Military personnel using drone controller

A new proposal within the 2025 defense authorization bill aims to establish a dedicated drone corps as a distinct branch of the US Army. This initiative seeks to professionalize and elevate the field of uncrewed aerial vehicle (UAV) operations, placing it on par with other established military disciplines.

The proposed drone corps would oversee all military activities related to the development and deployment of UAVs, as well as the use of counter-UAV systems. According to the bill, this new branch would serve as a command center for operations involving UAVs, integrating these systems with traditional Army forces, and conducting research, development, testing, and evaluation.

The legislation outlines several primary functions for the drone corps, including Specialized Training; Recruitment and Retention; Counter-UAV Strategies; and Research and Development.

The establishment of a drone corps represents a significant shift in how the US Army organizes its defense divisions. Traditionally, the US military categorizes its forces based on operational domains: land, air, sea, and space, with the respective branches being the Army, Air Force, Navy, and Space Force. The introduction of a drone corps would add a new dimension to this structure, accelerating the adoption of uncrewed technologies and advancing new military strategies.

Advocates for the drone corps emphasize its potential to revolutionize military operations. Lt. Col. Robert Solano, in an editorial for Breaking Defense, highlighted the importance of establishing an Uncrewed Systems Branch alongside traditional combat arms branches like Infantry, Armor, and Aviation. He noted that this new drone corps would not only speed up the adoption of UAV technologies but also enhance talent management within the military.

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Be sure to visit the BWU Technology Partnerships Initiative website to learn more about how our NEOFIX program drives economic growth, promotes policy and infrastructure to improve drone safety and efficiency in various industries, and ensures that drone technology is being used responsibly.