If you're an evil villain who really wants to know when somebody is snooping around your secret lair, it helps to have sophisticated surveillance gear. Static cameras are fine, but what if you had a camera that could automatically detect intruders then follow them around while snapping pics?
That's the idea behind the Secom's flying surveillance robot, which combines the maneuverability of a quadrotor with the intelligence gathering capabilities of a laser-guided camera. Secom took an existing robot from a German company called Ascending Technologies, then added a bunch of James Bond style gadgets to make it more awesome.
First Secom gave the UAV a laser sensor that can detect movement within a predefined area, so if somebody tries to breach the perimeter of your compound, the 'copter will know immediately. Then they added a sensitive camera with LED lights, so the intruder can't sneak in under the cover of darkness. And finally, there's a communications system to send the images back to base, and a computer to keep everything running.
Should someone try to sneak in, the quadcopter will automatically sneak up on the person and take pictures, and if they're in a car, it can even get shots of the license plate for identification. The drone has a flying time of around 15 minutes, after which it returns to base and automatically reconnects to its charger.
No word on whether it's vulnerable to enemy gunfire, or if it can dodge bullets Matrix-style.
Check out the gallery to see more pictures of the surveillance robot in action.