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Pentagon orders a small Israeli drone for indoor Special Operations

Jerusalem-The Pentagon has signed a contract with the Israeli company Xtend to provide dozens of small unmanned aviation systems for use by Navy, Marine, and Army special forces in indoor and urban environments.

The ministry has ordered the Skylord Xtender in collaboration with the Israeli Ministry of Defense. Xtend did not provide the value of the contract.

This system is one of several drones manufactured by Xtend, and Skylord Griffon UAV aims to destroy other drones. This is a recently demonstrated feature at Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona. This system is already in operation by Israeli special forces.

Xtend has optimized its products for urban warfare challenges such as Close Quarters Battle (CQB) Counter Drone (C-UAS) Intercept Counter Improvised Explosive Device (C-IED) missions and underground (Sub-T) operations. “.

Xtender is designed for indoor use. This is a problem faced by many drone operators trying to break into buildings without endangering the lives of their troops in environments where IEDs may be present or where enemies may be hiding. is.

Xtender uses 3D video and navigation, gesture control, and artificial intelligence to provide situational awareness, according to the company’s video.

With basic foundation technology, inexperienced operators can “control state-of-the-art drones within seconds of training,” said Ido Bar-On, vice president of business development and sales. .. “The challenge is [that] There is no GPS or lighting indoors, there are furniture and open windows with turbulence, propeller cleaning and the physics of flying in confined spaces. “

To address these challenges. Xtend has worked with the Israeli Ministry of Defense and the Department of Defense Research and Development for 18 months and with the US Department of Defense for the past year.

Mr. Buron said the partnership between governments allowed the company to receive support and bilateral funding, leading to a relatively rapid acquisition process for US special forces.

The drone has a guard on the propeller and can fly for about 10 minutes. In the video demonstration, a small quadcopter floats 30 centimeters above the ground into and out of the building, flying through a small hole of average brick size. Xtend claims that the Israeli Chief of Staff flew the drone at a recent event and officials from the United States, Britain, the Netherlands, and Singapore saw demonstrations.

Source: Pentagon

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