Dotterel Scores VC Funding to Quieten Drone Noise

Dotterel shroud

Source: Dotterel

Japanese VC Drone Fund is flying into a quiet funding round, investing in New Zealand UAV startup Dotterel.

The company develops tech to reduce noise generated by drone propellers and microphones for aerial audio recording, primarily to customers in government, security and entertainment in the U.S. and Australia.

“We strongly believe that Dotterel’s technology will contribute to the social acceptance of drones and air mobility,” a Drone Fund spokesperson said.

Through this investment we will promote cooperation with Drone Fund’s other investees and further accelerate the social implementation of drones and air mobility. 

Managed by Kotaro Chiba and Soki Ohmae, Drone Fund lists 33 drone companies in its portfolio – including DroneDeploy and DoCo (DJI’s Japanese subsidiary).

Dotterel CEO Shaun Edlin said his company set out to address a common complaint by the public that drones contribute to noise pollution.

An example of this are current UAV logistics trials for delivery of parcels happening around the world where there has been public outrage due to the incessant noise,” Edlin said. As a result, regulatory bodies are moving to set noise standards that will restrict their use.”

Edlin added:

Our noise reduction technology is essential to help increase the public acceptance of UAVs, allowing them to achieve their commercial potential unrestricted by noise challenges. Today’s UAVs are carrying incredible visual sensors that provide eyes in the skies that can save livesHowever, in terms of situational awareness we are only streaming one of the senses to the operator team on the ground: vision.  The operator is still essentially deaf, unable to hear people yelling for help or detect gunfire. UAV operators haven’t had a function to verbally communicate with people in an emergency to understand their immediate needs.”

Last year, Drone Fund, in partnership with Idaten Ventures, invested more than $1.8 million in California-based Sabrewing Aircraft Company – a manufacturer of vertical-take-off-and-landing cargo drones.

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