While earning his Bachelor of Engineering degree at the University of Bath, Jeremy worked his summer placements at the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE) in Bedford. After graduating with specialties in microprocessor systems and digital control, he joined RAE full-time and stayed on through its metamorphosis from government agency into QinetiQ in 2001.
Initially, Jeremy’s research interests centred on Guidance, Navigation & Control (GNC) projects and he’s worked on helicopters and STOVL aircraft like the Harrier and the Joint Strike Fighter.
“My focus then shifted to broader issues like command and control,” he said, “which naturally led to unmanned aircraft.”
Today, Jeremy serves as both programme director and the company’s ASTRAEA Industry Executive (AIE) representative.
“My job in this last year of the programme is to examine and evaluate the big picture,” he explained. “I’m looking at what comes next for the consortium and, on the company level, how QinetiQ can best leverage all the good work that’s come out of ASTRAEA.”
As examples of the latter, Jeremy pointed to autonomous technology and the UAV service industry.
“Autonomy allows de-skilling of operations and it lets you do more with less,” he said, “and it has applications far beyond UAVs. And I see UAS managed services as a way ahead for unmanned systems because customers are more interested in the data UAVs collect than they are in buying and operating their own UAVs.”
Jeremy said QinetiQ was already rolling out these managed services and has provided a very successful ISR-by-the-hour service to the Dutch Army in Afghanistan. This customer base will expand into the civil market as soon as the regulatory environment for UAVs, begun in ASTRAEA, comes to fruition.
How long will this take? Jeremy predicts a gradual, layered advance in UAV operations over the next ten years with the first applications likely to be airborne surveillance and survey. One new market he sees is communications where long endurance UAVs act as data links and provide customers with a far cheaper alternative to today’s satellite links.
QinetiQ is a leading international provider of technology-based services and solutions to the defence, security and related markets. The company develops and delivers services and solutions for government organisations, predominantly in the UK and US, including defence departments, intelligence services and security agencies. In addition, we provide technology insertion and consultancy services to commercial and industrial customers around the world. QinetiQ uses the in-depth technical and domain knowledge of its people to understand and help meet some of the most complex technical challenges faced by customers in the core markets of Defence, Security and Energy & Environment.