Pigeon-powered Air Monitoring Takes Off

A flock of pigeons fitted with mobile phone backpacks is to be used to monitor air pollution, New Scientist magazine reported on Wednesday. The 20 pigeons will be released into the skies over San Jose, California, in August. Each bird will carry a GPS satellite tracking receiver, air pollution sensors and a basic mobile phone. Text messages on air quality will be beamed back in real time to a special pigeon “blog”, a journal accessible on the Internet. Miniature cameras slung around the pigeons&#39 necks will also post aerial pictures.

Images courtesy: Beatriz da Costa, University of California at Irvine

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