BAE Systems and QinetiQ have agreed to collaborate on autonomous uncrewed air systems (UAS) and mission management systems.

Under the framework agreement, both parties will investigate potential collaborations to develop a range of UAS and associated mission management systems. The aim is to facilitate interoperability with current and future crewed and uncrewed systems, enhancing operational capabilities and concentrating combat air power.

The autonomous mission management system empowers operators to seamlessly employ a combination of crewed and uncrewed assets collaboratively on the battlefield, all overseen by a human decision-maker.

In the initial phase of this collaboration, the joint team will explore the integration of BAE Systems’ autonomous mission management system into uncrewed platforms jointly developed by both companies. These platforms will operate in tandem with each other and with existing and forthcoming crewed and uncrewed combat aircraft.

Dave Holmes, Managing Director of FalconWorks, the advanced research and technology division for BAE Systems’ Air business, said: “The UK and other nations want to field high-performance uncrewed air systems capable of delivering military effects across a range of operational scenarios. Our agreement with QinetiQ will see us work together to deliver this capability to our customers.”

Mick Andrae, Global Campaign Director, Robotics & Autonomous Systems, QinetiQ, said: “Our customers have a growing need to increase combat mass, protect lives and reduce costs. Our collaboration with BAE Systems enables future mission-critical operations to be conducted without the traditional costs associated. All of this will provide our customers with better intelligence, protection, and capability to defend against adversaries and protect our national interests.”

Under the framework agreement signed at DSEI in London, each company will continue to develop its own UAS aligned to a common product strategy that will enable effective collaboration on existing and future crewed and uncrewed platform concept development.

The framework agreement will see BAE Systems and QinetiQ continue working with the relevant regulatory bodies to help develop the appropriate clearance processes for autonomous systems. (Press Release)

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Post Image Credit: QinetiQ and BAE Systems