Flying Over Southern New Zealand Feels Like a Beautiful Thrill Ride

Southern New Zealand is known for its exceedingly beautiful and rugged landscape, and this video from Australia-based director Mark Toia shows it from its best angle – above. The video captures a landscape pushed upward by the slow but powerful force of shifting tectonic plates. From those snowy mountain heights, water flows into perfectly translucent lakes, making its way downhill in a series of precipitous drops. It’s these stomach clenching heights that are captured over and over in this video, highlighting a collection of ‘aerial rushes’ produced as part of a TV commercial project.

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Modular Robots that Self-Assemble, Coordinate and Fly

Distributed Flight Array 1

Quadrotors are all the rage right now, from a series of robots that precisely create buildings out of blocks, to an artist who turned his deceased cat into a flying machine (yes really); but what about robotic flying machines that need to self-assemble and cooperate in order to take flight? That was the dream of Professor Raffaello D’Andrea at the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control at ETH Zurich. In 2008 he conceptualized the Distributed Flight Array, a self-assembling modular robot, and today it has become a reality. He and his team of researchers/students have spent the past 5 years conceptualizing, prototyping and testing a series of one-rotor flying machines that can’t fly on their own… but together form an unlimited array of flying potential. It’s seriously cool how well these machines operate; just check out the video below!

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Visual Bits #314 > Taking It To The Extreme

Check out your links after the jump!

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