BAE Systems secures Autonomous Systems Capability Technology Demonstrator Contract
A contract awarded to BAE Systems by the Federal Government will significantly enhance Australia’s development of enhanced surveillance technology for unmanned aircraft systems, according to a senior company representative.
The Minister for Defence Personnel, Materiel and Science, Mr Greg Combet, announced on June 26 that BAE Systems would receive a new Capability and Technology Demonstrator (CTD) Program contract that builds on work previously conducted for the Australian Defence Force (ADF).
Brad Yelland, BAE Systems Australia’s General Manager for Aerospace and Autonomous Systems Development, said the contract was further proof that BAE Systems was recognised by the Commonwealth as a world class industry in the field of intelligent autonomy.
Mr Yelland said the CTD contract would be used to develop technologies aimed at enhancing the ADF’s strategic and tactical capabilities in the deployment of unmanned aircraft systems.
He said the innovations that would be developed for the ADF through this CTD included:
Increased autonomy in target detection and recognition - Improved algorithms for detection and recognition of targets will allow greater detection of targets from video footage than was possible with previous systems.
Reduced Reliance on Global Positioning System (GPS) - The enhanced Simultaneous Location and Mapping (SLAM) technology enables operations without reliance on GPS signals which can easily be denied or ‘spoofed’ by an opposing force.
Improved Payload Management - Increased accuracy in the navigation and localisation of targets of interest will allow greater control over payloads and greater certainty in the detection and location of potential targets.
More Efficient Use of Communications - Processing of imagery onboard allows for the transmission of imagery to the Ground Element to be prioritised based on the significance of the likely targets contained in the data stream, minimising the consumption of often constrained bandwidth by data of little operational value.
“The contract will conclude with a capability demonstration using BAE Systems’ Kingfisher 2 Unmanned Aircraft Vehicle (UAV) against real-world targets employing scenarios that are realistic and representative of the operational environments in which the ADF is currently employed,” he said.
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