Milind Raj has been no alien to work around drone technology. Having started early with sharpening his skills as a drone creator, little had the boy known that his technology would come in handy fighting a global pandemic. As the world fights COVID – 19 tooth and nail, drones and robots seem to be quietly taking over. These high level technology innovations are helping add to the armoury of scientists, doctors, nurses and other personnel who are at this juncture no less than god. A top notch progressive scientific development that has been totally backed by the respective state governments including the state government of UP. An example of which was seen at the Nizamuddin Markaz episode or in Etawah, Uttar Pradesh. In Uttar Pradesh cops continue to employ drones monitoring activity in the Gautam Buddh Nagar district checking the spread of Corona.
A Lucknow boy, Milind has developed an ‘anti-corona drone’ prototype, being dubbed the ‘sanitiser drone’ which is efficient in carrying out a comprehensive sanitisation process.
Work on the drone had started playing on his mind when the first signs of the Indian COVID – 19 scare sinked in as early as January. The drone is based on a concept called ‘aerial disinfectant spray technology’ having a good lifting capacity.
Reportedly a ‘drone spray’ is 50 times more efficient than a manual spray; a ‘drone spray’ is faster, reliable and automated. These drones can work for kilometers keeping a safe distance.
Milind has been quoted saying that a drone spray technology can sanitize vehicles, outdoor boundaries, narrow lanes, high rise structures and much more. It sprays nothing less than 8-10 litres of disinfectant making an upgraded version spraying over 30 litres.
Milind had the rare fortune of meeting APJ Abdul Kalam in December 2014 when the 100% Indian drone was shown to Dr. Kalam and he was very impressed. He gave Milind the name of the Drone Man of India. He currently heads Mondatech and is working on niche technologies.
Lucknow’s Drone man is not alone in this mission to turn life mechanized. A Bengaluru based start-up has developed a prototype of a drone for Indian Institute of Horticultural Research. Little had the team known that the innovation will bear fruit in beating Corona. Six such drones are being used by Bengaluru district authorities to spray disinfectants.
Since 24 March, the founder, Neel Sagar, and a Alpha Drone Technology team has worked closely with the Bengaluru city administration to spray disinfectant across the city. The operation has six teams each, and a hexacopter that can carry 15 litres of disinfectant flying at 20-25 feet.
Meanwhile in Andhra Pradesh the Vijayawada Municipal Corporation is using drones too. In Vijay Rupani’s Gujarat, a drone company with the state is working to surveil public spaces like streets and markets controlling mass gatherings.
These drones are helping in disinfectant spraying, crowd management, social distancing and heat mapping. They are also being used to deliver medical supplies to hot spots.
A nationwide network of 200 pilots are working on the broader drone technology gameplan. The services are free of cost. In the national capital meanwhile two boys Prashant and Sagar, run a private company. They have created a drone that can identify a Corona patient from a distance. With the help of drones, the body temperature is detected from a distance of 15 to 20 meters.
This drone is not only useful in detecting body temperature from a height, it comes in handy in spraying sanitizer. Fitted with a tank in which the sanitizer can be filled. Delhi police had also used drones in the Chand Bagh, Karawal Nagar and Shiv Vihar areas to identify houses during the ugly Delhi riots.
Other states like Telangana, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu have already started using drones.
As the race for tech heats up, the first point of contact in some Bengaluru hospitals is a humanoid. Built by Bengaluru robotics startup Invento, these humanoids are equipped to do more than hand out sanitizers.
India has been slow in taking to drone technology as it still prefers humans over machines but in the post COVID world that could very well change. Police forces too are using drones to fight the trouble makers in sensitive drones.