With unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology developing rapidly, military and industry are coming up with new methods to both utilize them and combat them out in the field. Drones can provide an element of risk reduction through value-adding activities, such as recce and the ability to perform offensive strikes, or provoke a specific reaction in a unit, all the while minimising the exposure of the users operating them.
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Indeed, UAV technology presents plenty of beneficial opportunities, but it is important that drones remain-value adding, and efforts are made not to increase the cognitive and physical burden on infantry that will have to carry them, use, and retrieve after a mission.
The US Military Goes Shopping
The US Army has ambitious plans regarding infantry use of drones. For example, in 2018 the US Army awarded a $2.6 million contract to FLIR Systems Inc. of Wilsonville, Oregon,