There’s a new entry in the book of excessively dangerous things to do with drones – and Johnny Dronehunter beware: chainsaw drone is coming for revenge. More Robot Wars than Evil Dead: it’s a drone equipped with a chainsaw.
It’s a mixed verdict. Pros: you can have an aerial saw, precisely chopping down trees, at speed, without a man on ladder. Cons: you have a highly mobile, aerial chainsaw flying around.
Gizmodo speculates that the video may be an April Fools’ prank… but with an eight-bladed UAV hoisting the chainsaw around, it does look pretty real (#killerdrone, obviously). Things it can do include chopping icicles and killing snowmen. Things it can’t quite handle include balloons.
If made safe, there are evidently a lot of practical applications that the drone could put to – being a lumberjack remains one of the most dangerous jobs in the world after all, which might not be the case if the operator is never within a mile of the trees. It also suggests at other ways that a flying arm could come in handy (painting, window cleaning, rescuing kittens etc), with the only limitations being weight and (significantly) flight time. Nevertheless, as an all-too-real sci-fi menace, this is just the kind of thing to horrify domestic security agents, justifiably fearing sabotage, robotic burglary and terrorism (or a combination of all three). On the other side of the law, US police are already looking at using armed drones carrying non-lethal weapons that could include sound cannons, tear gas, tasers, pepper spray and rubber bullets.
Previously in the book of excessively dangerous things to do with a drone – adding a flamethrower to a quadcopter:
While it might be roasting the ‘holiday turkey’, this is the kind of thing that gives legislators convulsions. And the turkey has not come out well at all.