QinetiQ North America has unveiled a new, 10-pound variant of its Dragon Runner robot designed to give infantry units a portable, durable sensor, company officials said at the Association of the United States Army Annual Meeting and Exposition.
The new robot, called Dragon Runner 10, recently completed testing and has already been purchased by U.S. military units, said Mark Hewitt, Chief Strategy Officer, QinetiQ.
“It is very light. It is designed to be thrown up into a second story window,” Hewitt told Military.com.
The back-packable, throwable robot is engineered with a small electro-optical/infrared sensor and a picatinny rail for small radios and other attachments. It can be configured with an attachable modular mechanical arm equipped with day and night sensors designed for IED-detection, route clearance or other missions, Hewitt explained.
“There is a fair amount of interest in this class of robots. Because they are more portable, they are easier to integrate into the concept of operations for a variety of different users,” he added.
In addition, QinetiQ has also developed a lightweight Tactical Robotic Controller (TRC) designed to allow for simultaneous control of unattended ground sensors, unmanned air vehicles and ground robots, Hewitt explained.
The TRC, which is also starting to hit the market, has successfully test-flown a Puma and Raven UAS. The portable, lightweight technology is designed to run an operating system from multiple unmanned vehicles onto a single controller. The system can be man wearable or vehicle mounted.
“TRC is the wave of the future,” Hewitt said.