Small Robot Surveillance Balloons Like Niven's Copseye
A new patent describes a miniature robot surveillance balloon that would be capable of autonomous movement in groups.
(Miniature robot surveillance balloon)
Some of the device's planned capabilities:
These miniature surveillance balloons are essentially robots--capable of operating on their own when necessary. They also are able to operate in an intelligent cluster where together they can accomplish a goal by coordinating their efforts. Thus they become a socially interactive multiple robot system. Methods for controlling and manipulating a cluster of such robots have been described in a number of prior art references.
What is currently lacking, besides miniaturization, is the ability of a robot surveillance balloon to control its position in order to coordinate with other such balloons to effectively cover the deployment such that the desired surveillance objective is properly viewed. To do this, a balloon should have the ability to control its motion in both vertical and lateral directions.
These small surveillance bot balloons could also carry a small charge for use as an offensive weapon.
SF readers are immediately reminded of the copseyes from Larry Niven's 1972 story Cloak of Anarchy:
Someone at police headquarters had expected that. Twice the usual number of copseyes floated overhead, waiting. Gold dots ageist blue, basketball-sized, twelve feet up. Each a television eye and a sonic stunner, each a hookup to police headquarters, they were there to enforce the law of the Park.
As I recall from the story, the copseyes also were able to float around in small, directed groups.
Update 26-Mar-2008: Thanks also to Rod, who reminds me that the Honeywell ducted-fan MAV is being tested in Florida; see Honeywell MAV Tested By Miami Police for pictures and details.
Via Robot spy balloons.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 3/25/2008)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )
Related News Stories -
'Alexa For Residential' A Landlord's Dream (Tenant's Nightmare?)
'...unseen mechanical entities... that are in our very midst. One of them following each of us.' - Philip K. Dick, 1960.
Foiling Facial Recognition, Fighting Coaster Viruses, Harlan Ellison-Style
I have no mouth and I must scream.
Adversarial Pattern Shirts Confound Object Detection Systems
Ah, to be a vague blur!
A Passing Drone Has Covid-19 Advice
'Gold dots against blue, basketball-sized, twelve feet up.' Larry Niven, 1972.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Tesla Will Have Metal Gear Snake Autocoupler, Musk Confirms
'Its motion was so swift, complex, and perfect that at first I did not see it as a machine, in spite of its metallic glitter.'
Starlink Satellites Leading Edge On-Orbit Debris Mitigation
Propulsion-assisted orbital decay, brought to you by SpaceX.
Healight Ultraviolet Endotracheal Device Has Covid-19 Treatment Potential
'He applied the tip of the instrument to the interior of the wound...'
Parents Use AI To See One Last Message From Their Deceased Son
'...what's to keep me from showing face, Man?'
Satoshi Tomizu Creates Pocket Universes And Worldcraft Bubbles In Glass
'The Worldcraft bubble glittered, catching the light...'
Space Hero Inc. Offers Trip To ISS As Reality Show Prize
'This is Elmer Schmitz, presenting to you the finalists in our Aviation Quiz Program...'
I Love Ceiling-Mounted Robots
'Immediately an enormous apparatus fell on to her out of the ceiling...'
Armano Remote Control Excavator
'The bulldozer moved through the... mine... '
OK, NASA 3D Printer Of Food Not Yet Star Trek Food Synthesizer
Maybe not, but we're seeing definite progress.
Kelly Clarkson Show Like Black Mirror '15 Million Merits'
'These people are pieces of software called avatars.'
Salto Jumping Robot Now Sticks Landing!
'Lucky touched the leap knob and the hopper's leg retracted.'
Gyroscopic Median-Straddling Mass Transit Vehicles
'It was among these leviathans that the little gyrocar was daring to thrust its puny self...'
Bigrating Laser Beam-Riding Light Sail Is Self-Correcting
'That sail will be twenty thousand miles at the wide part.'
ISS Astronauts Test Estee Lauder 'Advanced Night Repair' Skin Serum
'Out in the New Moon, just ask for what you want...'
LG Wing Twisting Smartphone Might Be Fun
'A polycarbon screen unfurled...'
Mushroom Coffin Returns You To Nature, Naturally
'She touched the leaf. She was wanted.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories