The flying history of drones

The history of drones is full of interesting episodes

The history of drones is full of interesting episodes

Bulgaria becomes a pioneer for the Balkans with the exhibition brand INTER DRONE EXPO, which Inter Expo Center and the International Drone Exhibition Consortium will implement from October 20 to 23.

Maybe someone is at a concert now. Another – at a friend’s wedding. A firefighter saves lives, a scientist measures air pollution, a farmer maps his land, and you receive mail. Do you know what unites you? The drones. These gadgets, entering more and more into everyday life, simply because they can do many things, deserve proper attention. So we tell their intriguing story.

If today we are at the beginning of the “Golden Age” for these gadgets, we should be aware that the road to get here has been quite, indeed, long. There are many answers to the question “What is a drone?”. We like this one: “A drone is an unmanned aircraft or craft controlled by remote control or an on-board computer.” Precise, short and clear.

The beginning

The concept of drones was born in 1849. Austria attacks Venice with over 200 unmanned balloons rigged with explosives; one reaches its goal.

50 years later, the concept of the quadcopter – perhaps the most mainstream today – was born. The invention of 1907 is the fruit of the minds and hands of the brothers Jacques and Louis Breget (the yes-creator of Air France). They are assisted by the French physiologist and Nobel laureate Prof. Charles Richet. Although it reaches a height of only 60 cm in flight, the machine marks the beginning of a major branch in aviation.

The military industry first noticed the potential of drones. During the First World War, the first unmanned aircraft with radio guidance was constructed – the Ruston Proctor Aerial Target. After the end of the global conflict, the industry developed rapidly, and Edward Sorensen registered a patent for his invention with a ground terminal tracking aircraft movements. The outbreak of World War II sends the world reeling; the German Fau-1 was created. The first cruise missile has an autopilot with a guidance system. Only ten years later, in the Vietnam War, humanity first heard of drones with cameras used for reconnaissance purposes.

The supporting environment of the 20th century

Let’s pay tribute to the 60s of the 20th century! A great decade in which man first stepped into outer space and set foot on the moon. And the technologies are already advanced enough, increasingly compact and affordable. It’s time for drones to enter commercial life. The creation of devices that even an ordinary person can operate begins.

Kits are appearing on the market that anyone can assemble and direct with a remote control. Lovers unite in clubs and… Voilà! The doors to the wide world of drones are wide open. However, there is little time before they are wide open. Hardly anyone thought that they would one day be the center of public attention and the focus of specialized events such as INTER DRONE EXPO – the exhibition that Inter Expo Center and the International Drone Exhibition Consortium will organize in Sofia from October 20 to 23.

The beginning of the Golden Age

For one reason or another, until the beginning of the new millennium, drone technology was developed primarily in the military and entertainment industries. Only in 2006 In the US, the first permit to own a drone for commercial purposes was issued. And since then, nimble unmanned machines, at first clumsily, and then – more and more rapidly, enter our field of vision. Originally seen as cool gaming gadgets, today….

Today, drones are used everywhere. They are an integral part of the equipment when fighting fires, conducting rescue and search operations. They are used for mapping, imaging, science, wildlife and environmental protection, security and police. Giving an opportunity to look from another perspective, drones are on every movie set. They are an integral part of every festival, concert or wedding and where else. Global companies are just a step away from launching their deliveries with unmanned machines. In May of this year, the Bulgarian company Dronamix received permission for cargo flights with its Black Swon transport drone.

The development of technologies and their implementation in our daily life draws a more than promising future for drones. In the US alone, as of May of this year, nearly 900,000 of these machines were registered (according to the F.A.A.). Until 2024 statistics predict a doubling of drones for commercial use. On the other hand, the expectations are that the value of the global market will exceed 8.15 billion dollars in 2022, and at the end of the decade will reach nearly 48 billion dollars.

Because of everything written so far, we can safely conclude: The general public will increasingly feel the benefits of drones, the applications of which we will discover in the large-scale business forums emerging around the world. And Bulgaria can be proud of being a pioneer in this field as well. Because thanks to INTER DRONE EXPO, from October 20 to 23, it will be the first country in the Balkans to develop an exhibition brand dedicated to drones and unmanned aerial vehicles.