Three years ago, scientists from the University of California in Santa Barbara presented the technology of “alternative X-ray” based on Wi-Fi. Since then, they have stepped forward and up, mastering 3D-scanning of objects. Hanging scanners on drones and developing new calculation algorithms, they learned how to build three-dimensional models of obstacles. And “see” what is behind them.
The essence of the technology is that the pair of drones synchronously moves along some obstacle, on both sides of it. One machine is equipped with Wi-Fi-emitter, and the second does not just receive a signal, and constantly measures its characteristics. When passing through obstacles, the signal damps – if you compare the dynamics of the process with the points on the object, you can calculate the location of the voids and obstacles inside it.
The accuracy of the measurement and the detailing of the model being built resemble the angular pixel “three-dimensional” games of the end of the last century. However, the technology works and is characterized by its cheapness and ease of use. In such areas as the study of architectural structures, the search for objects under the rubble, structural monitoring of structures.
Wi-Fi signal, in contrast to real X-rays, is much less harmful to living things. And the power consumption is lower than that of lidars, sonars and other types of space scanners. The use of programmable drones as a platform for the scanner gives the chance to quickly and easily glance to where not to deliver other cumbersome equipment. Continuous benefits, but Californians are not talking about commercial development.