Interview released with RAF Programme Manager: Reaper and Protector ahead of SMi’s upcoming UAV Technology conference 2019

SMi reports: Exclusive insights released from RAF Programme Manager: Reaper and Protector ahead of upcoming UAV Technology conference in London

As the development of new UAS technology continues to advance, and procurement and acquisition increase at a fast pace, SMi will host its fourth annual UAV Technology conference, taking place on the 30th September - 1st October 2019, in London, UK.

Ahead of the two-day conference, SMi Group caught up with Wing Commander Judith Graham, RAF Programme Manager: Reaper and Protector to discuss the upcoming event as well as the current developments and challenges within the UAV technology field.

View a snapshot below. Download the full interview in the download centre at

SMi Group: It's well known that the RAF's incoming Protector unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are a big step forward for the UK's unmanned capability. What advantages does the Protector provide over the current Reaper?

Wing Commander Graham: "Protector will be certified for use in unsegregated airspace, meaning it can be used in the UK for training and for operational purposes such as supporting the civilian authorities, if required. It will incorporate enhanced sensor capabilities and include advanced detect-and-avoid technology. The Protector airframe also gives an advantage over MQ-9 Reaper as it has greater persistence with over 40 hours of endurance, and it can carry a greater payload when in its Armed ISTAR role."

SMi Group: What new strategic opportunities and possibilities will the Protector open up?

Wing Commander Graham: "The opportunity to use Protector as a sovereign capability in UK airspace offers very flexible employment and training at home and we will also be seeking ways to ensure its wider use. Partnering with NATO and other Allies could offer the UK significant possibilities for achieving global reach with Protector."

SMi Group: What are you looking forward to most at the upcoming UAV Technology conference in September?

Wing Commander Graham: "A chance to meet with other Programme Managers who may be considering Protector for their service/Nation or who are experiencing similar programme challenges to me."

Download full interview at

As the Royal Air Force continue to advance their capabilities, delegates will get the chance to listen to Wing Commander Graham at the conference this September where she will present: Delivering Next Generation Unmanned Aerial Capabilities to the RAF for 21st Century Air Operations. Her presentation will cover Outlining the RAF's vision for future unmanned aerial capabilities; Protector - the next generation of unmanned asset for RAF ISR; Assessing lethality options for Protector for CAS and tactical strike capabilities; Future requirements for RAF RPAS.

For those interested in attending, registrations can be made on the event website at

UAV Technology 2019
30th September - 1st October
London, UK

Proudly sponsored by Black Diamond Advanced Technology, Enterprise Control Systems Ltd, Fizoptika, Leonardo, Mynaric AG, Scheibel, Teleplan Globe and Robin Radar Systems

For sponsorship enquiries, contact Justin Predescu on +44 (0) 207 827 6130 or
For delegate enquiries, contact Alan Lam on +44 (0) 207 827 6112 or
For media queries, please contact Natasha Boumediene at

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About SMi Group: Established since 1993, the SMi Group is a global event-production company that specializes in Business-to-Business Conferences, Workshops, Masterclasses and online Communities. We create and deliver events in the Defence, Security, Energy, Utilities, Finance and Pharmaceutical industries. We pride ourselves on having access to the world's most forward thinking opinion leaders and visionaries, allowing us to bring our communities together to Learn, Engage, Share and Network. More information can be found at

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