Drones Next Attraction at Disney Theme Parks?

Still remember Disney’s grand idea of having an unmanned flying vehicle (aka drones) to hover on its theme parks at night time? Well at first it may seem to be a terrorism countermeasure, but truth be told, according to the park’s top brass, they’re seeking ways to innovatively enhance the park goers experience.

First hatched during the summer of 2014, the idea of having unmanned aircraft vehicles (UAVs), or drones to supplement night time entertainment involves having these autonomous contraptions control massive puppets and to carry screens that they call as floating pixels or “flixels”. The idea was revived last October 2015 when Disney decided to move ahead by filing an exemption from the FAA that acts as an overseer in the commercial use of drones. The application was filed last December 31 and the FAA is yet to respond.

As mentioned, the exemption has a three-fold objective: first the creation of a multi-drone system that would hold aloft a projection screen, as high as 150 feet from the ground, for night time display which they call  ‘flixels; second, the execution of “flight plans to move and to position the flexible projection screens within the display air space,” as mentioned in the proposal; and third, which probably the most amazing aspect of it, to attach these drones to immensely huge puppets that will eventually control its movements. Flight plans will according to the proposal, will ‘largely take place over water elements and restricted areas.’ To prevent the UAVs from wandering outside of its flight plan, Disney will erect what it calls a geofence so as to prevent it from leaving its controlled airspace.

The application further detailed what the crowd can expect from the Flixels, ‘(They) are to accompany entertainment at the Walt DisneyWorld and Disneyland Resorts, including during each resort’s nightly Fireworks Spectaculars. Deployed from a monitored platform designated as the launch/land area in restricted access areas of each resort, Flixels will be “magically” incorporated into Disney story elements that engage and inspire children and their families. Once the show segment concludes, Flixels will return to the launching/landing area.’

We just have to wait and see if these drones can really bring the magic to Disney without sacrificing the safety and welfare of its patrons. So what do you think about this? Share your thoughts with us.

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