Disposable Nanodrone System
The latest breakthrough in remotely controlled spacecraft technology consists of palm-sized disposable spacecraft remotely powered by a ship's on-board laser array. The nanodrone system consists of remote laser array, control computer and a nanodrone assembly plant.
The assembly plant is capable of rapidly assembling hundreds of tiny spacecraft from on-board component storage. Drones can be outfitted for on-the-fly repairs, ore haulage and other purposes.
Each drone contains a solid block of aluminium propellant that's vaporized by directed laser heat to provide thrust, using an array of mirrors to control thrust vectoring. Drones are expected to perform their role in less than a minute and are considered disposable after launch.