As if the perfect storm of technology could protect us on a summer day, a collaboration has led to a breakthrough in shark monitoring.

The Little Ripper is backed by Intel, Telstra, Westpac, the UTS and others to develop a drone capable of being flown where people are surfing/swimming and monitoring aqua life. The drone is said to feature a camera capable of spotting the difference between a dolphin and a shark, a human to a sea turtle and more. The team claim a 90% success rate with an algorithm that continues to develop and learn.

The drone is flown from the shore and monitored, so it isn’t completely unmanned however it is certainly cheaper than flying a chopper across the beaches. The drones are also carrying sirens capable of alarming swimmers of any dangers in the area, the camera relayed back to the beach also provides early warning to swimmers and lifesavers.

The technology has been in testing and you could expect to see one hovering at a beach near you this summer. It is an amazing piece of work from a group of companies seeking a common goal, keeping our waters safe. We can’t wait to see how this improves further.