Unmanned aerial vehicles the size of a cigarette

Researchers at OSU developing plasma thrusters to power nano unmanned air vehicles.

Oklahoma State University

Researchers at Oklahoma State University are working with DARPA to deliver a sophisticated, unmanned aircraft small enough to fit into a soldier's pocket, reports the Daily O'Collegian.

A state-of-the-art propulsion system, one that uses plasma thrusters with no moving parts, could provide power for micro and nano unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV.)This class of airplane can measure anywhere from a foot to less than 6 inches long.

"What we want the infantrymen to be able to do is pull a pack of six or so out of their pocket and have them ready for use," Jamey Jacob, an associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering told the Daily.

The new line of aircraft would take over some of the duties performed by today's UAV fleet, mainly surveillance of hostile areas, and would be a significant improvement over the UAV equipment available to soldiers today, according to Jacob. OSU students are working on another DARPA project, an aircraft that can stay aloft for five years at a stretch.

Oklahoma State University

Featured Video
6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

As Xbox One gets a little sweeter, HoloLens gets Xbox Live

Microsoft announces new features coming to Xbox One, including the ability to record TV shows. Also, the company opens up Xbox Live to HoloLens programmers.

by Bridget Carey