British Army embarks on largest military robot exercise in its history

Military drone
The Army has started its biggest military robot exercise in British history. Troops have commenced the testing of over 70 examples of futuristic technology including enhanced surveillance drones and other unmanned vehicles. The ‘Autonomous Warrior’ experiment, taking place on the fields of Salisbury Plain, will last four weeks and will test a range of prototype unmanned aerial vehicles alongside autonomous ground-based robots. The exercise will finish with a battlegroup experiment which will see the best ideas and products tested in a tough simulated operational environment. On the experiment, defence secretary Gavin Williamson, said: “Our troops now have the chance to
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Heliguy hosts emergency services roadshow in Lincolnshire

Heliguy has hosted an emergency services roadshow in Lincoln, in partnership with DJI. The scene, put together by event organisers, featured a derailed train and a number of casualties which emergency services had to use a drone to deal with as part of a demonstration. The event, held last Tuesday, also doubled up as the official launch of the DJI Mavic 2 Enterprise release in the UK. Emergency services used the new loudspeaker feature on the drone to give a message to the casualties of ‘This is the emergency services. Please remain calm. Help will be with you shortly’ in
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Australian beach council to use drones for coastline patrol

Northern Beaches Council lifeguards and rangers in Australia are currently undertaking drone qualifications to operate drones. The move is part of a plan to give the team greater capability to keep beaches safe and supplement existing regulatory resources. The tailor-made Certificate III in Aviation (Remote Pilot – Visual Line of Sight) qualification has been offered to four council lifeguards and two rangers. Once completed, the staff will receive their Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) Remote Pilot License (RePL), as well as their Aeronautical Radio Operator Certificate (AROC). On the training scheme, Northern Beaches mayor, Michael Regan, said: “We’re very lucky
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Openreach turns to drone operations for fibre broadband connection in Scottish Highlands

Openreach used a drone to fly a fibre broadband cable across a river in the Scottish Highlands. The UAV was used to connect a remote home in the area with the network, providing it with a better quality of internet. According to a report by the BBC, the team had previously attempted to attach cables to fishing lines, golf balls and even hammers, but had been mostly unsuccessful. Chief engineer for Openreach in the North of Scotland, Kevin Drain, told the BBC: "Although Glenmazeran is only 20 miles from Inverness, the properties are very remote and scattered. We've had to
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SenseFly to showcase new fixed-wing drone in free webinar

SenseFly, one of the industry’s leading providers of professional mapping drones, and a commercial drone subsidiary of Parrot Group, will host a free webinar exploring its new eBee X fixed-wing drone on Tuesday, November 13. The online session will be led by Francois Gervaix, fixed-wing drone lead for Parrot Business Solutions, Chris Healy of IN-FLIGHT Data and Scott Hiebert of Green Aero Tech, for the 45-minute live event. Together, they will discuss how they have employed the eBee X in a range of projects, from assessing open pits to flying beyond visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) and more. Gervaix said: “With the eBee
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EXCLUSIVE: UK-based drone training provider introduces new online PfCO course

Uplift Drones, a UK-based drone training provider, has launched a new PfCO course that can be taken completely online. The Online PfCO is an all-inclusive, CAA approved drone training course that leads to the student's NQE recommendation for the Permission for Commercial Operations (PfCO). The course has been created by an expert training team of commercial drone operators and manned pilots. It exceeds the CAA recommended syllabus delivered by an advanced Learning Management System (LMS) that tracks a student's progress through each module and is accessible on multiple devices including tablet, Apple Mac and PC. The e-course material is made of
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Chartered Surveyors take to the skies with aerial drone inspections

Chris Daniells and Richard Huffer from Daniells Harrison Chartered Surveyors recently attended a 3-day commercial drone flying course at NATS Swanwick and successfully gained permission to fly a DHCS company drone for commercial operations. The Portsmouth-based company can now offer aerial drone surveys alongside existing surveying services, for both commercial and residential purposes. Huffer said: “The drone gives us the opportunity to easily survey previously inaccessible parts of buildings, such as roofs and higher structural details. He added: “We don’t have bring in cherry pickers which were costly and often hard to get on site.  And the high definition quality
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Drone shoots down UAV in first aerial take down

The US Air Force has confirmed that a US Reaper Drone shot down another unmanned aircraft for the first time ever last year. According to a report by, the US MQ-9 reaper fired a missile to take out the unmanned aircraft. The event has been described as the beginning of the unmanned aerial combat age. In an interview with, colonel Julian Cheater said: “It was an MQ-9 versus a drone with a heat-seeking air-to-air missile, and it was direct hit during a test.” He added: “We develop those tactics, techniques and procedures to make us survivable in those
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BVLOS operations in the UK opens its doors

The Beyond Visual Line of Site in the UK conference has opened its doors this morning for a two-day event. The London-based conference is hoping to bring a range of operators, users, providers and regulators together to gain a deeper insight into BVLOS. Operators will explain how they safely operate BVLOS while users will describe the business behind the approach. Providers are set to use the conference to assess new capabilities which can mitigate the current constraints in the industry. Additionally, regulators and legislators are hoping to provide background to proposed regulatory developments. Currently, the UK CAA oversees BVLOS operations,
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US Navy set to test first of its kind carrier-launched drone

The US Navy are preparing to begin formal flight testing for a first of its kind carrier launched drone in 2021. The drone has been designed to double the attack range of F-18 fighters, F-35Cs and other carrier aircraft. According to a report by Fox News, the launch is part of the emerging Navy MQ-25 Stingray program which is planned to enter full service in the mid-2020s. The report goes on to describe how the program will introduce a new generation of technology by engineering a new unmanned re-fuel capability for the carrier air wing. Jamie Cosgrove, spokesperson for Naval
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