Mon. Jul 22nd, 2024

The British Ministry of Defense is resuming work on heavy-duty drones

Natasha Kumar By Natasha Kumar Jul10,2024

Ministry of Defense UK relaunches work on heavy lift drones

The UK Ministry of Defense has relaunched its separate Uncrewed Air Systems Heavy Lift Capability (UASHLC) body to address the current lack of market options and ensure rapid access to new technologies.

This £95m initiative aims to accelerate the development of advanced autonomous unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), particularly in the maritime industry.

According to the tender announcement, the Ministry of Defense of Great Britain explained the need to reopen the structure to ensure rapid access to new technologies. The announcement states: “The aim is to address the lack of current options in the market by increasing the number of ready-to-deliver platforms to help support and develop management understanding of the potential and operational use of such unmanned aerial systems.

< p>The program, which will run until December 2027, invites industry partners to join and contribute to the development of advanced UAV technologies. It is aimed at creating an environment that supports rapid development and commercial operation, reducing the time to market of new UAV technologies.

The message emphasizes: “The Authority will facilitate the accelerated development of one or more UAV suppliers that meet or exceed the requirements of the Authority's defined minimum viable products (MVPs), as well as additional and basic technologies that expand the operational capabilities of UAVs.

Key aspects of this concept are as follows:

  • Accelerated Development: DoD will facilitate the accelerated development of vendor BSPs to meet or exceed specified Minimum Viable Products (MVPs). This program is designed to “support and inform the development of maritime operational concepts and provide evaluation, analysis, research and evaluation of the use of UAVs for beyond-line-of-line-of-sight (BVLOS) payload delivery and broader UAV capabilities.
  • Market Expansion: The program is open to all industry partners capable of expanding the market for heavy UAVs, including those that offer new technologies and capabilities such as payloads, fuel, software and counter-UAV technologies. The MoD states: “These basic and emerging technologies and capabilities may include (but are not limited to) payloads, fuel, software, and counter-UAV technologies (ground or platform)”.
  • Operational Confidence: The initiative aims to provide end users with confidence in the ability of UAVs to accurately deliver heavy payloads over long distances. The Department of Defense intends to “ensure sponsor/user confidence in the potential of UAVs as renewable, adaptable, autonomous/remotely piloted aerial systems capable of delivering heavy payloads over long distances with precision”.
  • Evaluation and Acquisition: The program will enable DoD to identify and potentially fund viable solutions for further development and evaluation. It aims to “identify and, if necessary, finance the most viable solutions on the market for accelerated further development in order to meet the minimum requirements of the Authority (MVP) within the established time”.

In the tender announcement also mentions the importance of collaboration between providers and MOUs, and the potential for partnerships with other providers to drive innovation and efficiency.

Industry partners interested in participating in the UASHLC must submit their applications by 5:00 p.m. on August 12, 2024. The MoD's procurement process aims to attract a diverse range of suppliers, “ensuring that the best and most innovative technologies are offered to support the UK's defense capability”.

Previously, in 2021, the UK sought an “autonomous amphibious assault force. heavy aircraft for the Royal Navy.

The Royal Navy has previously said that the use of unmanned aerial vehicles for logistics has a number of advantages, including lower costs, faster completion of missions and the absence of certain risks for the ship's company.

“NavyX and DARE (Discover, Analysis and Rapid Exploitation – detection, analysis and rapid exploitation) are collaborating with the British companies Malloy Aeronautics and Planck Aerosystems in the development of unmanned aerial vehicles for moving cargo on ships.

< p>The heavy drone has already been tested in the harsh conditions of the Arctic Circle during the Royal Navy's Autonomous Advance Force exercise. At the beginning of this year in the north of Norway, it proved that it can be operated safely under any conditions and successfully deliver cargo.

Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my 1-800-268-7116

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