World Politics Review: The U.S. Navy’s Belated Robot Revolution

07.12.11

Categorie: David Axe, Naval, Robots, World Politics Review |
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Scan Eagle. Boeing photo.

Scan Eagle. Boeing photo.

by DAVID AXE

It was an ignominious start for a potentially profound technological revolution. On June 21, 2011, a U.S. Navy MQ-8 Fire Scout robotic reconnaissance helicopter was shot down near Tripoli by forces loyal to then-Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi. The 24-foot-long, gray-painted drone was one of two launched from the frigate USS Halyburton and remotely controlled by operators aboard the vessel. Carrying classified sensors, the Fire Scouts likely helped detect targets for NATO forces flying top cover for Libyan rebels.

The Fire Scouts’ Libyan missions represent the major combat debut for the U.S. Navy’s growing arsenal of unmanned vehicles. In coming years, the world’s biggest maritime force could add hundreds of flying, swimming and diving robots to its existing fleets of surface warships, submarines and manned aircraft. The new unmanned systems promise to greatly expand the Navy’s ability to locate and attack enemy forces.

Read the rest at World Politics Review.

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One Response to “World Politics Review: The U.S. Navy’s Belated Robot Revolution”

  1. Varun says:

    Hello David,

    Thank you for sharing this with us. There’s news that FireScouts will be armed soon.
    http://www.pacificflyer.com/2011/12/navy-arming-its-fire-scouts/
    Don’t you think that there is a potential in these drones to operate in anti-piracy theaters? (of course under some form of control i.e. UN/NATO-led).

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