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Team Drone - 2021 Technology, Innovation & Great Power Competition

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Technology, Innovation and Great Power Competition,TIGPC, Gordian knot Center, DIME-FIL, department of defense, dod, intlpol 340, joe felter, ms&e296, raj shah, stanford, Steve blank, AI, ML, AI/ML, china, unmanned, autonomy, c3i, command and control

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Team Drone - 2021 Technology, Innovation & Great Power Competition

  1. Original Problem Statement Chinese literatures have revealed how drones can be used as an surprise element in an amphibious assault to overwhelm defenses. In a potential Taiwan Strait Crisis, there is a need for a low-cost and survivable counter-drone system to defend Taiwan. Final Problem Statement Taiwan needs a robust and survivable C2 system to effectively and quickly bring the right asset to the right place at the right time during an invasion. Tom Liang - MS Mechanical Engineering ‘22 - BS Mechanical Engineering Josh Stelwagen - MA East Asian Studies (China Concentration) ’21 Felipe Calero - BS Computer Science (AI Track) ‘23 Team Drone Total interviews: 17
  2. Kinetic cUAS Drone swarms
  3. Kinetic cUAS Detection Drone swarms
  4. Kinetic cUAS Detection C2 disruption Drone swarms
  5. Drone swarms Kinetic cUAS Detection C2 disruption Network of sensors
  6. Drone swarms Kinetic cUAS Detection C2 disruption Network of sensors Command and Control
  7. Proposed Solutions Cultivate Indigenous EM Expertise Sharing Best Practices with Allies and Partners Smart Fortress Defence
  8. Geographical Space Defense Budget Overall Defense Concept Smart Fortress Defense for Robust C2 Layered, decentralized modular network of sensors Get right things to the right place at the right time
  9. Taiwan is not allowed in many international institutions with current geopolitical constraints GCTF is a platform for Taiwan to share their expertise and strengthen connections with international experts Vigorously expand the scope of GCTF to include the sharing of information about emerging threats in the Electromagnetic Environment (EME) as well as best practices in defensive Electromagnetic Operations (EMO). Recommendation Expand GCTF to Share Defense Practices
  10. Offer scholarships to Taiwan high school students to pursue undergraduate STEM education at top colleges in the US Students required to work for the Taiwan government for six years upon completion of their studies Cultivate Domestic Taiwan EM Expertise
  11. Questions? Questions? Photo: Zhuhai Airshow 2020, China breaks world record for most drones
  12. APPENDIX
  13. What: How: Drones + AI Amphibious Assault Taiwan’s Overall Defence Concept + Geographical/Political/Economic Constraints Potential Solutions: Taiwan Straits Crisis UAV/UUV swarms Finding, tracking and neutralizing drone swarms Disrupt C2 networks Robust & survivable C2 architecture Electronic Warfare (EW) Buoys network for detection & communication EW for cUAS Search & destroy drone mothership
  14. Where we started Use of drone swarms for kinetic offense during an amphibious invasion How can Taiwan bring down enemy drones?
  15. What constraints exist? 1. Economic 2. Political 3. Geographic 4. Overall Defense Concept (ODC)
  16. Uncertainty about where drone swarms would be utilized, and if effective solutions even existed At this point in the quarter, we began to feel more deeply the uncertainty about where drone swarms would be utilized. What exactly was the problem Taiwan should be most concerned about? Additionally, many of the kinetic cUAS we looked into were either in very early stages or impractical, and it did not seem like Taiwan would be able to know where to deploy them during an invasion. Should this problem not be framed in terms of kinetic defenses?
  17. Key Problem = Detection Software + C2I
  18. Key Insight - Importance of EW for China, and how Taiwan’s current defense plan thinks about EW. China wants to disrupt Taiwan’s command and control, and prevent it from using the assets it has (e.g. surface-to-air missiles) effectively Drone swarms may represent a unique threat to Taiwan’s C2, and may be an attractive option for China. Taiwan’s current defense plan neglects EW, and essentially assumes it will lose access to any advanced communication systems. Ryan Fedasiuk - CSET
  19. Key Insight - Drone swarm encompasses not only detecting and tracking drone swarms over land, but also incoming ships As small drones cannot cross Taiwan Strait, they would need to be deployed from a ‘mothership’ or some other source nearby. Problem is: Taiwan cannot effectively target vulnerabilities like the mothership or command nodes for drones. Zak Kallenborn - freelance analyst
  20. Buoys network for detection & communication Could provide improved operational awareness during invasion, help find targets (e.g. mothership) Decentralized, difficult to jam or spoof Considered this as potential solution for the problem of targeting vulnerabilities like motherships or command nodes, but did not solve other aspects of the problem.
  21. Final insight: Underlying problem is Command and Control (C2) Detecting & tracking drone swarms, defending against EW, and being able to target drone swarm vulnerabilities are all symptoms of the same problem - C2. Drone swarms are concerning in large part because of the weaknesses of Taiwan’s current C2 architecture. In the longer term, Taiwan needs to learn to compete in EW and cyber warfare, or it will not be able to use the assets it has accumulated. The problem is: Taiwan cannot defend it’s C2 architecture from EW and cyberattacks, and losing situational awareness would hamper its ability to impose costs on an invading force. Dr. Chen-Yi Tu - INDSR (Taiwan’s version of RAND)
  22. What: How: Drones + AI Amphibious Assault Taiwan’s Overall Defence Concept + Geographical/Political/Economic Constraints Potential Solutions: Taiwan Straits Crisis UAV/UUV swarms Finding, tracking and neutralizing drone swarms Disrupt C2 networks Robust & survivable C2 architecture Electronic Warfare (EW) Buoys network for detection & communication EW for cUAS Search & destroy drone mothership
  23. Future work ● Validating solutions with stakeholders of the proposed solutions
  24. Aerial drone swarms for kinetic offense Aerial drone swarms for: - Kinetic offense - Reconnaissance - EW Underwater drone swarms for: - Reconnaissance - Minesweeping
  25. Key Insight - Using the kill web concept to emphasize importance of detection and tracking Mrinal Menon (Anduril Industries) & DoD interviewees Kill web process: Detection, Tracking, Classification, Mitigation Current thinking in this space neglect the first links of the kill web, and actually it is very difficult currently to detect and track incoming drones Problem is not just bring down drone swarms, but rather detecting and having the situational awareness to know where to deploy assets.
  26. Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) - Current Practice In 2018, the Industrial Development Bureau of MOEA established a cybersecurity integrated service platform called Security Platform as a Service (SecPaaS), in which more than 51 domestic companies that independently develop cybersecurity systems participate.
  27. Indigenous EM Expertise Current Practices: ● Supporting and recruiting high-caliber R&D talents to forge stronger science and technology capacity and industry R&D capacity ○ Accelerate higher education reform and increase higher education funding to strengthen the innovation and R&D capacity of higher education institutes ○ develop high-caliber talent databases to keep track of the whereabouts of PhD graduates and the supply and demand for PhD graduates ○ provide scholarships to PhD graduates to motivate Taiwanese and foreign students to further their study ● Cultivating and recruiting professionals to facilitate industrial transformation ○ industry-academia cooperation PhD talent cultivation systems ○ actively recruit high-profile talents from Taiwan and overseas
  28. Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) ● Focus on academic research that caters to the needs of industry ○ Taiwan relies on science and technology innovation as a key driver of economic growth and national progress. ● Three national science park - Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), National Applied Research Laboratories and Institute for Information Industry ○ ITRI - helped to set up TSMC & United Microelectronics
  29. Geographical Space Defense Budget Overall Defense Concept Smart Fortress
  30. President Tsai Ing-Wen’s Five Plus Two Industrial Innovation Program
  31. President Tsai Ing-Wen’s Five Plus Two Industrial Innovation Program ● Smart Machinery Industry ○ Boost development of smart machineries ● National Defense Industry ○ Provide support to information security industry cluster in Taiwan ○ Promote dual-use technology
  32. Current Schemes National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (NTUST) Scholarship for international graduate students [1 - 4yrs / tuition and stipend] https://www.studyintaiwan.org/university/scholarship/136 Ministry of Education Taiwan-Caltech Scholarship
  33. What: How: Drones + AI Amphibious Assault Taiwan’s Overall Defence Concept + Geographical/Political/Economic Constraints Potential Solutions: Taiwan Straits Crisis UAV/UUV swarms Finding, tracking and neutralizing drone swarms Disrupt C2 networks Robust & survivable C2 architecture Electronic Warfare (EW) Buoys network for detection & communication EW for cUAS Search & destroy drone mothership
  34. Slide Templates
  35. Smart Fortress Who: Joint Taiwan NCSIST and US Defense Industry venture. What: The Smart Fortress complements Taiwan’s existing “ODC” by establishing a defense in-depth featuring layered, decentralized constellations of sensors capable of rapidly cueing electronic, cyber, information, and directed energy capabilities. This framework not only promotes shared awareness but enables multi-domain targeting synchronization across all echelons of command, thereby presenting adversaries with additional dilemmas and risks. Where/How: Use Taiwan’s condensed geography to its advantage: incorporate urban terrain, mountains, outer islands, and harbors into sensor network that is nested with Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield.
  36. Sharing Best Practices ● Due to current geopolitical constraints, Taiwan is not allowed to participate in many international institutions. ● Global Cooperation & Training Framework (GCTF) is a platform for Taiwan to share their expertise and strengthen connections with international experts on different topics via workshops and events. ● Vigorously expand the scope of GCTF program to include the sharing of information about emerging threats in the Electromagnetic Environment (EME) as well as best practices in defensive Electromagnetic Operations (EMO).
  37. Indigenous EM Expertise ● Taiwan should invest in education and aim to produce world-leading electromagnetic scholars. ● Offer scholarships to Taiwan high school students to pursue undergraduate STEM education at top universities in the US and UK. The condition of the scholarship is for the students to return back to work for the Taiwan government for six years upon completion of their studies.
  38. Tom Liang - MS Mechanical Engineering ‘22 - BS Mechanical Engineering Josh Stelwagen - MA East Asian Studies (China Concentration) ’21 Felipe Calero - BS Computer Science (AI Track) ‘23 Final Problem Statement Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense needs robust and survivable C2 architecture for decision-makers to effectively visualize and understand the operating environment during a crisis, rapidly deploy the right asset to the right place at the right time, and efficiently mass firepower across multiple domains thus enhancing unit lethality. Original Problem Statement In order to strengthen credible deterrence by denial and protect against asymmetric People’s Republic of China (PRC) AI and swarm technologies in a potential Taiwan Strait crisis, Group 5 analyzes the PRC’s joint service (联合 作战样式) operational concept for the future of amphibious warfare (两栖登陆作战), as described in open source official Chinese publications, and develops low-cost, survivable, and lethal solutions Team Drone Total interviews: 17
  39. Indigenous EM Expertise Offer scholarships to Taiwan high school students to pursue undergraduate STEM education at top universities in the US. Students to return back to work for the Taiwan government for six years upon completion of their studies.
  40. LOREM IPSUM Proposed Solutions Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, nibh est. A magna maecenas, quam magna nec quis, lorem nunc. Suspendisse viverra sodales mauris, cras pharetra proin egestas arcu erat dolor e amet. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, nibh est. A magna maecenas, quam magna nec quis, lorem nunc. Suspendisse viverra sodales mauris, cras pharetra proin egestas arcu erat dolor e amet. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, nibh est. A magna maecenas, quam magna nec quis, lorem nunc. Suspendisse viverra sodales mauris, cras pharetra proin egestas arcu erat dolor e amet. Smart Fortress Memorandum of Understanding Promote Indigenous Expertise

Editor's Notes

  • Drone swarms first direction, kinetic counter drone weapon systems
    We did initially learn about several alternatives, but in one interview realized that this approach was wrong.
    Key problem is not bringing down the drone in front of you, but detecting drone swarms in the first place
  • Current solutions neglect detection and tracking, so we began asking the question, what software and technology should taiwan implement to be able to detect and track incoming drone swarms?
    Again, through expert interviews and research, we realized that this again was the wrong approach, because while it is an important problem, there is an underlying problem of
  • Electronic warfare. China will utilize drones and other assets to jam and disrupt communication during an invasion, and so even if the tech existed to detect drones, commanders might not receive the information. We began researching and brainstorming ways of defending against EW and fighting back even if communications are disrupted, but once again through expert interviews realized that this was insufficient.
  • To most effectively combat drones, Taiwan needs to have more information that what its current C2 architecture is capable of, and we began thinking about a potential network of sensors using buoys or modular nodes, as its current system is vulnerable to disruption by China, and its current Overall Defense Concept, the overarching framework for their defense, does not emphasize EW or maintaining communication systems.
  • It was here that we had our final a-ha moment. Just a symptom, c2 important for other threats
    The underlying problem we had kept running into was that of maintaining effective C2 during an invasion. In one of our expert interviews, we realized that, like much of current thinking on Taiwan, we had been operating under the assumption that C2 would be lost during an invasion, and that Taiwan would not be able to compete in this area. We began to challenge this assumption - what if C2 didn’t fall? What if Taiwan began competing in this domain, in ways consistent with its overall defense concept, and taking into consideration the lessons we had learned so far about the necessary components of an effective C2 architecture?
  • It was here that we really began approaching our final solution - given Taiwan’s constraints, how can it invest in a war of tomorrow while still being prepared for the war of today?
    What would a C2 architecture that complements the Overall Defense Concept and is looking ahead to emerging capabilities look like? Here we arrived at our proposed solution:
  • From the interview insights we got, our group has 3 recommendations for Taiwan.


    The other two to ultimately support the smart fortress idea
  • Took into consideration Taiwan’s geographical space, defence budget and ODC and propose a layered decentralized modular network of sensors.

    A lot of cheap sensors to create robust and survivable C2 network to allow commanders to get the right assets to the right place at the right time.


    Address surprise element
    Condensed geography
    Taiwan defense spending
    Reliance on US arms

  • Stakeholders: GCTF administered by Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, American Institute in Taiwan & Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association
    Network security, government corruption, energy efficiency
    USA / Japan / South Korea - “resist China and assist Taiwan”
  • Taiwan govt to attract and retain talent from young at the undergraduate level


    Taiwan should invest in education and aim to produce world-leading electromagnetic scholars
    The US should encourage and provide opportunities for Taiwan to engage in exchange programs with relevant, top US civilian institutions and military Centers of Excellence (CoEs).
    Stakeholders:
    Ministry of Science and Technology - Department of Engineering and Technologies
    Ministry of Education - Department of Higher Education
  • So with that here is our journey from looking at the use of drones in Taiwan Straits Crisis to realising the need is for Taiwan to invest in a robust and survivable C2 architecture to not surrender the technological space to China during a conflict.
  • The problem is: Taiwan does not have effective ways of bringing down drone swarms.
    Initially envisioned drone swarms being used by China for kinetic offense during the initial phase of an amphibious invasion.

    What counter drone swarm weapons exist? What types of drone swarms could China use? What does Taiwan’s current defense plan look like?
  • -Leveraging Taiwan’s small size
    - Applying ‘porcupine’ concept to EW. In the longer term, Taiwan does need to compete with China in this space


  • Anduril Industries develops autonomous, AI-enabled solutions for defense and national security issue
  • https://www.most.gov.tw/most/attachments/36977724-a4cd-42f3-bcd1-6e50e98b648e
  • https://www.most.gov.tw/most/attachments/80ff16e8-2653-43b7-8a66-8080107c90a5
  • https://www.taiwan.gov.tw/content_8.php
  • https://www.taiwan.gov.tw/content_8.php
  • https://www.taiwan.gov.tw/content_8.php
  • Felipe - to edit

    Josh
  • Address surprise element
    Condensed geography
    Taiwan defense spending
    Reliance on US arms

  • Stakeholders: GCTF administered by Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, American Institute in Taiwan & Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association
    Network security, government corruption, energy efficiency
    USA / Japan / South Korea - “resist China and assist Taiwan”

  • The US should encourage and provide opportunities for Taiwan to engage in exchange programs with relevant, top US civilian institutions and military Centers of Excellence (CoEs).
    Stakeholders:
    Ministry of Science and Technology - Department of Engineering and Technologies
    Ministry of Education - Department of Higher Education
  • Taiwan should invest in education and aim to produce world-leading electromagnetic scholars
    The US should encourage and provide opportunities for Taiwan to engage in exchange programs with relevant, top US civilian institutions and military Centers of Excellence (CoEs).
    Stakeholders:
    Ministry of Science and Technology - Department of Engineering and Technologies
    Ministry of Education - Department of Higher Education
  • ×