With AI, drones can now fly autonomously at high speeds, navigating complex obstacles using only their onboard sensors. Researchers at the University of Zurich have a quadrotor to fly forests, buildings, ruins, and trains – with speeds up to 25 MPH without crashing.
State of the art autonomous drones like this could be useful in emergencies, on construction sites, or for security applications, but they will also be used by governments to help spy on every square inch of the planet.
Davide Scaramuzza, who leads the Robotics and Perception Group at the University of Zurich, explains:
"To master autonomous agile flight, you need to understand the environment in a split second to fly the drone along collision-free paths. This is very difficult both for humans and for machines. Expert human pilots can reach this level after years of perseverance and training. But machines still struggle."