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4,000 Chinese DJI Mavic 3 drones join Ukraine's arsenal following $14 Million deal

On April 22, 2024, the Defense Procurement Agency of the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense finalized contracts for the acquisition of 4,000 Chinese drones, comprising 3,000 DJI Mavic 3E and 1,000 DJI Mavic 3T unmanned aerial systems. Valued at 575.2 million Ukrainian hryvnias (approximately $14.478.456,98), these acquisitions are part of Ukraine's broader objective to acquire a total of 20,000 DJI drones through the Prozorro platform.
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With batteries optimized for endurance, the Mavic 3E offers 45-minute flight durations, allowing coverage of up to 2 square kilometers in a single flight, thereby maximizing surveying efficiency. (Picture source: Dominion Drones)

Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine, Dmytro Klimenkov, highlighted the importance of drones in modern warfare, noting their potential to enhance the speed, accuracy, and flexibility of the armed forces. He also noted the necessity of integrating these technologies with existing military strategies to strengthen national defense.

The contracts were awarded after a competitive bidding process on the Prozorro platform, which involved multiple suppliers, aiming to secure favorable prices for the state. Maryna Bezrukova, Director of the Defense Procurement Agency, noted the significance of competition in driving down costs, citing the participation of multiple suppliers in auctions. The specific contract prices were UAH 126.9 thousand ($3,194.22) for each DJI Mavic 3E and UAH 194.2 thousand ($4,888.24) for each DJI Mavic 3T, each inclusive of three additional batteries and a charger.

Delivery of the initial batches of these drones has already begun, with distribution to military units currently underway. Furthermore, efforts to procure an additional 6,000 drones are ongoing within the Prozorro system, comprising a total of 4,500 Mavic 3E systems and 1,500 Mavic 3T systems. This procurement marks the first instance of the Ministry of Defense acquiring DJI Mavic 3 drones for military use, reflecting an ongoing strategy to enhance the country's defense capabilities through the Ukrainian Prozorro procurement platform.

Prozorro, the platform used for these procurements, functions as a fully electronic public procurement platform, facilitating access to public tenders across Ukraine and allowing global participation. Distinguished by its open-source code and open API, Prozorro supports the development of additional services based on its data, allows for electronic submission of tender proposals, and centralizes all public procurements within a single electronic system.

Additionally, the platform integrates a public analytics module by Transparency International Ukraine for procurement data analysis and handles procurements funded by various international organizations such as the World Bank and the European Investment Bank (EIB), offering personalized procurement design options to meet specific needs. With over $14 billion in signed contracts annually and more than 320,000 competitive tenders yearly, Prozorro extends participation opportunities globally, enabling suppliers from any part of the world to register and participate.

The DJI Mavic 3 Enterprise Series, which includes the Mavic 3E and Mavic 3T models, is designed to meet specific professional requirements. The Mavic 3E, optimized for mapping and surveying tasks, features a 20 MP wide-angle camera with a 4/3 CMOS sensor and a mechanical shutter for motion blur prevention during rapid capture. This model integrates a hybrid zoom camera capable of up to 56x magnification, facilitating detailed aerial inspections and mapping without the requirement for ground control points. Additionally, the Mavic 3E incorporates an RTK module, enabling centimeter-level positioning accuracy for precise surveying applications.

Conversely, the Mavic 3T caters to specialized operational needs such as firefighting, search and rescue, and night missions. Equipped with a 48 MP wide-angle camera featuring a 1/2" CMOS sensor, this model ensures high-resolution imaging suitable for detailed inspections and reconnaissance. The inclusion of a thermal camera with a resolution of 640 × 512 px enhances its utility in detecting hot spots and conducting thermal inspections. With a simultaneous split-screen zoom functionality, professionals can utilize the Mavic 3T's thermal and zoom cameras side-by-side, enabling efficient comparisons and analysis.

Both models feature advanced obstacle detection and navigation systems, including DJI AirSense and enhanced DJI APAS 5.0, ensuring flight safety during operations. Advanced Return-to-Home (RTH) functionality automatically plans the optimal route home, while DJI APAS 5.0 enables automatic rerouting around obstacles, providing convenience during flight operations. With batteries optimized for endurance, the Mavic 3E offers 45-minute flight durations, allowing coverage of up to 2 square kilometers in a single flight, thereby maximizing surveying efficiency.


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