US military massively scales aerial launch effects (ALE) drones to locate and destroy targets

By Security Television Network, Author: by Kris Osborn, Warrior Maven

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September 16, 2021 (Security TV Network) – Mini-drone missions include intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, counter-drone interception, and action as a weapon.

The military is moving fast to speed up the launch of new mini-drones capable of launching from helicopters to find enemy targets, operate under enemy fire, and send instant target coordinates and key surveillance details to decision makers humans.

Air launch effects

Called by the Air Launched Effects service, the mini drones are intended to operate in a range of different capabilities to of course include intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance as well as counter-drone interception or even function as weapons. mini-drone explosives in an attack mission.

The ALE program is divided into distinct phases that are based on state-of-the-art and scalable mission computation, sensors, kinetic and non-kinetic effectors, and transport layer networking technologies.

Last year, the U.S. military awarded ten air-launched effects projects for a total of $ 29.75 million, according to a service report. The ten projects are categorized into three Air Launched Effects focus areas: aerial vehicle, mission systems and payloads.

Raytheon offers an adaptation of its popular Coyote Block 3 mini-drone. Coyote Block 3, a newer variant of the now operational Coyote Blocks 1 and 2, can take advantage of a variety of payloads to include non-kinetic interception technology. to destroy swarms of enemy drones or disable approaching threats.

“We have a mature, low-risk FTA solution. We have taken advantage of our proven Coyote Block 3 for the ALE variant and will perform a ground launch with the same technology required to perform low level aerial launches to demonstrate its connectivity to an aerial vehicle and to communicate via a unmanned network, ”Abel Ghanooni, senior director for short-range air defense and rapid development programs for missiles and Raytheon defense, told The National Interest in an interview.

Interestingly, Raytheon Block 3 was contracted by the US Navy earlier this year to be launched from surface ships and unmanned submarines on reconnaissance missions.

During a demonstration in February this year, Coyote Block 3 used non-kinetic technology to destroy an enemy swarm of 10 drones. Non-kinetic effectors could incorporate high-power microwave technology, EW systems, or other types of interference capable of deactivating an impending threat while minimizing collateral damage and preventing an explosion.

In addition to supplying the FTA aerial vehicle itself, Raytheon also competes with a handful of industry bidders for potential “payloads” or sensor configurations for the FTA. Much of this, Ghanooni explained, relies on an evolving and evolving IT mission.

For the military, Raytheon plans to deliver an airborne ALE mini-drone intended to open up new mission possibilities. The emerging technology will be showcased in October 2021 at Dugway Proving Grounds, Utah, as part of a global development effort.

“SRI is an element of this mission. The demo we are working on is to meet the requirements of air vehicles and leverage our ability to be modular and incorporate new enhancements. Our goal is to be able to travel long distances with the ability to be consumable, ”Ghanooni said.

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Dr James [email protected] (202) 607-2421

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