It's an exciting time to be involved with science based applications for drones. A few weeks ago I posted an article on drone usage in geology. For Ecosynth in particular, last week we saw Dandois and Ellis 2013 officially published (open access I might add). Heck, there was even an International Conference and Unmanned Aircraft Systems at the end of May which focused on civilian and science applications for drone technology. Lastly Nature just published this exciting piece: Drones in science: Fly, and bring me data.
It's a pretty good read highlighting scientists using drones for specific applications around the globe (regrettably Ecosynth wasn't featured). People are using UAV planes and copters for meteorology, disaster relief, environmental monitoring, poaching, herbicide application, etc.
Out of curiosity I used Google Trends to see how searches for drones + science has trended since 2009. In the last few years it has been gaining momentum, and I imagine it will pick up considerably as more media pieces like the one in Nature are released.
We do seem to be at an exciting time period; this seems to be the forefront of having drones as a common tool for acquiring valuable data. I'm excited to see where and how this technology will aid scientists in the upcoming years.