As far back as 1916, drones have been flying by radio control. Surprised? Unfortunately (or not) the first models didn't quite live up to expectations. Still, you have to admit it was a big feat at the time.
Photo via Wikipedia
The first drone can be traced back to 1916 when British inventor Archibald Low (shown above) designed and flew the first unmanned radio-controlled vehicle. The drone was made to counterattack German Zeppelin airships, and it also carried out ground attacks during World War I. It was made with wood and tin, its wings taken from the lower wing of another biplane. Overall, the drone was somewhat unsuccessful because the noise from its engine interfered with its radio. The Sopwith Aircraft Company also tried making a drone in 1916. They placed the radio equipment at the tail so that the engine would not interfere with its signal, but their drone never flew as it was damaged in an accident on the ground. Low would try flying his drone again in 1917 when he flew it in front of some senior military officers. It was launched from the back of a lorry and flew for some time before crashing due to engine failure, almost killing the military officers present.
I can't help but wonder what Mr. Low would think if he saw what we are doing with drones today. Would he be happy to see what damage and destruction we can cause with a few drones, or would he take heart in the fact that it was designed as a defense weapon? Guess we will never know. Thanks to Listverse for this article!
Coffee out on the patio this morning. Watch out for all the crazy Bluejays...!