Northrop Grumman is one of the largest defense contractors in the United States and the company works on a wide variety of projects for the US military. Many those projects have to do with aircraft and unmanned aerial vehicles, but some of the projects aren't designed to fly. Northrop Grumman has announced the launch of its latest generation CUTLASS unmanned ground vehicle.
The ground vehicle is specifically designed for remote handling and surveillance of hazardous threats. Northrop says that the vehicle uses a modular design to allow the end-user to deal safely with a range of hazardous threats from a distance. The vehicle can be used for detecting and disposing of explosive ordinance among other tasks.
The design allows the vehicle to accommodate a wide range of payloads, sensors, and tools. Northrop says that the CUTLASS' ability to accommodate a wide range of payloads means that users don't have to deploy two standard unmanned vehicles. The main tool for the CUTLASS is a three-fingered gripper arm with nine-degrees of freedom.
The mine-degrees of freedom gives the robotic arm greater movement capability and agility allowing it to move inside limited spaces. The arm also has specialized sensing systems allowing for a high level of dexterity and minimizes damage to property. The high level of dexterity for the arm also allows for the preserving of forensic evidence. The vehicle is able to reach speeds of up to 12 kph and features a six-wheel design allowing for mobility on all sorts of terrain and in all sorts of weather conditions.
[via Northrop Grumman]