At CES this week, drone manufacturer Yuneec announced it’s latest UAV product; the Typhoon H. The original Yuneec drone, the Q500, was an extremely capable piece of hardware that found its place in the prosumer drone market. It was improved upon in the Q500 4K and, with the Typhoon H, Yuneec looks to be bringing the features that worked with the old models to a new platform alongside some new industry standards.
The Typhoon H boasts 6 rotors instead of 4, preprogrammed flight patterns like Orbit and Follow Me, retractable landing gear, a 4K camera, and geofencing.
All of these features can be found on one of the industry’s other leading drone models but the Typhoon H may be the first drone to bring it all together in one complete platform… And I haven’t even mentioned the most important piece of hardware the drone will ship with.
The Yuneec Typhoon H was designed to be modular – being add ons and payloads can be easily swapped out – and the modification Yuneec is highlighting is the first true consumer drone sense and avoid system powered by Intel’s Real Sense cameras and ultrasonic sensors.
Sense and avoid, or a drone’s ability to perceive its environment, process sensory data, and then use that data to avoid obstacles has been a much talked about technology.
One of the most common questions I get asked when talking to someone new to UAV technology is, “What’s going to stop you drone or Amazon’s drone from running into me?”
The answer to that question is we have to give drones eyes and ear (so to speak) so they can “know” where they are in space and use that information to avoid you.
We have seen sense and avoid in action before.
Panoptes developed an outer shell embedded with sensors for DJI’s Phantom 2 and 3DR’s Iris models that caused the drone to bump away from solid surfaces, but it has yet to get directly integrated with either company’s drones.
DJI itself sells a guidance system but it is only compatible with the Matrice 100 developers’ model.
Even Amazon has filed a patent for a sense and avoid system which will presumably appear on Prime Air, but no demos of this tech has been shown off yet.
But the Yuneec Typhoon H is the real deal; the sense and avoid mod may not ship with the drone when it is released, but it is intended to be part of the platform.
To see what the Typhoon H sees, check out this quick clip from The Verge:
Alan is serial entrepreneur, active angel investor, and a drone enthusiast. He co-founded DRONELIFE.com to address the emerging commercial market for drones and drone technology. Prior to DRONELIFE.com, Alan co-founded Where.com, ThinkingScreen Media, and Nurse.com. Recently, Alan has co-founded Crowditz.com, a leader in Equity Crowdfunding Data, Analytics, and Insights. Alan can be reached at alan(at)dronelife.com