The Military Academy of Technology (MAT), which was established in 1951 at the time of radical reform of higher military education in the early 1950’s, is considered to be the oldest immediate ancestor of the Faculty of Military Technology, currently one of three faculties at the University of Defence.

The city of Brno was chosen as the location for the new engineering-oriented military college due to its long tradition of superior quality engineering education. As it was ordered, the MAT core was formed from a considerable part of the buildings, equipment and staff of the original Dr. Edvard Benes University of Technology. The public did not really accept this step positively, which resulted in a long-time adverse relationship with civilian schools.

The education at the MAT began in 1951 and gradually was institutionalised at six faculties providing engineering education in various military fields such as Artillery, Armour, Aviation, Engineering, Telecommunication, Chemistry and Railway. These fields of study were divided into the branches providing education for military experts of all arms of service. The departments became the basis of the Academy and its faculties. Originally, there were established 44 departments, 19 of them were all-academic. Afterwards, in 1952, partial reorganisation was accomplished and new departments were established, whose number reached 62 in total. In 1953, the Military Academy of Technology had been awarded the standard by the presidential decree.

After the constituent period, which was accompanied by several complications with a lack of qualified staff as well as financial conditions, in 1954, in accordance with the Soviet military academies, the Military Academy of Technology adopted the name of Antonin Zapotocky and became the Antonin Zapotocky Military Academy of Technology (AZ MAT). In the endeavour to enhance the qualification of the staff, the Academy extended its activity to the development of scientific and research projects and cooperation with armament industries. As a result of this effort, the Academy acquired rights to confer a scientific degree CSc. At this stage again, some reorganisations took place and resulted in establishing new departments.

Next important period in the Academy’s existence came in 1958, when the Antonin Zapotocky Military Academy of Technology was united with Klement Gottwald Military Academy in Prague and renamed Antonin Zapotocky Military Academy (AZ MA), due to extensive reorganisation of the military education system. This newly established school began preparing future officers for commanding posts, apart from engineering education. The preparation of commanders was carried out at three Faculties (command, armour and aviation, and electronics).

AZ MA also provided specialized military education for foreign students. At first, the academic staff used to be sent abroad, but the progressive increase of such activities resulted in the establishment of the Faculty of Foreign Studies. The development of international activities and requirements on emphasizing military objectives, craved for the change of the Academy organizational structure. This change was accomplished in 1962 by the presidential decree based on which a new structure of AZ MA was created. It included four faculties – the Faculty of Command-Engineering, the Faculty of Artillery and Radiolocation, the Faculty of Aviation and the Faculty of Foreign Studies.

In 1966, the Army adopted the new framework of military personnel training and education. The new education system was supposed to divide military positions into preparation of graduate officers and secondary military-engineering educated warrant officers. Higher command positions should have been manned by officers with postgraduate education. This new framework conformed to the new concept of AZ MA implemented in 1967, together with the conception of the Faculty of Command and Organisation in Vyskov, the Faculty of Ground Forces, the Faculty of Aviation, the Faculty of Air Defence and Telecommunication, the Faculty of Higher Commander Staff and the Faculty of Foreign Studies. The 1960’s brought, apart from the deepening relationship with the foreign countries and elevating the school academic standard, reconciliation with the citizens of Brno, who were gradually forgiving the military their “confiscatory” attitude in the early 1950’s.

The crucial moment in the history of AZ MA as well as the whole nation, was the invasion of the Warsaw Pact allies in August 1968. The atmosphere of the “Prague Spring” full of hope in releasing the fetters of the communist regime also penetrated the Academy. On August 21st, 1968, when the intruders’ tanks suddenly appeared in front of the buildings of the Academy, it upraised the resistance against occupants. The Academy press actively participated in spreading anti-occupation leaflets and other crucial, unavailable information. The academic community staff prepared in secret a prospective resistance plan against the occupants; but it did not fell through.

Instead of it, the Academy was seized by the normalization. It was finally enforced in June 1969, when the central control of political parties was imposed. In 1970, the Academy underwent the “normalization” of its relationships, which consequently forced hundreds of prominent academic staff as well as members of political apparatus to leave the academic campus. This replacement was associated with the process of improving military so-called hierarchic management system of the school. At the beginning of 1972, the Academy consisted of five Faculties: the Faculty of Command, the Faculty of Engineering – Ground Forces, the Faculty of Aviation and Air Defence, the Faculty of Distance Studies and the Faculty of Foreign Studies.

During the 1970’s and 1980’s, the AZ MA underwent several changes accompanied by reductions and increases in the number of Faculties.

The Velvet Revolution in 1989 impacted the Academy by the outside intervention and directed the institution to the way of transformation as a future element of a democratic state army. This process issued from the depoliticizing of the Academy and its continuous transformation to the democratic academic ambience, which was symbolized by the introduction of autonomous academic institutions in 1990, and, last but not least, renaming it the Military Academy in Brno as well as the changes in staff, curriculum and restitution of buildings within Brno. The transformation was significantly influenced by the disintegration of Czechoslovakia, which brought further reorganization of the Army as well as the Academy itself. In the second half of the 1990’s, it settled into a structure of three faculties: the Faculty of Command and Staff, the Faculty of Military-Engineering and the Faculty of Aviation and Air Defence. During this process the Academy was clarifying its new role within the work of the Army as well as arranging new contacts abroad, especially in NATO structures. Also its concern was to commence cooperation with Czech civilian universities in academic areas.

The process of “permanent transformation”, characteristic for the whole Armed Forces of the Czech Republic in the 1990’s, was definitely completed in spring 2004, when it was decided about establishing a sole university providing the highest level of education within the Army. The Military Academy became a part of the newly established University of Defence and thus the core of one of its Faculties, namely the Faculty of Military Technology. The Faculty of Military Technology, still located in Brno, has become an upholder of the fifty-year tradition of higher military education in the centre of southern Moravia.