Intel's Shooting Star light show drones make U.S. debut

Intel's Shooting Star light show drones make U.S. debut

Walt Disney Co (NYSE:DIS) and Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) have teamed up to create a light show that will feature about 300 drones flying in coordinated patterns. The display is sure to delight onlookers - even if it was likely inspired by research into drone swarms conducted by U.S. Navy technologists.

Weighing just over half a pound each, the quadcopters carry LED lights that can create more than 4 billion color combinations and can be programmed for any animation. But the real draw is that all 300 of the Shooting Star drones used in the show will be controlled from a single computer. For the most part, Global Positioning System works just fine to get a drone from one place to another, but the technology faces challenges when it comes to getting drones close enough to a structure to capture high resolution images. "By combining our technological capabilities, we will be able to light up the sky this holiday season".

In August, the FAA released drone rules for commercial operators.

"Starbright Holidays - An Intel Collaboration" marks the first time a show-drone performance of this scale has ever been performed in the United States.

Except for its weight, which is similar to a volleyball, Intel has not provided comprehensive hardware details for the Shooting Star drone.

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Josh Walden, GM of Intel's New Technology Group said, "Our drones, together with Disney's expertise in animation as well as storytelling, and the music score, together make what we think is going to be a groundbreaking form of entertainment". The drone show will be at the Disney Springs entertainment district. The drone light show is Disney's alternative to the usual fireworks show.

When combining the cutting-edge technology from Intel and the limitless creativity from Disney, the two companies were able to rethink what's possible and create an incredible new entertainment experience.

It is half of the distance required for the original Shooting Star drones used before that needs three meters. With the improved software and interface, a light show can now be done in a matter of days, instead of weeks or months.

As part of safety caution, the drones will be about 200 yards away from the audience.

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