Unmanned combat drones aren’t exactly new. We’ve heard about them and read about them being used in warfare, but it seems that we could be reaching new heights in drone technology. This is thanks to Kelley Aerospace who have managed to craft an unmanned combat drone that can hit speeds of over 1,500mph.
The drone in question is called Arrow and it is larger than what you might think of when it comes to drones. It is made completely out of carbon fibre which helps with keeping it light, and can even exceed the speed of sound and hit Mach 2.1. The drone is priced between $9-16 million, which the company claims is a relatively low price, and they also state that they have received more than 100 pre-orders of the drone to date.
According to Kelley Aerospace’s CEO Ian Lim, “UAVs are known for their persistence…loitering, [but] are never known for their speed. So with the Arrow supersonic UAV, you will overcome the issues of speed and reach.” The drone is still currently in the prototype phase but they are looking to proceed with flight tests with a quarter-scale model that will be used as proof of concept.
The drone can also be used alongside manned aircrafts, where there will be a manned version of the Arrow that will have the capability of controlling multiple unmanned versions of the drone, each with its own mission, equipment, and weapons.