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UK to test US base defense solution under TALOS program

Anduril Sentry tower
Photo: UK MoD

The UK defense ministry has kick-started a project to trial a base defense system delivered by US company Anduril Industries.

The trial will be undertaken as part of the TALOS program, which is aimed at helping rapidly bring new technology into defense.

The Strategic Command’s jHub awarded Anduril a £3.8-million (approx. $5.2M) contract for the trial.

The system uses an operating system assisted by AI and a network of sensors to autonomously detect, classify, and track potential threats.

It uses a combination of sentry towers, ground sensors and drone technology to alert personnel of any intrusion on the ground or in the air and then presents options for personnel to respond. The system has the capacity to add different sensors and autonomously offers options to respond, depending on the threat.

The UK’s TALOS program should not be confused with the European TALOS (Tactical Advanced Laser Optical System) program, which aims to develop a EU high-power laser effector that could be integrated in military applications in the next decade.

The UK TALOS focuses on accelerating a defense-wide approach to integrated command and control (C2). The system has been offered through a new subscription model, meaning the software and hardware will be updated with the latest technology whilst also being maintained for operational use.

This approach ensures that defense is equipped with the latest cutting-edge technology whilst also allowing the jHub to work with the company to trial and deploy new technology as it is developed. It forms part of the jHub’s work towards a Sustainable Tech Adoption Model (STAM), which is looking into different ways of working with industry to procure new capabilities.

TALOS previously experimented with counter ground intrusion towers at the UK’s overseas base in Akrotiri, Cyprus, to see whether the systems could be integrated into the existing C2 network. This next step allows the UK to continue to develop advanced, multi-domain, integrated force protection technology.