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Tag : Predator


Robohub is an online platform that brings together leading communicators in robotics research, start-ups, business, and education from around the world.
by   -   March 16, 2013

Robots have already changed the face of modern warfare, particularly through the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), commonly called “drones.” Currently, armed drone aircraft are in widespread use transnationally and have proven highly effective. A current trend is for these huge aircraft to shrink into smaller forms. The US Air Force Unmanned Aircraft Systems Flight Plan 2009-2047 describes sought-after future scenarios in which insect-sized unmanned aerial vehicles infiltrate buildings and either spy on the occupants or deliver lethal payloads directly to individual targets. Current drones are the size of small buildings and they typically kill one civilian for every five combatants using flagrant missile attacks, thereby creating an ongoing international relations nightmare. It isn’t hard to see why smaller, more subtle, and better-targeted drones are in development.

The most worrisome aspect of the plunging cost and climbing sophistication of drone technology is to consider its domestic use in the United States. Although I don’t expect to see armed Predator drones cruising American cities, it is obviously very tempting to employ smaller versions for domestic law enforcement applications (e.g., surveillance during hostage negotiations). How long until similar devices are sent to hover over high-crime areas? We are already confronting novel privacy issues with the advent of Google Glass, increasingly invasive social networks, and sensor-laden smart phones. As drones of all shapes and sizes proliferate abroad, I won’t be surprised when we start to see their appropriate use join the ongoing privacy discussion in the US.

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by   -   March 15, 2013

ftx_-rq-9-reaper-gps-robohub-orgThis is a brief presentation of some of the most widely used robots (or remotely controlled, semi-autonomous systems) from militaries around the world. There are numerous other projects that are currently under development and others that are either abandoned or replaced but here only systems that are currently under use are mentioned. If you have any objections or suggestions you are welcome to make a comment.


by   -   January 1, 2013

photo of Abe Karem

Recently profiled in The Economist, in an article titled “The dronefather”, Abe Karem, founder of Leading Systems, which eventually became the division of General Atomics which builds the Predator, and its successor the Reaper, and also founder of Frontier Systems, a company that developed unmanned helicopters with variable-speed rotors, which he sold to Boeing, now leads Karem Aircraft, which is working on a tilt-rotor transport aircraft, using the “optimum speed” technology developed by Frontier Systems.

Mr. Karem will be among those featured in a PBS Nova production, Rise of the Drones, to be aired Wednesday, January 23rd, beginning at 9:00 PM U.S. Eastern Time (UTC-5).