A few weeks ago, the 2019 Nanchang Flight Convention was held in China. From November 2-3, the convention showcased the best China had to offer in the fields of aviation, drones, and space travel. While over a hundred commercial and military planes were shown over the course of two days, what really struck audiences was the closing ceremony:
As shown in the above video by Xinhua Sci-Tech, 800 drones took to the sky as the convention ended and arranged themselves into the shapes of various flying aircrafts such as a commercial airliner, an attack helicopter, and a fighter jet. As it would look boring if these planes were merely on the ground, all of this was done in mid-air over thousands of people.
Once the drones finished their plane formations, they flew themselves over the awestruck crowds just as a plane would (albeit a little closer to the ground to remain within controlling range). Unlike a normal plane however, these drones were able to change the colors of their lights to really give a show to onlookers.
While it’s scary to see a plane flying so close to ground level, what’s really frightening is just how fluid and coordinated these drones are. Sure, they look harmless now, but what if someone with a more militaristic mindset got their hands on these drones?
Paranoia aside, it’s great to see how far drone technology has come in a few years! Let’s just hope we keep them in check and use them for things like plane light shows and cargo deliveries instead of more dangerous professions.