Army Develops Kamikaze Drone To Defeat Enemy Attack Drones
(Washington D.C.) The Army is working with industry partners to upgrade and expand its counter-drone fight by helping to bring new advanced technology to U.S. allied countries across the globe facing an increasingly complex threat. The effort includes industry moves to offer emerging counter-drone systems for international sales, the addition of advanced interceptors and emerging uses of AI -- all as part of a cutting edge effort to destroy attacking drones.
Armored vehicle convoys maneuvering through mountainous terrain as part of a massive, coordinated combined arms ground attack, could easily be vulnerable to fast-appearing, close-in enemy drone attacks. Forward Operating Bases, often fighting without immediate air support, are also potentially susceptible to fast-approaching drone swarms. Dismounted, forward-moving infantry operating in small groups without armored vehicles or close-air support could be especially at risk of a coordinated close-in, small drone attacks.
Enemy drones, even low-tech ones, are not only widely available but extremely dangerous to ground forces in today’s modern warfare threat environment. While many countermeasures already exist or are in rapid development, persistent innovation is now being prioritized by the Pentagon, in an effort to stay in front of adaptive enemies pursuing fast-expanding avenues of attack. The U.S. Army is now improving existing drone defense weapons and moving quickly to deploy new ones, such as interceptor missiles, networked ground sensors, laser weapons and EW, among other things.
At the same time, while many medium, large and longer-range drone countermeasures have reached substantial levels of maturity, smaller vehicle attack drones, described as Group 1 to Group 3, present unique and still somewhat unresolved challenges. Drone swarms, for instance - such as commercially-available quadcopters - can be flown in groups to overwhelm radar systems, blanket areas with ISR or even themselves function as mini attack explosives or airborne IEDs.
These small drone threat challenges are specifically addressed in the Army Air and Missile Defense Vision 2028 document, which states …. “Low, slow, and small (LSS) UASs are defined as Groups 1-3, which current AMD (Air and Missile Defense) systems find difficult to detect, identify, and defeat. The Army concentrates its counter-UAS efforts on defeating Groups 1-3 using a combined arms approach…...The extensive range of platforms in terms of size, velocity, range, altitude, flexibility, and capability make this a very challenging mission area for AMD systems.”
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Osborn previously served at the Pentagon as a Highly Qualified Expert with the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army - Acquisition, Logistics& Technology. Osborn has also worked as an anchor and on-air military specialist at national TV networks. He has appeared as a guest military expert on Fox News, MSNBC, The Military Channel and The History Channel. He also has a Masters Degree in Comparative Literature from Columbia University.
This article first appeared in Warrior Maven.
Image: New York Army National Guard Corporal Matthew G. Mena performs a systems check on an RQ-11 Raven B, a small unmanned aerial system or drone, during the field training at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, U.S. May 15, 2019. New Jersey National Guard/Mark C. Olsen/Handout via REUTERS.