The 60th Air Mobility Wing Security Forces tests a new patrolling drone at Travis Air Force Base, Calif., in February. Photo by Nicholas Pilch/U.S. Air Force
Dec. 17 (UPI) -- The Air Force's 60th Security Forces Squadron has launched the first drone-based perimeter security system at California's Travis Air Force Base.
The squadron collaborated with drone provider Easy Aerial to launch the initiative, based officials said Thursday.
The aircraft are not armed, but are designed to "enhance strategic deterrence and foster full-spectrum readiness across the Air Force," the branch said in a press release.
The Smart Air Force Monitoring System can be programmed to deploy from its base station after receiving a security trigger -- such as a fence alarm, fire alarm or other distress call -- and autonomously navigate the area.
"Easy Aerial's unmanned aerial systems are a game-changer," Master Sgt. Joshua Hicks, 60th SFS small unmanned aircraft system instructor, said in a press release.
"This jointly developed technology will provide unparalleled security and safety for our Airmen and critical assets," Hicks said.
The drone initiative is part of the Department of Defense's Small Business Innovation Research Phase II program.
"This was a joint effort as we worked closely together from start to finish, resulting in a customized solution for the Air Force that meets all of their operational desires and requirements," said Ivan Stamatovski, Easy Aerial chief technology officer.
Last month the Air Force announced that Florida's Tyndall Air Force Base is using four-legged robot dogs for security patrols, one of several other drone and robotic initiatives the branch is working on.