Drone-mounted streaming system provides real-time video

By Patrick C. Miller | April 08, 2019

Triangle UAS LLC has launched a drone-mounted real-time video streaming system to enhance situational awareness during disaster or accident response, search and rescue operations and law enforcement activities.

Located in Raleigh, North Carolina, Triangle UAS is a provider of unmanned aircraft system services and technology. The company said its new streaming solution offers first responders, public safety officials and smart cities a method of providing real-time video streaming from a drone to remote operators or an emergency operations center via a secure internet connection.

“When developing this streaming solution, our goal was to create a user-friendly, cost-effective real-time video streaming system that delivers superior performance compared to currently available solutions,” said Taylor Kerby, president and founder of Triangle UAS. “Previous drone video systems employed SD cards to store recorded video, which then had to be removed and delivered to the emergency operations center, causing delays.”

Kerby noted that most current video streaming technologies are limited to distances of about one and can introduce latency or delay in the video signal. With the Triangle UAS system, the video streams with a latency of 500 milliseconds or less, he explained. “Many of the existing systems do not offer secure access and involve bulky hardware that comes with a high price tag,” Kerby said.

The Triangle UAS streaming solution consists of a compact, lightweight device that connects directly to the controller of a video-enabled drone to encode and transmit the video stream to the internet by 4G or Wi-Fi networks. This enables video to be viewed in real time on multiple screens at emergency operations centers or by authorized third-party users through a secure Internet connection.

In addition to the hardware device, there's a custom server software platform and a mobile and web-based app supporting secure access for hundreds of viewers. It provides customizable privileges and the ability to record all incoming streams from multiple video sources. The new streaming solution will also support video from conventional video cameras and smartphones.

According to Kerby, the streaming solution is anticipated for deployment in several application areas related to “smart city” technologies, including public safety, search and rescue, emergency management, disaster response, utility and infrastructure inspections, as well as for media outlets streaming video for live news.