Amazon Files Patent For Drone That Pulls Skiers

Amazon Files Patent For Drone That Pulls Skiers

Skiing

Amazon Files Patent For Drone That Pulls Skiers

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“While there are various known uses for unmanned aerial vehicles, certain techniques for controlling the unmanned aerial vehicles are relatively limiting with respect to other uses. For example, current hand-operated remote controls for automated aerial vehicles are not conducive to users being able to operate the remote controls while simultaneously utilizing their hands for other purposes.” –June 2016 Patent Filing

Looks like Amazon might be making a play to break into the uphill transportation business if you take a look at this patent they filed back in June 2016 that was approved on the 18th of August. Amazon’s idea is focused on the interface between an automated drone system and the user. It includes features that would allow a user to summon the drone to their location. Once there, the drone would detect and avoid obstacles in the travel path of a user and/or tow line:

“For example, when a user is snow skiing in a mountainous area, a designated travel area may be determined that avoids cliffs or other dangerous areas.”

There you have it, one of the biggest companies in the world has a patent claim on how drones might be used to transport skiers in the future. Kind of dystopian but if it takes big backers to make large scale projects like commercial drone skiing possible, Amazon is at the top of the food chain.

Description:
A towing system is provided that includes a tow control handle that is attached by a tow line to an unmanned aerial vehicle (“UAV”) for towing a user. The tow control handle may include various control elements (e.g., sensors, buttons, switches, rotatable portions, etc.) which may be actuated by a user to provide control signals that are utilized for controlling various aspects of the flight of the UAV (e.g., direction, speed, etc.) A user device that is worn or otherwise carried by the user enables the user to summon the UAV to the user’s location when a towing process is to begin and/or when a user is to re-acquire the tow control handle (e.g., after the user releases the tow control handle during the towing process, etc.)

Description BACKGROUND

Unmanned aerial vehicles are continuing to increase in use. For example, unmanned aerial vehicles are often used for surveillance. There is also discussion of electronic-commerce retailers, and other entities, delivering items directly to a user’s home using unmanned aerial vehicles. While there are various known uses for unmanned aerial vehicles, certain techniques for controlling the unmanned aerial vehicles are relatively limiting with respect to other uses. For example, current hand-operated remote controls for automated aerial vehicles are not conducive to users being able to operate the remote controls while simultaneously utilizing their hands for other purposes.

….here’s a preview of what drone skiing might look like: 

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