23 May '12, 9am

#WEAPONS: USMC Adopts Mini-Cruise Missile

May 23, 2012: The U.S. Marine Corps is buying an unspecified number of Switchblade micro-UAV/cruise missiles. The marines apparently noted the success the U.S. Army and SOCOM (Special Operations Command) had with this system. The Switchblade is a one kilogram (2.2 pound) expendable (used only once) UAV that can be equipped with explosives. The Switchblade is launched from its shipping and storage tube, at which point wings flip out, a battery powered propeller starts spinning and a vidcam begins broadcasting images to the controller. The Switchblade is operated using the same gear the larger (two kg/4.4 pound) Raven UAV employs. A complete Switchblade system (missile, container and controller) weighs 5.5 kg (12.1 pounds). The army sent some Switchblade UAV systems to Afghanistan two years ago for secret field testing. This was apparently successful. It appears that Switchb...

Full article: http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htweap/articles/20120523...

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