Unmanned Ground Vehicle can be modified in field.

Press Release Summary:

Dragon Runner Small Unmanned Ground Vehicle is modular ground robot system capable of reconnaissance and improvised explosive device disarmament in urban, mountainous, or rural environments. Modular base unit weighs less than 20 lb and field-transformable features snap or bolt into place. Operators can add tracks, manipulator arm, cameras, and motion and sound detectors. It also offers field-changeable frequency capabilities, utilizing analog and digital radio options.

Original Press Release:

QinetiQ North America Rolls out a Robotic First: The Field-Transformable Dragon Runner Small Unmanned Ground Vehicle

Troops now have fast, transformer-like ability to modify the Dragon Runner SUGV to fit a variety of critical missions

MCLEAN, Va., Sept. 10 / / - QinetiQ North America's Technology Solutions Group today launches its new Dragon Runner Small Unmanned Ground Vehicle (Dragon Runner SUGV). Dragon Runner SUGV is the first fully modular ground robot system capable of both quick reconnaissance and improvised explosive device (IED) disarmament in urban, mountainous or rural environments.

Based on a robot originally designed for the U.S. Marine Corps, the modular base unit Dragon Runner weighs less than 20 pounds and can be carried by one person in a standard-issue pack. With field-transformable features that quickly snap or bolt into place - no special tools required - Dragon Runner SUGV can morph to fit virtually any mission.

Dragon Runner SUGV can adapt quickly to fit a variety of critical mission scenarios. These include: reconnaissance inside buildings, sewers, drainpipes, caves and courtyards; perimeter security using on-board motion and sound detectors; checkpoint security; in-vehicle and under-vehicle inspections; and hostage barricade reconnaissance and negotiation.

Operators of Dragon Runner SUGV have the ability to add tracks for maximum mobility and a manipulator arm with rotating shoulder, wrist and grippers for dexterity. In addition, day and night pan/tilt/zoom cameras, motion detectors and a listening capability allow Dragon Runner SUGV to further extend the combat team's situational awareness.

Additionally, Dragon Runner SUGV, gives operators field-changeable frequency capabilities, using analog or digital radio options, to improve flexibility and range. Standard vehicle and operator control unit batteries mean that troops can use available government inventory for reduced cost and improved sustainability, making Dragon Runner SUGV even easier to integrate into current missions.

"We listened closely to our military customers' needs, and Dragon Runner SUGV is the result," said Dr. William Ribich, President of the Technology Solutions Group, QinetiQ North America. "We've created a lightweight, modular robot that can climb stairs, open doors, provide critical reconnaissance information and disarm IEDs - all while protecting our troops, who control the robot from a safe distance."

QinetiQ North America also provides a worldwide maintenance and support plan to return battle-damaged Dragon Runner SUGVs to active duty as quickly as possible.

"When Dragon Runner SUGV takes a hit, that means at least one soldier or marine was kept from harm," Ribich concluded.

About QinetiQ North America

QinetiQ (pronounced "kinetic") North America Operations LLC provides world-class technology and responsive solutions to U.S. government customers. With more than 6,000 engineers, scientists and professionals working in partnership with customers, QinetiQ North America develops innovative technology solutions to meet the challenges of national defense, homeland security and information access. QinetiQ North America is part of QinetiQ Group plc, one of the world's leading defense and security technology companies. For more information, please visit www.QinetiQ-NA.com.

About QinetiQ North America Technology Solutions Group

QinetiQ North America's Technology Solutions Group, headquartered in Waltham, MA, includes the businesses of Foster-Miller, Inc., and its subsidiaries Planning Systems Incorporated, Automatika, Applied Perception, Spectro, Inc., and the research and development activities of Apogen Technologies, Inc. It is a technology and product development group with an international reputation for delivering innovative products and systems that perform under the most demanding conditions.

1. Dragon Runner SUGV complies with the Joint Architecture for Unmanned Systems (JAUS), which defines messages and component behaviors that are independent of technology, computer hardware, operator use and vehicle platform.

2. Dragon Runner is currently the smallest and also one of the newest members of the TALON® family of QinetiQ North America robots. MAARS(TM), the first fully modular ground robot system capable of a measured response with options for non-lethal, less-lethal and even lethal stand-off action while still retaining heavy-lifting abilities of up to 100 pounds, first shipped to combat zones earlier this year. The current mainstay of the TALON family, the combat-proven TALON mid-size robot, has been in use since 2000 with over 2,000 fielded worldwide by the U.S. military. All of these robots address the military's need for standoff protection in critical missions, including IED disarmament, RSTA, hazardous materials work, combat engineering support, SWAT/MP assistance and force projection. In fact, QinetiQ North America's Foster-Miller is the only firm to field a fully interoperable family of ground robots providing universal control with marsupial capability, meaning larger robots can carry smaller robots. This continued expansion and integration of the TALON family of robots is QinetiQ North America's response to the military's growing interest in using robots not only for combat support, but for future combat operations as well.

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