Guiding light: Skoltech technology puts a light-painting drone at your fingertips

Skoltech researchers have designed and developed an interface that allows a user to direct a small drone to light-paint patterns or letters through hand gestures. The new interface, DroneLight, can be used in distant communications, entertainment, and even search and rescue: https://youtu.be/SdnIqLjtGeU. The paper was published on the preprint server arXiv.org and presented at IEEE International Conference on Robot & Human Interactive Communication (IEEE RO_MAN 2020).

Drones are becoming ubiquitous both in industrial and consumer applications, and engineers are working on ways to make human-drone interaction as natural and reliable as possible. Yet, as the paper notes, “up to now, the available technologies have not made it possible to control drones intuitively without special training and additional control equipment.”

“Flight control is a challenging task as user has to manipulate with the joystick to stabilize and navigate drones. Only a very skillful operator can maintain

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