malaria

Scientists are using Drones and smartphones to fight malaria in Tanzania

Health

The fight against malaria has been improving, but there is still lots more work to do. For one thing, anti-larval sprays are both expensive and time-consuming — you cannot always afford to spray a whole area. Thankfully, a mix of technology is creating that mosquito battle more practical. Wales’ Aberystwyth University and Tanzania’s Zanzibar malaria Elimination Programme have partnered on an initiative that uses drones to survey malaria hot zones and identify the water-laden areas where malaria-carrying mosquitoes are likely to breed.

A single drone (in this case, DJI’s Phantom 3) will cover a 30-hectare rice paddy in twenty minutes, and the data will be processed in the space of an afternoon. you’ll discover and spray trouble zones within hours, preventing outbreaks from getting started. And there are expansion plans, too. the next step is to bring the drone imagery to smartphones to both guides the spraying teams and track their progress. rather than having only a general plan of where to go, sprayers will make a beeline for affected areas and report back when they are done.

It may take some time to detect the widespread use of the drone-assisted spray. There are concerns that drones may interfere with local wildlife and spark privacy concerns. The creators hope that familiarizing residents will make them lighter with the technology, though, and mindfulness could prevent clashes with the ecosystem. Until that happens, it’d have the possibility to virtually wipe out malaria in entire neighborhoods It should not spend a fortune or waste of valuable hours.

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