More on Kronshtadt GCS capable of swarm operations

At Dubai Airshow-2021 Kronshtadt of Russia displayed for the first time its new automated ground control station for drones that allows the operator to control groups of drones. More information have emerged since our first article on this subject.

“The new GCS can simultaneously control up to 20 drones,” Kronshtadt CEO Sergey Bogatikov told EDR On-Line.

The workplace has a new graphic interface and uses advanced information technologies, including artificial intelligence elements and augmented reality with 3D images. The operator can concentrate its attention only in the target setting rather than in direct control of the drones. “A computer with artificial intelligence elements deals with the main operations related to flight control, fulfilment of the mission, and interaction between drones in the swarm. The approach moves the drones to a new development stage. They become semi-autonomous rather than automatically controlled,” Bogatikov said.

The operator no longer has to look for targets in the video stream provided by the onboard optical-electronic system of the drone. The computer prompts the elements the operator has to consider. Instead of laying the flight route and marking every point on the map, the operator has to mark the search zone and the drones will themselves determine the best way to fulfil the mission according to the strength of hostile forces, landscape and weather. The vehicles “agree” between themselves and share duties and mission priorities.

“It is a new stage in drone control. The vehicles become more autonomous,” Bogatikov said.

Factory trials of the first Russian system capable to control swarms of drones will begin in 2022. The automated workplace of the operator can have military and civilian options. “The system provides a possibility to decrease the load on the operator and engage the vehicles by the artificial intelligence,” Bogatikov said.

Photo courtesy N.Novichkov