Fire-Starting Drones May Help Protect People And Environment

The drone technology is modeled on existing ignition balls used by firefighting agencies. (Photo by Ariana Brocious, NET News)

by Ariana Brocious, NET News

You’ve heard about drones – unmanned aircraft – being used for everything from military attacks to documentary filming. Now, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is designing one to light fires, in a way that helps protect people and the environment.

On a warm spring morning, a burn crew dressed in yellow and green flame-resistant clothing gets ready to set 26 acres of tallgrass prairie on fire.

“This tallgrass prairie is actually the second oldest restored prairie in the nation and the oldest restored prairie within the National Parks Service,” said Mark Engler, park superintendent at Homestead National Monument of America near Beatrice, Nebraska.

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