Airbus Autonomous Target Drone No. 2,000 To Be Blown Up Over Norway

Airbus Do-DT45 aerial target drone 8 photos
Photo: Airbus
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Military hardware is spectacular in nature, and that’s why we keep bringing it under the spotlight. Almost always though we’re talking about active equipment, the one the militaries of the world use for offensive or defensive actions. Now, it’s time for something a bit different.
In the race to train personnel, the military came up over the years with all sorts of opponents and targets. Until recently, when it comes to aerial combat, the opponents were limited for training purposes to friendlies playing the role of bad guys, or imagined threats high in the sky.

Then, target drones came around, and everything changed for fighters. Although these things can trace their roots all the way back to the British DH.82 Queen Bee of the 1930s, large-scale use of somewhat intelligent drones only recently came into play.

Airbus is one of the companies making such things for military purposes and this week the company announced it reach a milestone when it comes to one of its solutions, the Do-DT45 – the production of the 2,000th unit.

This thing is described as an “autonomous high-speed aerial target” and it was created with the goal of being an imagined threat that can be engaged by surface-to-air, air-to-air and ship-to-air missiles.

The drone can reach a top speed of 518 mph (833 kph) and can fly for about 50 minutes and to about 68 miles (110 km) from its departure point. It can be loaded with a variety of payloads, including infrared, lasers, smoke, and lights.

Do-DT45 number 2,000 will be deployed in Norway, where it will be used in a military exercise over Andoya Space Defence's training site. We’re not told exactly what type of enemy the drone will play, but we do know it’ll be blown to bits as a means to train local air defense forces for the "current volatile world situation."
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Editor's note: Gallery shows various Airbus aerial target drones.

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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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