Drones today are being proposed for everything from flying cars to autonomous last-mile delivery systems. Autonomous vehicles that can take off, safely perform a mission beyond the observation of a human operator and return and land back on their takeoff pad without any human intervention are the future of commercial UAVs. Delivery drones have become a particularly hot area of development, with a future dream of armies of small flying drones delivering everything from life-saving medicines, defibrillators and life preservers to run-of-the-mill packages. What if instead of delivering packages, we built drones that could do the reverse – cleaning up trash? As AI software capable of autonomously identifying trash improves, could we actually built fleets of pollution cleaning drones?
Most of the development work to date on autonomous pollution cleaning drones has focused on the ocean, collecting plastics, fishing nets