App controls drone flying 3,000 miles away

September 28, 2011 By W.J. Hennigan

Military mobile apps may one day help soldiers on the battlefield.

Engineers and researchers at Boeing Co. and MIT have developed an application to fly a miniature rotorcraft from some 3,000 miles away.

It just takes a few taps and swipes of the operator's finger in Seattle to make a drone at a baseball field on the MIT campus in Cambridge, Mass., start to hover, rotate and zip around.

"These applications could allow (drones) to be used more effectively for tasks that are dirty or dangerous, as well as for missions that may be too long and tedious to have a human be continuously at the controls," the company said on its website.

The Pentagon is testing all manner of smart devices, including iPhones and iPads, for action in . It has kicked off a race among software companies and defense firms to develop innovative apps for future soldiers to operate.

Explore further: A drone for security and safety (w/Video)

Related Stories

A drone for security and safety (w/Video)

May 29, 2009

( -- European researchers have developed a small robotic drone capable of helping save lives in emergency situations or preventing terrorist attacks in urban areas.

Raytheon turns iPhones into battlefield tools

December 17, 2009

US defense contractor Raytheon on Wednesday unveiled the first of what it said will be a series of software applications to make iPhones or iPod touch devices into battlefield tools.

Eyes, ears of US military take shape in high-tech labs

November 18, 2010

A Global Hawk robotic plane, hovering more than 11 miles above Afghanistan, can snap images of Taliban hide-outs so crystal clear that U.S. intelligence officials can make out the pickup trucks parked nearby - and how long ...

Military tests usefulness of smart devices

September 27, 2011

As a Cobra attack helicopter pilot, Marine Capt. Jim "Hottie" Carlson was running support missions above Afghanistan last summer when it occurred to him that it was taking far too long to find where U.S. troops were under ...

Recommended for you

Drone market to hit $10 billion by 2024: experts

October 3, 2015

The market for military drones is expected to almost double by 2024 to beyond $10 billion (8.9 billion euros), according to a report published Friday by specialist defence publication IHS Jane's Intelligence Review.

Radio frequency 'harvesting' tech unveiled in UK

September 30, 2015

An energy harvesting technology that its developers say will be able to turn ambient radio frequency waves into usable electricity to charge low power devices was unveiled in London on Wednesday.

Professors say US has fallen behind on offshore wind power

September 29, 2015

University of Delaware faculty from the College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment (CEOE), the College of Engineering and the Alfred Lerner School of Business and Economics say that the U.S. has fallen behind in offshore wind ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.