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European governments preparing for UGV procurement negotiations

European defence ministries will be looking to enter procurement talks with contractors for UGVs in the near-future.

06 August 2010

European governments are likely to be undertaking large procurement negotiations in the coming years as demand for unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) increases.

According to research by Frost & Sullivan (F&S), the UGV market will see burgeoning levels of activity between 2011 and 2016 as nations across Europe consider modernisation initiatives for their ground forces.

UGVs are robotic platforms that are operated remotely and can be controlled over networks - for reconnaissance, patrol or to remove the need for humans in hazardous situations such as bomb disposal.

The analyst claims that the European UGV market has remained niche in the past, but this will change as the technology becomes an "integral" part of so-called network-centric warfare.

As this happens, European defence contractors and governments will become increasingly likely to hold procurement talks.

F&S analyst Shyam Srinivasan said: "The ability of remotely patrolling a group of vehicles and strategising battlefield formations has evoked an interest to graduate to unmanned artillery in the future."

In the UK, the Defence Procurement Agency is an executive division of the Ministry of Defence tasked with negotiating the procurement of equipment for the UK Armed Forces.

It has a budget of £6 billion annually and manages hundreds of projects, including Typhoon, Skynet and Future Carrier. 

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