Transformation Fund to fast-track military robotic projects
The Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has committed £66 million of defence’s new multi-million-pound Transformation Fund to fast-track military robotic projects.
The funding means that the British Army will benefit from a range of new equipment including new mini drones; remote-control capability for fighting vehicles; and autonomous logistic vehicles.
The injection of funding from the new £160m Transformation Fund will see some of this equipment set to deploy to the likes of Estonia, Afghanistan and Iraq before the end of the year. The Defence Secretary will also look to make a further £340 million available as part of the Spending Review.
The investment comes after the Army tested a range of projects as part of the biggest military robot exercise in British history at the end of last year, Exercise Autonomous Warrior.
The Defence Secretary visited 16 Air Assault Brigade in Colchester which will be among the recipients of the new battlefield technologies. He discussed how the new equipment will benefit troops on the ground to help increase their safety and combat effectiveness.
The Brigade is specially trained and equipped to deploy by parachute, helicopter and air-landing. Its core role is to maintain the Air Assault Task Force, a battlegroup held at high readiness to deploy worldwide for a full spectrum of missions.
Mr Williamson said: “This announcement is a clear demonstration of how our Armed Forces are reaping the benefits from our new multi-million Transformation Fund. Each of these new technologies will enhance our Army’s capabilities whilst reducing the risk to our personnel and I’m delighted we will be revolutionising frontline technology by the end of the year.
“The MOD has always embraced pioneering technology and this fund will ensure the UK stays at the forefront of global military capabilities and ahead of our adversaries.”
image © Crown Copyright
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