- 15:45 ET, Jan 14 2022
- Updated: 17:19 ET, Jan 14 2022
SCARY drone tech that lets a single soldier control 130 drones with just their voice has been developed in partnership with the Pentagon.
The drone swarms have been tested in indoor and outdoor settings.
Defense contractor company Raytheon has been working with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) on the project.
The drone swarms have been dubbed “OFFensive Swarm-Enabled Tactics” (OFFSET).
One swarm is said to be made up of 130 physical drones and 30 simulated ones.
Raytheon announced the successful tests in a press release.
It said: “Using integrated swarm technology developed by a Raytheon BBN-led team, a single operator successfully controlled a swarm—composed of 130 physical drone platforms and 30 simulated drone platforms—both indoors and outdoors in an urban setting.”
It said that controlling the drones required “minimal training”.
The drones are controlled using a virtual reality interface that lets a commander she what each drone is looking at.
This is said to create an “interactive virtual view of the environment”.
Shane Clark, the principal investigator of OFFSET at Raytheon, said: “You can look behind the building to access a view of drone locations for example, and use the virtual reality environment to test and see if your mission is viable.”
The drone swarm can also be controlled by a speech interface that allows voice commands.
This was added to allow an operator to act quickly.
Clark added: “Our software is smart enough to assign drones with the right capabilities to the appropriate set of tasks.
“For example, if the task is to surveil a building, multiple drones will be dispatched with each surveilling portions of the building.”
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