Drone parachute system for safety below and to help save your falling UAV

Is this going to be a standard feature on drones in the future?
You’re flying your drone and for whatever reason it loses power and starts tumbling back to earth. Your investment will soon be broken into pieces when it hits the ground.
Now you wish you had something to slow its decent. Well there is a company out of Israel by the name of ParaZero that may have a solution. They have developed a parachute system for drones.

Beyond wanting to protect your investment in what could be thousands of dollars of drone hardware and camera equipment, a drone crashing on people and property could be another costly damage liability you might want to avoid.  There is a clear need to ensure that the increasing numbers of drones filling the skies don’t pose a danger to the people or property on the ground.

From private consumers and hobbyists to commercial applications of real estate, movie production, structure inspection and companies such as Amazon, Google, and Walmart looking at drone delivery services the safety of both people and property is a concern.  Redundant back-up systems for a safe landing would be nice. When one of these vehicles loses power you don’t want it falling on you from above … a softer parachute landing might be a better option.

ParaZero SafeAir

According to their March 2016 news release, ParaZero, a startup, has developed a safety solution for aerial systems such as UAV’s / drones.  See above video of ParaZero’s solution in action.

ParaZero has developed its SafeAir system, that includes an automatic parachute recovery system for drones that will not only protect and prevent injury of people and assets on the ground, but will also allow drone operators to protect their investment in expensive drone hardware.

According to the news release, “ParaZero has already partnered with leading manufacturers in the limited initial deployment of its system. Current users include Martin Jetpacks, DJI, as well as the Solo drone, produced by 3D Robotics.”

Here is what the product looks like …
ParaZero SafeAir product

A look at the SafeAir being deployed …
ParaZero SafeAir deployment

The ParaZero’s SafeAir recovery system includes a patented pyrotechnic parachute launcher, independent triggering, as well as other safety solutions for payload protection. Some of the features of their design are:

  • Quick Full Formation Deployment – the system uses a customized pyrotechnic device that actively deploys the parachute to its full formation in a fraction of a second which provides for deployment in low altitude situations, where other systems may not be able to fully deploy. The technology protects aerial systems of all shapes and sizes, including all UAV, UAS, and drone platforms.
  • Stand-Alone Auto Deployment System – the ParaZero does not rely on the drone’s own systems and sensors, but instead utilizes a complete stand-alone auto deployment system. Thus in the case of a loss of power or control, breach of flight envelope limits, penetration of GEO fencing, and other emergencies, the auto deployment system independently detects and automatically deploys the parachute.
  • Lightweight – the recovery system is made from composite lightweight materials.
  • Custom Design – Each system is custom made and embedded to fit the platform design, specs, and appearance of the aerial system. The safety solution can also be an independent add on, or dull integrated, according to the needs of the customers.

Don’t you wish you had a parachute for that time when …

Images and Source : News Release, ParaZero

Update: November 30, 2016
The drone parachute may very well be the future of drone systems.  In Japan, drone manufacturer ACSL has added a parachute to its new model drone for package delivery.  As part of a drone based delivery service being tested with Japan powerhouse ecommerce company Rakuten, ACSL has added the parachute because the drone was “designed with future flight over the sea and populated areas in mind, and as such has been equipped with a parachute to slow the speed of the fall in an emergency, offering a greater level of safety than conventional drones.”  Source: Rakuten Press Release