Opening of a state-of-the-art MOD hub near Wool

A NEW state-of-the-art Department of Defense Innovation Center has opened.

In its first 10 years, the Defense BattleLab facility, near Wool, aims to create 90 jobs, add £4million to Dorset’s economy and enable the MOD to work in conjunction with academic institutions , businesses and SMEs.

The facility, at Dorset Innovation Park, Winfrith, will be used by the UK Armed Forces and the wider MOD for the next 15 years.

Defense Procurement Minister Jeremy Quin said: “As the pace of technological change continues to accelerate, Defense must be forward looking and innovative in its approach.

“This will be supported by our new industrial land strategy, which will increase transparency with industry to help foster working together.”

The project marks a £5.7million collaboration between the MOD, Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Dorset Council.

It will help bridge the gap between the MOD and the UK’s world-class innovative businesses, particularly in the small and medium-sized business sector.

Dorset has a particularly strong defense sector and is home to many MOD establishments, such as the Army Armored Test and Development Unit at Bovington, the Royal Corps of Signals Training Center at Blandford and the training area at Lulworth Cove, which is used by all elements. of the armed forces of the United Kingdom.

The property seeks to take advantage of Dorset’s location, with Bovington, Blandford and the plains easily accessible.

Clare Cameron, Director of Defense Innovation, said, “Defence Innovation is delighted to co-fund the new Defense Battlelab as we strengthen our partnerships with talented industry innovators to deliver winning technologies faster. tomorrow.”

Dorset LEP Chair Cecilia Bufton said: “We believe the Defense BattleLab has real potential to attract investors, inspire collaborations and encourage more SMEs in the county.”

Deputy Chief of Staff Lieutenant General Sir Chris Tickell KBE said: ‘The military is undergoing its most radical transformation in over 20 years to deliver Future Soldier, including spending over £40bn sterling over the next 10 years.

Defense BattleLab facilities include access to the UK’s only multi-area ranges at Lulworth, featuring 15,000 feet of unobstructed airspace, an available sea area and a range capable of firing live ammunition.

While there is no single goal for the organizations involved, BattleLab seeks to encourage free-thinking and innovative approaches to addressing challenges in the land, sea, and air military domains.

Cllr Tony Ferrari, Dorset Council portfolio holder for economic growth, assets and property, said: “Dorset offers a unique combination of facilities which allow organizations to develop products closely with military users, faster and more interactively than using traditional means.

“The Innovation Park provides state-of-the-art 5G technology and maps over long-established military infrastructure in the Lulworth Ranges with open fire, open air and sea space.

“He is also linked to the Army Signals and Communications organizations in Blandford and the Royal Marines in Poole.

“The Defense BattleLab provides an unprecedented opportunity for industry to collaborate with the military, delivering capabilities to our armed forces faster than ever before.”