Researchers at the University of California, Santa Barbara, just developed a technology through which drones can create a clear image of things even through walls. Yasamin Mostofi, professor of electrical & computer engineering and her team of researchers came up with technique which allows two drones working on Wi-Fi RSSI measurements to create detailed pictures of objects behind walls.


In a video uploaded by Mostofi, two drones working together generate an image of what’s enclosed within a four-sided brick structure. The drone flying outside this brick structure sends Wi-Fi signals to other drone, which the latter then measures. Using these measurements, a high level 3D image of what lies behind that wall is created. Although this image isn’t perfectly clear, it is pretty accurate in displaying what object behind a wall is.

Now, this idea of drones seeing through walls sounds like something straight out of a sci-fi movie, but I’m really concerned about how this technology could be easily misused. Mostofi says, There are several potential applications, like emergency response, archeological discovery, & structural health monitoring, that can benefit from obtaining a high-resolution 3D image of an unknown area through walls with everyday Wi-Fi signals.”

But if it gets in hands of wrong people, this technology could be used in ways right out of nightmares. How could I be sure that when I’m taking a relaxing shower in future, there won’t be a creep flying a drone outside my house, watching right through the walls of my bathroom?  Or on a more serious note, what if this technology gets in hands of say, terrorist organisations or robbers? While technology like this can prove to be beneficial in many ways, the other side of coin also needs to be considered. Are we truly ready for something like this?

Check the video demonstration of discussed drone :