U.S. Navy selects RE2 Robotics to develop an autonomous robotic cargo handling system
Being that personnel are still responsible for manually loading and unloading cargo from an air vehicle for cargo missions today, the U.S. Navy has tasked RE2 Robotics with developing an Autonomous Robotic Cargo Handling (ARCH) system.
This system will be demonstrated in concurrence with the Autonomous Aerial Cargo Utility System (AACUS) equipped UH-1H Optionally Piloted Aircraft (OPA), which will provide the ability to deliver supplies autonomously.
“Manual handling of cargo increases time the aircraft is on the ground in the Landing Zone and increases exposure of personnel to dangerous situations,” says Jorgen Pedersen, president and CEO of RE2 Robotics.
“Autonomous load and unload capability would greatly reduce burden on Marine Corps troops who typically move cargo out of the supplying aircraft.”
The ARCH system will be developed under the Department of Defense’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The contract total for Phase I SBIR is $125,000.
RE2 Robotics will spend the first phase of the SBIR defining and developing a concept for the ARCH system. Speed of loading/unloading, load capacity, and power requirements are a few of the important performance parameters that will be focused on during the development of the system.
RE2 Robotics will also take into account modularity and interoperability for the ARCH design.
RE2 will develop an initial conceptual design of the system using the company’s expertise in robotic manipulation and modular systems.