Samuel Bendett Profile picture
Aug 6 15 tweets 8 min read
1/ QUICK THREAD - a follow up to the earlier post about September "Dronnitsa" event that will bring together Russian, DNR/LNR drone pilots to Russia. Few months ago, there was a lack of drone on the front - now there is a lack of trained pilots because...
2/ ...Ukrainian military learnt how to target Russian/DNR/LNR drone operators. Therefore, "it is more relevant than ever to create a training system based on the working prototype launched this summer that has to be scaled very quickly and efficiently."
3/ "Today, its a question of training not just operators, but instructors capable of conducting training/retraining, including taking into account the constant emergence of new technical means and solutions on both sides of the front."
4/ "In this sense, the main goal of the "Dronnitsa" meet is to initiate the formation of such an instructor corps, to establish, in fact, a new specialty - an instructor in the combat use of UAVs, and to create a system for training such specialists."
5/ "Therefore, there will be three "Dronnitsa" tracks: the exchange of experience among existing operators and instructors; a program for selecting potential instructors; and public events for people who are not indifferent to the topic (of drone operation)."
6/ What are more detailed "Dronnitsa" issues that this meet is supposed to solve? "To critically analyze the existing practice of "popular" collections for copters for the front and..."
7/ "... get feedback on how useful, effective it is - what can and what can not an ordinary "commercial" copter do, how effective are the "self-made" technologies for its "finishing" for combat missions, what new solutions are there - both technological and organizational."
8/ "What can be done to popularize the topic of drones in “peaceful” life - it would be much easier if, in the active Armed Forces, the majority already had at least some basic familiarity with the subject and basic UAV piloting skills obtained back in the civilian life."
9/ "Raise the topic of IT solutions, like the means of calculating artillery coordinates from the geoposition of the target, and ending with complex stories like "smart swarm" and computer vision, real-time geometric video analytics, etc."
10/ "To discuss a lab to coordinating some part of the work on such decisions and at least collecting information about them; establish a production center for educational videos and online courses, both open and classified".
11/ "Finally, create a video archive and a data bank should, where videos from copters are collected, both for pilot training tasks and for potential AI machine learning tasks."
12/ This "Dronnitsa" is a volunteer-organized event - and the real question is to what extent will the Russian MOD participate and absorb the lessons shared and tactics discussed/developed there.
13/ Officially, Russian MOD begun to incorporate quadrocopters/small drones in the military back in 2019, but its still not clear to what extent this is still widespread across Russian forces in Ukraine.…
14/ Most of the Russian quadrocopter/small UAV evidence seen in the open sources is volunteer-initiated, with volunteers donating DJI Mavic and other small drones to the front. We now even know exactly which commercial drones make the cut.
15/ For more on the Russian drones used in the war, please check out a recent @CNA_org paper.

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More from @SamBendett

Aug 7
1/ QUICK THREAD - a very interesting interview with Ruslan Pukhov, Director of @CentreAST, from late June 2022 on the Ukraine war. Although a bit dated now, most of the arguments are still valid today. Summary of main points below:… Image
2/ "We (Russians) are severely short of infantry. The front is large, and there are not enough people for the entire special operation."
3/ "Another point - the special military operation showed that at this moment the airborne troops, roughly speaking, are bad ersatz infantry. Their aluminum infantry fighting vehicles are easily destroyed, and they have fewer other weapons than motorized infantry."
Read 11 tweets
Aug 5
1/ QUICK THREAD According to the Russian tech news, Russian programmers are preparing their software for export to Africa, Asia and the Middle East due to European sanctions.…
2/ Russian interest in the Indian market rose almost threefold, including from companies that do custom software development. Russian companies that enter this market have specific IT solutions that require special competencies in a narrow technological area.
3/ Russian software developers would like to debut their products in South and Central America. At the same time, Russian software sales in Western markets will continue via representative offices in neutral countries and not on behalf of Russian companies.
Read 4 tweets
Aug 3
1/ QUICK THREAD: US continues to sanction Russia's high-tech ecosystem. OFAC imposed sanctions on the Skolkovo ecosystem - Skolkovo Foundation that supports technology entrepreneurship, Skolkovo Technopark that hosts startups, and Skoltech, that develops innovative tech.
2/ The sanctions will make it more difficult for Skolkovo to develop 5G and 6G technologies, to purchase hardware and components that will be required for the production of this equipment.…
3/ Some Russian commentators already note that at this point, Rus companies have already learned how to circumvent such restrictions, and work may continue as long as the Rus government provides additional financial resources.
Read 15 tweets
Aug 2
1/ What have the Russian and DNR/LNR drone pilots learnt so far in their use of quadrocopters/UAVs in Ukraine? Over 100 combat drone pilots will share their experience during "Dronnitsa" meet on August 1-5 on Ilmen lake, near Veliky Novgorod in Russia.
2/ The key issue for Russian/DNR/LNR forces is the "acute shortage of trained drone operators on the front lines." The Dronnitsa event will be a train-the-trainers event to develop rapid learning skills set that can be passed to others.…
3/ According to Russian Telegram channels, the main goal of Dronnitsa is to select and test potential candidates for the military drone instructor corps.…
Read 4 tweets
Aug 1
1/ QUICK THREAD on the main points of the 2022 Russian Maritime Doctrine released over the weekend. One of the priorities is "increasing the volume of fundamental/applied scientific research related to the marine environment, World Ocean resources, the Arctic and Antarctic."
2/ Among priorities are environmental and climate research, including the study of Antarctica glaciers and Arctic islands off the coast and continental shelf of the Russian Federation; and modernization of existing and construction of new research vessels.
3/ A key priority is the development of marine robotic complexes and systems. Prior to the war in Ukraine, Russia had at least 17 different USV/UUV projects aimed at maritime exploration and ISR at different depths, some with military applications.
Read 14 tweets
Aug 1
1/ This is important, since the demand for crowdsourced and volunteered drones for the Russian forces is driven as much by the solders as by key bloggers that also deploy to the frontlines. Here, the comments is that each Russian platoon should have 3 small drones...
2/...while company commander should have a small quadrocopter similar to DJI Mavic 3. Another suggestion is that each company should have a drone with a range of 15-20kms.
3/ Earlier, I made a quick thread of the types of drones that many Russian volunteers are collecting for the Russian/DNR forces. Specific DJI models are preferred over others:
Read 4 tweets

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