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Updated: Apr 27, 2023

In military lingo, “blue” denotes friendly forces and assets. For unmanned aircraft systems, the term has become synonymous with the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) Blue UAS initiative, and with the five companies’ drones initially stamped as legal and policy compliant as well as cybersecure. That project, a response to policy and legal prohibitions on the Department of Defense’s purchase and operation of Chinese drones, includes a series of dynamic subprojects. The latest: DIU Blue sUAS 2.0. This article dives into the history, evolution and the way ahead of Blue.

Topics: Defense Innovation Unit, DIU, Blue UAS, cybersecurity, Department of Defense, DOD, Chinese drones, Blue UAS 2.0, Section 848, Fiscal Year 2020 National Defense Authorization Act, FY20 NDAA, Executive Order 13981, Short Range Reconnaissance, SRR, General Services Administration, GSA, Shelby Ochs, Commercial Solutions Opening, CSO, Area of Interest, AOI, Other Transaction Authority, OTA, OUSD(A&S), Ascent AeroSystems, BlueHalo

Easy Aerial, FlightWave Aerospace Systems, Freefly, Harris Aerial, Inspired Flight, SenseFly, Skydio, Vision Aerial, Wingtra

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