.CSIRO, a research organisation in Australia just released information about a new UAV called the Mantis.

Quote from the press release: “Australian scientists have developed a ‘brain’, which enables the production of a world-first low-cost, intelligent small helicopter, set to end many difficult and dangerous tasks undertaken by humans.”

On the site there is a video link to watch it in action.

SMH reports that ‘Within a decade armies of tiny helicopter drones will monitor traffic, inspect buildings for maintenance problems, map bushfires, look for faults in powerlines, and join search-and-rescue missions.’

This is all well and good for most of the world, but they could be looking at patent infringement from Airborne Autonomous Systems who’s utility patent on what they call the SFD covers functionality of a Flight Director (whether or not it’s called AI) in an unmanned aircraft.

Regardless, though, the FAA has made it clear before that commercial UAVs must not have exposed rotor blades, so it is unlikely that something like this will ever be sold or used in America