Parrot AR.Drone

The Parrot AR.Drone is a remote controlled quadricopter from the French manufacturer Parrot SA.

The drone can a mobile app that is available for Apple iOS and Android are available to be controlled by the user.

Design and development

The AR.Drone was first presented at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in 2010. There she won the CES Innovations Award for Electronic Gaming Hardware. At CES in Las Vegas 2012, Parrot in front of the second version of the drone. This provides, among others, an improved camera and more sensors.

At CES 2013 Parrot announced new features for the drone. So a flight recorder was introduced. This has a GPS module to flights in 3D display and to enable autonomous flights. In addition, the device has 4GB memory for video. It was also announced a new 50 % more powerful battery. The app will be revised and better movies and edit videos allow.

Using Wi -Fi may be the aircraft with an app that is available for smartphones and tablet PCs with the operating systems Apple iOS or Android, are connected to and controlled and sends in parallel images of the two cameras on the device. Furthermore, several unofficial apps for bada, Symbian and Windows Phone are available.

Free Flight

Free Flight is the name of the app that controlled the drone and videos can be recorded. The thus-recorded videos and photos can be instantly shared with the software on YouTube and Picasa.

In addition, it has been an update of the app possible in July 2012 to compete with other owners of the AR.Drone on the so-called AR.Drone Academy. The social network can be used directly from within the app.

Technical specifications

The capabilities of drone include 3D ​​environment recognition, compatibility for AR games and applications a vertical meters for controlled hovering in the wind.

The shell is made ​​of expanded polypropylene. The four engines are each attached to carbon fiber tubes.

Sensors and inertial navigation unit

AR.Drone has several sensors, which are mounted under the fuselage. This includes a micro- system-based miniaturized inertial navigation unit. This allows maneuvers, such as pitch, roll and yaw.

Other inertia knives are responsible for the automatic stabilization of the maneuvers and assisted tilt control. This realistic AR effects are produced. The ultrasonic telemetry allows height measurement and automatic altitude stabilization and assisted speed control.

Games with augmented reality

For the AR.Drone optionally by the manufacturer five games provided. Below that is a multi-player battle simulation called AR.FlyingAce and AR.Rescue, a single-player game in which must be fought against aliens.

The manufacturer took its developer platform AR.Drone API in operation to help studios and developers in developing games for the drone.

Research and Education

Since the aircraft is to obtain low cost, a wide range of sensors offers and is provided with an open programming interface, the AR.Drone is increasingly popular as a platform for research and training. It has already been used for experiments with visual autonomous navigation, machine learning, autonomous surveillance, human-machine interaction and even as a Training Assistant.


Occupy Wall Street complainant Tim Pool configured one of the devices, which was described by him as Occucopter, for the purpose of monitoring the police by citizens. He tried to get a stable live feed to allow 50 people at the same time control of the device. Once the police would notice this control by a computer, they could stop this though, the control, however, would automatically switch to another person. Using a mobile radio standards (such as LTE) it would even be possible to control such a drone from another country. This would greatly expand the possibilities of a violation of privacy.