By Evan Bleier / September 8, 2018

Report: US Army Is Building Laser-powered Drones That Don’t Need to Land

Lasers can blast power to the drones from up to 1,600 feet.

Google Is Helping the Pentagon Build AI for Drones. (Getty Images)

In order to help power the next wave of drones, the U.S. Army is harnessing a next-generation technology: lasers.

According to a report in New Scientist, Army engineers at the Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center in Maryland are developing a way to beam energy to in-flight drones with lasers.

The lasers, which beam into and deliver power to photovoltaic cells on the drones, have the capability to eventually deliver juice from up to 1,600 feet away.

While unconventional, the method is similar to what University of Washington researchers did to power a flock of mini-insect robots.

By using this modern method of wireless recharging, the Army is hoping its drones will be able to fly indefinitely and never have to land. 

As it stands, their power-sucking drones are limited to a flight time of a half an hour or less.

Daily Brief

15 Things to Know Today, from RealClearLife

April 19, 2019 April 18, 2019 April 17, 2019