Drones are unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) that help in civilian, farming, military and entertainment field. The first pilotless flight was the invention of 1917 post the pioneering Kitty Hawk flight by the Wright Brothers. Radio-controlled technology (RC) invented by Nikola Tesla is the base for operating these unmanned vehicles.
Uses of drones in military
Drones serve various purposes and play a very crucial role in military operations. Military uses drones in different sizes and each has its own designated operation.
Small military drones are barely as big as a palm and serve the purpose of surveillance and target detection. The soldier can easily carry them around as they are very light and the drones give pre-warning of impending threats of the area where the soldier is heading.
Small drones are ideal in close combat missions for spying on the enemy base and to view the inner portions of damaged or erect buildings, where the soldiers need to carry out rescue operations. High power camera fitted on the drones enables the soldiers to detect any bombs or missiles planted in their operational areas.
The most important task that the drone performs is to give an idea of the enemy base setup. This is essential for the operation commander to plan the strategy of attack. Drones come into force where a manned aircraft cannot travel safely without damage and destruction. These small hovering objects are on duty 24×7, acting as aerial eye to alert the military personnel of nearby threats.
The drones are programmed and the operator does not need to be in the proximity of the target area and can maneuver the craft from a safe distance. Besides, as far as attack is concerned, these drones do the job perfectly when armed with missiles and bombs.
Different types of combat drones
There are many ultra modern, well- equipped and high performance drones available for military use. Some popular names are RQ-4 Global Hawk, RQ-11B Raven, RQ-2A Pioneer, RQ – 7B Shadow, QF-4 Aerial Target, MQ-1B Predator, MQ-9 Reaper and others. Companies like Lockheed Martin, General Atomics, Boeing and others have been supplying drones to military for a long time.
Israel, the United States and China list as leaders in unmanned combat aerial vehicle technology (UCAV). However, the world’s smallest combat drone is the Black Hornet Personal Reconnaissance System and it barely weighs 32 grams but is power packed with navigation capability beyond the GPS coverage zone.
Drones used by military serve many purposes. Their primary use is for spying. However, drones help in locating trapped people in the buildings during war, in order to facilitate rescue operations.
Modern technology has created the opportunity to safeguard one’s life by not getting too close to the enemy quarters. Instead, the army personnel make use of drones to counter attack from a safe distance. Since these are programmed and unmanned objects, they can be loaded with ammunition like bombs, missiles to achieve targeted destruction. The precision in the programming helps the drone to pinpoint the location of attack and execute the task effectively.
Long flying hours and high altitude flights of almost the height of 60,000 ft. make these drones useful aids in military combats.