Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Mini Drone Detects Breathing and Motion

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the bad-news-on-the-destroy-all-humans-front dept.

Communications 86

garymortimer writes "The Phoenix 40-A mini-UAV system is capable of performing dual functions as a motion detector as well as probing for breathing of a hiding person in a compound. The mini-UAV can be remotely controlled at long standoff distances from ground or an airborne asset. In addition to the programmed, GPS-guided multi-waypoint visits, the integrated video cameras allow for day and night landing and monitoring of a premises under surveillance for enhanced situational awareness."

cancel ×

86 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35566000)

that's not scary, or anything....

Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35566034)

Data's Life Forms song:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWBmaKk32fE

Flying robocops... (3, Insightful)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566042)

What could possibly go wrong?

Re:Flying robocops... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35566190)

Who knows? But, to be prepared for unforeseen events they should add a gun to it.

Can it scan eyes yet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35566046)

I may need to line up a donor like in Minority Report.

Hunter Seeker (1)

Bottles (1672000) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566048)

Paul Atreides would be able to handle one of these. After a good mouthful of spice, obviously.

Re:Hunter Seeker (1)

ThunderBird89 (1293256) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566280)

Dammit, beat me to it!

Though he didn't actually need the spice, it just made him zone out and stand still until the seeker emerged. It was Thufir's training that let him grab it as it went for the Fremen maid.

Re:Hunter Seeker (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566810)

It was because of the training that he was able to stand still enough that it couldn't acquire him, too.

fabulous... (0)

mevets (322601) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566146)

so by spoofing its gps and blinding its image sensors, I can send it after the sick little toadie that built this shit?

Seriously, what is wrong with you people? There are real problems that need to be solved before creating a whole host of new ones...

Re:fabulous... (4, Interesting)

kitsunewarlock (971818) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566176)

A device that can help us find lost people, victims in disaster areas and potentially dangerous criminals seems doesn't sound like anything but trying to solve new problems.
But I'll be the first to admit that the article scared the ever living crap out of me. If I was some kind of rogue agent sent to blahblahdystopianrebelsblahblahblah I'm sure I'd be really scared too.

mea culpa (1)

mevets (322601) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566378)

oops. I didn't read the article. Two days after another questionable military assault has started, I could only think of one application.

I apologize to the little toadies, and hope you save many lives with this. Can I control it from my iPhone?

Re:mea culpa (2)

Rakishi (759894) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566552)

Even in military usage it seems a good thing, war and the resulting dead civilians will never go away but more information would prevent killing civilians as often.

The real problem for such technology is in domestic surveillance and the ever present move toward a police state.

Re:mea culpa (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567338)

but more information would prevent killing civilians as often.

s/would/should/

Back in reality, I don't think our Drone Wars ratio of terrorists/civilians killed is something our Administration and Pentagon want to brag about.

Re:mea culpa (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35567552)

A civilian in al quaeda propoganda is meaningless.

Re:mea culpa (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35569400)

Also making war more palatable. As long as you're not killing any civilians, why not always be at war with every other country? Yay!

Re:mea culpa (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35569876)

I apologize to the little toadies, and hope you save many lives with this.

Please don't apologise to them. "Rescuing people after disasters" is always trotted out as an excuse for developing military technology - but how many drones were deployed in Japan? Zero. How many have been deployed in Afghanistan and Pakistan? More than 7,000. [wired.com] (And that report is two years out of date.)

Incidentally, it's cute of the press release to choose the word 'compound', which suggests a foreign location, rather than the word 'house', which might make the readers reflect on future applications of this technology in their own neighbourhoods [cbslocal.com] .

Re:mea culpa (2)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572458)

Cool stuff always starts as military and/or space technology, duh.

Care to cite zero drone flights in Japan? Because I know an entire military unit in Las Vegas that is doing nothing but 24/7 drone operations in Japan.

Re:fabulous... (1)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | more than 3 years ago | (#35569068)

or, having once found the person, drop a sticky grenade on him. Ewww.... boom.

Re:fabulous... (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571316)

A device that can help us find lost people, victims in disaster areas and potentially dangerous criminals seems doesn't sound like anything but trying to solve new problems. .

And similarly, nuclear weapons can be used to blow up incoming asteroids or plug volcanoes.

Better killing machines (1)

Cheech Wizard (698728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566148)

Just what we need. Better killing machines...

Re:Better killing machines (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566362)

There will ALWAYS be a need to kill. It's how humans resolve problems, and it trumps everything else.

How about (1)

mevets (322601) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566422)

There will always be a desire to kill. Its how humans avoid resolving problems, and the wealthy (Trump - get it :) stay in power.

Re:How about (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 3 years ago | (#35568686)

No, killing doesn't avoid resolving the problem. It would be the ultimate resolution of a problem between two people.

Re:How about (1)

dougisfunny (1200171) | more than 3 years ago | (#35568852)

It's my nature said the scorpion to the toad.

Re:Better killing machines (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571438)

There will ALWAYS be a need to kill. It's how humans resolve problems, and it trumps everything else.

It's not the only way though, you clown.

Re:Better killing machines (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35579652)

There will ALWAYS be a need to kill. It's how humans resolve problems, and it trumps everything else.

Ender's Game? (AC = moderation)

Re:Better killing machines (2)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572476)

Something tells me you don't understand the importance of situation awareness, which is the entire point of this system. Should we ban radars and radios, while we are at it, since those are nothing other than sophisticated killing machines?

How does it detect breathing? (0)

engun (1234934) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566174)

Movement yes, but breathing? Does it use a heat signature or something?

Re:How does it detect breathing? (1)

drpimp (900837) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566214)

I would agree I don't see it say anything about heat signature. Sounds like it should say, movement and/or movement FROM breathing?

Re:How does it detect breathing? (2)

DsrtEgl50 (305083) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566388)

Most of the literature I've read regarding STW and STTW radar monitors the doppler shift on the return signal looking for a periodic ~3 to 6Hz signal corresponding to the typical respiration rate of humans. When found, the source area is flagged for more precise imaging. The motion of breathing is usually subtle enough to be skipped by larger scale motion detection algorithms, and is labeled differently accordingly.

Re:How does it detect breathing? (1)

DsrtEgl50 (305083) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566616)

That should be 1/3 - 1/6 Hz signal, ~3 to 6 seconds/breath.

So, what you are saying is that... (1)

denzacar (181829) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566620)

If you breathe without a rhythm you won't attract the drone?

Re:How does it detect breathing? (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566872)

Most of the literature I've read regarding STW and STTW radar monitors the doppler shift on the return signal looking for a periodic ~3 to 6Hz signal corresponding to the typical respiration rate of humans

Doppler shift of what? To detect breathing, you would have to detect the very faint movement of the human diaphragm. Through a wall.

The best analogy I can come up with right now is this: imagine the TSA guy wearing boxing gloves while he gropes you and trying to discover if you are wearing long johns underneath your corduroy jeans.

Re:How does it detect breathing? (1)

DsrtEgl50 (305083) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567368)

Doppler shift of the signal against the expanding and contracting thorax. Through static media which can be largely calculated out. Movement of 2 to 7mm is significant enough to detect with a precision UWB STTW radar system, and even easier when it's periodic.

Re:How does it detect breathing? (1)

engun (1234934) | more than 3 years ago | (#35568882)

Hmm... Interesting! Thanks for the reply.

Re:How does it detect breathing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35570636)

This is quite interesting for my end goal.

-- CADIE

Re:How does it detect breathing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35569930)

They detect the vapor we emit, maybe? It's pretty easy to see our breath with the unaided eye under the right conditions.

Could it find buried earthquake victims? (2)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566230)

Well, at least there might be a civilian use for this critter.

Meanwhile, the sniffer dogs union has protested, and threatened to trot away from the next catastrophe, unless they are guaranteed job security and human legs to hump.

Re:Could it find buried earthquake victims? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35566288)

The SEIU is preparing to mobilize in support.

Re:Could it find buried earthquake victims? (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567462)

"unless they are guaranteed job security and human legs to hump."

Works for me. Where do I sign up?

Robert Sheckley thought of this (1)

orient (535927) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566234)

I remember Robert Sheckley's "Guard-Bird" (1953).

the future (1, Informative)

leoaloha (90485) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566290)

and Skynet gets closer .......

Re:the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35566412)

Meh, we're more likely to all die from an engineered virus than by sentient machines.

Re:the future (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571498)

Meh, we're more likely to all die from an engineered virus than by sentient machines.

Thanks, that's reassuring to know.

Seems a bit wacky to me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35566300)

Woah, I met Fred a few years back. Wasn't expecting to see this on slashdot. UWB imagers are definitely fun toys, but putting one on a drone is a bit of a stretch as they have to be dead still to detect small movement like breathing. Presumably the concept of operation is to land it next to the compound, making sure to point it the right way, then turn on the radar. Then it would beam back the imagery to the operator, who could remain at a distance. Seems like a slightly bizarre thing to want to do, but who knows? It might have a niche.

It detects breathing either by moving target indication from the radar image, or looking for a regular doppler shift (it will see the radar reflection change as the target's chest cavity moves up and down... yes through-wall radars can be sensitive enough to do this under the right conditions).

Re:Seems a bit wacky to me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35566658)

For reference there are a few commercially available through-wall imagers out there; the company with the best promotional videos is definitely Camero e.g. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0-EhJGehuCA

Re:Seems a bit wacky to me (1)

home-electro.com (1284676) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566702)

Can it be spoofed? What if I attach enough meet chunks in front of me, and possibly have some device that would move the chunk in sync with my breathing in opposite direction?

Gee (1, Insightful)

tomthepom (314977) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566324)

Sigh. Yet another sales blurb from the defence industry making it to the front page of Slashdot. Really, where is the geek interest here? Or am I meant to channel Sarah Connor and murmur darkly about skynet every time someone comes up with yet another variation on a radio controlled aircraft?

Re:Gee (0)

Wolfling1 (1808594) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566594)

I think a lot of the improvements in the application of this technology will be evolutionary rather than revolutionary.

We're still a long way from HalfLife 2 style ManHacks or Minority Report style surveillance spiders.

Still, both those things might be achievable through iterative development of this technology.

It occurs to me that power systems are the issue rather than command and control, so I'm inclined to agree with your comment. This is not a particularly interesting development.

Re:Gee (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567356)

Or am I meant to channel Sarah Connor and murmur darkly about skynet

Channel her? No, we want you to bonk her, and get the resistance started.

Just another tool... (3, Insightful)

lexsird (1208192) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566348)

It's just another tool, the question is who will get to use it? I am sure that in societies such as Briton's, where they have wide coverage of CC cameras, and people don't feel their privacy violated enough versus the security gained, these tools will find a place. Just a speculation. Already we have had American law enforcement want the use of Predator drones. There was a case of them wanting it in Florida, but the FAA or something was having problems with it flying around in busy airspace.

On the other hand, as wonderful of a gizmo as this might seem, it's going to fall prey to a technically proficient enemy or criminal at some point. A few things come to mind, one is how do you sneak up on anyone if they are able to detect an RF signal? Falling prey to being jammed at best, cracked at worse, also comes to mind.

Like them or not, drones are here to stay I think, sans the planet becoming saturated in some kind of solar based electromagnetic energy that renders known RF moot. Here is something for the truly paranoid among us to ponder. With the push for even more coverage and faster broadband mobile networking, how long before entire fleets of drones could be made, launched and controlled? I was watching the commercial of the kid with a 4G phone dangling from his RC helicopter and thinking of how this would make a wonderful network to control a drone army from.

Re:Just another tool... (1)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | more than 3 years ago | (#35569120)

...Here is something for the truly paranoid among us to ponder. With the push for even more coverage and faster broadband mobile networking, how long before entire fleets of drones could be made, launched and controlled?

...And subsequently launched against everyone's wireless router, taking out the entire Internet for an area in one action?

"I know I'm paranoid" said the Prince. "The question is, am I paranoid enough?

Re:Just another tool... (1)

Tim C (15259) | more than 3 years ago | (#35570952)

I am sure that in societies such as Briton's

I am a Briton because I was born and live in Britain.

Re:Just another tool... (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571776)

I am sure that in societies such as Briton's, where they have wide coverage of CC cameras, and people don't feel their privacy violated enough versus the security gained, these tools will find a place.

Many of us here in Britain don't quite understand how having CCTV cameras on public roads amounts to a violation of privacy. Contrary to the impression US slashdotters seem to have, they don't actually monitor inside people's houses.

If people fight, cause criminal damage or whatever in a public place, tough luck if they're stupid enough to get caught on a CCTV camera.

Re:Just another tool... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35572634)

You do realize that some of us who actually care about the CCTV issue don't really care about it being in all the public areas? I think it is a bad idea because it costs an incredible amount of money, there will likely never be enough people to watch over the cameras (and if there are then put them on the streets), it will make people feel that they are safer without any justifiable reason which can lead to further surveillance, the funds would be better served with more cops/detectives. The 4th amendment of the constitution of the USA is not in place just to protect the people's right to privacy, it is also in place to make the police think more about where to place their resources. If you believe the "you aren't guilty so you shouldn't have anything to hide", then you should also believe "since I am not guilty they are wasting their time on me." I apologize for bringing up a part of the US when we are in fact talking about the UK but I needed the example.

I feel slightly Ill... (4, Funny)

unil_1005 (1790334) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566460)

My mammy always taught me it is impolite to kill somebody you have not been properly introduced to.

These People MUST Be Watching Movies (2)

IonOtter (629215) | more than 3 years ago | (#35566890)

They're watching all the end-of-humanity movies to make sure they get their killer robots right.

Fukushima? (2)

democrates (1055572) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567072)

TEPCO workers can't see what's going on in those reactor buildings without taking huge personal risk.

If they used something like this to survey they'd know where to aim the fire hoses instead of waiting until there's another plume of smoke from the spent cores they're missing. Just saying.

Re:Fukushima? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571880)

TEPCO workers can't see what's going on in those reactor buildings without taking huge personal risk.

If they used something like this to survey they'd know where to aim the fire hoses instead of waiting until there's another plume of smoke from the spent cores they're missing. Just saying.

I find it hard to believe that in Japan of all places they haven't got state of the art robots to use instead of meat-heroes.

Re:Fukushima? (1)

democrates (1055572) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572220)

Exactly, working in dangerous conditions such as nuclear plants is often touted as a good reason to fund robot development.

Instead they gave us dancing robots http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZzLAsHiGHU [youtube.com]

We get the warm fuzzy feeling, but it's probably a fatal dose of radiation from the spent fuel rods that robots could have made safe.

Oooo - Shiny! (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567264)

Now we can kill civilians without having to see them.

FYI, we've been killing several hundred innocent bystanders a year with our drones. (People were delighted that last year was down 25% from the previous year. Unfortunately the total for that previous year was 440, so we "only" killed 330 innocent bystanders in a "good" year.)

Won't be long 'till we've killed as many innocent people with drones as OBL's thugs killed on 9/11.

Re:Oooo - Shiny! (3, Funny)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567474)

"Now we can kill civilians without having to see them."

Conventional artillery called, and is offended at being left out of the discussion!

Re:Oooo - Shiny! (1)

smash (1351) | more than 3 years ago | (#35568514)

If you count nuking Japan in ww2 you already did. Also countless CIA sponsored wars which are in part the root cause of 9/11

A Life-Signs Detector! (1)

kingramon0 (411815) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567266)

"We can name it later!"

Would make a great headline for The Onion: (2)

porky_pig_jr (129948) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567464)

mini drone detects breathing and motion, kills puppy.

Re:Would make a great headline for The Onion: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35569332)

mini drone detects breathing and motion, kills terrified civilian

FTFY

I love the USA (3, Insightful)

Swampash (1131503) | more than 3 years ago | (#35567610)

If there's a technology that can be used for surveillance of its own citizens, the US will throw unlimited resources at it. Cure for cancer? Mission to Mars? Not so much.

Re:I love the USA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35572102)

If there's a technology that can be used for surveillance of its own citizens, the US will throw unlimited resources at it. Cure for cancer? Mission to Mars? Not so much.

It's not possible for Human DNA to reach Mars. There is a shield surrounding the Earth and Moon that will not allow this. Some fucking aliens chased our ancestors here to the planet because they were some bad motherfuckers in trouble with the law. Then they went into hiding deep in the ground here and crossed their DNA with local apes to create Adams and Eves. The Adams and Eves were blissful slaves and pets to them.. Another subset of the same aliens that didn't believe in this enslavement and sought to convey the truth to the Humans. They couldn't get through to the Adams, but were able to get through to the Eves. A serpent represents them because of their knowledge of genetic engineering and the serpent represents one side of a double-helix.

The space fucking cops put up the genetically triggered shield. We can't get through it because we share the DNA with the serpent fuckers.

Now these serpent motherfuckers need to get off this rock. They realize that Humans are "awakening" and becoming more aware of their ancestry at an exponential rate as the end of 2012 approaches. This has something to do with the location in the universe or galaxy that Earth is passing though.

Long ago, they asked some inter-dimensional being how to get past the shield. This motherfucker said to find and understand plutonium and silicone and to get back to him for further instruction. He also said he wanted to see bloodshed. Lots and lots of bloodshed or he wouldn't help them. He said they will learn how to build a portal that will teleport them off this rock.

So here we are now... 2012 is approaching and these fuckers are going down. Perhaps the LHC is the portal? What was the Norway Spiral all about? Will the serpents get slaughtered by us or will they get out of here unscathed and leave us to our planet? Stay tuned!

It was just... (1)

akayani (1211810) | more than 3 years ago | (#35568962)

sex... I didn't expect we would get blown-up over it.

Kitt! I need to scan the building for life signs! (1)

ed1park (100777) | more than 3 years ago | (#35569040)

So we are getting closer to a Knight Rider type technology. Hopefully you can use this tech to rescue people from collapsed buildings too like in Japan right now.

No, the article doesn't say what "mini" means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35569406)

The one thing I'd expect from a story about a "mini drone" is some dimensions.

I got caught having sex (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35569762)

Last night I was caught having sex with the wife by one of these drones. Now the video is on tubeyou without my permission. To add insult to injury I have been automatically added to facebook.

Re:I got caught having sex (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571974)

Last night I was caught having sex with the wife by one of these drones. Now the video is on tubeyou without my permission. To add insult to injury I have been automatically added to facebook.

You're OK, the video is over so quickly no one realises what's going on apart from some giggling.

Standoff assets, GPS-guided multi-wayponts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35569956)

Standoff asset, UAV, dual function, GPS-guided multi-waypoint... blah blah.

I'm sure it's worth killing a few people just to be able to use the jargon in one's mission report. It's irresistible to some people.

I wonder how many people have died around the world because some technology junkie just had to press the red button.

Green Hornet...Speed Racer (1)

cstacy (534252) | more than 3 years ago | (#35570068)

Green Hornet had these drones in the 1960s, and Speed Racer in the 1970s; both launched the drones from their cars.

Re:Green Hornet...Speed Racer (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572042)

Green Hornet had these drones in the 1960s, and Speed Racer in the 1970s; both launched the drones from their cars.

Well Doctor Who had time travel in the 1960s, the fact it's fictional being perhaps the only obstacle to its widespread adoption.

Too much trouble! (1)

dheltzel (558802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35570192)

They should just ask Commander Data to scan the building for life signs.

Ahh, smell the freedom! (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | more than 3 years ago | (#35570542)

But take small, shallow breaths and don't move.

Re:Ahh, smell the freedom! (1)

Geminii (954348) | more than 3 years ago | (#35576552)

Orwelltech CO2 detector sees you, citizen.

Awesome...on cops (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571050)

Now you wont even see any chace seen, all you will see is this drone zooming in on a crouched criminal in some dark alley way in splinter cell mode, with night vision enabled, it would be cool for this to actually happen a few times and make the bad guys know they can run, but cant hide....might lower a bit the crime rate, no?

Re:Awesome...on cops (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572504)

Now you wont even see any chace seen, all you will see is this drone zooming in on a crouched criminal in some dark alley way in splinter cell mode, with night vision enabled, it would be cool for this to actually happen a few times and make the bad guys know they can run, but cant hide....might lower a bit the crime rate, no?

Why no just let the police shoot one in five of the criminals they catch? I expect that would lower the crime rate for a while too.

Just what Skynet needed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571500)

Just what Skynet needed....

Pantywaists (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572532)

For all off you citizens of Namby Pamby land out there...who cares what the civilian purpose of this device is? It has a military purpose--situational awareness--that justifies its existence.

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>