The first Maker Faire of the year took place last weekend in San Mateo, California, and among the many thrillingly geeky sights and sounds on display was an indoor drone racing course set up by the Aerial Sports League, which bills itself the "only Major Drone Combat and FPV Drone Racing League." The Department of Energy was also attendance, and was so captivated by the Aerial Sports League's setup, that the agency recently posted a 360-degree video of the drone racing area to its Facebook page while lamenting the fact that "the U.S. Department of Energy doesn't race drones for fun like these enthusiasts."
However, the DOE points out it is also intensely interested in drones a.k.a. unmanned aerial systems for other important purposes. As the DOE elaborated in its Facebook page:
"For example, drones can be used to detect methane leaks or help scientists select the fastest-growing strains of sorghum, an important bioenergy crop.”
That’s the verbal equivalent of wearing socks and sandals, but just because the Department of Energy is more focused on scientific concerns like sorghum and methane leaks, doesn’t mean they can’t show off a gorgeous drone race track in 3D.