Sample Technology Paper on Drones in War

Drones in War


Technology in war has become the main competing area that gives militaries an upper hand over their opponents. One of the most controversial technologies that has changed rules of engagement in the battlefield is the use of drones. Not only has drone technology revolutionized photography and videography in movie industry but it has also brought new paradigm in times of war. Futurists consider drones quite a disruptive technology that will alter the idea of war.

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

A normal drone is normally built using composite materials which are lighter compared to metallic materials in order to increase maneuverability in the air. This composite material, which is strong and rigid allows military UAV to cruise at extremely high heights. Drones are built with different state of the art technology that enable them to capture images from high altitudes such as high focus infra-red cameras, GPS and laser (Powell, 2016). They can be easily controlled and maneuvered by a remote control system. Drones or UAVs come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes, with the large ones mainly used for military activities such as the Predator drone, other UAVs which require short runways, to other smaller ones which can be thrown by hand.

The nose of the drone is where all vital components such as infrared sensors and global navigational systems are built. The materials generally used to build the drone’s body are made of high-quality complex composites, which can dump vibration consequently decreasing the noise produced. By reducing the noise, drones are able to intrude enemy’s camp without getting noticed and conduct surveillance without drawing much attention.

The main benefit of using unmanned aircraft in war is that they offer an accurate way of striking the enemies in their camp while minimizing risks for casualties (Powell, 2016). It is possible to control the weapons from a far distance bases thousands of kilometers from the enemy line. Their use range from general surveillance to precisely targeted eliminations of key terrorist elements and war enemies. Drones or UAVs are used in circumstances where manned flight and ground combat is considered too risky or dangerous (Powell, 2016).

Use of Drones to fight Terrorism

Many countries in the world have been at war with a sinister, elusive foe for more than a decade. It has been a war that lacks borders and front lines, ignited by an enemy (terrorists) that hides behind innocent civilian population, in dark places, mountains and rugged terrains (Powell, 2016). Numerous terrorist groups of the modern days including the ruthless Al-Qaida, ISIL, and ISIS have carried out numerous bloody attacks to innocent people, including the infamous and distressing attack on Sept. 11, 2001. Terrorist groups have used weapons of war such as guns, landmines, grenades, and bombs among others to terrorize, murder and maim innocent people in the name of religion and other orthodox ideologies.

To be able to fight these terrorist groups, powerful countries such as Israel, United States, Russia, United Kingdom, France, and Turkey among others, have resorted to use AUVs to conduct surveillance and strike the enemies in their own territory. As Powell (2016) suggests, it is only through careful vigilance, intelligent surveillance and tactful invasion these enemies be eliminated from among the civilians (p. 276). A key weapon in that has proved effective in the fight against terrorism has been the drone, a small unmanned craft that can be sent to a very precise target and eliminate it without posing any risk to the forces. The drone technology again proved its value when it was used to eliminate wanted terrorists such as Abu Yahya al-Libi killed in Pakistan, Faruq Qatani(Al Qaeda) in Afghanistan, Abu Muhammad Adnani (ISIL) in Syria, Hafiz Saeed Khan (ISIL) in Afghanistan, Mullah Akhtar (Taliban) in Afghanistan, Jihadi John (ISIL) in Syria, Muhsin Fadhil (Al Qaeda) in Syria, Adam Gadahn (Al Qaeda) in Pakistan, Hakimullah Mehsud (Pakistan Taliban) in Pakistan, Maulvi Nazir (Pakistani Taliban) Pakistan, Abu Yahya al Libi (Al Qaeda), and Anwar Awlaki (Al Qaeda) in Yemen.

In all these strikes, drones have been powerful weapons used by US military know when appropriate to strike the enemies. Success in drone technology has greatly devastated the major terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda and ISIL, and significantly help thwart awful plans by these groups. Israel is well known for significant development in drone technology. It has been fighting its enemies from Hizbollah groups in its border using armed drones.

Controversies in Drone Usage

Drones are considered by those who use them in military as delivering accurate strikes without the dire need for more intrusive martial action. However, the use of drones to strike key suspects in the war against terrorism has come with numerous us controversy. The use of drones in war against terrorist has triggered various resentments and brought many controversies. Many critics of United States policies blame the country of killing innocent civilians in their strikes using drone technology (Williams, 2013). One of the deadliest attacks that was conducted by United States army was in March 2011 where 40 people were killed, majority thought to be innocent civilians who were holding a tribal meeting (Williams, 2013).

Future of Drone War

Increased innovation and continuous development in drone technology may see armies engage in war which will not require physical combat as it was during the World War I and II.  The United States military has currently revealed its new development of drone, helicopter type with very powerful camera of 1.8 gigapixel which is meant to track and monitor terrorist activity on the ground (Rosenblum, 2016). This powerful drone will be able to track individuals and vehicles from altitudes above 20,000 feet or 6.1kilometers across almost 170 square kilometers. USA is currently working together with the United Kingdom-based defense contractor BAE Systems to create and develop a more advanced type of the Argus-IS sensor that will be able to capture night scenes and offer night vision (Rosenblum, 2016).


Drone technology is developing worldwide as an alternative weapon of war in areas that are considered dangerous and difficult to enter. It has revolutionized war while also raising new issues regarding their legality and effectiveness as weapon. By using remote control system in a ground cockpit, the military can control unmanned aircraft to hit their targets. Reports from the United States have shown that there has been a significant success in the fight against terrorism using drone technology. The benefits of reducing the risk of casualties and the ability to carry any form of lethal weapon in any kind of space and terrain is the most attractive feature that comes with drone technology



Powell, J. (2016). Targeting Americans: The constitutionality of the U.S. drone war. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Rosenblum, G. (2016). Domination drone: The era of the drone wars. Cork: BookBaby.

Williams, B. G. (2013). Predators: The CIA’s drone war on Al Qaeda. Lincoln, NE: Potomac Books.