Drones are getting pretty advanced, and they're continuing to prove their usefulness. They can do anything from dodge bullets to land on aircraft carriers. And up next is an emerging new class of drones that can take off and land vertically, thanks to the likes of the new Arcturus UAV Jump system.
The Jump system attaches to the Arcturus UAV T-20 and T-16 and is designed for maximum versatility. With the vertical lift motors and rotors of a quadcopter and the winged flight capability of an aeroplane, this thing takes less than 15 minutes to attach to the winged aircraft and can go anywhere once it's in the air. The converted drone doesn't need a runway since it lifts straight up off the ground, while its wings give it a long flight range. When you see the system in action, it sort of looks like some Frankenstein of an unmanned aerial vehicle taking to the air with impossible ease.
This isn't the first time we've seen a winged drone that can take off and land vertically. These sorts of aircraft have been around for a while, but a new bolt-on conversion kit like the Jump brings the capability to drones that already exist.
It's the sort of thing the Pentagon is no doubt interested in. Last year, they announced the X-Plane project to fund the development of a new class of vertical take off and landing aircraft. Those prototypes are already starting to pop up, but it will be a while before they actually hit the market. The Jump, meanwhile, is available now.
Picture: Arcturus UAV