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FLIR nano-drones are now able to be automatically launched from vehicles

By Greg S ยท 8 replies
Oct 8, 2018
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  1. FLIR Systems has shared that its Black Hornet 3 nano-drones can be packed into a launch unit that allows for deployment of multiple units in rapid succession. The military-focused drones are used for reconnaissance and information gathering purposes.

    Really small drones are nothing new, but having the capability to launch a drone swarm from a moving vehicle is a new step forward. The Black Hornet Personal Reconnaissance System (PRS) is currently the world's smallest unmanned aerial system weighing in at 2.87 pounds. The drone itself weighs less than 33 grams or 1.16 ounces.

    The near-silent Black Hornet 3 carries both electro-optical and infrared sensors. It can fly forward up to 1.25 miles and communicate back to the operator through and encrypted data link. Even under windy conditions, this tiny drone can withstand gusts of over 20 mph. Although not very quick relative to other drones, the Black Hornet 3 is still reasonably fast for its size reaches upwards of 13 mph. Also consider that noise signature is a large concern making faster flight undesirable.

    Attaching to the outside of tanks, armored personnel carriers, light utility vehicles, and just about any other vehicle you can think of, the Black Hornet vehicle reconnaissance system is ready to put eyes in the sky.

    Today, more than 30 countries are using FLIR's Black Hornet PRS for battlefield insights. Aside from military use, first responders, SWAT teams, and law enforcement have been successful in gathering real-time information via nano-drones. Available as part of a battle management system, the Black Hornet VRS is only available to military, government agencies, and law enforcement customers.

    Permalink to story.

  2. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 2,200   +1,625

    "Not even James Bond had the ability to launch a drone swarm from his decked out Aston Martin..."
    However Speed Racer could launch a drone from the Mark 5 ;)
  3. Reachable

    Reachable TS Evangelist Posts: 369   +183

    God help us.
    Robinson Ochoa likes this.
  4. Capaill

    Capaill TS Evangelist Posts: 902   +499

    That photo of it with the armoured vehicle makes it look a few feet long. Hardly a nano drone. In reality it's 4 inches. But I think we jumped to the word nano too early - micro drone would be a better description. When we get drones under an inch or even measured in milimetres, will they also be nano or will we need a new adjective, like teeny weeny.
    erickmendes likes this.
  5. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TS Evangelist Posts: 876   +372

    Don't see a drone that small being relevant for a armored unit. They need something that cane cover 5-10 miles out in front that can network back to the group and allow them to swarm hellfires over the horizon at enemy armor units or fortifications. For a squad of ground troops the micro drones offer a huge advantage just in weight and size over what they carried over the last decade.
  6. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,976   +4,010

    I find it hard to believe that "FLIR Systems", appropriated the "FLIR" acronym as their corporate name.

    Unless of course, they are also the original inventors of, "Forward Looking Infra Red sensors", in which case, I stand corrected.
  7. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TS Evangelist Posts: 876   +372

    "FLIR took its name from the acronym for forward-looking Infrared.[4] The company began in 1978 with airborne IR systems, and developed from 1978 to 2004 through product development and acquisitions of related companies.[5] Originally based in Tigard, Oregon,[6] the company relocated to Portland in the mid-1990s.[7] FLIR teamed up with Hughes Aircraft Company in 1990, with Hughes taking part ownership of FLIR"

    captaincranky likes this.
  8. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,976   +4,010

    @GeforcerFX Ha, Ha, made ya look.....:D (y) (Y)

    (I would have usually done that research myself, but it was pushing seven in the morning and I was heading to bed).
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2018
    Capaill likes this.
  9. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TS Evangelist Posts: 876   +372

    I thought that was there name source as well, so my own curiosity made me look it up, had no idea they were that old of a company.

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