Focus Area: Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition, and Reconnaissance Systems
Project Cost: $15.695M
Project Duration: 40 months
Description: The Microtactical Ground Robot (MTGR) is an advanced lightweight robotic system (15 lbs. platform, 25 lbs. with manipulator arm, Ruggedized Operator Control Unit-7 (ROCU-7), and ancillary equipment), which is highly maneuverable on all terrains, capable of overcoming obstacles and climbing stairs (without an add-on mobility kit). The MTGR is made of composite materials (optimal strength/weight ratio), operates with state of the art motors, which are extremely effective in supplying substantial torque and high speeds at the same time while being powered by standard U.S. military BB-2557 batteries. With its five onboard day/night cameras, internal microphone and visible/near IR laser pointers, the MTGR is capable of providing intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) 360 degrees from its position, enabling the MTGR to be used in a variety of technical surveillance applications. A critical element to the MTGR is the NSA Suite-B encrypted Mobile Ad Hoc Network (MANET) radio. This enables the robot to transfer real-time video, voice, and data to other tactical personnel in the area of operation and to higher headquarters. The system functions on a Windows 7 based operating system and therefore can be fully controlled and viewed from any Windows 7 based computer. The ROCU-7 provides the C2 input of the robot as well as providing the means of streaming real time video back to the operator and higher command levels. The MTGR is currently being rapidly deployed to Special Operations Forces, Multi Purpose Forces, Department of Homeland Security, and Department of Justice communities. The MTGR will continue global operational test and evaluations in FY13 through FY15.
Operational Impact: The MTGR provides dismounted operators with organic capabilities to counduct cismounted ISR and to identify IED threats in difficult field and urban (multi-surface) environments with safe standoff from potential secondary/tertiary IEDs. The control unit decreases the training time or need for operator specialization. The NSA Suite encryption ensures the safety of operators and innocent personnel when emplacing an IED countercharge so that unintended commands are not given to the robot.
Deliverables: Priority fielding of 100 MTGRs to SOF and EOD tactical operators conducting combat operations. Thirty-five MTGRs will be provided to interagency tactical units or domestic operations.
Performer: Roboteam/Stark Aerospace
End Users: Army Special Operations Command, Naval Special Warfare Command, FBI-Hostage Rescue Team, Border Patrol Special Operations Group, Marine Corps Combat Engineer Schoolhouse, Joint Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Fire Department of New York