Land Rover has partnered with the Austrian Red Cross combining a modified Discovery with some very clever tech containing a drone capable of surveying dangerous terrain in order to assist with the saving of lives.
The Discovery has been modified to include a retractable roof system which allows the operator to launch the drone via proprietary app called Overwatch, it is controlled by the by the centre console contained in the car, from this waypoints can be set, or even predetermined destinations, the drone will then autonomously navigate all while streaming live footage back to the operator safely remains in the car. Once the drone has completed its locations it will automatically pilot itself back to the car.
According to Land Rover the drone has a number of features including an infrared camera allows it to detect heat signatures, thus aiding its ability to find people in need of rescue; “With the drone airborne, live footage can be transmitted to the Red Cross’s emergency response teams, helping them respond more quickly and effectively to landslides, earthquakes, floods and avalanches,”
As drones have become down in price and therefore accessible to a larger audience we are used to seeing negative press from somewhat risky usage by pilots who either have no idea what they are doing or just don’t care. Here, however, Land Rover have applied the tech for a use that will hopefully be a benefit to those rescue crews working in dangerous environments and therefore enabling them to keep themselves safe while saving lives, which can only be a good thing.