This tiny drone can be carried and deployed by soldiers

The Snipe quadcopter is already in the hands of the US government

Drone-maker AeroVironment has developed a handheld quadcopter that it says can be carried by soldiers on the battlefield and quickly deployed to get an aerial look at a potentially hostile location.

The drone, called Snipe Nano Quad, has retractable rotor arms so it can be carried in a compact form and unpacked when needed. It weighs just 140 grams (5 ounces).

It's equipped with cameras that can send a visible or infrared image back to a handheld controller unit. The infrared view provides a way to see the body heat of a person who may be hidden.

The drone has a top speed of around 20 miles per hour and a radio range of about 1 kilometer. It has a battery life of about 15 minutes, and its size means its difficult to spot when in the sky, said the maker.

170509 snipe 2 AeroVironment/IDGNS

A control unit for AeroVironment's Snipe drone.

Twenty of the drones were delivered in April to the U.S. government, the company said. It didn't name the customer agency, but AeroVironment recently signed a contract to supply small drones for border protection work and has a lucrative continuing business with the U.S. Army for its RQ-11 Raven hand-launched drone.

AeroVironment has been developing small-size drones for several years. Its perhaps most well-known research project is a hummingbird drone that maintains flight by quickly flapping two wings, similar to a hummingbird.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2019

This Holiday Season, protect yourself and your loved ones with the best. Buy now for Holiday Savings!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?