Facebook’s solar-powered drone, designed to bring internet to remote areas, has operated and landed with flying colours.
Any landing you walk away from…
Unlike Aquila’s maiden pilot run, the drone completed its test and this time without the crash landing. The goal is to create a collection of sun-powered drones, capable of remaining air-born for months at a time, providing Wi-fi service to remote areas.
Back in June of 2016, Aquila tripled air-time expectations with a maiden flight of one hour and 36 minutes. Sustaining a damaged wing, the drone has been revamped and blowing away expectations.
We can rebuild it, we have the technology
According to Facebook’s director of aeronautical platforms, Martin Luis Gomez, Aquila has achieved a second flight of one hour and 46 minutes, sustaining only regular wear and tear.
Adding spoilers to the wings, incorporating hundreds of extra sensors, updating the autopilot software, and installing a horizontal propeller stopping mechanism, are all to thank for the smoother flight.
The innovation to bring internet by means of an air-born fleet is fast becoming a reality, bringing internet to some of the world’s most remote locations. This most recent flight marks a significant milestone in the what Gomez has called “an audacious goal.”
Is the world ready for lower-altitude Wi-Fi beaming? Do you think this is a more innovative use of drones? Give us your two cents in the comments section below.