Israel’s Elbit Systems showed off a new loitering micro-suicide drone capable of scouting and mapping buildings, and even carrying out pinpointed targeted killings.
The Lanius was unveiled in a video posted on Elbit’s YouTube channel on Nov. 10 ago that is now drawing attention. The video shows a mother ship drone releasing a number of micro drones to a soldier who sends them inside a building. As the Lanius navigates through a complex of rooms and stairways, it sends images back to soldiers outside. Then, in the video, a terrorist preparing to shoot down the Lanius is killed when the soldier operating it detonates the drone.
According to Elbit’s specifications, the Lanius can reach speeds of up to 20 meters/second (72 km/hour or 44 mph) outdoors. Its mass while carrying a maximum payload is 1.25 kg. Its artificial intelligence enables the Lanius to distinguish between people who are threats and people who are not.
Despite the Lanius’s autonomous search and attack capabilities, Elbit stressed that attacks on targets require an active operator’s approval.