French start-up Airvada has just developed a drone with inflatable arms that makes it fold up into less than eight inches of space. The drone is only 0.44 pounds which places it under the FAA’s 0.55 pound limit to register the drone. The Diadone drone also has a larger version that is 0.88 pounds and an even larger one at 3.3 pounds—all of them are inflatable. The drone is able to inflate in 20 seconds, thanks to CO2 cartridges and can be deflated and packed away in 60 seconds.
The drone’s inflatable arms allow it to land on water and easily fly in the rain. Even though the drone is light it has a flight time of around 20 minutes. The drone is not yet in the market and no pricing is available.
The question Drone Dossier has is how well will this drone perform in windy conditions? Will it blow away? Will gusts cause its inflated arms to bend and destabilize its flight?
We would also like a chance to see what kind of material the inflatable arms are made out of to see if they can be easily damaged. The Diadon drones are a cool idea and we are going to keep an eye on if Airvada can make them a commercial reality.