Guide to Unmanned Aircraft

As the name suggests, an unmanned aircraft is one without a pilot. The proper name is unmanned aerial vehicle, which is usually shortened to the acronym UAV. This type of aircraft can be controlled remotely or can be programmed to fly in a particular pattern. The military often uses this system for its attack and reconnaissance missions. They are often used in various situations where the life of a person may be at risk, such as in firefighting. Quite simply, they are used for missions too dangerous for humans or too dull.

There are six main functions for which unmanned aircraft are used:
• Reconnaissance mission for gathering intelligence. They are equipped with various kinds of sensors tat can detect chemicals, enemy weapons and submarines.
• Acting as a target to draw enemy fire so troops will know where the enemy is located. UAV’s are known for their precision bombing.
• Attack missions tat are too dangerous for troops
• Cargo and logistics operations
• Research and development to help in finding new techniques and assessing new concepts. These experiments are usually too dangerous to involve human personnel.
• Civil and commercial uses

For the military, the use of UAV’s is intended to provide support for the troops on the ground. There are different tiers for each section of the Armed Forces and these tiers use different models. Manufacturers all over the world are involved in the development of these aircraft. Their use is very popular because they do not require pilots that have to be trained in their use and no loss of life will be incurred if one of them goes down or does not function properly.

The length of flight time varies according to the model of UAV and the purpose for which it is designed. There is no technology available to refuel the aircraft, which is one of the limitations. Therefore, each flight has to be carefully timed and controlled so that it will return to its base before the fuel supply runs out.