Whitman Student in the Spotlight by Drone Forward, Inc.
Whitman Middle student has been selected as the Spotlight Student by Drone Forward, Inc., for his drive and enthusiasm for learning. James recently participated in the organization’s drone and robotics entrepreneurship course. His concept—Solar Drones—proposes the creation of solar-powered batteries that would provide unlimited flying power for drones possibly impacting industries involved in delivering medicine across the world. He thinks his idea could benefit the agricultural drone industry, as well as retail services like Amazon and delivery services like UPS. With a particular interest in technology and how it can improve the world, James was asked where the idea for solar drones came from. He explained, “Two of my idols are Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk. I know that both are doing stuff with drones, but Elon Musk’s biggest thing is Tesla, and that’s all electric. So, thinking about electric stuff brought me to solar energy because it’s a clean and easy way of getting solar power. I figured if drones were in the sky, it made sense for them to rely on [solar] energy.” He is also aware that today’s solar panels are large and expensive and did a cost analysis of what his proposal would cost. He said that learning about refining his idea was a valuable lesson and resulted in having a concept to present rather than an idea. The complete article and interview with He is available online. Contact news liaison Lindsey Miller at @email.