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September 11, 2018

NOW THAT’S THE 21ST CENTURY I’VE BEEN DREAMING ABOUT: The United States Army wants to power drones with lasers, keeping them in the air indefinitely.

By placing a photovoltaic cell on the bottom of the aircraft, ground units could effectively aim a laser at said piece to charge the drone. This would, in turn, convert the light from the laser into electricity, thus powering the aircraft. The Army’s goal as of right now is to shoot this laser at an aircraft that is 500 meters (0.31 miles) above the ground.

By early 2019, the Army plans on being able to power a grounded drone via a laser beam, thus proving the technology can work. They hope to be powering airborne drones by 2020 as long as the necessary regulatory process is approved.

Get the damn regulators moving already.