Media Contacts

David “Lefty” Schlesinger
lefty [at]
+1 408 605 1621
Jane Backhouse Johnston
jane [at]
+44 7747 892 302
Shane Martin Coughlan
shane [at]
+81 80 4035 8083

Press Releases

2012-06-06: OpenRelief Project Launched, Announces Low-Cost Disaster-Relief Robot Aircraft — Prototype Robotic Reconnaissance Aircraft and Radiation Detector To Be Shown [HTML] [PDF]


Selected Press Coverage

Co.EXIST: “A Kinder, Gentler Drone To Help With Disasters” “LinuxCon Japan: OpenRelief launches”

ComputerWorld UK: “Open and Humanitarian”

The Register: “Raspberry Pi IN THE SKY: Wallet-sized PC is Disaster Drone Brain” “OpenRelief Launches Open Source Disaster Relief Drone”

DesignSpark: “OpenRelief: Clearing the Fog of Disaster”

  • Chinese: “开源救援用飞机OpenRelief” (LinuxPilot)
  • Japanese: “オープンソースで安価な災害救助ラジコン飛行機、「OpenRelief」プロジェクト発足” (ITpro)
  • French: “Un drone d’analyse des zones sinistrées basée sur des technologies ouvertes” (AviActu)
  • German: “Raspberry Pi hilft Drohne bei Rettungsmissionen” (pressetext)
  • Greek: “Ρομποτικό αεροπλάνο που σώζει ζωές” (
  • Russian: “OpenRelief: разведы­вательный беспилотник для спасателей стоит медных денег” (


What is OpenRelief?

OpenRelief is a project to design open, modular, information solutions for disaster relief.

Why was OpenRelief started?

OpenRelief was inspired by the difficulties encountered when mapping the Tohoku disaster area in Japan during March 2011. It was hard to see through the “fog” of disaster, so we decided to create tools to clear the fog.

Who is behind OpenRelief?

OpenRelief was founded by Shane Coughlan and Karl Lattimer, and has a large team of international volunteers. OpenRelief contributors come from the USA, UK, New Zealand, Australia, Japan and elsewhere.

Where is OpenRelief based?

OpenRelief is an international project, but primarily located in the UK and Japan. We are also in the process of forming a UK association to manage the finances of the project.

When will OpenRelief provide working solutions?

We released our first generation airframe in July 2012, our second generation airframe in May 2013, and are currently working on a stronger, simpler third generation airframe. These airframes, in conjunction with open source autopilots like the ArduPilot and software from projects like CanberraUAV, already provide working solutions.

Open Source Airframe gallery

Radiation Detector gallery

Prototypes gallery

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