate any leaks

Although it looks really, really cool, the most important feature of the Neo Octocopter drone happens to be its payload. Attached to the drone is a radiation detection sensor that can identify radiation leaks in nuclear plants and provide first responders with real-time data of hazerdous materials in the area. It can also be used to quickly inspect cars, cargo containers, and ships for harmful substances.  

Intel Falcon 8+ drone
Credit: Magdalena Petrova
When chip makers fly

The Intel Falcon 8+ drone is the first Intel-branded commercial drone. It features full electronic system redundancy, meaning that it has redundant batteries, redundant communication between all flight relevant components, and redundant sensing. The drone is made for inspection, surveying, and mapping. 

Swiss Drones helicopter
Credit: Magdalena Petrova
The Hummer of unmanned arial vehicles

The SDO 50V2 unmanned helicopter system from Swiss Drones may not be the most elegant aircraft, but what is lacks in fineness, it makes up for in power. Fueled by a tubine jet engine, the SDVO 50V2 can carry payloads of up to 50 kg for a prolonged period of time. It's currently being used to spray crops and for mapping jobs in harsh environmental conditions.  

Alta solar panels on drone
Credit: Magdalena Petrova
A drone that harnesses the power of the sun

If the SDO 50V2 helicopter is the Hummer of the aerial vehicle world, The Bramor ppX LRS drone with Alta solar panels is the Tesla. With a power output of 24 watts per square foot and a weight of only .56 ounces per square foot, the solar panels allow the drone to fly two hours longer. The modified drone can be used for road inspection, pipeline monitoring, and surveying powerline infrastructure. 

Altavian amphibious drone
Credit: Magdalena Petrova
From sky to sea, this drone does it all

Altavian's Nova F7200 AE can be considered the hybrid of drones thanks to its ability to take-off and land in water. The drone needs to be launched by hand from a boat, but once in air, it can cover over 1,000 acres per mission and fly for up to 90 minutes. It's popular for mapping environmental information, such as identiflying invasive species and detecting temporal changes in waterways.