Raspberry Pi-based Kiosk Display Shares Weather, FAA Advisories for Drones

(Image credit: Sky Horse Tech)

This Raspberry Pi project is ready for takeoff -- or at least it's ready to plan your drone's next takeoff. We recently spotted this fascinating creation from Sky Horse Tech that uses a Raspberry Pi as the mainboard and shows weather and current FAA advisories on a 32-inch display.

This is extremely useful for anyone planning to fly a drone, as laws and regulations vary across the U.S. and can impact when it's okay to fly. It's important to be mindful of any restrictions or compromising weather conditions before you take off.

The team built a custom housing for the kiosk made from wood. They connected a Raspberry Pi 3 B  to an LED screen with 720p resolution. The Pi runs a few applications on top of Raspberry Pi OS, formerly known as Raspbian. It uses three separate API, one for weather information and two for FAA advisories called AirMap and MapBox.

The kiosk is pre-programmed to shut off at night,. This not only saves power but makes sense, considering you can't fly unmanned aircraft systems (or UAS) at night. The team added a few different networks to the Pi so it could be easily transported and set up at different locations.

If you're interested in recreating this drone kiosk for yourself, check out the Sky Horse tech website. The team created a really comprehensive guide to help get you started, including blueprints for the kiosk cabinet. 

Ash Hill
Freelance News and Features Writer

Ash Hill is a Freelance News and Features Writer at Tom's Hardware US. She manages the Pi projects of the month and much of our daily Raspberry Pi reporting.

  • bit_user
    I don't get the point of this. Why wouldn't you just load up those apps on your phone or a laptop PC?
  • SkyHorseTech
    bit_user said:
    I don't get the point of this. Why wouldn't you just load up those apps on your phone or a laptop PC?
    We built this for a local college droneport to be posted outside under a weatherproof enclosure where there are multiple drone pilots flying. Definitely agree each pilot should check the FAA advisories and weather on their own apps, this is more of a cool-factor, proof-of-concept, fun-to-create concept. It falls somewhere between a RaPi marble sorter and automated corn shucker on the scale of real-world usefulness :)