A Bay-Area startup is taking the conceptual idea of a drone “guard dog” and launching it into the real world.
At a recent tech expo, Aptonomy Inc. demonstrated what it calls a “flying security guard”– a DJI S-1000+ all-seeing, human-detecting octocopter that will autonomously patrol a pre-set perimeter to scout out potential intruders.
“The monotonous job of patrolling is just not suitable for humans,” an Aptonomy marketing piece states. “But drones, being machines, are perfect for routine patrols. By working seamlessly together with … on-site/remote security infrastructure, Aptonomy drones can multiply the reach and speed of … existing solutions.”
The drone uses advanced navigational tools and an artificial intelligence module to secure property using night-vision cameras and other sensors – including facial recognition software – to identify security threats.
Working in tandem with motion detectors, the Aptonomy drones can rapidly target a detected intruder and alert the user of the precise trouble spot in real time or via recorded video.
A user can deploy the drones on a routine patrol that allows a physical security presence on site without the need for human guards. Like a burglar alarm, the drones can flash bright lights and broadcast a warning via loudspeakers aimed at prowlers which provides a solid deterrent.
Since the UAVs can focus quickly on an area of concern, the technology cuts down on loss of time and funds due to false alarms since the drones can quickly verify a given situation via camera.
In April, the robotics firm unveiled the system prototype during ISC West, a large-scale, annual trade show for security companies in Las Vegas. At last week’s Y Combinator startup accelerator event, the company showed off its ready-to-launch status and has already taken orders for shipping in 2017.
“We are thrilled to share the initial prototype of our security drone with the industry at ISC West this year,” said Mihail Pivtoraiko, Aptonomy co-founder during ISC West. “We are able to leverage over 25 years of robotics research and development expertise, combined, to bring this cutting-edge drone solution to the security marketplace.”
Roving security drones are a growing sub-sector of the overall security UAV market.
In December, Japanese company SeCom announced the development of a “drone guard dog” – a $6,000 commercial-security drone designed to roam factories and commercial buildings and investigate suspicious activity, sending a stream of live-video to its human counterparts.