Monday, 15 February 2010

MoD to end secret research programmes

This is a busy time of the year for companies wishing to get their hands on lucrative defence research funding.

Last week the Centre for Defence Enterprise at Harwell showcased several projects which have already received government funding. Incorporating a range of technologies, these projects aim to ensure that UK forces "will have the battle-winning edge in current and future conflicts".

They include

  • textiles that could be made into uniforms and used to power weapons, radios and charge batteries;
  • unmanned surveillance systems that could stay airborne for upto 3 months;
  • a portable solar-powered battery to increase power at FOBs;
  • turret-based camera to provide wide-angled surveillance images;
  • 3D persistent surveillance systems;
  • I'm getting lost here so visit:-
  • NDS: The Appliance of Science to Benefit Frontline Troops
Next month the MoD will be hosting its annual Defence Research conference and exhibition at the ICC in Birmingham. The main partner in this enterprise is our old friend QinetiQ - they seem to have an influence over much of MoD spending these days.

The message behind Defence Research 2010 is that the MoD will for the first time be opening up its entire £400million annual research budget to private industry and universities. So, no more secret military research programmes.

Defence Research 2010 website
MoD: Defence Suppliers Research Information Portal