Marines see need for common robotic controller
Lightweight device would operate unmanned aerial and ground vehicles, sensors
- By William Welsh
- Jul 24, 2009
QinetiQ North America will develop a common robotic controller that Marine Corps ground troops could use to operate unmanned vehicles and sensors under a $2.1 million Navy contract.
Under the contract, QinetiQ will furnish the design for a single controller that soldiers can use to operate unmanned tactical aerial vehicles, unmanned tactical ground vehicles and a network of hand-placed sensors, according to an award notice posted July 23 on the FedBizOpps Web site.
The common robotic controller is intended to serve as the control station for the Tactical Networked Sensor Suite program under the direction of the Marine Corps Warfighting Lab, according to documents posted online. The initiative is designed to support Marines at the company, platoon and squad levels.
The solicitation calls for a computing subsystem, operator interface, communication subsystem and power subsystem that uses an open architecture and standardized interface. It is designed to be carried and operated by ground troops during missions.
The contracting activity is the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren Division.
William Welsh is a freelance writer covering IT and defense technology.