140-mph quadcopter has designs on first responders

140-mph quadcopter has designs on first responders

The Recruit drone is geared towards users such as fire departments, police forces and the military
The Recruit drone is geared towards users such as fire departments, police forces and the military

If there’s one thing that all types of first responders have in common, it’s the fact that they put a premium on speed. The Recruit quadcopter was created specifically for such users, as it can reportedly fly at over 140 mph (225 km/h) and has a claimed 3-hour flight time.

Designed by Atlanta-based drone manufacturer Sonin Hybrid, the carbon fiber-bodied Recruit appropriately enough has a hybrid power system. More specifically, it incorporates a gasoline engine hooked up to a generator, which in turn continuously charges the batteries for the four electric motors.

It is this setup that is said to make the long flight time and energy-hungry high speeds possible. By contrast, pure-electric quadcopters such as DJI’s Phantom 4 Pro typically top out at about 30 minutes of flight time, and a maximum forward speed of 45 mph (72 km/h).

A police-spec Recruit drone
A police-spec Recruit drone
Sonin Hybrid

Along with its hybrid tech, some of the Recruit’s other features include a gimbal-stabilized 4K/30fps camera with 30X optical zoom; fixed and mobile target tracking; a FLiR night-vision camera; a 6,000-lumen spotlight; a loudspeaker that’s audible up to a distance of 5 km (3 miles); retractable landing gear; and a choice of red/blue, red/white or yellow/white flashing LED lights.

The aircraft can be remotely controlled in real time, or it can autonomously follow a preprogrammed flight path.

A company representative tells us that production has started, with first deliveries expected to begin at the end of this year.