erick munden's profile photoAlexander Bednarczyk's profile photoJan Tomsa's profile photoAndrew Gorospe's profile photo
That's pretty cool. Now if they could just bring that tech to manned aircraft...
Actually, where that technology would be PARTICULARLY useful would be in beanstalk climbers.
Why do I see a next generation of theater-serving solar  satellite being built to service these. Put a big solar collector in orbit above a given operational theatre and have it beam continuous energy down to the drones operating in the theatre.
if it has to come close enough to the laser, why not just land the damn thing and refuel.
Atmospheric and line of site problems aside, laser refueling means you essentially can refuel from an unlimited distance.
They're also the most energy-intensive.
"And theoretically, it means the only reason a reconnaissance drone would ever have to land would be for physical maintenance, or if it gets shot down."

Please answer something...

How does a drone land if it has been shot down?
"Landing" doesn't imply "intact". It simply means "returned to earth".
It's been shot down, so now it has to land...

Still seems like a strange construction.
I see a plenty of usages in civil sector as well. Permanently updated 3D / 45° maps, traffic info (available from car computer - "hey Siri, how does the trafic look like 5 miles ahead?")...
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