Earlier this year the U.S. Army announced that the Soldier Sensors and Lasers (SSL) division of Rock Island Arsenal’s Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center (RIA-JMTC) delivered the first 60 complete Black Hornet systems to unspecified units. This Personal Reconnaissance System (PRS), weighs in at less than a tenth of a pound, measures just under seven inches long, and comes complete with a docking station for two drones, a hand-held touchscreen device as well as a controller. The U.S. Army’s 1st Battalion of the 82nd Airborne Division’s 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment will begin using the devices next month in Afghanistan. Read more for two additional videos and information.
The Black Hornet 3 sports two daytime video cameras, as well as a thermal imager, which means during nighttime operations, the drone combines the feeds from both its electro-optical the thermal imaging system to create higher fidelity imagery. This enables the operator to positively identify individuals as hostile, rather than just innocent bystanders.
It can in flight or up to 25-minutes and has a maximum range of 1.24 miles, thus allowing the operator to send it far ahead of their position to survey items of interest. Due to its ultra quiet operation, troops to can use it regularly, day or night, without giving their position away.