Intel Drones Set New World Record to Mark PyeongChang Winter Olympics

Credit: Recode/Intel

Intel drones set a new world record before the 2018 PyeongChang Olympic Winter Games even began, by coordinating the most drones ever flown simultaneously.

In a prerecording for the Olympics opening ceremony, the Guinness World Record for “most unmanned aerial vehicles airborne simultaneously” was set, so that viewers could enjoy the first ever drone light show to take place at a Winter Olympics.

A total 1,218 Intel® Shooting Star™ drones lit up the sky as observers in South Korea prepared for the games to begin. That total easily surpasses the previous record set by Intel when 500 drones were flown simultaneously in Germany in 2016.

Sports in the Sky

Custom animations were created for the games, including those inspired by various sports and also by Olympic logos. They will be used during nightly victory ceremonies as well as having been part of the record-setting display.

“The Olympics are a time when the sports and entertainment industries are buzzing with record-setting performances, so it was the perfect stage for Intel Shooting Star drones and our team to set their own kind of record,” said Natalie Cheung, general manager of Intel’s drone light show team.

Credit: First Post/Intel

“It’s been exciting for us to partner with Intel on the Winter Olympics, as they continue to push the limits with their advanced drone light show technologies,” added Sam Prosser, commercial director EMEA APAC Guinness World Records. “From flying 100 drones simultaneously in 2015, to 500 drones in 2016, and now more than 1,000 drones – the sky is the limit with entertaining through Intel drone light shows.”

About the Weight of a Volleyball

Intel Shooting Star drones are designed specifically for light shows and weigh just 330 grams – a little more than the weight of a volleyball. They feature built-in LED lights, and more than 4 billion color combinations are possible.

There is always a need for one Olympic opening ceremony to be more spectacular than the last – not an easy feat – and the help of pioneering technology is one way in which organizers can try to blow spectators’ minds in future.

Intel Drones Have Entertained the World

The Olympic-related achievement is one in a series of drone developments from Intel.

Following the Germany display, a new Guinness World Records title was attained at CES 2018 when the highest number of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) were airborne indoors at the same time, with the use of a single computer.

A total of 110 Intel® Shooting Star™ Mini drones contributed to an indoor light show, and all were controlled by just one pilot.

Another recent display took place above the Las Vegas Strip and the iconic Fountains of Bellagio, when 250 Intel drones were coordinated with the fountains to the song, “Stargazing,” by Kygo.

Battling the Cold

But there really is no bigger stage than the Olympics, and the event also provided the team at Intel with some new challenges to overcome, not least the very cold temperatures in PyeongChang. As they explain in this video, plenty of prior testing had to take place in some of Europe’s coldest locations:

“We are honored to have Intel drones playing several roles at the Olympic Games,” said Anil Nanduri, vice president and general manager, Intel Drone Group. “Not unlike the athletes competing in the events, we continue to push to innovate and develop the drone technologies that inspire people all over the world.”