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Drone Swarms as You Know Them Are Just an Illusion—for Now

Liam CobbPhoto by: Liam Cobb Look at all the pretty drones. Hovering above sports stadiums from Houston to Pyeongchang, many hundreds of them have lately sparkled in artful murmuration. On a recentTime magazine cover, 958 drones pixelated the sky. The world record, 1,374 LED-bedazzled microbots, was set by Chinese company EHang UAV in May. So-called drone swarms—the phrase people have taken up with gusto—are having their biggest, buzziest year ever. It’s an evocative word,swarms, and innocuous enough when applied to one ofIntel’s drone light shows. But it’s tinged with alarm—if drones can dance at twilight, they can also attack. Sure enough, a gang outside Denver sent a small fleet to harass FBI agents on a raid earlier this year. In Syria, rebels reportedly sicced a squadron of quadrotors on a Russian base. To the media, both events were swarms. Take comfort, then, in this buzzkill: “The swarm is really an illusion,” says Mac Schwager, an assistant professor at Stanford who studies mul…

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Saab-Damen team reveal submarine plan

A Saab-Damen team has revealed an initial design of a submarine that it plans to offer to replace the Royal Netherlands Navy’s incumbent Walrus-class fleet.
The two companies initially joined forces in 2015 to jointly bid for work in a number of markets, stating at the time that the Dutch tender was of particular interest.
An artist's impression of the Saab-Damen proposal for the Netherland’s Walrus-class submarine replacement.Photo by: Saab
Partly derived from Saab Kockums’ A26 submarine, the two companies have designed what they describe as a modular vessel for the Netherlands’ requirement.
Saab and Damen representatives say that a modular approach will allow for many Dutch companies to integrate their systems onto the submarine, and subsequently support them throughout the life of the fleet.
janes.com
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