Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute begins developing drones to fight wildfires

After the skies were hazy last summer in Pittsburgh and other cities across the country, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute began developing drones to combat wildfires.

Andrew Jong, a recent graduate with a master’s degree in robotics, is now pursuing his Ph.D and said that autonomous drones could help firefighters with situational awareness of wildfires, especially being able to see through dense smoke – one of the many challenges they are faced with when these rapid fires happen.

“The situation on the ground can evolve in a matter of minutes,” Jong said. “Better real-time information on wildfires could improve firefighting tactics, contribute to a deeper understanding of fire science, and save the lives of firefighters and others caught in the fire’s path.”

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