Major breakthrough: IIIT Hyderabad scientist develops drone that can handle packets of varying shape, size

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April 07, 2021 12:57 PM

Suraj Bonagiri who developed 'Elasticopter' said that any forcible fitting and carrying inappropriate payloads can make a drone inefficient, unstable and can even compromise with the safety.

The UAV has also been designed in such a way that it does not experience any mid-air turbulence during its flight. (Representative image)

In a major breakthrough, a team of researchers from the International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad (IIIT-H) has been able to develop an innovative unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) which has adjustable arms that help it to pick packets of different sizes and shapes. Named ‘Elasticopter’, the drone vehicle has been developed by 24 year-old Suraj Bonagiri from the Robotics Research Center (RRC), IIIT-H, the Indian Express reported. Understood to be a big breakthrough in the evolution of drone technology, the UAV is also undergoing through the process of patent.

One of the biggest factors behind the latest innovation was the limitations of existing delivery drones which can adjust to the variations in size but ignore the crucial aspect of the shape of the packet which is to be delivered. Suraj Bonagiri who developed ‘Elasticopter’ told the Indian Express that any forcible fitting and carrying inappropriate payloads can make a drone inefficient, unstable and can even compromise with the safety. In contrast the UAV developed by Suraj and other researchers is a rectangular shaped drone that has been designed with four propellers and a flexible chassis which is capable of expansion and collapse in accordance with the packet size/shape. The UAV has also been designed in such a way that it does not experience any mid-air turbulence during its flight.

Prof. Prakash Yalla, who is the Technology Transfer Officer (TTO) and Head of Product Labs, IIIT-H told the Indian Express that the innovation is path breaking and the quadcopter is a drone vehicle people had been thinking about for long. Explaining the unique trait of the device that makes the UAV truly path breaking, Prof Yalla said that apart from being able to move in all directions and capable of holding packages of all sizes, the drone vehicle can also expand and contract as per the need of the package without compromising with its stability.

Professor of Co-Innovation, heading the Research/Innovation outreach at IIIT-H Ramesh Loganathan told the Indian Express that Suraj’s design is the culmination of 2 years’ work and research on ‘pick and place’ drones had been going on at the institute for years at the Robotic Research Center, IIIT-H

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