Not long ago, Border Patrol agents would ride horseback along trails looking for illegal smugglers, an agent would focus on a footprint to see which way they were traveling and if they were carrying anything. Fast forward a few decades and agents are now equipped with technology that allows them to monitor the border without being actually there.
From ground sensors to long range cameras border security has come a long way and now engineering students at the University of Arizona are hoping to take security to the next level. What their working on is drones; but, unlike the drones of today these droves will be self driven and self thinking. The goal is to provide the country with most secure border possible.
Since 2005, The Department of Homeland Security has been using drones to assist agents on the ground. When an agent or a surveillance technician sees a viable threat the decision has to be made if a drone should be deployed. That in turn means bringing in a pilot and launching a drone.
The Autonomous Border System would be all self sufficient; as soon as a threat is confirmed the system would launch on its own. It will use NASA information to track the threat by air and land sending real time information to agents nearby. Now, the program is still in its infancy stage and once developed the system may come with a hefty price tag; early estimates are that each drones could cost taxpayers around $18 million each.