Unmanned Aerial Vehicles: Their Value in Security Operations
MASSACHUSETTS INST OF TECH CAMBRIDGE CENTER FOR INTERNATIONAL STUDIES
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The Value of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Security Operations was the focus of the Sixth Annual James H. Doolittle Conference, held on 21 April 1999 at the MIT Faculty Club in Cambridge, Massachusetts. General Doolittle, an aviation pioneer and military hero, received his PhD from MIT in 1925. Since 1993, the Security Studies Program has honored the innovative spirit of Jimmy Doolittle by hosting a symposium on airpower issues. In attendance at this years conference were representatives from the military, academia, government and industry. The morning panel focused on the Operational Uses of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles UAVs. The luncheon speaker was Colonel William Knarr who spoke on the Armys requirements for UAVs and the process for fielding the systems. The afternoon panel highlighted the Development of Service Operational Requirements for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. At dinner, LTG Campbell offered anecdotal insights that could be applied to the UAV procurement process. At the conference, the value of UAVs to security operations was thoroughly briefed and discussed by a wide range of subject matter experts from the government, military, industry and academia. Conference attendees concluded that technology is not the main obstacle to develop and fielding tactical UAVs. Rather, conflicting organizational requirements, interservice conflicts and intraservice competition seem to be the primary barriers to the smooth integration of UAVs into the present day war fighting force. The problems mentioned above must be resolved because the continued use of UAVs by the military is inevitable. Reduced military funding, in combination with integrated machines directed by powerful microprocessors, electro-optic, radio frequency, power and propulsion technology advances and American discomfort with casualties all will lead to the increased use of drones.
- Pilotless Aircraft