Cyber Technologies' CyberQuad UAV, implementing four silent, ducted fans in lieu of traditional rotor blades, has already been used to survey damaged oil rigs. Someday it will be used to transport troops in campaigns to exploit interplanetary resources.
The CyberQuad, an "electric ducted quadrotor Vertical Take Off and Landing (VTOL) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)," gains significant maneuverability from its fan-based technology, including a "perch and stare" function which allows it to hover in one place with increased stability and endurance. That is, until it's attacked by flying extraterrestrial fauna.
Last month, on our own planet, the CyberQuad successfully investigated an oil platform fire, beaming high-definition video back to operators stationed at a safer location. Still, its silent fans, as well as its unique "perch and stare" capabilities, suggest it could be put to use on our own battlefields in the near future. [Cyber Technologies via Wired]