Thursday Jul 21, 2022
The world's first-ever laser communication system was demonstrated recently by QinetiQ.
The successful demonstration featured a drone being controlled by a laser, which they believe strengthens "military capability for covert, low detection probability operations in the future".
A ground-based operator controlled an airborne Un-crewed Air System (UAS) by sending control commands and receiving sensor information
Free Space Optical Communications (FSOC) was included as a bi-directional link in its mission communication system, said QinetiQ.
Previously, airborne un-crewed platforms or drones were operated via radio frequency (RF) technologies. The downside, in that case, is that RF is vulnerable to detection as well as interference.
Laser-controlled drones can play a huge role in contested environments where the enemy attempts to sabotage the mission by altering the commands.