US Marine Corps Unveils Rogue 1: A Game-Changing Exploding Drone

The U.S. Marine Corps has recently introduced its latest innovation in military technology: the Rogue 1 drone. This kamikaze drone, developed by Teledyne FLIR Defense, boasts a range of advanced features designed to enhance the effectiveness and flexibility of Marine fireteams. Reportedly priced at around $94,000 each, the Rogue 1 is expected to revolutionize the Corps' approach to loitering munitions.

Key Features of Rogue 1

The Rogue 1 is not just any kamikaze drone. It features vertical take-off and landing () capabilities and can be equipped with various warheads depending on the mission. This flexibility is crucial, allowing Marines to adapt the drone's payload to different combat scenarios. The warhead options include:

  • Forward Fragmenting Warhead: Ideal for anti-personnel roles, this can airburst to disperse shrapnel over a wide area.
  • Explosively Formed Penetrator (EFP): Turns the drone into a guided anti-tank missile.
  • Dummy Training Warhead: Used during training to familiarize Marines with the drone's operations without risking damage.

One of the standout features of the Rogue 1 is its ability to abort a mission and return safely if needed. This means that if the situation changes—such as civilians entering the target area—the drone can disable its explosive payload, land, and be recovered for future use.

Operational Advantages

Teledyne FLIR Defense's Rogue 1 drone is part of the Marine Corps' Organic Precision Fires-Light (OPF-L) program. The program aims to equip Marine fireteams with loitering munitions, reducing their reliance on air support and increasing their operational range. The ability to deploy such drones on-demand provides significant tactical advantages.

The drone can be controlled via a tablet, where operators can set various engagement parameters. It can loiter for up to 30 minutes, offering real-time tactical flexibility. The compact design allows it to be carried easily, with each unit packaged in a tube that can be worn on the back. This portability means a single Marine can carry multiple drones, greatly enhancing the team's firepower.

Comparison with Other OPF-L Entrants

The Rogue 1 is one of three systems being evaluated under the OPF-L program, alongside 's Switchblade drones and an undisclosed system from Anduril Industries. While the Switchblade series has seen combat use, particularly in , the Rogue 1 offers unique advantages:

  • Ease of Deployment: Unlike the Switchblade, which requires a mortar-like launcher, the Rogue 1 can take off independently, similar to consumer drones like the DJI Mavic.
  • Reusable System: The Rogue 1 can be recovered and reused, a significant advantage over the one-time-use Switchblade.
  • Swappable Warheads: This feature allows Marines to adapt the drone for different missions quickly.

Anduril Industries has yet to reveal its entry, but it is expected to feature a VTOL design similar to the Rogue 1. The competition within the OPF-L program is keen, with each company striving to provide the most versatile and effective system.

The Rogue 1 drone represents a significant leap forward in military for the U.S. Marine Corps. Its versatility, ease of deployment, and reusable nature make it a valuable asset in modern warfare. As the OPF-L program progresses, the capabilities of such drones will likely expand, further enhancing the Marines' operational effectiveness.

DroneXL's Take

The introduction of the Rogue 1 highlights the rapid advancements in drone technology and its increasing importance in modern military strategy. Drones like the Rogue 1 not only offer tactical flexibility but also improve safety by allowing remote operations. As the continues to innovate, we can expect even more sophisticated and capable systems to emerge, solidifying drones as a cornerstone of future combat operations.


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Haye Kesteloo
Haye Kesteloo

Haye Kesteloo is the Editor in Chief and Founder of DroneXL.co, where he covers all drone-related news, DJI rumors and writes drone reviews, and EVXL.co, for all news related to electric vehicles. He is also a co-host of the PiXL Drone Show on YouTube and other podcast platforms. Haye can be reached at haye @ dronexl.co or @hayekesteloo.

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