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World Buckle up: Cambodian students build manned drone to aid community

05:20  21 september  2021
05:20  21 september  2021 Source:   reuters.com

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"The drone , when we see it flying without a pilot, there is a lot of shaking but when I sit on it and fly it becomes more stable and I feel so excited," said Lonh Vannsith, 21, the pilot of the drone . "We wanted to solve some problems for our society by making a taxi drone and inventing drones for firefighters," he said It took three years of research and development and cost around ,000 to build . While the team hopes it will eventually fly far higher, when manned the drone currently only rises to as much as 4 metres (13.1 feet). The project faced delays because of lockdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic

But here in Cambodia Town, not many are going to school.” Ripple effect. In the early 1960s, CSULB hosted more than 100 Cambodian students seeking to acquire industrial skills, as part of a student exchange program. Many of the students came from affluent homes, where their parents worked as government diplomats or urban professionals. Cambodian -Americans have too few resources when it comes to learning about college and programs such as financial aid that can help them enroll and graduate, Ly says. Often young people see gangs as a way to survive and support their families.

By Prak Chan Thul

Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh © Reuters/CINDY LIU Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh

PHNOM PENH (Reuters) - Inspired at first by a desire to beat their city's notorious traffic, a group of Cambodian students have designed a prototype drone that they hope can eventually be used to ferry people around Phnom Penh and even help fight fires.

a group of people sitting at a park: Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh © Reuters/CINDY LIU Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh

With eight propellers and using a school chair for the pilot's seat, the drone was developed by students at the National Polytechnic Institute of Cambodia (NPIC) on the outskirts of the capital.

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Neighbors and witnesses at the scene of the drone strike in Kabul told CNN that several people were killed, including children. "All the neighbors tried to help and brought water to put out the fire and I saw that there were five or six people dead," a neighbor told CNN. Another neighbor told CNN that they estimated that there might have been up to 20 people killed in the strike, "not much is left of their house and nothing can be recognized, they are in pieces."

The Communist insurgency inside Cambodia continued to grow, aided by supplies and military support from North Vietnam. Pol Pot and Ieng Sary asserted their dominance over the Vietnamese-trained communists, many of whom were purged. At the same time, the CPK forces became stronger and more independent of Simultaneous attacks around the perimeter of Phnom Penh pinned down Republican forces, while other CPK units overran fire bases controlling the vital lower Mekong resupply route. A US-funded airlift of ammunition and rice ended when Congress refused additional aid for Cambodia .

"The drone, when we see it flying without a pilot, there is a lot of shaking but when I sit on it and fly... it becomes more stable and I feel so excited," said Lonh Vannsith, 21, the pilot of the drone.

"We wanted to solve some problems for our society by making a taxi drone and... inventing drones for firefighters," he said, noting how, for example, they hoped it could reach the upper floors of a building to bring a hose where a fire truck could not reach.

a person flying through the air on a cloudy day: Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh © Reuters/CINDY LIU Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh

The prototype can carry a pilot weighing up to 60 kg (132 pounds) and fly for about 10 minutes for a distance of 1 km (0.6 miles). It took three years of research and development and cost around $20,000 to build.

a group of people looking at a cell phone: Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh © Reuters/CINDY LIU Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh

While the team hopes it will eventually fly far higher, when manned the drone currently only rises to as much as 4 metres (13.1 feet).

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Jennifer Gibson from the human rights organization Reprieve , which has brought drone survivors to the US to testify, estimates more than 4,000 people have been killed by drones including hundreds of children and said the Obama administration’s estimation of casualties “is unlikely to be worth the paper it’s printed on.” Obama is also expected to issue an executive order that will require annual tallies of innocent people killed by drones to be made public, although he is not expected to charge those responsible for killing innocent adults and children, including himself, with war crimes.

The project faced delays because of lockdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic and also as components like the propellers and the frame had to be ordered abroad, said Sarin Sereyvatha, who is NPIC's head of research and development technology.

The team plans to improve the design to allow it to take more weight, as well as fly further and more stably at a higher level.

"In principle, if we make one drone, the cost is expensive but if we make them to sell on the market, the cost will go down," said Sarin Sereyvatha.

(Reporting by Prak Chan Thul; Editing by Ed Davies and Christian Schmollinger)

a group of people sitting at a table using a laptop computer: Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh © Reuters/CINDY LIU Cambodian students design a manned drone, in Phnom Penh

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