British Antarctic Survey Tests New Drone to Study Effects of Climate Change on Frozen Continent

A new autonomous drone designed to assist with researching the effects of climate change in Antarctica is being tested by the British Antarctic Survey, who said it could be a “major addition” to their scientific capability on the remote continent.

The drone, the result of a collaboration between the BAS and drone company Windracers, has flown over 720 km in recent weeks, the BAS said, “collecting scientific data” that could enable researchers to widen their research on climate change.

If the tests of the drone’s suitability for future use are successful, it would be a “major addition” to research in Antarctica, the BAS said.

This footage shows the drone flying over the BAS’s Rothera Research Station.

The BAS said that the drone is capable of taking off, flying, and landing safely with minimal ground operator oversight due to its “sophisticated autopilot system.” Credit: British Antarctic Survey via Storyful

Video transcript

- All stations, all stations. Wind Racer final to land runway 1-8. Wind Racer final to land runway 1-8.