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Fort Benning testing new drone technology

FORT BENNING, GA (WTVM) -

The US Army may be addinga new type of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)—commonly referred to as a drone—to theirforce. But first, the technology is being tested at Fort Benning.

Simulations and testflight evaluations are taking place at McKenna MOUT from June 23-27.

The experiments aretesting algorithms and sensors which will enable low-altitude autonomousflight. The capability could reduce vulnerability during combat operations.

A 175 lb. helicopter witha 10 ft. rotor diameter is being used for the test flights. It's equipped withonboard navigation and guidance control systems.

Test flights includeremote-controlled flights as well as autonomous flights, in which"waypoints" are input into the onboard guidance system.

The Maneuver Center ofExcellence's Maneuver Battle Lab (MBL) is collaborating with Georgia TechnicalResearch Institute (GTRI) to conduct the evaluations.

GTRI has conducted similartesting and experimentation with the Maneuver Battle Lab since 2004, and this latesttesting continues to highlight the partnership between the Department ofDefense, Fort Benning and institutions of higher learning.

The Army's Aviation andMissile Research, Development and Engineering Center at Redstone Arsenal,Alabama are sponsoring the test flights.

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