With such a high decline in bee populations all around the world, the scientists came up to the idea of designing artificial pollinators to use them for crops. A student from Savannah, Georgia created a drone that can artificially pollinate flowers using real grains of pollen.
The idea of artificial pollination is quite a new one, but such machines have already started being tested in many parts of the world. Anna Haldewang is an industrial design student at Savannah College of Art and Design. In an attempt to compensate for the sudden decline of bees, she created the drone machine that can pollinate flowers artificially by using real pollen grains.
What is even nicer about this project is that Haldewang calls her drone “Plan Bee”, since it is a Plan B for bees who cannot pollinate all the flowers. This creation has gathered much interest and at the moment is the subject of intense academic debate.
Haldewang declared that she came up with the idea of a drone pollinator when she found out about the rapidly decreasing numbers of bees and other pollinating insects. This is quite a revolutionary and helpful method, since plants cannot yield crops without being pollinated first.
She said that she designed about 50 models of drones before settling for the current one for Plan Bee which, unexpectedly, does not resemble a bee at all.
Haldewang has now secured a valid patent and design for Plan Bee and is planning to release it on market in about two years. It might take that long because she wants to make sure that the drone achieves 100 percent accuracy in pollination.
Plan Bee has some propellers that keep it flying and some columns on which it can stand. Under these columns there are the holes where the drone collects pollen and then releases it to other plants.
However, other reports show that a drone cannot execute pollination as perfect as bees can. Bees can learn how to optimize their pollination methods or identify if a flower has been pollinated before. They can gather teams of bees for an optimal pollination and know which flowers host the best pollen.
These are the challenges that the creators of artificial pollinating drones have to understand before they start building their devices.
Image Source: Pixabay