Operator alone is able to control a swarm of more than a hundred drones

(ORDO NEWS) — American companies Raytheon Technologies and Northrop Grumman have shown that an operator alone can control a swarm of more than a hundred unmanned systems.

According to C4ISRNET, Raytheon’s development made it possible to control 130 real drones and 30 simulated ones, while Northrop controlled a swarm of 174 platforms.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) of the US Department of Defense launched the OFFSET program in 2016.

Its task is to create software that allows you to combine up to 250 different ground robots and unmanned aerial vehicles into one group. These groups of robots must solve problems together using one of more than a hundred tactical options.

The US military has already conducted a number of tests as part of OFFSET. For example, in 2019, a group of many robots of different classes performed reconnaissance, compiled a detailed map of the location of all buildings, and ensured the security of QR tags, which the operator designated as the most important.

Last November, DARPA again organized OFFSET tests at the Fort Campbell military base in Kentucky. They included Northrop Grumman and Raytheon.

Both companies have shown that their developments allow a single operator to control a swarm of more than a hundred unmanned systems. Raytheon has combined 130 real drones and 30 simulated ones, while Northrop has 174 platforms.

Erin Cherry, head of Northrop’s technical program for developing new capabilities, said their operator was able to control the swarm for up to 3.5 hours.

During this time, robots and drones discovered about 600 “artifacts” in about 20 minutes – intelligence, environmental information and mission scenario elements created by DARPA for testing.

The military is interested not only in combining robots and drones into swarms, but also in ways to deal with these swarms. Earlier we wrote about the Coyote drone, which the US Army tested against a swarm of ten drones.

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