Military Explores Drone Swarms
January 09, 2018
According to The Army Times, the military is exploring how to deploy autonomous robot swarms of “250 or more drones” under the control of Army or Marine light infantry units on the battlefield.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is currently engaged in a multi-stage program intended to develop “offensive swarm-enabled tactics.” The project combines air and ground robots in the most complex battlefield imaginable: urban spaces.
According to the report:
The teams will experiment with the technology to make swarm capabilities real. Other competitors will then use the architecture to focus on one of five areas—swarm tactics, swarm autonomy, human-swarm teaming, virtual environment and physical testbed …
The first sprint, which accepted applications through last November, will look at generating swarm tactics for a mixed swarm of 50 air and ground robots to “isolate an urban objective within an area of two square city blocks over a mission duration of 15 to 30 minutes.”
The report notes the Defense Department has been working on swarm drone technology for nearly two years. China held a demonstration of the same in June that slightly surpassed the numbers of the 2016 U.S. test.