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Giving drones better feet so they can rest atop nearby structures

March 14, 2019 / Bob Yirka

A team of researchers with members from the U.S., China and Sweden has developed a new kind of foot landing structure for drones to allow them to perch on nearby structures. In their paper published in the journal Science Robotics, the group describes their new landing gear and why it could be useful.
One of the most frustrating characteristics of drones is their limited flight time. Battery technology has improved greatly in the past several years, making drones useful. But it is still not enough. Enthusiasts want them to last for hours, not minutes. In this new effort, the researchers have come up with a way to extend battery life that does not rely on battery improvements-instead, they have developed a way to allow a drone to rest during part of its mission so that it only uses its battery in flight.