ARTICLES

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
UAVs, initially expected to prevent invaluable loss of pilots in a hostile territory while in action or surveillance either, are now been deployed for various requirements, military surveillance and espionage being notorious among those. As usual, USA was the authority that kindled the concept of introducing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles way back during 1959-1960, when it noticed the loss of prominent pilots of its possession along with best in class aircrafts in action. Talking exactly about Unmanned Aerial Vehicles irrespective of mechanics used to fly it, we have to refer Montgolfier Balloons used by Northern Unions during American Civil War, Japan during 1944 war on North America, USA during 1950 to surveil the Soviet Union realm using a wide angle auto triggered cameras and many more since then. UAVs later evolved into much sophisticated systems and are termed Drones for they started to resemble the structure of a male bee.
 
UAVs are designed with various technologies ranging from steam power propelled, gasoline fuel power propelled through to solar power propelled flights. Gas powered vehicles are most populated in the world even in present day use. Solar power propelled vehicles can almost be ruled out because their use is predominantly planned after daylight to capitalize the benefit of direct optical invisibility. The flight system has been alike every time. Flight guiding systems have been in constant evolution too. In fact, guiding systems determine the accuracy and targeting capability of a air vehicle. In the very early stages a guiding rope was used to avoid unmanned vehicle from striking against huge walls, which seem to be a hectic task of controlling the flight. Later, when the gyroscope was invented, drones or UAVs used a combination of gyros, barometers and altimeters to control the flight path and target approach. Later, radio controlled vehicles were designed, where in the system can be controlled remotely with reference to the video signal from a camera mounted on the vehicle.

 

Eventually, certain flight system parameters evolved to a saturation level and further development did not attract interests of many. Parameters like propulsion and aerodynamics have reached a saturation point in terms of development and evolution. Most of the present day drones use single propeller and a unique design which almost all the flight makers follow. Additional features like on board surveillance equipment, stealth parameters and soundless flight are considerably dealt with by the Drone manufacturers and designers. USA has been an initiator, but Israel has become a master in drone system design and selling. Israel adhered to the business of aircraft making since ages, which starts from the first Gulf War. The World trusts Israel's make from when it proved victorious over the Syrian Air Force attack during 1982, using its manned and unmanned air resile against the strike. News revealed that about 86 Syrian fighters are brought down in a considerably and comparatively short time. This impact has been a cusp for Israeli aircraft reign, as well as for other Air force units around the world. Many nations initiated developmental process to bring out indigenous UAV Systems and few others started to purchase 'talent' and product from Israel.

Best in class drones have come into existence out of technological dominance desires, security demands, and other peculiar demanding applications. And of course, UAVs can be affirmatively used in several other applications including civil surveillance, internal anti-social elements surveillance, industrial purposes etc., against predominant military deployments. Use of drones is back to form now, after a short gap since the last noticeable war rage. US Army has reportedly used drones for surveillance and unmanned aerial attacks in its 'anti-terrorist' operations in the Afghan territory after the World Trade Centre has been devastatingly struck by a plot contrived by an anti-social group residing in the Middle-East on 11th September, 2001. Later, in the recent past it is again the US Army that used a drone made by Lockheed Martin, and named it Polecat, to surveil the Kingdom of Gadhafi, Libya. It was reported by the concerned department at Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi that, early in 2011 China manoeuvred UAV drones along the Indo-Chinese border while the Himalayas witnessed the act. Drones are expected to make both plausive as well as caustic news more than ever, nevertheless every nation wishes not to be biased for either kind of news.

More on drone technologies, to be continued...

Other Articles