Spanish police deploy mega drone in patrol and surveillance system

by Lorraine Williamson
mega drone

MADRID – The National Police has updated its patrol and surveillance systems with the purchase of the mega drone. Furthermore, this is the first autonomous aircraft of its category in Europe owned by a police force.

The police can come by sea, land and air; cars, horses, boats, motorbikes or helicopters. These are some of the means of transportation used by security forces throughout history. But with all the technological advancements and new inventions out there, this institution also wants to renew itself. 

Therefore, drones are seen as one of the most interesting technologies for the future. Moreover, there are high expectations of the tasks and services they are going to provide. From logistics and messaging to advertising, but also for security functions. 

First official mega drone flight

On Friday, the Spanish National Police carried out the first official flight of an unmanned autonomous aircraft in Spain. It concerns the mega drone, the UAV EH216 drone. This drone, designed by the Chinese company Ehang, has a carrying capacity of up to 220 kilos or two adults. In terms of autonomy, the drone can reach a distance of 35 kilometres with a maximum speed of 130 kilometres per hour. Furthermore, the vehicle will be used for security and emergency missions. 

While this vehicle, as the police acknowledged during the presentation, has a wide range of capabilities and can be used for “missions requiring more stealth, deployment in dangerous areas following a natural disaster, accident or terrorist threat without endangering human life or as preventive actions” 

In addition to avoiding endangering agents’ lives in certain actions, this drone has lower operating costs than traditional means. The police wanted to emphasise the importance of this fact by ensuring that it is the first official flight of an autonomous unmanned aerial vehicle in Spain. That puts the police force at the technological forefront of the state security forces on our continent. 

The mega drone is a new instrument of the Air Resources Unit, which already has 20 helicopters, two aeroplanes, 53 drones of various sizes and other technical resources. 


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