Drones are in the news for everything from military to potential commercial applications. While we all think about whether or not we want our skies filled with Amazon drones buzzing overhead, delivering products, it is nice to see the technology being applied in a way most of us can support: saving lives.
Automated External Defibrillators (AED) are portable devices used to diagnose cardiac arrhythmia or heart attacks and other maladies caused by drowning, trauma, and respiratory failure. While malls, transport hubs, convention centers and even some homes and business now carry the equipment, there are still a lot of people dying or becoming seriously disabled due to the widespread unavailability of this equipment which sets the heartbeat back to normal.
Engineering Student Designs Defibrillator Drone
In the Netherlands, engineering student Alec Momont at TU Delft University of Technology has created a emergency yellow colored drone with six propellers that carries a defibrillator and equipment needed to help heart attack victims up to 4.6 mi.² ( 12 km²) zone within a couple minutes. The drone also has a camera and a speaker so that instructions can be given to people on how to use the equipment.
The Drone flies at up to 60 mph (100 kmh) and carries up to 8.8 pounds (4 kg) of equipment, just enough to carry the defibrillator.
Currently, the flying the defibrillator is in the prototype stage with an operational version expected early in 2015. Priced at about $19,000 ( €15,000). Many emergency service organizations in Europe are already expressing interest in the product.
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