The American developers of the Research laboratory of the U.S. Army patented a miniature drone with a wing and a paraglider, which can be run using the normal grenade launcher caliber of 40 millimeters. The development was named GLUAS (grenade-launched unmanned aerial system, unmanned aerial vehicle grenade launch).
For the past 10 years, the U.S. Department of defense is implementing a program to increase the number of drones of different classes, used by the armed forces. It is believed that the miniature drones that soldiers can carry in your pocket or backpack, will significantly increase the safety and awareness of the units.
In particular, with such devices, the soldiers can quickly and relatively quietly to conduct a reconnaissance, to observe the movement of the enemy or to scout his position.
According to the patent, the drone GLUAS can be run using the single-shot M79 grenade launcher, M203 grenade or heavy machine-automatic Mk.19. All of these grenade launchers have a caliber of 40 millimeters.
The drone is a compact cylindrical shell with folding wings, folded around the body and release the glider. The device is equipped with the battery and electric motor with pusher propeller.
Duration of flight of new drone, according to the draft, is 2 kilometers. The drone can stay in the air for 30 minutes to one hour and up to an altitude of 600 metres. It is expected that the device will be able to operate under operator control or fully automatic mode.
GLUAS it is proposed to equip the camera with which the apparatus and will be able to explore and exchange information on the operator panel. Whether it is only on the patent for a drone grenade launcher or the specialists of the Research laboratory of the U.S. Army have built a prototype of the device is unknown.
Today, the development of drones grenade launch is engaged in an Australian company DefendTex. Last spring she presented a quadrocopter Drone-40 form factor grenade shot for a grenade launcher caliber 40 mm.
This device is a miniature loitering munition, capable of circling the target to 20 minutes. This machine is capable of speeds up to 72 kilometers per hour and to perform flights on distance up to 10 kilometers. Drone-40 has a camera and can be equipped with armor-piercing, high-explosive or incendiary warhead or smoke charge.