Russia wants to replace the helicopter scouts on its existing ships with longer-range drones. Announced earlier this week by Russia’s Advanced Research Foundation (an analog to the US’s DARPA), this new concept wants to have a drone launch a drone from a ship.
The process, in theory, starts with a cyclocopter, a drone that flies without rotors or traditional wings. Resting on the cyclocopter as a platform, a fixed-wing scout drone would be carried into the air. Then, with the cyclocopter flying forward, the fixed-wing drone would take off from it like it was on a runway, with the platform drone dropping away. For landings, the process would reverse, with the fixed-wing drone catching a ride on a moving platform, and then descending back to the ship.
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