UK Crowdsourcing system for a single soldier to control 20 drones at once with fully working system by October 2018

UK ministry of Defense has a crowdsourcing competition to find a system that would allow a single solider to control up to 20 drones at once, allowing a group of drones to track targets, map out unfamiliar areas for soldiers, run surveillance missions, or provide communications links between soldiers and their central command.

The system should work for drones of different sizes, be relatively affordable to execute (less than £100,000, or $130,000), and new and radically improveed ways for drones to work together.

Ultimately, we want more than 10 UAS to operate in a co-ordinated and closely coupled way to achieve military effect across the electro-magnetic (EM) spectrum (in other words ranging from visible frequencies through to low frequency radio waves), in a contested environment, and all managed by a single operator.

We’re interested in the application of swarming UAS to missions in complex urban and littoral environments. For example:

  • tracking individuals
  • tracking vehicles
  • area mapping
  • area surveillance
  • communications relay

They are looking for proposals to develop sensing concepts and associated outline concepts of how these systems may be employed by the military across the EM spectrum including:

  • communications relay
  • electronic surveillance
  • jamming/electronic attack
  • novel low size and weight and power sensing solutions suitable for swarming concept

These could include for example:

  • low-cost sensing techniques
  • novel multi-platform sensing techniques
  • sense and avoid
  • more accurate navigation due to swarming
  • multi-platform co-ordination
  • multi-source, multi-modal data fusion
  • low-cost novel power sources
  • low-cost secure data storage

The ministry is looking for submissions by Nov. 3, with an ultimate delivery goal of October 2018.

The US military and Navy are working on similar drone swarm projects.

SOURCES- UK Ministry of Defense, Youtube