Sikorsky and the National Robotics Engineering Center (NREC) of Carnegie Mellon University will demonstrate an autonomous delivery of an unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) by an optionally piloted Black Hawk helicopter equipped with Matrix technology. The UGV will subsequently execute a mission to investigate a potentially contaminated area, while keeping human personnel out of harm’s way.
The project is an 18-month program sponsored by the U.S. Army’s Tank Automotive Research, Development, and Engineering Center (TARDEC) through the Robotics Technology Consortium. The NREC-led “Extending the Reach of the Warfighter Through Robotics” effort launched in March and will culminate with a final demonstration in September 2015.
The NREC is providing the UGV, a modified Land Tamer all-terrain vehicle which uses key elements of several NREC world-class autonomy systems to support on-road and off-road autonomous exploration. The team of unmanned ground and air vehicles will autonomously survey sites with suspected chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear contamination.
Sikorsky will deploy its platform-agnostic Matrix technology on a U.S. Army UH-60MU Black Hawk helicopter, working jointly with the Utility Helicopter Program Office, and the ADD under the terms of the Manned/Unmanned Resupply Aerial Lifter (MURAL) Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) and the TARDEC/RTC Robotics Other Transaction Agreement (OTA). The aircraft is Government Furnished Equipment provided by U.S. Army Aviation Applied Technology Directorate (AATD). The same aircraft was recently used to conduct an optionally-piloted and autonomous cargo-delivery demonstration under the ADD/Sikorsky MURAL Optionally Piloted Black Hawk Program.
Related: Unmanned News