A Kickstarter project called Project Ryptide is 25% towards it’s $10,000 goal. The idea of the project is simple, a life preserver that can be dropped from a drone. Ryptide smartly is not trying to make their own UAS, instead they are looking to make a servo driven drop mechanism with a automatically inflating life ring. Ryptide has collaborated with DJI and Splashdrone to make compatible hardware, but will also make open source kits and other kits with multiple rings, fpv, gimbal, and camera. At the introductory rate of $99 it seems like a no brainer for local rescue teams that already have UAS. Also if you couple this with the phantom, which goes for $479, a local lifeguard team could deploy a life ring in a matter of seconds. This can really impact response times and survival rates of drowning victims and swimmers caught in riptides. The most surprising aspect of the project is who’s behind it. Five seniors in high school and one RC veteran with over 30 years of custom building experience. This type of system could be incredibly useful not only at the beach, but on cruise ships and ferries that may loose someone overboard who are not within range of a crew member. A bonus feature of the project is that the life ring can inflate and attempt to stop the UAS from being submerged if the ring comes in contact with water. It is difficult to see how effective this solution is, but it’s a nice thought. Ryptide coupled with the waterproof Kickstarter project Splashdrone seems like a no-brainer for lifesaving teams around the world.