Future Trends

Minnesota Airmen First National Guards Certified to Fly X2D Drone

UAS training

Minnesota Airmen First National Guards Certified to Fly X2D Drone

Eight enlisted airmen of the 133rd Security Forces Squadron in St. Paul, Minnesota, have completed a three-day training on the X2D Drone, the first National Guards certified to operate the unmanned aerial system developed by Skydio

According to the online defense media DVIDS, the 133rd SFS, which acquired the Skydio UAS in 2023, trained the airmen at Minnesota’s Camp Ripley to fly and operate the drone’s camera settings and artificial intelligence capabilities. 

Based on Skydio’s website, the X2D drone has a flight range of up to 10 kilometers and a maximum flight time of 35 minutes, DVIDS reported.

Full 360-degree avoidance, autonomous flight features, thermal imagery and cyberattack protection are also among the drone’s capabilities, it added.

U.S. Air Force Tech Sgt. Brandon Trout, the 133rd SFS drone program manager, described the drone as a “force multiplier” suited to the different scenarios where the Air Force operates. He also said Camp Ripley is fitting as the airmen’s drone training ground, as its 53,000 acres provide the needed airspace, terrain and diverse landscape. 

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Category: Future Trends