Drones have already proven their ability to conduct war, spy on enemies and fertilize crops. China may soon add smog-fighting to these futuristic vehicles’ long list of capabilities.
According to the South China Morning Post, China wants to deploy newly-designed aerial drones in the country’s recently-declared “war” on pollution.
Later this month, government agencies in China are set to test whether the new drones are effective at combating smog by spraying chemicals that freeze pollutants and allow them to fall to the ground, the paper said.
China has previously deployed fixed-wing drones and other aircraft to monitor air quality and ahead of major events in Beijing.
However, the new drones are 90% cheaper, more efficient to operate and can carry more than 1,500 pounds of smog-clearing chemical over a three-mile radius.
Earlier this week, reports swirled indicating social networking leader Facebook (FB) is close to acquiring drone maker Titan Aerospace for $60 million. Facebook would reportedly use the company’s drones as a way to expand Internet access in developing areas like Africa.