Google has won a new patent for an emergency drone call system.
While Google has filed patents for delivery receptacles and delivery drones, this patent is for a humanitarian drone communications system that would send an appropriately equipped drone to the site of an emergency, enabling the delivery of critical equipment more quickly than a traditional ambulance stuck in traffic.
The patent indicates that Google would use portable boxes to allow people to request medical aid, listing the medical emergency and the needed supplies. The box would then send the data to the drone depot, where the drone could be dispatched either automatically or under pilot control to the location of the emergency. The system would also alert medical dispatchers to send professional help; and provide video assistance to the person requesting help on the appropriate use of the supplies sent. Google’s patent suggest that multiple types of drones could be deployed for different situations and localities.
If the figure above looks simple, it’s meant to. The patent document says that the system is designed for ease and speed: “The interface of the example apparatus may be configured to allow for fast and easy identification and selection of the particular medical emergency, or medical support implement necessary to address the particular medical emergency, such as with easy to read knobs, switches, or touch-sensitive controls…which may help to eliminate the twenty seconds it typically takes, on average, for a person dialing 911 to even be connected to an operator or dispatcher.”
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.
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