DRAWSKO POMORSKI TRAINING AREA, Poland — Spartan cavalry scouts with 6th Squadron, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, conducted a re-certification course for the AeroVironment RQ-11 Raven surveillance system last week at Glebokie, Drawsko Pomorski Training Area, Poland.
Raven operators displayed their proficiency over the unmanned aerial vehicle during their Master Qualifying Training.
The Raven Unmanned Aerial Vehicle is a lightweight combat surveillance drone capable of extending cavalry scouts’ range of operations in a quickly reactive environment.
In addition to providing surveillance capabilities, Ravens provide reconnaissance, target acquisition, and force protection for troops on the ground. Its lightweight and portable frame allow it to be transported easily either by mounted or dismounted cavalry scouts.
“The purpose of the Raven is to provide overhead reconnaissance," said Sgt. Michael E. Juarez, the Master Raven Trainer for 6-8 CAV, “It also can be used to clear routes and to gather information for the Commanders Critical Information Requirements.”
The operators taking the MRT were Spartan Soldiers who demonstrated their proficiency and skill during the Initial Qualifying Training. Raven operators taking the Master Qualifying Training flew the Raven in teams of two in order to fly without the instruction and supervision of the Master Raven Trainer. Operators are capable of conducting their training as needed following the completion of the Master Qualifying Training.
Raven operation is a distinct skill set that enhances the maneuverability and flexibility of reconnaissance units.
Sgt. Joshua Carlon from Troop C, 6-8 CAV, added his favorite part of being a Raven operator is being able to get his eyes on obstacles or enemies and giving the platoons a heads up so they can continue their missions.
The Raven and its operator are an essential part of the reconnaissance team build.