The US Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center (AMRDEC) and Wichita State University (WSU) have agreed to work on the development of new technologies for military applications.

A Partnership Intermediary Agreement (PIA) to this effect has been signed between AMRDEC and WSU.

Under the $1.9m research and development agreement, the WSU’s new FirePoint Innovations Center will work with AMRDEC scientists, industry, universities and other Department of Defense (DoD) researchers to develop vertical lift technologies for the nation’s troops over a period of two years.

FirePoint allows innovators from across the world to connect, sign partnerships and harness their collective power to help the army accelerate the development and deployment of future advanced technologies.

The new collaborations will help AMRDEC to address technology gaps and enhance its ability to develop and provide new capabilities.

WSU research and technology transfer vice-president John Tomblin said: “AMRDEC’s mission is vital to the strength of the nation’s defence, and we’re honoured to have this opportunity to work closely with them.

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“The collaboration will provide outstanding applied learning opportunities for our students, synchronising with the university’s vision, mission, and goals.”

“The collaboration will expand WSU’s role in DoD research and development activities and will provide outstanding applied learning opportunities for our students, synchronising with the university’s vision, mission, and goals.”

The AMRDEC provides aviation and missile capabilities and lifecycle engineering solutions to increase troops’ responsiveness.

Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies chairman Senator Jerry Moran said: “Partnerships between our nation’s universities and the Department of Defense strengthen our national security, and direct access to Wichita State University enhances the department’s ability to rapidly respond to mission requirements.

“The army’s decision to partner with Wichita State University to improve our nation’s aviation and aerospace defences exemplifies the quality of the university’s research and development capabilities. This partnership creates new opportunities for Kansans and the Wichita community.”

Airbus, Dassault Systemes, NetApp and Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence are currently partners in Wichita State’s Innovation Campus.