The US Army has the Maneuver Fires Integration Experiment at Fort Sill in Oklahoma to speed next-generation anti-drone technology to soldiers.
The Army wants to press the attack with its own small drones. They are developing a whole family of unmanned systems from the very low squad level.
- vertical-takeoff-and-push capability
- drones that can fly autonomously
- drones that can resist complex electromagnetic attacks (aka cyber hacking and EMP)
- drones “that can be deployed from a vehicle and hover over a vehicle
The 18-gram PD-100 Black Hornet from Prox Dynamics is an autonomous tactical drone being rapidly deployed to special operations units and Marines.
By the end of 2017, the commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. Robert Neller, wants every Marine squad downrange to carry an unmanned aerial vehicle for reconnaissance and surveillance.
“At the end of next year, my goal is that every deployed Marine infantry squad had got their own quadcopter,” he said. “They’re like 1,000 bucks.”
The MIX-16 exercise also employed a small number of pocket-sized PD-100 drone systems, made by Proxdynamics. But while these systems are lightweight and easy to operate, they don’t meet the $1,000 price point that Neller mentioned. The systems cost $50-$60,000 apiece, with additional costs for accessories.
One future solution Neller proposed is 3-D printing, a new technology being aggressively explored by the Marine Corps logistics community.
“Maybe we can just buy the design [for a quadcopter] and print our own,” Neller said. “I’m not joking.”
An unfinished draft of the U.S. Army Robotic and Autonomous Systems Strategy describes how the Army will use drones in the near term (2016-20) the mid-term (2020-30), and the far term (2030-40).
The DJI Phantom 4 Quadcopter is well reviewed as a camera drone on Amazon and costs about $1100
- Auto takeoff and auto return home with GPS technology, makes controlling easy. App enables monitoring/camera operation easy
- Capture 4K ultra HD video at 30 fps, supported resolutions include: 12.0MP (4000 x 3000) photos. The f/2.8 lens with a broad field of view delivers crisp, clear images
- Gimbal stabilization technology, along with a hover function allows you to capture smooth, clean footage while the camera is in the air
- Use DJI director software with a built-in video editor to add music, text, and more to your videos
With extra batteries and waterproof case it is just short of $1400.
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