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The Military United Kingdom News

Handheld Black Hornet Nano Drones Issued To UK Soldiers 97

cylonlover writes "Drones have become a valuable asset for any military force in recent years for both combat and surveillance. But while scanning a warzone from miles away is great from a tactical standpoint, unmanned aircraft can be just as useful in the hands of troops on the ground. That's why British soldiers in Afghanistan have been issued several Black Hornet Nanos, a palm-sized UAV that can scout around corners and obstacles for hidden dangers. Each UAV measures just 4 x 1 inches (10 x 2.5cm) and weighs a mere 0.6 ounces (16 grams), making it easy for troops to carry along with the rest of their gear. A built-in camera transmits live video and still images to a handheld control unit at a range of up to half a mile (800 meters)."
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Handheld Black Hornet Nano Drones Issued To UK Soldiers

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  • by 91degrees ( 207121 ) on Friday February 08, 2013 @04:24AM (#42829893) Journal
    Relative to the cost of a soldier [] this seems reasonable, assuming British soldiers have a similar cost.
  • by bmo ( 77928 ) on Friday February 08, 2013 @04:38AM (#42829959)

    This just in: short production runs of 160 pieces have an expensive per-piece cost.

    Tooling and R&D aren't free, buddy.


  • by rts008 ( 812749 ) on Friday February 08, 2013 @05:43AM (#42830209) Journal

    One thing is for certain, soldiers will have plans formed in much less than the first hour after the drones are issued to them..."We need drone style, real-time visual recon of the nearest women's shower. ASAP!"

    Troops will be troops, it has been so for thousands of years: Live to get laid, have the next drink, and collecting some coin.

  • by TheLink ( 130905 ) on Friday February 08, 2013 @10:14AM (#42831569) Journal
    Show me a 16g heli with 30 minute flight time, stable in high winds, camera that _transmits_ live video (think battery life again), and can follow GPS coordinates (think yet more battery life).

    Provide a link to one that's less than $1000. Otherwise you can figure out where all the millions went.

    I've seen interesting civilian/toy helis: e.g.

    But none have specs anything as impressive as _claimed_ in the article. It does make me wonder whether the claims are all true. If it's true it's pretty impressive tech. In fact it actually is not far from some of those Sci-Fi stuff.

    I've got toy helis, and without all those specs, they are toys.
    8 minute flight time
    requires pilot intervention in high winds.
    no GPS
    adding live hi-res video = even shorter flight time.
    Not water proof (my guess is the drone is waterproof or it'll be a major oops ;) ).

If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants. -- Isaac Newton