The active use of civilian drones to drop small-caliber ammunition on the enemy, which has become a traditional tool of fire impact on the enemy for the Armed Forces of Ukraine, has become a catalyst for work on this topic for the USA and China as well.
Each of these countries has demonstrated its own 'development' features. In particular, the American armed forces first decided to check how effective such a weapon could actually be. Although it seems that after the astronomical number of videos from the front line in Ukraine, where improvised bombs and hand grenades dropped from civilian Mavic-type quadcopters destroy manpower, vehicles, light and even heavy armored vehicles, it is surprising that such questions appear at all.
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In the USA:
A separate project was created for testing. According to the press service of the US Ministry of Defense, it is implemented under the auspices of the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities and Development Command (DEVCOM). The DEVCOM Armament Center and units of the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions participated in the tests themselves. During the tests, which lasted from February 22 to 24, a hand grenade was successfully dropped from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle.
For this, the RQ-28A quadrocopter by Skydio was used, with a dropping mechanism specially developed by the DEVCOM engineering team. Dropping a grenade from a quadcopter was entrusted to a soldier assigned to 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. It is noted that this was the first time that the American military carried out such an operation.
As a result of the tests in the USA, the possibility of such a combat use of the RQ-28A drone and the general viability of the concept were proven.
At the same time, somewhere in China:
One of the enterprises started serial equipping of agricultural multicopters for dropping mortar mines. Each such a drone is equipped with a device for dropping 8 mines, which most likely correspond to 82-mm caliber.
For such drones, the corresponding software has already been created, which works with a dropping mechanism itself. In addition, this software may even work out certain external data for more accurate aiming.
At the same time, it should be noted that these multicopters are equipped with an internal combustion engine, which has a rather characteristic sound, which is a significant unmasking factor.
But in general, the Chinese approach simply impresses with its massiveness and willingness to really respond to market requests as quickly as possible.
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