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Affordable Electric Unmanned Ground Vehicle Force Protection Sensor System

Description:

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Sensors 

OBJECTIVE: Develop affordable Electric Unmanned Ground Vehicle Force Protection Sensor System that provides a multi-modal sensors to improve Army Force Protection capabilities. 

DESCRIPTION: Army Force Protection requirements need to extend beyond perimeter sensor ranges. Previous Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Force Protection systems have been expensive and provided marginal unmanned sensor capabilities. Sophisticated yet inexpensive commercial sensors and driver-less automobile technology offer the opportunity to make significant advances in extending and lengthening base defense. Developing an affordable and effective Electric Unmanned Ground Vehicle Force Protection Sensor System that provides multi-modal sensors to improve Army Force Protection capabilities is achievable with today’s technology. Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) shall be 100% electric driven, capable of operating (sensors on) for 2 hours (Threshold) or 6 hours (Objective) on smooth surfaces (roads and fields) with a range of 10 Km (Threshold) or 30Km (Objective), be able to maneuver safely around obstacles and people based on either a pre-programmed route or directed by the Force Protection Command and Control (C2) system. The UGV shall provide steerable flood light and audio (transmit and receive). The UGV shall not cost more than $25,000 (Threshold) or $15,000 (Objective) and no replaceable component may be more than $5,000. Network connectivity (i.e. radios) will be provided by the Army and not part of these requirements. Force Protection Sensor System shall consist of Electro Optics camera, Infrared (EO/IR) camera, Radar and/or LIDAR sensor(s), and Acoustic Sensors. Electro Optics camera shall provide High Definition (Threshold) or 4K Definition (Objective). Radar and/or LIDAR sensor(s) shall be capable of providing sensor data that can detection and track objects greater than 100 meters (Threshold) or 500 meters (Objective). Acoustic array sensors shall be capable of providing line of bearing within 5% (threshold) or 0.5% (Objective). All sensor data will be processed by the Force Protection C2 (i.e. minimal processing on-board). The Sensor suite shall not cost more than $25,000 (Threshold) or $15,000 (Objective) and with the exception of EO/IR sensors no replaceable component may be more than $5,000. 

PHASE I: Carry out a feasibility study for an affordable Electric Unmanned Ground Vehicle Force Protection Sensor System capability. This assessment will validate Electric UGV Force Protection Sensor System with a limited UGV and sensor demonstration. Phase I will define factors for a Phase II electric UGV Force Protection Sensor System prototype demonstration. 

PHASE II: Develop an affordable electric UGV Force Protection Sensor System prototype. Demonstrate electric UGV Force Protection Sensor System at an Army’s Research and Development location. 

PHASE III: Develop prototypes and transition proven technology to appropriate potential DoD customers/transition partners. End state vision is a demonstrated capability to acquire a high capability unmanned ground vehicle equipped with a force protection / intelligence sensor package that meets affordability and performance criteria identified in Phase 1. Army uses to include: extending the range of force protection and incident investigation around a Fixed Operating Base via UGV patrol; enabling remote intelligence collection via cheap UGV asset. Transition is targeted towards Product Director Force Protection Systems as proof of concept for new capability demonstrating extended range operations for possible future acquisition. Commercial applications could include facility security, civil law enforcement applications, homeland security and search & rescue applications. 

REFERENCES: 

1: LOW-COST PLATFORM FOR AUTONOMOUS GROUND VEHICLE RESEARCH AUTHORS: Nikhil Ollukaren, Dr. Kevin McFall, Southern Polytechnic State University, Marietta, Georgia, United States of America DATE: 1 November 2014 JOURNAL: Proceedings of the Fourteenth Annual Early Career Technical Conference The University of Alabama, Birmingham ECTC 2014 URL:http://scholar.google.com/scholar?start=70&q=affordable+unmanned+ground+vehicle+pdf&hl=en&as_sdt=0,47&as_vis=1

2:  The University of Pennsylvania MAGIC 2010 multi-robot unmanned vehicle system AUTHORS: J. Butzke, K. Daniilidis, A. Kushleyev, D.D. Lee, M. Likhachev, C. Phillips, M. Phillips, University of Pennsylvania DATE: 31 July 2012 JOURNAL: Journal of Field Robotics URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/rob.21437/full

3:  Improving the Control Behavior of Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) using Virtual Windows AUTHORS: Dr. Rosidah Sam, Ammar Hattab, Electrical Engineering Department, University Teknologi MARA DATE: 2014 JOURNAL: Research Paper URL: http://ammarhattab.com/resources%5Cpapers%5CUGV_researchPaper.pdf

4:  Real-Time Obstacle Avoidance and Waypoint Navigation of an Unmanned Ground Vehicle AUTHORS: Hzkki Erhan Sevil, Pranav, Desai, Atilla Dogan, Brian Huff, University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX DATE: 2012 JOURNAL: The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), ASME 2012 5th Annual Dynamic Systems and Control Conference joint with the JSME 2012 11th Motion and Vibration Conference URL: http://proceedings.asmedigitalcollection.asme.org/proceeding.aspx?articleid=1739118

5:  Designing and control of autonomous Unmanned Ground Vehicle AUTHORS: SI Hassan, M Alam, NA Siddiqui DATE: 5 April 2017 JOURNAL: 2017 International Conference on Innovations in Electrical Engineering and Computational Technologies (ICIEECT) URL: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/mostRecentIssue.jsp?punumber=7910138

6:  Low-Cost Sensors for UGVs AUTHORS: Fenner Milton, Fene Klager, Thomas Bowan, CERDEC NVESD DATE: 10 July 2000 JOURNAL: Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers SPIE URL: https://www.spiedigitallibrary.org/conference-proceedings-of-spie/4024/1/Low-cost-sensors-for-UGVs/10.1117/12.391628.short

CONTACT(S): 

Peter Janker 

(703) 850-0986 

peter.s.janker.civ@mail.mil 

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