U.S. Army Speeds production of FCS Robot

The Army’s Future Combat Systems (FCS) program managers are accelerating development of a backpackable next-generation version of the PackBot called the Small Unmanned Ground Vehicle (SUGV).

Being developed in partnership with Boeing, the SUGV was to have been fielded in 2010 or 2012, but now is slated to deploy next year.

“The SUGV is being developed with the same basic digital architecture that is in the PackBot, so we expect to add all of the different mission capabilities,” said Bob Bell, director of iRobot’s FCS program. “It has high-performance visible and infrared cameras. It won’t have the EOD’s [Explosive Ordnance Disposal’s] 7-foot arm; it will have an 18- to 20-inch arm. It will be able to look at and pull the cover off an IED, but it won’t be able to carry it away.”

The Army used a prototype SUGV in a February FCS experiment at White Sands Missile Range, N.M.

Source:  Defense News


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