Army moves closer to hoverbike

After nine months of exploration, a feasibility study gave positive marks to the Army Research Lab’s tactical reconnaissance vehicle, or TRV, concept.  The futuristic hoverbike is aimed at keeping soldiers out of harm’s way by sending the TRV into potentially dangerous areas for a first look – providing squad and ground-level forces 3D reconnaissance. 

Cheaper and easier to fly than a helicopter, the hoverbike can be flown unmanned or manned and has an estimated range of 90 miles and a payload of 220 pounds. Planned uses include supply transport, surveillance, and search and rescue operations.  It could mitigate the dangers of ground threats, aiding in communication, reconnaissance and protection and even  lightening the soldiers' load, ARL said.

Following the successful performance in the Army’s feasibility study, the Army will partner with Malloy Aeronautics, a United Kingdom-based aeronautical engineering company, and SURVICE Engineering Company, a Maryland-based defense firm for delivery of a prototype. 

ARL also noted that the project could transition to other organizations within Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, although ARL would continue to support the project. 

About the Author

Mark Pomerleau is a former editorial fellow with GCN and Defense Systems.

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