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High-Tech Micro Air Vehicle Will Battle With Soldiers

U.S. Army Pvt. 2nd Class Gregory Goodrich puts the micro air vehicle system together while the rest of his platoon is being fired upon by the enemy. U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Kyndal Brewer.

Schofield Barracks, Hawaii (SPX) Nov 01, 2005
While on a dismounted patrol along a rocky dirt path, soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment, stayed alert of their surroundings as they made their way to the Military Operations in Urban Terrain site here.

When it was time to enter the site, the platoon-sized element stopped in the wood line and came up with a plan of action.

Minutes later, a micro air vehicle operator called and provided information on enemy locations.

As soon as the troops had a good location of the enemy, they maneuvered on to the site grounds. When the enemy spotted the troops, a firefight ensued.

The troops remained alert and moved tactically into nearby buildings. They cleared every room until they reached the rooftops, where they began to return fire.

Using its two onboard cameras, the micro air vehicle system assisted the troops in figuring out where the enemy was located.

"I think this training is good for us because it's new equipment that a lot of people haven't gotten the opportunity to train with yet," said Pvt. Gregory Goodrich, a cavalry scout with 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment.

"It isn't just training on the micro air vehicle equipment, it also helps us train more on our tactical and basic Soldiering skills," said Goodrich, who was one of the system operators during the training.

The micro air vehicle technology was designed to gather and transmit information to soldiers on the battlefield.

According to the Website, spacewar.com, each system is comprised of two air vehicles, a dismounted control device and associated ground support equipment that is carried by selected platforms and dismounted soldiers.

The micro air vehicles use autono-mous flight and navigation with vertical take-off and landing and recovery capabilities.

Two cameras are mounted on each vehicle; one looks ahead of soldiers, the other looks down at the ground. The vehicles also carry chemical sensors.

"The micro air vehicles are the future," said 1st Lt. Mario A. Quevedo, a platoon leader with 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment. "These young soldiers that are out here training with it will see it again, and they will already know how to use it."

For the past month, 40 soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment, have been training with the new, high-tech surveillance vehicles.

"This training is very beneficial to these soldiers because when we go down range in the future, this equipment will go with us," Quevedo continued. "The micro air vehicles are here to stay."

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