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The Counter-UAS Center of Excellence will provide researchers and industry and military partners a collaborative platform to design, produce and test new counter-UAS technologies.

USRI announces military partnership for counter-UAS research

Friday, October 21, 2022

Media Contact: Harrison Hill | Senior Research Communications Specialist | 405-744-5827 | harrison.c.hill@okstate.edu

Whether it’s amazing aerial photography or video; monitoring critical infrastructure such as bridges, buildings and pipelines; or simply as a means of entertainment for the whole family racing against opponents through obstacle courses, the role drones have in society continues to expand. 

However, some researchers at Oklahoma State University are designing and developing technologies to keep our skies safe from those wishing to use drones for more nefarious reasons.  

The Unmanned Systems Research Institute (USRI) at OSU has announced the formation of a Counter-UAS (unmanned aerial systems) Center of Excellence (COE).

Created in partnership with the U.S. military and industry leaders, the center will elevate USRI’s capacity to develop state-of-the-art technology and a highly trained workforce equipped to sustain growth well into the future.

The newly formed COE will provide a collaborative environment to rapidly develop and test counter-UAS capabilities, as well as bolster the U.S. military’s ability to attract a skilled, security-cleared workforce to develop and test this technology.

“With the funding I was able to secure in this year’s [National Defense Authorization Act], Oklahoma State University has the great privilege to open the Counter UAS Center of Excellence, which will support counter-UAS activities across our nation’s military,” said U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe, who has been instrumental in the formation of the COE. “I am proud of all the work we’ve been able to accomplish together over the years and I look forward to seeing how OSU will bring about great change with the Center of Excellence.”

The center will have a formal grand opening in the fall, coinciding with a counter-UAS symposium being held at USRI’s offices in Oklahoma City. Although the center’s work will be performed predominantly at the EXCELSIOR lab on OSU’s Stillwater campus, the footprint of the center’s reach will extend to OSU’s facilities in Oklahoma City — such as the Hamm Institute for American Energy at Oklahoma State University — and to the U.S. Army facilities at Fort Sill near Lawton, Oklahoma. Fort Sill has recently been selected to house the Joint Counter-UAS University to provide training across all branches of military for the U.S.

USRI — housed in OSU’s College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology — will provide expertise on unmanned systems, autonomy, advanced materials and navigation solutions, as well as potential workforce candidates that will now have extensive, hands-on experience with systems and technologies developed through the COE.

“This goes back to OSU’s land-grant mission to not only support the needs of the citizens of the state, but to also assist both industry and other state and federal agencies,” said Dr. Jamey Jacob, USRI director and OSU professor. “This Center of Excellence provides the capability to address the needs of the DOD at large by providing cutting edge counter-UAS solutions, more specifically for the Army — its training mission at Fort Sill and its Counter-UAS university— as well as provide for the safety and well-being of the United States.”

As the adoption of UAS technology becomes more common, the need for systems designed to counter these technologies continues to grow. The COE will provide OSU and the state of Oklahoma the opportunity to continue its growing leadership role in aerospace and UAS research.


Photo By: The Unmanned Systems Research Institute

Story By: Jeff Hopper | Research Matters Magazine

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