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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles - Benefits to the Warfighter

From the first crude aerial vehicles to the current systems, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have sought to garner some advantage over the enemy. The benefits to the warfighter have also evolved over the years from basic delivery platforms to enhanced surveillance and precision delivery platforms. Future benefits might even eliminate the need for manned aerial platforms. However, the major challenges faced by troops on the ground today are not at the regimental, battalion, or even company level. The rationale behind the development of early UAVs, current UAVs, and even planned UAVs is that they support conventional operations at the company level and above, and for the most part they have provided excellent support. In the current operating environment though, particularly in Iraq and Afghanistan, troops at the platoon, squad, and fire team levels are engaging the enemy. To meet the requirements of troops at this level a major shift is needed in the development of UAVs from the traditional systems that support the “over the next hill” or “area of operation” battlefield concept to UAVs that support “close-quarter” operations. The current threat on the modern battlefield requires a greater investment in specific UAV platforms to provide immediate support to troops in contact.

Date of Report: June 11, 2012
Number of Pages: 17
Order Number: G1878
Price: $19.95

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