29 May 12. As DVD2012 approaches, Major General Carew Wilks, Defence Equipment and Support’s (DE&S) Director Land Equipment, looks forward to the key land equipment event in 2012 and what promises to be an exciting and informative opportunity.
DVD2012 is Defence Equipment and Support’s (DE&S) key stakeholder event for the land equipment community. Taking place on 20 and 21 June at the Millbrook test track in Bedfordshire, it allows us to link up with industry in a single, focused land environment event. It’s an opportunity for us to engage with industry colleagues to discuss technologies, current developments and opportunities in the sector and for us to share our aspirations and plans for the future. Millbrook offers a unique environment that enables equipment to be seen and demonstrated in a practical setting, enhancing the scope to develop a better understanding of requirements and capabilities.
For 2012, we will be concentrating solely on land equipment, retaining the focus of recent years on support to current operations in Afghanistan. As always, there will be a range of vehicles at the event, including the new light protected patrol vehicle, Foxhound, in its production Theatre Entry Standard form. In addition to military vehicles, there will be equipment providing Dismounted Close Combat capability, Manoeuvre Support and deployed infrastructure.
Our key theme for 2012 will be systems engineering in the Land environment. Recent experience in delivering complex UORs for Afghanistan has highlighted the importance of systems engineering across Land equipment and we will be demonstrating how technology integration is being improved through the use of system architectures. Progress in developing the Land Open Systems Architecture (LOSA) will be discussed at the ‘Open Systems in the Land Domain’ conference immediately preceding DVD, and will be a theme throughout DVD. The engineering and technical challenges around integration will also be brought to life by the Bloodhound Supersonic Car team, who will be displaying the vehicle which will attempt a new land speed record.
To make the LOSA ideas more tangible, we are building a simulated Forward Operating Base (FOB), hosted in the central display area, where we will be able to show how we can link subsystems, such as those in a vehicle, on a soldier or within a base. I’m very much looking forward to seeing this first manifestation of LOSA, demonstrating how systems can link together in an open way so we can develop technology and insert it incrementally, enabling us to connect different systems more effectively and efficiently. I will be looking to industry to contribute to this work at DVD2012 and to show us their ideas about how they can integrate their technology onto our platforms. We’ve already been discussing generic vehicle, soldier and base architectures with our industry colleagues, including the development of Defence Standards, but DVD2012 will allow us to highlight it further and for delegates to work together to look at the art of the possible.
On a more general level, DVD2012 will be a key opportunity for us to talk to industry and for visitors to see the equipment we support. A major benefit of holding the event at Millbrook is the ability to demonstrate particular vehicles on Millbrook’s test tracks, especially off road, where people can experience the reality of their cross country capabilities and see how the technology of the equipment put on the vehicles is used in practice. Unlike other exhibitions, DVD2012 is a very practically orientated event and it’s a chance for my Project Teams and other stakeholders across defence, particularly those involved in Force Development and identifying capability requirements, to really understand how the needs they specify affect the integration of technology and what that means for size, weight and power. I hope DVD2012 will increase awareness of potential issues, make us a better informed intelligent custom