The US military is testing the strategy of hitting the council with a squadron of drones

These drones are deployed from US and Allied helicopters; It’s also the largest swarm of “interactive ALE” drones the military has ever tested (ALE stands for Air-Launched Effects, which refers to drones launching from the air over a war zone within a war zone, below, used by seated soldiers controlled in the aircraft or fully autonomously and transmits information about the helicopter and infantry for the benefit of the user).

These drones are a combination of Area-I’s ALTIUS 600 model and Raytheon’s Coyote. They will be launched from various aircraft and ground vehicles at the US military-sponsored exercise EDGE 22 April 25-May 12 at the Dugway Test Range near Salt Lake City, Utah.

The US military tested the strategy of combating the Rat with a large number of drones in the Utah skies - Photo 1.

The ALTIUS-600 was released from a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter

Depending on the load, the ALTIUS-600 weighs 9 – 12.25 kg, has a range of more than 444 km and the battery lasts at least 4 hours. Like PILS, this drone can be launched from CLT and RIwP. It can carry a variety of cargo to perform a wide range of intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR) and signals intelligence (SIGINT) missions. ALTIUS can also be equipped with an additional warhead for attacks or used as an anti-drone weapon in combination with Lockheed Martin’s MoRFIUS system. Last year Area-I announced the ALTIUS-700 with triple the payload of the previous generation, up to 5 hours flight time and can be outfitted with components for surveillance missions, anti-UAS, electronic warfare, ammunition transport, and signals intelligence.

Meanwhile, Raytheon’s Block I Coyote drone was first introduced in 2007 with a rear strut and pair of wings and dual tail with the ability to deploy. They were billed as a low-cost intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance platform, but ultimately became the test product for a variety of uses, including aerial launch by NOAA aircraft to collect data during hurricanes in 2017.

The US military tested the strategy of combating the Rat with a large number of drones in the Utah skies - photo 2.

Raytheon’s Block I Coyote drone

Block 2 was introduced in 2018, with a more missile-like appearance, without wings, and was specifically designed to combat drones. Block 3, launched last year, is used for autonomous naval vessels to launch from above or below the sea surface.

ALEs, featuring a variety of sensor technologies, are launched from aircraft, ground vehicles, and infantry, then linked together as they fly back into the war zone. This swarm of drones will cover the entire combat area, identifying enemy forces with infrared sensors and integrated electronic battlefield systems capable of detecting transmitted signals, changing positions and relaying information. then back to the network of operators and manned attack aircraft.

The US military tested the strategy of combating the Rat with a large number of drones in the Utah skies - photo 3.

ALTIUS evolved from Area-I’s PILS system. started

EDGE 22 is part of experimental exercises organized by the US military to evaluate the technology and practice new combat models. About 20 other defense units are expected to participate in EDGE 22, testing at least 50 technologies, including operation and coordination with other automatic sensor network units. . To assess the potential for bottlenecks and speed up decision-making, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and the UK will join the exercise.

EDGE is viewed as a learning activity from last fall’s PC 21 exercises, paving the way for PC 22 later this year.

In PC 21, two ALTIUS 600 drones were launched and controlled by a Black Hawk UH-60 helicopter using DARPA’s autonomous brain called the Aircrew Labor In-Cockpit Automation System, creating the second airborne sensor system. The second and third are used to transmit data for reconnaissance and bring data back to the operational network. The successful test of this small swarm of drones has set the stage for the US side to conduct a 30-drone multimedia exercise combining two warplanes aimed at the landing pad behind the enemy station. The swarm of drones will be deployed to seek out, detect, assess and possibly attack enemy positions before the manned helicopter arrives.

The idea behind this tactic is to deploy swarms of spy drones and deliver ammunition behind enemy positions to find and identify hidden enemy forces. Working together, swarms of drones can search large areas of terrain with complete autonomy, transmitting video and targeting information via manned platforms that congregate out of enemy range. Last year, DARPA tested a similar tactic, but relied on a smaller drone swarm for urban missions rather than airstrikes. The US military can also deploy larger standstill autonomous platforms such as the MQ-1C Gray Eagle.

The military’s plan for each ALE is to conduct at least one of the predetermined groups of targeting and reconnaissance missions – “detect, locate, locate, report,” or DILR. The drones in the swarm carry active or passive functional systems. For example, passive drones carry infrared or electro-optic imaging cameras or sensors capable of electronic positioning broadcast by the enemy, including communications and radar systems. Active drones carry an electronic jammer to disrupt enemy communications and detection systems, or a warhead to directly attack enemy positions.

You can see a description of this tactic in the following video:

Tactics of hitting the council with a swarm of US military drones

Once targets are acquired and identified, some of the aircraft in the swarm can be used as suicide drones to hit the target, while others look out for semi-indirect or machine-launched missiles. to fly. Sharing tasks and packages between drones in the swarm makes the drone network more flexible, as not every aircraft is forced to perform all specified tasks. It also allows for the deployment of smaller and cheaper UAS as they don’t have to carry both reconnaissance and attack gear.

The US military is currently evaluating the capabilities of future battlefield drone swarms in a variety of configurations and sizes, launched from a variety of platforms including infantry vehicles, airships and airships. , long-range missiles and other unmanned systems.

ALTIUS has previously been launched from MQ-1C drones and UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters and XQ-58A Valkyrie stealth drones. Using Area-I’s PILS launch system, ALTIUS can be launched from C-130, AC-130J, P-3 and civilian aircraft, as well as from a DAGOR ultra-light tactical vehicle.

With these systems, the US military gets a broader and more detailed view of the future battlefield before manned aircraft and infantry close in on the enemy. ALTIUS was also a testing ground for what would later become an ALE line with a broader range of capabilities.

The US military tested the strategy of combating the Rat with a large number of drones in the Utah skies - photo 5.

Critical to the deployment of drone swarms, and to the military’s broader combined strategy, is an anti-jamming network strong and covert enough to function in environments with restricted communications. lost. The drones themselves can be used as repeaters to extend communications between forces deployed on the battlefield and command posts in the rear.

Such a secure and hierarchical network of long-distance strike and surveillance vehicles would allow the military to create the desired battlefield conditions before attacking defensive positions, and ensure that armed forces engage military targets in highly complex environments such as urban ones.

Regardless of the results of the EDGE 22 test, the military will continue to push the connected battlefield model with high mobility in the future. PC22 this fall will likely mark the debut of an even larger swarm of drones, performing even more complex tasks to achieve that goal.

Reference: TheDrive

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