The Blue Coat School, Liverpool – Years 12-13
In a natural disaster, such as an earthquake, roads can be blocked or damaged, making it impossible for emergency supplies to get where they’re needed. So, we developed a 0.3kg quadcopter to transport small payloads. The drone has two cameras, a gyroscope and an ultrasonic distance sensor that let it fly itself. All the user needs to do is attach a payload and set the drone’s destination through the accompanying app.
The drone has a range of roughly 20km and is perfect for distributing light goods such as medical supplies. And one person could easily manage multiple drones from a distribution centre, allowing quick and easy access to medicine, bandages or vaccines in dangerous or isolated locations.
A machine learning algorithm assesses input from the two cameras to detect obstacles, which the drone can then avoid. The ultrasonic sensor aides landing by measuring the distance to the ground. And the gyroscope measures rotation and acceleration so the drone can find its current velocity and adjust thrust and torque to navigate effectively.
The accompanying app features a map that allows the user to choose a destination. This means anyone can use the drones in an emergency as programming it requires no specialist knowledge.