Skydio Advances Autonomous Drone Capabilities in the U.S. Army’s Short Range Reconnaissance Program

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Enterprise version of Skydio X10

Leading U.S. Drone Manufacturer Skydio Elevates Defense Capabilities: Final Phase of Short Range Reconnaissance (SRR) Tranche 2 with Skydio X10D.

by DRONELIFE Staff Writer Ian J. McNabb

US-based drone manufacturer Skydio recently announced that it has entered the final phase of the US Army’s Short Range Reconnaissance (SRR) tranche 2 program with its autonomous Skydio XD10 small UAS. Skydio is already the producer of record for the Army’s Short Range Reconnaissance Program, which it won in November 2021 with its X2D model UAV. 

“As the largest manufacturer of small drones in the United States, we are proud to further our work with the U.S. Army. Many US government agencies and international allies have already ordered the X10D and we look forward to delivering the X10D to our service members,” said Mark Valentine, President of Global Government at Skydio. “Skydio is dedicated to pushing the boundaries of what drone technology can do to protect soldiers, increase mission effectiveness, and ultimately aid in stronger security and greater prosperity around the world.”

  The Skydio X10 enterprise drone, along with the X10D military/government variant, combines industry-leading sensor packages with autonomous functionality to meet a wide range of possible uses, including defense, public safety, and utilities. The X10D is advertised as exceeding all current SRR standards and features technology designed to aid in 24/7 autonomous use, including NightSense, an obstacle avoidance system designed to operate in complete darkness. 

The X10D is also designed for enhanced compliance to federal standards, including Robotics and Autonomous Systems – Air (RAS-A) Interoperability Profile (IoP), and an open, modular platform that supports third-party applications. RAS-A compliance and open MAVLINK protocol enable the use of third-party and government-owned flight application software.

The SRR program is designed to put small drones in the hands of frontline troops for reconnaisance and surveillance (R&S) activities, and currently includes multiple tranches to advance the technology and increase overall performance. Skydio has an extensive history of supporting the US military with UAV solutions, including collaborative efforts on autonomous UAV systems with the DOD’s Defense Innovation Unit.

More information on Skydio’s products, including the X10D, is available here

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Ian McNabb is a staff writer based in Boston, MA. His interests include geopolitics, emerging technologies, environmental sustainability, and Boston College sports.