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British troops to be trained on X-box and Playstation games consoles

Thomas Harding
London Telegraph [1]
Wednesday, July 16, 2008

British troops are to be trained to fly drones to spy on insurgents using X-Box and Playstation games consoles.

It is hoped it will help to reduce the number of crashes of the unmanned spy planes, which cost £5million each.

Defence experts believe that the drone industry will be “revolutionised” and £250 million will be saved by the British and American military with the introduction of the advanced game technology usually used by teenagers playing Doom or Halo.

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The considerable costs and time in training drone operators is also expected to be slashed by 25 per cent.

Air force operators flying Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAVs), from a base outside Las Vegas control the aircraft by unwieldy toggles as they circle over Afghanistan or Iraq spying on insurgents and using an array of weapons to kill them.

But over the last five years the US has lost more than 40 Predator drones with 67 per cent of the crashes caused by human error. More recently the RAF crashed one of its Reaper drones over Afghanistan at a cost of £5 million.

The accidents are mainly caused by the operators who become physically and mentally exhausted during eight hour shifts and lose their “situational awareness” navigating just by the nose-mounted camera in the drone.

Full article here [1]