Target Hunting UAV Armed With Fireworks

Don’t just build a UAV, use it to blow things up. In this case a tri-copter seeks out colored balloons and pops them using low-grade fireworks. We’ve seen this type of flying armament before, but not in a ‘copter form factor. It looks like the targeting and firing is done by an operator, and is not an automated system despite what the text overlays on the video after the break says. The lack of autonomous firing capability makes this delightful, rather than scary. Don’t miss the build log for the tri-copter itself. How do you think this one stacks up to the last 3-bladed build?

[via Engadget]

39 thoughts on “Target Hunting UAV Armed With Fireworks

  1. i love how were at the point of hackery that no longer large governments or corporations can make anything they want now some guy in his garage can make anything they want with a little knowledge and an internet connection XD

  2. haha, If my little son wouldn’t be asleep I’d LOL! Good job manouvring between the trees by the way! Looks like the stationary gun has some cool movement detection (that goes berserk by his own fire anyway)

  3. @Odin
    If it’s illegal then apply for a weapon manufacturer license. In some countries with a long military industry history they usually hand out permits/licenses like candy. Even to civilians. All in the name to promote innovations and help the little guy starting his own weapon manufacturing plant.

  4. @ Gnu

    You don’t know what you’re talking about. The process involved in getting a Class 2 SOT from the BATFE is insanely intimidating.

    It’s corporate plutocracy at it’s worst. Corporations use government to prevent competition by writing the regulations.

    @ Gilliam

    Hi, nice to meet you. Just like in the comic books, as a tortured genius polymath my drinking problems impede my success.

    An example of a cool weapons technology that doesn’t exist because of the BATFE: MG47 conversion of a Saiga 12 using a PKM parts kit.

    That’s just small arms. While the army finances grenade launchers that shoot iphones from a ruggedized PS3, you could accomplish virtually the same thing using RFID, a 555 timer, and replacing the fuses on plain old surplus M203 40MM rounds. Ditch the overpriced unreliable optics. Make it recoil operated and use a linear potentiometer in the stock to set the timers. You could even fine tune the velocity by using compressed air instead of gunpowder. They want a portable mortar and are buying a patriot missile.

    The human eye and brain are still way ahead of PID/servo/computer vision boondoggles in terms of return on investment, so it’s stupid to use platinum when silver get’s the job done.

    Aerospace is even more disgusting in it’s complacency. If rockets were piloted by volunteers instead of “priceless” astronaut celebrities, we could utilize economies of scale and russian manufacturing techniques like explosive forming to greatly increase our presence in space. If you put acceptable safety and comfort at the sweet point on the curve of dimenishing returns, we would get a lot more bang for our buck.

    If the NRC weren’t a bunch of panty waist bitches then we could back off on our insane overkill nuclear regulations and we’d have limitless access to energy and therefore rocket fuel by hydro-cracking water.

    The regenerative cooling process involved in cryogenic cooling those gases to liquid is child’s play and the technology is virtually identical to a home refrigerator.

    Since the only barrier to uranium mining is the energy expense of pulling it out of the ocean & enriching it, the most significant obstacles are regulatory based in paranoia.

    Nuclear power plants should be automated and placed on the bottom of the Mariana Trench where the insane high pressures would aid in containment(and storing liquid hydrogen). They would also facilitate the reaction and it’s efficiency by reducing the critical mass.

    By using thermal electric generators, we can cut costs on turbine construction, as well as increasing state of the art battery energy density to disruptive technology level.

    Plutonium-238 or Strontium-90, pick your poison. If the private sector got to play with the toys that NASA keeps to themselves, our society would be a Utopian Paradise.

    Oh yeah, fuck the smart grid and these bullshit wind mills. They would be cheaper to build as vertical turbines first off, and it’s fucking retarded to use an electric generator to power a water pump to store energy as hydro-electric.

    You can make a vertical wind turbine out of two water pumps, a car alternator, a water tower(called a hill), some conduit, steel cable, and PVC pipe.

    Rockets are bullshit too, but I won’t discredit the alternative by giving it my endorsement.

    The transmission grid is old-tech.

    Magnesium Diboride liquid hydrogen pipelines would serve triple functionality as a lossless transport of electricity, internal combustion engine/scram jet/pulse jet/fuel cell/rocket fuel, as well as having a modest perk of functioning as super conducting maglev infrastructure.

    Flying car? Piece of cake, but I’m keeping that one to myself until I’ve built one.

    Yeah, for the record: I’m unemployed and can’t afford college because FAFSA says my expected family contribution is 10 fold my parents monthly disposable income. I can’t keep a job flipping burgers because of depression related to the former.

    God Bless America. When I invent the flying car you’ll have to buy a plane ticket to buy one, cause I’ll never export to the land of opportunity(for everyone but me) or any other country for that matter. I’ll sell them to individuals “based on financial need”.

    I need a drink.

  5. @Rob

    I wish I was high, I’d rather be delusional than right and impotent to bring about change.

    The good news is, if it turns out I’m oblivious to my delusions, then when the nice men with a white coat come to take me away I’ll be content and have some peace in knowing I was wrong.

    I must be wrong, if I was capable of building a flying car I wouldn’t be commenting on Hackaday right?

  6. @Tony, actually much of what you said is actually very interesting. It is just a bit intense and broad for a HaD comment, which does not even get indexed by Google and will quickly get buried to unsearchable depths in the HaD archives (even faster now with multiple posts per day). Perhaps you could expand on your ideas (with references and links) in a blog, sorted by topic rather than jumbled together.

  7. @Necromant

    It’s interesting because the problems that the Wright Brothers solved were significant. They were able to make do with such terrible engine technology because they made unprecedented breakthroughs in airfoil efficiency.

    At the same time, energy density and specific power had advanced to the necessary point to make flight possible.

    All this considered, their flight lasted 59 seconds traveling only 852 feet.

    Since then, there have been incredible advances in specific power, specific impulse, fuel efficiency, ect. Jet propulsion and turbo fans.

    The problem with flying cars is lack of imagination. Folding wings do not a viable transportation infrastructure make. People think that the answer is buried in Material Science or NASA’s Jet Research Laboratory.

    All I want to do is use existing technology in a new way. It’s kind of sobering that no one else has thought of it before me. Nearly 100 years humanity has had to figure it out, and I’m the first one to think of it? No wonder I’m so lonely.

  8. @Rob

    I might just do that some day soon. Only if I don’t think I can bootstrap my way to Iron Man status though.

    After all, persuasion is for when you can’t build a demonstration yourself without financing.

  9. I’d like to applaud Rob Wentworth for asking for a clarification in the politest way possible and not also mentioning the weed, which I’m pretty sure is the culprit here too.


  10. @strider

    Everything you need to know about nuclear power you can find on slashdot and wikipedia.

    Most everything I listed is old news waiting on the price of electricity to fall. If the price of electricity was 1/10 what it is right now, all sorts of cool shit would be happening. Nuclear could do it. It won’t happen. Makes me sad.

  11. @Tony, there is a huge amount of electricity stored in scrap Aluminum, which IS only 1/10th the cost it was a couple of years ago.

    Aluminum is the actual power source of “water fueled” cars from decades back. After extracting hydrogen by oxidizing Aluminum with water and a catalyst (mercury or , the Aluminum Oxide at the bottom of the fuel tank can be sent back to be recharged by refining it again with huge amounts of electricity.

    There is a huge amount of FUD about “water-fueled cars”, but there are also recent “aluminum/water battery” patents using Gallium to replace mercury. Here is an DIY Aluminum/Gallium video:

    Alumium/Gallium batteries last a very long time, but require a continous source of water “fuel” to generate hydrogen. The battery absorbs oxygen from the water and releases hydrogen to power the car. Because the only short-term consumable is water, the car appears to be a water-fueled car.

    References: read the bit about mercury-aluminum here:

    Some old aluminum/water power supplies mechanically scraped off the aluminum oxide.

    If you want electriciy that is 1/10th the cost, start investing in cheap scrap aluminum. ;-)

  12. I just posted a comment about how to get electriciy at 1/10th the current cost, but because I included references (multiple URLs), it is “awaiting moderation”.

    Why does HaD discourage commenters who backup their claims by including multiple references, by requiring moderation?

    Also, why do included youtube links sometimes appear as embedded video and other times just show as a URL?

    I suppose it could by some sort of misguided SPAM prevention… ;-(

  13. @Tony, here is more on cheap power:

    Pure aluminum does not exist in nature and requires HUGE amounts of electricity to refine it. That is why aluminum is usually refined near a dedicated hydroelectric dam. In essence, pure aluminum is a HUGE energy storage medium, and scrap aluminum is going for 1/10th its previous value during the current economic down cycle.

    So, maybe instead of Iron Man, we need Aluminum (powered) Man?

  14. @Tony, what they keep secret in the following video is that water is NOT the fuel, but rather the consumable transfer medium to extract energy from aluminum, which only needs to be replaced after it gets converted to aluminum oxide sludge in the bottom of the tank:

    Keeping the aluminum battery secret and claiming that water is the power source rather than the transfer medium is why this technology often gets misclassified amongst perpetual motion crackpot claims.

    Refined Aluminum is a highly efficient energy storage medium to transport hydroelectric energy from the dam to the remote hydrogen engine, which has been know for many decades, but this has been obfuscated by the “water powered car” claims surrounding it.

    After aluminum regains it REAL value, it will no longer be a cheap source of stored energy. Now is the time to buy aluminum for any “Iron Man” projects that need a lot of cheap energy.

    I do not own aluminum, but I would love to have an investment portfolio built around scrap aluminum. ;-)

  15. In previous comment please replace “transfer medium to extra energy” with “transfer medium to extract energy”.

    HaD comment spell-checker does not correct errors in grammar when a typo creates an erroneous but valid word.

    P.S. Sorry about the lengthy off-topic continuation of Tony Stark’s comment. Perhaps this should be moved to the HaD forum?

  16. I don’t really see where all you folks are coming from, calling Tony a pothead or saying his posts are incomprehensible. He’s making a lot of good points, and you’d do well to actually read them. The “invention plutocracy” in America is a genuine problem; nearly all of the non-trivial things you can work on are regulated to hell and back; I can’t build a nuclear reactor or a rocket, design a radio or a drug, or build a car, gun, or bomb, without thugs from five different government agencies breaking down my door and probably shooting me dead. Not to mention all the things I can’t build simply because of the lack of parts available to non-corporations: ever try to build a modern laptop from scratch, anyone?

    Of course, all of those things involve actual work, not just gluing wires to a 555 timer and calling it a day, so I can see why none of you understand.

  17. IMHO Eugene Potlenkov was right.
    Only explanation for the cover-up over the gravitational reduction effect from spinning superconducting disks with current flow.
    I theorise that there was some chance impurity in the YBCO 1-2-3 disks he made which made it all work, but that particular information is under wraps.

    Needless to say, NASA and others “tried” to make it work and failed because they did not know the secret.
    Instant “oh look another fake antigravity pseudoscience nutter” syndrome, and the technology gets “lost” in Area S-4 or elsewhere.
    In the meantime the world gets back to wasting fossil fuels and chasing terrorists.

    FWIW I am very close to duplicating this effect so if anyone is interested let me know…
    (hint:- silver nanoparticles made from standard cheap and easy to obtain materials!)

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