Ukraine, Lessoned Learned: UK Establishes UAV Unit

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Ukraine, Lessoned Learned: UK Establishes UAV Unit
UK will establish a UAV unit by the end of 2023 as the war in Ukraine has showcased UAVs’ role in the battlefield.

The British Armed Forces Chief of the General Staff, Gen. Sir Patrick Sanders, who delivered keynote remarks at the DSEI trade show in London, reminded that the army will invest £41 billion over ten years. “Our job is to responsibly commit this money and demonstrate a return on that investment,” Sanders said and added that the UK will establish a new UAV unit by the end of 2023, and it will be named “reorientated Joint Aviation Command (JAC).” The command is called the “Joint Helicopter Command” currently.


Sanders stressed that JAC would allow the establishment of deep expertise and coherence with uncrewed strategies. Sanders said this development will create the next generation of UAVs with even closer industry partnerships.

According to Sanders, the second most valuable asset is all-in on data. This will allow the army to rapidly define its ability to adopt artificial intelligence. Sanders stated that the army is working on over 25 data projects and that many are coming. The keynote speaker underlined that the goal is transforming the British army into a “software-defined and data-centric force.” 

The chief of General Staff has also stated that they are renewing their structure to be ready to fight and win wars on land.

The new structure will have 1st Division to take 16 Air Assault Brigade Combat Team under command. From 2024, it will provide the land component command of a joint and multi-domain sovereign Global Response Force (GRF). 

UK will enhance the 3rd Division to warfight under the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC) – the UK’s NATO Corps. In accordance, the UK will refine the ARRC to deliver a Corps-level Strategic Response Force (SRF) by 2024 under the NATO Force Model (NFM), optimised for NATO’s deep battle.


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