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Tag: Military Tech

What we know about the ‘Phoenix Ghost’ drones going to Ukraine

Science April 28, 2022 0 Comments

Last week, the Department of Defense announced that it was sending “121 Phoenix Ghost Tactical Unmanned Aerial Systems” to Ukraine. This release was part of a broader package of arms and aid for the country that has, since February 24, been fighting against invading Russian forces. It also came as a surprise: the Phoenix Ghost drone appeared to be a…

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Robotic cartographers created these colorful cave maps

Science February 2, 2022 0 Comments

Last week, the team that took second place in a DARPA competition called the Subterranean Challenge released two videos recorded from runs last year through the Louisville Mega Cavern. These videos, recorded as part of the competition to find, identify, and map underground spaces, offer a glimpse into the world of machine-generated mapping of three-dimensional spaces. Each video also looks…

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Why the Air Force is interested in this little electric plane

Science January 30, 2022 0 Comments

With its rotors pointed towards the ground, the Heaviside plane by Kitty Hawk looks like an almost-complete hobbyist project. As the rotors spun into action for flight testing in December 2021, the plane lifted off and wobbled, looking not unlike a model of a spacecraft pulled skyward by fishing line in an old sci-fi movie. Once airborne, with the rotors…

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Russia’s Marker robot is a testbed for its next-gen military tech

Science January 21, 2022 0 Comments

This month, Russia announced that it had completed research on its experimental Marker robot combat vehicle. The machine, designed from the start as a testbed for future tools and technologies, was never designed for combat, but machines based on its features will be. In a Russian military modernizing and mobilizing for war, the Marker program was a bet placed on…

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An inside look at how one person can control a swarm of 130 robots

Science January 20, 2022 0 Comments

Last November, at Fort Campbell, Tennessee, half a mile from the Kentucky border, a single human directed a swarm of 130 robots. The swarm, including uncrewed planes, quadcopters, and ground vehicles, scouted the mock buildings of the Cassidy Range Complex, creating and sharing information visible not just to the human operator but to other people on the same network. The…

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Russian mail drones could simplify Siberian postal delivery

Science November 27, 2021 0 Comments

On its platform, the helicopter-style SH-350 drone receives a blue package in a pelican-case-style box. Tied tight into place, it rises with the drone over a field of snow. The tops of snow-covered trees are visible below, as the robotic letter carrier navigates the skies of the Siberian winter twilight. On delivery, a human opens the protecting case, and extracts…

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Poland’s new anti-aircraft system will hit stealth targets at supersonic speeds

Science November 24, 2021 0 Comments

Sovereignty in the sky is as much about putting planes in the air as it is about denying the airspace to hostile aircraft. These twin desires—to contest the sky with aircraft and to deny it with missiles—drive a great deal of defense planning and spending. In that vein, on November 18, Poland announced an agreement with the United Kingdom to…

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Inspired by a seed, this rotating drone will make your head spin

Science November 18, 2021 0 Comments

In flight, the drone resembles a giant seed pod, lofted in the wind and buzzing through a rotor.  Created by a team at the Singapore University of Technology & Design, this new seed-inspired one-wing drone is named F-SAM. It is a type of monocopter, or a helicopter with only one rotating blade. Engineers first developed a monocopter in 1913, with…

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Watch a AC-130 Gunship Devastate Targets on the Ground with Its Howitzer

Technology January 31, 2019 1 Comments

The largest gun attached to any warplane in the world belongs to the new AC-130W Stinger II flying gunship. Its M102 howitzer can fire 105mm high-explosive shells at targets on the ground at a rate of up to ten rounds per minute. Here it is in action: The video starts with aircrews loading 105mm howitzer shells into the aircraft for…

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