Thursday, June 19, 2014

Firm is selling pepper-spray bullet firing drones, "riot control copter"

The maker of a drone that fires pepper spray bullets says it has received its first order for the machine. South Africa-based Desert Wolf told the BBC it had secured the sale of 25 units to a mining company after showing off the tech at a trade show. It is marketing the device as a "riot control copter" that can tackle crowds "without endangering the lives of security staff".  Desert Wolf's website states that its Skunk octacopter drone is fitted with four high-capacity paintball barrels, each capable of firing up to 20 bullets per second. In addition to pepper-spray ammunition, the firm says it can also be armed with dye-marker balls and solid plastic balls. The machine can carry up to 4,000 bullets at a time as well as "blinding lasers" and on-board speakers that can communicate warnings to a crowd. Guy Martin, the editor of Defence Web, said he believed the drone was unique. "The Skunk unmanned aerial vehicle with its four paintball guns, loudhailer and cameras is only a logical next step in the development of UAVs, but nevertheless it is a watershed moment in their evolution and goes to show that UAVs have almost unlimited uses," he said. "I predict that we will see a whole new wave of UAVs emerging with payloads more unusual than tasers, dart guns and paintball guns."...more

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