U.S., U.K. Navies Establish London Tech Bridge

By Mandy Mayfield

The United Kingdom’s Royal Navy is teaming with the U.S. Navy in a new international Tech Bridge partnership in London in hopes of accelerating the adoption of innovative ideas and technologies.

The newly established London Tech Bridge will serve as a command post for innovation for the two navies as they work toward interchangeability in everything from technology development to deployment and operations.

Military, industry and academia can meet, share ideas and collaborate to produce capabilities that will be beneficial to both the military and civilian sectors.

“The Tech Bridge facilitates navigation of the innovation pipeline for stakeholders,” said U.S. Navy Cmdr. Albert Arnold IV, director of the London Tech Bridge. “The offices aim to accelerate delivery of capability to the sailor and Marine by developing strategic partnerships that allow rapid flow through the pipeline.”

The official partership was announced in December.

The U.S. Naval Agility Office, or NavalX, has successfully leveraged a number of Tech Bridges across the United States over the past year. The London office is its first overseas location among its 13 outposts.

The Tech Bridge expansion is the next logical step for NavalX, Arnold said in an email.

“The U.S. Navy and Royal Navy have long recognized the very special and critical relationship that we have, and its importance to global security,” he said. “As threat vectors continue to evolve, our two navies have realized that just being interoperable isn’t enough to effectively and efficiently stay ahead of those threats.”

In October, the two navies also signed the Statement of Intent for Future Integrated Warfighting, which outlines a shift in the way the two forces work together, going from interoperable, to interchangeable, Arnold said.

“To achieve the interchangeability, we need to work at it from all angles, including development of capabilities and technology,” he said. “The Tech Bridge is one tool and one of the first tangible actions following the [statement of intent] that solidifies both countries’ commitment to this new idea.”

Initial focus areas for the effort include unmanned systems, autonomy, AI, biotechnology, directed energy, lasers and space capabilities, Arnold said.

The London Tech Bridge will be facilitating a joint U.K.-U.S. test and evaluation symposium in late 2021 to assess new capabilities.

Topics: Global Defense Market

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