News: 2nd MLG trains with Raven system
Story by Lance Cpl. Shawn Valosin
CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. - Approximately 12 Marines from 2nd Marine Logistics Group split into four groups comprised of two-man teams to train with the Raven RQ-11B here, Feb. 4.
The Raven system is the most updated model of lightweight unmanned aerial vehicles used for reconnaissance missions overseas.
The training included classroom lessons as well as practical application in the field to prepare the Marines for use in a deployed environment.
Ravens have front and side cameras, giving operators multiple viewpoints. They also have an infrared lens for nighttime operations. They can operate more than six miles away from the Ground Control System, or GCS, for a 60 to 90 minute period.
“By using the Raven we can recon a route before our [logistics] convoys pass through, so we don’t get hit,” said Cpl. Tyler Sanchez, a radio operator with Combat Logistics Regiment 2, 2nd Marine Logistics Group.
A vehicle operator manually guides the aircraft through the sky, while a mission operator monitors the route and makes changes as necessary.
Ravens weigh approximately four pounds with the front-end camera attached, and have removable wings, making the systems extremely portable.
The aircraft are launched by hand, which allows them to be used in a variety of locations, and their rugged design and adaptability make them a valuable asset for military operations.
“The Raven system is the base system to learn on,” said Daniel Owens, an instructor with PMA-263. “Once you’ve become proficient with this system the other UAV systems are easier to learn.”
Courses for the Raven are held every two weeks and are available to Marines from myriad military occupational specialties to train on them.