Lt. Gen. Eric Smith: USMC to Focus on Unmanned System Quantity

Lt. Gen. Eric Smith

Lt. Gen. Eric Smith, who leads the U.S. Marine Corps’ Combat Development Command, said the service branch seeks more unmanned systems for surface, underwater and air operations, National Defense Magazine reported Wednesday.

USMC will work to boost the quantity of its new unmanned systems, seeking functions such as reconnaissance, radio communications and lethality, Smith said at the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International’s Defense-Protection-Security Conference in Washington, D.C.

The commanding general noted that USMC needs smaller, lower-cost unmanned systems so that the service branch can focus on quantity. However, he also said the marines will need large, long-endurance drones for a portion of the service’s inventory.

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