Today I have a chance to meet and learn more about drones from Allied Drones. I saw two displayed drones. The single rotor helicopter is the HL11 Atlas UAV, and the multirotor is the HL48 Chaos UAV. The single rotor helicopter looks solid and durable, and its fuselage is made of fiberglass, and it has an onboard first person view camera. With a weight between 25lb to 33lbs, it can travel at 40mph and flight time is about 60-150 minutes which is pretty impressive. The fuel it used is 89 octane gasoline, and the engine can be either 52cc or 80cc twin-piston 2-stroke engine and with single carburetor. It surely can do some heavy lifting.
The multirotor drone uses 8-12 cells battery to power its four sets of propellers and each propeller has a top and bottom blade design. This is more simple and inexpensive than the helicopter. However, because each prop moves independently from one another, one disadvantage is stability. Besides, top and bottom blades in each prop need to be balanced as well. If not, it will create unwanted vibration, and if you need to shoot with a camera, it leads to a "Jello" effect on the video and causes unnecessary wear and tear on the component on the drones. For this model, HL48 Chaos UAV, it can reach an airspeed of 30mph and best of all, it is autonomous and can be operated by a laptop. It can be easily foldable and transportable when motor booms are released.
To learn more: www.allieddrones.com
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With this increasing processing power, people are working to develop hyper-intelligent software that utilizes this processing power to create artificial intelligence (AI). From a long-term perspective, people teach the machine to acquire not only knowledge but the ability to think. Once AI can have the ability to do recursive self-improvement, it is possible to increase its intelligence exponentially and inevitably surpass humans. Like the human, depending on what personality the AI has, as soon as it becomes self-aware, it will think about itself and tries to sustain and survive. The next move from the self-aware machine is unpredictable.
Recently, a computer scientist, Steve Omohundro, published a paper titled, "Autonomous technology and the greater human good".
In his paper, he gives a realistic warning about how the inescapable future may be, and self-aware killing machines will be self-turned on to destroy us all. It seems unavoidable because there is no trust between country to country, government to government since everyone wants to be the first to invent something more powerful than the previous invention. The military wants to deploy more destructive weapon and most efficient way to accomplish its military goal. Drones have been gained popularity recently in the news. We learned that they had the capability to identify a target and destroy it, whether or not a target is a person or an object. When drones combine with self-aware artificial intelligence, it will be a recipe for human destruction. It sounds like Skynet in the movie Terminator. With the recently purchased company called Boston Dynamics by Google, building a self-aware Terminator is closer than you think. We should incorporate our moral values into AI before it's too late.
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Researchers at MIT has the breakthrough at last. By utilizing the ability of some special molecule group called Photoswitch molecule, solar energy can be stored in chemical form. The energy can be released by triggering the reverse reaction, and the energy will be released again. Azobenzene is a good example to accomplish that since it has two benzene groups in a trans position that has a shape like an unfolded paper. When a photo particle hits this molecule, it causes it to changes its shape into cis position that has a shape like a folded paper [See Figure 1]. It can be kept it that position as long as if the physical condition allows.
With the help of nanotechnology, these molecules can be packed and arranged into carbon nanotubes and make them more efficient in storing energy and control. According to Kucharski that it could be stored in liquid form and store the energy in a storage tank. It's truly a renewable energy coming to you soon.
However, if a plant can talk, it will say that in the world of plants, storing sun's energy is nothing new at all and they are doing it every single day for the last millions of years on earth. The sun's energy is absorbed and stored in plants in the form of sugar via photosynthesis. Whenever plants need the energy, the stored sugar is breaking down into ATP as a suitable energy source for the entire plant.
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