Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has unveiled a new Science and Technology Strategy for the UK.
The strategy was launched with Chief Scientific Adviser, Professor Dame Angela McLean, against a backdrop of futuristic autonomous military kit, from UAVs that can fit in the palm of a hand to crewless all-terrain surveillance vehicles commanded remotely from a Challenger II tank and the new AJAX vehicle demonstrating ‘human machine teaming’ with an unmanned all terrain buggy.
The MoD said in a news release:
“Building on the UK’s rich heritage in science and technology, this new strategy will focus on finding and funding the breakthroughs that will shape the future, and ensure the armed forces are equipped to meet tomorrow’s threats. It will also have a renewed focus on data, including its capture and curation, which will underpin research to identify threat trends and deliver generation-after-next military hardware.”
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:
“We are in a very real race with our adversaries for technological advantage. What we do today will lay the groundwork for decades to come. Proliferation of new technologies demands our science and technology is threat driven and better aligned to our needs in the future.”
Professor Dame Angela McLean said:
“We need a clear focus on what we want science and technology to achieve. I will champion a challenge-led approach, based on trends across science, technology and the military, to set out what we need to be able to do in the future and how we can build towards it through our S&T activity.”
Minister for Science Research and Innovation Amanda Solloway said:
“Placing science and research at the heart of the UK’s defence activity will unleash a new wave of innovation for our brilliant armed forces, equipping them to meet our greatest challenges. By backing our best and brightest scientific minds in every corner of the UK, we will ensure we bolster the security of our nation now and for decades to come.”
The MoD say that the Army Warfighting Experiment series allows the British Army to push the boundaries of technology and military technology, testing a range of prototype systems by putting them in the hands of the user while giving invaluable feedback to suppliers.