Flock: Real-time people tracking to influence flight planning

I’m not sure how this will work in the real world. Flock wants to route around you.

Operators can intelligently map their environment

Flock’s real-time ground level data analytics optimises flight paths, reduces accident risk and protects cargo 

Insurance Providers can accurately quantify and price risk

Flock considers and weights multiple data feeds, providing a quantified, on-the-spot risk profile for any flight.

UTMs and Regulators can understand impacts at ground level

Flock’s AI identifies high- and low-risk areas and flight corridors, providing insights to UTMs and regulators.

Sounds a little bit like Silicon Valley thinking coming out of London. Software will eat the world and all that. There is a rush to be the provider of maps to the drone world. This time not of airspace data but of where people are.

Immediately I see the intelligently re-routed RPA, avoiding all sorts of folks until its battery runs out or it has to re-route over those crowds to get home to avoid its battery running out.

What happens when common traffic choke points cause RPA to route all day over the same areas? Will residents not get upset? Already people are complaining about Amazons delivery drone tests in Cambridgeshire.

The system will be only as good as the data it finds and promulgates. Already we have some totally inaccurate map systems out there that people use at their peril IMHO. Paper maps are much easier to understand, always on and created by the aviation authority you are flying in. No grey areas.

This is also something Google Maps could swallow for breakfast with its real-time knowledge of millions of phones.

Let’s hope this is not the start of the next rush to second rate data.

 

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Gary Mortimer
Founder and Editor of sUAS News | Gary Mortimer has been a commercial balloon pilot for 25 years and also flies full-size helicopters. Prior to that, he made tea and coffee in air traffic control towers across the UK as a member of the Royal Air Force.