Maple Seed Drones Will Swarm The Future

Imagine a cheap, tiny, hovering aerial drone capable of being launched with the flick of a person’s wrist and able to provide manipulable 360-degree surveillance views.Lockheed Martin's Samarai UAV on a testing field.

It’s real, it’s inspired by maple seeds, and the company behind it, Lockheed Martin, envisions a future in which swarms of the new drones can be deployed at a fraction of the cost and with greater capabilities than drones being used today by the military and other agencies.

“Think about dropping a thousand of these out of an aircraft,” said Bill Borgia, head of Lockheed Martin’s Intelligent Robotics Lab, in a phone interview with TPM, “Think about the wide area over which one collect imagery. Instead of sending one or two expensive, highly valuable aircraft like we do today, you could send thousands of these inexpensive aircraft, and they are almost expendable.”

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