During a recent trip to North Dakota to tour drone facilities, we got the opportunity to meet a bunch of actual military drone pilots and see some drones up close.
One of the pilots pointed out this fancy little thing called a “horse hair” (on the smaller MQ-1 Predator) that allows pilots to see how steady their hands are as they land.
Apparently, inside that dark circle sits a camera that pilots can look through as they land the drone. Most of the flying is incredibly hands free, but takeoffs and landings are still done manually.
The tilt of the horsehair in the air shows how well the pilot is flying, or, as the pilot put it, it shows “how much you suck.”
Here’s another low-tech piece of gear on a drone: this Rollerblade-like wheel protects the tail during a bumpy landing.
The rest of the U.S. military’s premiere drones are particularly high-tech though.
Check out the brains:
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