Darpa, the research brand of the United States Pentagon, is testing ways to launch and catch fixed wing drones without the need for a runway. While quadcopters, hexacopter, etc. are great for hovering in place, to really travel long distances, a fixed wing drone is much better equipped. However, many places where these drones will be used on missions don’t have smooth ground to take off and land from. Thus the need for catapults to launch them and devices to catch them from the air. Check out the video of this 400 pound drone being launched at a rate that allows it to get airborne and then caught instantly by the Darpa device.
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