Bristol shows off drone to make radiation mapping safer

A flying drone that could help safely monitor nuclear disaster sites was unveiled by the University of Bristol today.

NaamloosResearchers created the semi-autonomous “ARM system” as a way of providing visual, thermal and radiation monitoring in radioactive locations such as the Fukushima power plant in Japan, where helicopter pilots assessing the site were exposed to significant amounts of radiation following the 2011 incident.

‘By using light-weight and low-cost unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) systems, we can immediately and remotely determine the spread and intensity of radiation following any such event,’ said project lead Dr Tom Scott, director of the university’s Interface Analysis Centre.

‘The systems have sufficient in-built intelligence to deploy them following an incident and are effectively disposable if they become contaminated.’ ‘Concurrently with project RISER, which is developing micro-unmanned aerial vehicles for the indoor mapping of radiation, we have developed an outdoors system that is now ready for commercial deployment,’ said Scott.

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