UNGSC delivers Micro Uncrewed Aircraft Systems training to MINUSMA
From April to June 2021 UNGSC, in response to MINUSMA’s request for a technology solution to improve the safety and security of UN camps and patrols and to increase situational awareness, conducted a series of UAS courses in conjunction with MINUSMA Field Technology Section. The courses were the first of their kind for this technology; a hybrid teaching method borne out of necessity after the mobile training team could not travel due to the Covid-19 related travel restrictions. While the theoretical components of the course were delivered remotely by UNGSC, the practical flight training was conducted by FTS personnel in-mission with the support of UNGSC. The MINUSMA trainers had already graduated from UAS training conducted by UNGSC in MONUSCO in 2020 and so easily adapted to the training delivery in MINUSMA.
A translator provided by MINUSMA FTS was used throughout the training as the majority of the students were French speaking. UNGSC staff also utilized the tools offered through MS Teams such as live translation while delivering a presentation.
Safety considerations when operating UAS, the importance of strict compliance with established aviation protocols and SOPs as well as communication via the chain of command were highlighted throughout the course. Students were brought from beginner level gradually through a series of increasingly complex training drills designed to increase confidence and ability. This culminated in scenario training including operating at night using thermal sensors, conducting patrol support and camp perimeter surveillance.
In total sixty four students were trained from the military component and the Department of Safety and Security. FTS procured modern UAS equipped with advanced sensors, spot lights, speakers and strobes which are issued to units once they have completed the training. These technology solutions will be employed to improve situational awareness and safety and security across the mission.