The Department of the Navy’s Office of Naval Research this week released two videos showing hives of drone aircraft being launched and controlled en masse.
The ONR’s LOw-Cost Unmanned aerial vehicle Swarming Technology (LOCUST) program envisions a tube based launcher that could deploy with Marines ashore or from the decks of Navy ships and operate in masses that could conceivably reach hundreds, overwhelming an enemy.
“This level of autonomous swarming flight has never been done before,” said ONR program manager Lee Mastroianni in a previous media release by the Navy. “UAVs that are expendable and reconfigurable will free manned aircraft and traditional weapon systems to do more, and essentially multiply combat power at decreased risk to the warfighter.”
All of which reminds us of Gen. George S. Patton’s speech to the Third Army in which he said, “No dumb bastard ever won a war by going out and dying for his country. He won it by making some other dumb bastard die for his country.”
The above video shows a swarm test launching where they rip off 9 drones in 9 seconds while the below shows a 30 aircraft flight of UAVs directed in tandem by the Navy and researchers from the Georgia Tech Research Institute of the Georgia Institute of Technology