These Paper Drones Can Make Deliveries, then Disappear
An American company has built a new drone that could improve the efficiency of deliveries.
The drone is very different from other unmanned aircraft. It is made almost completely out of cardboard and has no motor. It can be packed with materials and sealed up with tape.
Because the drones do not have a motor, they are designed to be dropped from airplanes. Hundreds of drones could be launched at once. Then they could be automatically guided to where they are supposed to go.
The company says these drones could then complete deliveries to different places over an area covering hundreds of kilometers.
The drones look like bigger versions of the paper airplanes we used to make as kids. But this light flyer is not a toy. It is aerodynamically designed and equipped with a small computer, a battery and sensors to guide it to the ground.
The drones are being developed by Otherlab – a technology research company in San Francisco, California. It calls the drone a "Sky Machine."
The company says it can travel about 150 kilometers at speeds up to 88 kilometers an hour. Currently, it can carry materials weighing up to one kilogram, but future models are expected to carry larger loads.
One of the drone's main advantages is that it does not have a heavy motor or large battery. This allows more room for materials and makes the drone cost less to build and operate.
The Otherlab development team has called its invention the "Ikea of drones." This is because it is packaged similarly to products from the Swedish furniture maker Ikea. The drone arrives as flat pieces of pre-cut cardboard that can be quickly and easily put together.
The technology that guides the drone can make it land within 10 meters of its target, according to Otherlab. Unlike other drones, even a crash landing is acceptable since the aircraft is disposable. The company says the drones can also be reused.
Once the drone completes its delivery, it can be thrown away and the cardboard material will likely decompose within a few months.
The company has received money from the U.S. Department of Defense to carry out research on the drones. The money came from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.
The agency is attempting to find the best delivery vehicles that can disappear after their missions are complete. The U.S. military has a need for delivery drones. But it wants to simplify and lower the cost of using them. Otherlab's Sky Machines are an attempt to fill that need.
Military drones can also be stolen and studied by others if found after use. Before they can truly vanish, the electronic materials inside must also somehow disappear. Researchers are still working on ways to get the technology itself to self-destruct.
I'm Bryan Lynn.
1.be different from 与...不同
The worker of today is different from the worker of yesterday.
He won the election because the Democrats self-destructed in their primary.
3.carry out 实施
The Social Democrats could still carry out their threat to leave the government.
4.thrown away 扔掉；抛弃
I must have thrown away the tickets by accident.
1.Unlike other drones, even a crash landing is acceptable since the aircraft is disposable.
crash landing 迫降；紧急着陆
The passengers were told to brace themselves for a crash landing.
We need more investigations to find out the exact cause of the crash landing.
2.The drone arrives as flat pieces of pre-cut cardboard that can be quickly and easily put together.
put together 组合；将...放在一起
He took it apart brick by brick, and put it back together again.
We wouldn't have time to put together an agreement.
这款无人机不同于普通的无人机 。该无人机几乎完全由硬纸板制作且没有发动机 。它可以用材料进行包装并用胶带密封 。
因为没有发动机，纸质无人机需要通过飞机进行发射 。数百架无人机可同时发射 。之后无人机会被自动引导至目的地 。
这款无人机看似我们孩提时代折的纸飞机的大号版 。然而，这一款简易无人机不是玩具 。它根据空气动力学原理设计，内部配备了小型电脑，电池和引导方向的传感器 。
这款无人机由加利福尼亚州旧金山的Otherlab技术研究公司开发 。他们称此无人机为“天空机” 。
该公司表示，该无人机可以时速88公里行驶约150公里 。目前可承载重达1公斤的物品，未来的的新型无人机预计可拥有更大负荷量 。
无人机的优势之一是没有发动机或大型电池 。这样会有更多的空间放置物品，无人机的制作及操作成本也大大降低 。
Otherlab研发人员戏称此无人机为“宜家无人机” 。因其外形包装类似于瑞典家具制造商宜家旗下的产品 。该无人机可由裁剪完毕的硬纸板快速组合在一起 。
据Otherlab介绍，目前的技术可让纸质无人飞机在预设着陆点的10米内着陆 。与普通无人机不同的是，一次性纸质无人机可强行着陆 。公司表示，纸质无人机也可循环使用 。
美国国防部为该公司后续的无人机研究提供了资金支持 。研究资金来源于国防高级研究计划署 。
该机构一直在寻找一种完成任务后可降解的最佳运输工具 。美国军队需要无人机进行运输 。但该机构希望简化并降低使用成本 。Otherlab发明的“天空机”具备满足这些需求的条件 。
使用过的军用无人机可能会被他人窃取并进行研究 。在无人机消失前，内置的电子材料也必须消失 。目前，研究人员正在研究如何使无人机自我降解 。