Weekend Roundup: July 10, 2020

This Week (and last week) in the Unmanned Systems and Robotics World

Parrot has made several announcements over the last few weeks. Last week, the company announced the launch of its ANAFI USA drone, which is designed for first responders and enterprise professionals. This week, the company announced partnerships with Hoverseen and the Airborne International Response Team (AIRT), respectively.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis recently signed several environmental bills. One of the bills will allow the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the Florida Forest Service to use drones to manage and eradicate invasive species on public lands. (News4Jax)

In collaboration with Ava Robotics, researchers from MIT have developed a UVC light-equipped robot that is designed to keep shared spaces free of the coronavirus and other pathogens. The robot can travel through and disinfect spaces autonomously. (Engadget)

A new internship program has launched at Oklahoma State University’s Unmanned Systems Research Institute. A $25,000 research grant will support up to 12 OSU student internships scheduled to run from June to Aug. 15. (The Oklahoman)

Pudu Technology, a robotics research and development startup based in Shenzhen, China, has announced that it has raised more than $15 million in funding. The company will use the funds to develop new products, expand sales, and explore markets overseas. (VentureBeat)

Chinese autonomous vehicle startup WeRide has announced that it has become the first autonomous company to start fully driverless vehicle testing in China. Backed by Nissan, Renault and Mitsubishi, the three-year-old company began tests on Wednesday, July 8 on open roads in a designated area of Guangzhou after the southern Chinese city granted permission. (Automotive News)

Mountain View-based Wisk has quietly been working on autonomous air taxis that it says will allow commuters to skip the traffic with short-range flights soaring over jammed highways. The company has developed a 21-foot-long airplane that can carry up to two passengers. The prototype model has undergone more than 1,000 test flights. (Mountain View Voice)

An autonomous driving startup from Hungary called AImotive is leveraging its technology to help with autonomous satellite operation. AImotive will work with satellite and space-based technologies supplier C3S to develop a hardware platform for performing AI operations onboard satellites. (TechCrunch)

The Chula Vista Police Department in Chula Vista, California has become the first police department in the U.S. to receive approval from the FAA to fly its drones beyond line-of-sight. The department has purchased the American-made Skydio drones for these flights. (CBS News 8)

Virginia Tech researchers at the Center for Marine Autonomy and Robotics have partnered with Dive Technologies to support the development and testing of a novel AUV with innovative vehicle design and state-of-the-art control, software, and autonomy systems. (The Roanoke Star)