Aerobotic Tech Team Twente (A3T), the newest student team at the University of Twente, will use one of the drones that they have built themselves to help aid workers in the African country of Malawi. They have been asked by Transport4Transport, a non-profit organisation that provides bicycle ambulances for developing villages, to map the areas surrounding those villages. The team will be visiting Malawi between 9 May and 17 May.
The maps that Transport4Transport currently uses are out of date. Malawi has also been suffering from severe flooding, which means that the lie of the land is constantly changing due to the surplus of water. Many houses have been washed away in recent years, and new ones have been built in different locations. The updated maps will help development organisations such as Transport4Transport to locate more villages and reach more people with aid, which they sometimes need urgently.
In addition to producing more up-to-date maps of Malawi, the Twente drone team is also committed to supplying medicines to flood-stricken areas. To do this, the team will conduct test flights using a newly developed drone. The drone will have a carbon-fibre frame and rotors that can be tilted. The tilting rotors will enable it to take off vertically and then fly horizontally, all with the efficiency of an aircraft.
Teaching local communities about drones
In order to make a long-term success of the use of drones in development aid, it is important that the people of Malawi are able to operate the drones themselves. So the Twente team will also be organising drone workshops in Malawi. The workshops are being developed in collaboration with Space53 and are part of a longer-term plan, the ultimate goal of which is to enable local communities to make and maintain drones themselves.
Aerobotic Tech Team Twente (A3T) needs your support to make these projects in Malawi a success. The team has launched a crowdfunding campaign for this purpose. You can read more about this at https://www.hulputwente.nl/project/aerobotic-tech-team-twente- a3t / donors
About Aerobotic Tech Team Twente (A3T)
A3T is one of the University of Twente’s six student teams. It’s a group of 25 multidisciplinary and international students who work with enthusiasm and dedication on developing and building drones. The team is involved in a number of different projects, ranging from security and logistics to humanitarian missions and spectacular drone races.
This article was first published 5 February 2020 by University of Twente.