Friday, September 23, 2022
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New Center and Partnership Agreement Position OSU as Fort Sill’s Preferred Aerospace Defense Provider
Oklahoma State University’s Oklahoma Aerospace Institute for Research and Education (OAIRE) has launched a Counter-UAS Center of Excellence and a new partnership to strengthen national defense by developing countermeasures to thwart unmanned aerial systems. malicious (UAS) driver.
The agreement strengthens OSU’s position as the preferred aerospace defense provider for the U.S. Army base at Fort Sill. The agreement includes receipt of an indefinite delivery of $15 million, indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contracts with Amentum to help the US Department of Homeland Security develop technology to counter threats from drones and other UAS through the Counter UAS Center of Excellence (CUAS COE). Amentum is performing this contract under the Department of Defense Information Analysis Center (DOD IAC) multi-contract contract.
“Working together, we are setting the national standard for counter-UAS. The possibilities for the future of aerospace at OSU in Oklahoma and the United States are enormous and all rest on a foundation built from decades of experience,” said OSU President Kayse Shrum. . “This center will change what is possible with national security. This will advance research and strengthen Oklahoma’s economy as we merge the civilian and military worlds in a partnership that will exponentially improve the mission of both.”
As part of OAIRE, the center is a critical part of OSU’s aerospace infrastructure, which spans across the state of Oklahoma, Dr. Shrum said.
“We are working with industry and federal agencies to coordinate and evaluate technology to ensure the United States maintains a leadership position in UAS and counter-UAS technology for the foreseeable future,” Shrum said.
The partnership announcement was made Friday at the launch event celebrating the opening of the National CUAS COE, held at the Hamm Institute for American Energy at OSU in the Innovation District. from Oklahoma City.
“We work with our partners in the military and civilian sectors of government and supporting industry as we help develop and evaluate new solutions at the center of our land-grant mission to keep Americans safe, defending all degrees of freedom.”
– Dr. Jamey Jacob, director of the Oklahoma Aerospace Institute for Research and Education
The new center was created in partnership with the DOD through the National Defense Authorization Act. The U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command has contracted with OSU to launch the CUAS COE with $6.5 million in appropriate funds for fiscal years 2021 and 2022, with $5 million in funding additional pending for fiscal year 2023.
As the anti-UAS arm of OSU’s Unmanned Systems Research Institute (USRI), this new center brings together resources and research to put Oklahoma at the forefront of this area of vital specialty tasked with protecting the nation from drone weaponization.
This new $15 million contract supporting the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) makes OSU’s CUAS COE a multi-agency resource at the federal level, elevating OSU’s national stature and impact.
“What I’ve seen as a soldier with the OSU USRI team – of what is going to be the Counter-UAS Center of Excellence at OSU – is very encouraging to see the open dialogue, communication , thinking and brilliant minds that are putting a lot of effort and hard work into solving these problems,” said Col. Todd Daniels, deputy commandant of the Fort Sill Air Defense Artillery School.
Formalized in September 2022, the agreement will fund a range of projects at the center up to $15 million over the next 4½ years.
These projects will involve developing, evaluating, and improving technologies that enable DHS to identify, track, and mitigate threats posed by drones to infrastructure and other sites critical to homeland security.
They will also involve training existing and potential professionals within DHS to understand and deploy counter-UAS technologies and techniques.
At the event, Dr. Jamey Jacob, the current Director of USRI, was named Director of OAIRE.
“Oklahoma’s aviation aerospace industry has an annual economic activity of $44 billion and is the second largest industry in the state behind energy,” Jacob said. “With the advent of the new advanced air mobility industry, Oklahoma has the opportunity to leverage its expertise in aerospace and autonomous systems to lead the newest and most advanced field of aviation. fastest growing and ensuring global impact throughout the 21st century.”
The CUAS COE was created in partnership with the DOD through the National Defense Authorization Act to provide high-level research and engineering personnel at sites in Oklahoma City, Stillwater, and Fort Sill in Lawton.
“We are working with our partners in the military and civilian sectors of government and supporting industry as we help develop and evaluate new solutions central to our land-grant mission to keep Americans safe, defending all degrees of freedom,” Jacob said.
Another mission of the center will be to improve facilities that allow CUAS COE and U.S. military partners to quickly and easily operate UAS systems for research, testing and training.
“Drones have the potential to transform sectors of the United States economy, including agriculture, law enforcement, public safety, disaster assessment and response, fire, border security, weather forecasting, construction and utility monitoring,” U.S. Representative Frank Lucas said. “It’s exciting that as this technology develops, OSU is leading the way in aerospace R&D. The Unmanned Systems Research Institute is a true driver of UAS and counter-UAS technology. »
The center also plans to host an annual Anti-UAS Symposium to bring together representatives from across government to discuss new threats, technologies and best practices, as well as connect with private industry to meet government needs. in terms of CUAS.
Outside of counter-UAS efforts, USRI also addresses multiple aspects of unmanned systems research and development, including: drone development; use of drones for human health and safety; advanced air mobility; NASA Applications for Autonomous Operations; and the development of new drone applications.