Intel launches 500 drones into sky, breaks world record

WEB DESK – While Intel unveiled its first commercially available drone this week with the Falcon 8+ drone, it made even bigger news when it broke its record for a simultaneous launched drone flight that featured 500 of its Shooting Star drones controlled by a single operator. While the Falcon is Intel’s wanting into the growing drone space, the Shooting Star drones and recently granted permission from the FAA are designed to be flown for amusement parks, companies, sports teams and cities for celebrations and special events.

“These drones are able to fly as a fleet, this is the first time ever we can show it works so well with so many drones!” said Daniel Gurdan, Intel Engineering Lead.

Intel is hoping to reproduce a little of that magic with its Shooting Star drones.

“We’ve really thought about what are some of the issues commercial customers face today and when they want to get that crisp, hi-res image, you don’t want any of the rotors in the image”, she said. “What I mean by that is, with the 8 rotors, you can have up to 2 rotors on each side stop and still fly the drone safely home”. It also take two batteries and will seamlessly switch power sources when one is exhausted.

Natalie Cheung, Intel Light Show Business Lead told Guinness, “We’re showing regulators around the world that UAV technologies used the right ways can help shape new rules for manned and unmanned aerial vehicles”.

Called the Intel Cockpit, it’s a completely new design that replaces a previous one that was based on a model airplane controller.

“We believe drones are an important computing platform for the future and we are continuing to invest in technologies and companies that will enable us to provide the best compute, sensor, communications and software integration for the growing drone ecosystem”, said Anil Nanduri, VP of Intel’s New Technology group, in a blog post, “These announcements represent a string of progress we’ve made in the drone space”.

All of the 500 drones moved as a single fleet, operated by one pilot with a laptop. At this year’s CES, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich shared his vision for this, claiming drones are safer and easier to control than fireworks.