Eyal Saiet’s job is looking for the sweet spot—that connection between machine and science that makes sense. For instance, Saiet is thinking of flying an unmanned aircraft through the blow of a surfacing bowhead whale to collect mucus samples. The samples will tell biologists the health, sex and fertility of the migrating behemoth returning to Alaska waters.
Obviously, the craft would be launched from a boat, but he ponders how the mucus should be collected. A pop-open vial or somehow scraped off the aircraft, he mulls. And what responsibilities will the humans involved have? So many pieces to put together with a potentially marvelous payout.
“So you have an aircraft,” said Saiet, a researcher at the Alaska Center for Unmanned Aircraft Integration at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. “What can you do with it? What story can you tell now that you couldn’t before?”
For the full story visit http://gi.alaska.edu/node/1810.