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26 mars 2014 3 26 /03 /mars /2014 08:20
Unmanned Vehicle Demo Showcases Leap-Ahead Technology



25.03.2014 US Army - army-guide.com


Working closely with Lockheed Martin and a conglomeration of Army technology, acquisition and user community stakeholders, the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research Development and Engineering Center successfully demonstrated an unmanned military convoy Jan. 14 at Fort Hood, Texas.


From a rooftop in the Fort Hood training area, military and industry VIPs saw firsthand how the Autonomous Mobility Appliqué System, or AMAS, enabled two driverless Palletized Loading System prime movers and an M915 tractor trailer truck to seamlessly interact with a manned Humvee gun truck escort. The convoy negotiated oncoming traffic, followed rules of the road, recognized and avoided pedestrians and various obstacles, and then used intelligence and decision-making abilities to re-route their direction through a maze of test areas to complete both complex urban and rural line haul missions.


As the ground systems expert within the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, TARDEC develops, integrates and sustains the right technology solutions to address ever-changing threats and shifts in strategic, technological and fiscal environments. Flexibility and adaptability are vital to future systems, and AMAS is designed to provide a wide range of military vehicle platforms with optionally-manned capabilities that will increase safety and provide the warfighter with additional flexibility.


"We're not looking to replace Soldiers with robots. It's about augmenting and increasing capability," said Col. Chris Cross, chief of Science and Technology at the Army Capabilities Integration Center.


Equipped with GPS, Light Detecting and Ranging systems, known as LIDAR, Automotive radar, a host of sensors and other high-tech hardware and software components, the common appliqué kit's intelligence and autonomous decision-making abilities can be installed in practically any military vehicle, transforming an ordinary vehicle into an optionally manned version.


AMAS can also keep personnel out of harm's way and provide Soldiers on manned missions with increased situational awareness and other safety benefits. For instance, AMAS also features collision mitigation braking, lane-keeping assist and a roll-over warning system, electronic stability control and adaptive cruise control. During manned missions, these additional safety features could theoretically increase Soldier performance. The robotic mode frees up the vehicle crew to more closely watch for enemy threats, while still leaving them the option of manually taking control of the vehicle when necessary.


"The AMAS hardware and software performed exactly as designed and dealt successfully with all of the real-world obstacles that a real-world convoy would encounter," said AMAS Program Manager David Simon, with Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.


AMAS development aligns with Army goals for the Future Force. At an Association of the United States Army breakfast in Arlington, Va., Jan. 23, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno talked about the Army Modernization Strategy and the difficult decisions ahead.


"What is that leap-ahead technology that we need that could make a real difference for our Soldiers on the ground?" Odierno asked. "What is the technology that allows us to decrease the weight so we can be more expeditionary? I need tactical mobility for the future. We need to move towards mobility and try to determine how we sustain survivability while increasing mobility."


In his just-released CSA Strategic Priorities, Odierno added that we must prioritize Soldier-centered modernization and procurement of proven technologies so that Soldiers have the best weapons, equipment and protection to accomplish the mission.


Another AMAS demonstration with more vehicles and more complex notional scenarios is scheduled for later this year.


"We are very happy with the results, but the AMAS must undergo more testing before it becomes deployable," said TARDEC AMAS Lead Engineer Bernard Theisen.


"The vehicles and systems are replaceable, but nothing can replace the life of a Soldier. These systems keep Soldiers safe and make them more efficient," he said.


TARDEC is the ground systems expert within RDECOM. It provides engineering and scientific expertise for Department of Defense manned and autonomy-enabled ground systems and ground support systems; serves as the nation's laboratory for advanced military automotive technology; and provides leadership for the Army's advanced Science and Technology research, demonstration, development and full life cycle engineering efforts.




TARDEC is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to develop technology and engineering solutions for America's Soldiers.


TARDEC is also a TACOM Life Cycle Management Command partner. In this capacity, it is responsible for critical technology functions within the "acquisition -- logistics -- technology" system life-cycle model, including: technology maturation and integration; technology subject-matter expertise; systems-level engineering analysis; and systems engineering.


TARDEC provides engineering support for more than 2,800 Army systems and many of the Army's and DoD's top joint development programs. The organization is responsible for maximizing the research, development, transition and sustainment of technologies and integration across ground systems.


RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command. AMC is the Army's premier provider of materiel readiness -- technology, acquisition support, materiel development, logistics power projection, and sustainment -- to the total force, across the spectrum of joint military operations. If a Soldier shoots it, drives it, flies it, wears it, eats it or communicates with it, AMC delivers it.

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2 février 2014 7 02 /02 /février /2014 20:20
Après les avions et les bateaux, au tour des «drones» sur roues et sur route

Le «Système autonome mobile» (AMAS) développé par Lockheed Martin et les Forces armées américaines permettent aux convois de se passer de conducteur, évitant ainsi des pertes de vie humaine (Lockheed Martin)


1 février 2014 par Jacques N. Godbout – 45eNord.ca


Pour éviter les pertes de vie à l'avenir, des camions sans conducteurs en zones de combat


La meilleure façon d’éviter des pertes de vie chez les conducteurs de convois militaires en zones hostiles est simplement de ne plus en avoir, de conducteur. la solution, c’est le «drone» de la route.


L’armée américaine a longtemps cherché des options pour protéger les convois militaires américains de kamikazes, des engins explosifs artisanaux ( IED) et d’autres attaques depuis les guerres en Irak et en Afghanistan.


Les convois de l’armée américaine seront maintenant bientôt en mesure de rouler dans les pires zones de combat sans qu’il y ait à se soucier d’éventuelles pertes de vie grâce une la nouvelle technologie qui rendra les véhicules du convoi entièrement autonomes.


Après les avions et les bateaux sans pilotes, les camions sans conducteurs!


Ce mois-ci à Fort Hood, au Texas, la société américaine Lockheed Martin et le Centre de développement et d’ingénierie des camions et blindés de l’Armée américaine (TARDEC) ont fait la démonstration des capacités la capacité du «Autonomous Mobility Appliqué System», le «Système autonome mobile» (AMAS)


Le AMAS donne une pleine autonomie aux convois qui peuvent même naviguer dans les milieux urbains.


Lors des tests, les véhicules tactiques sans conducteur ont pu naviguer à travers dangers et obstacles, y compris les piétons, la circulation venant en sens inverse, les carrefours, les ronds-points, les véhicules immobilisés sur la voie et les autres véhicules qui circulent sur la route.


En vertu d’un contrat initial de 11 millions $ en2012, Lockheed Martin a développé en partenariat avec l’Armée et la Marine américaines un ensemble («kit») multiplateforme qui intègre des capteurs à faible coût et des systèmes de contrôle avec des véhicules tactiques afin de permettre un fonctionnement autonome en convois .


Selon Lockheed, AMAS donne également aux conducteurs, quand conducteurs il y a, le choix entre «pilotage automatique» ou «manuel».


«Les logiciels du système AMASAMAS ont fonctionné exactement comme prévu , et traité avec succès tous les obstacles du ‘réel’ qu’un convoi serait appelé à rencontrer dans le ‘monde réel’ » a déclaré David Simon , responsable du programme AMAS pour Lockheed Martin.


Non seulement les convois sans conducteur ajoutent un degré de sécurité dans des conditions dangereuses, mais ils sont un pas de plus vers le «rêve» Pentagone dMune guerre sans pertes humaines.


«[ AMAS ] ajoute un poids considérable à la détermination de l’armée d’obtenir des systèmes robotisés pour les combattants», a déclaré pour sa part le directeur technique TARDEC Bernard Theisen .

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2 décembre 2013 1 02 /12 /décembre /2013 18:20
Army’s Ultra Light Vehicle now in survivability testing


December 2nd, 2013 By Army News Service - defencetalk.com


Two of the three vehicles in the Army’s “Ultra Light Vehicle” program have now entered survivability testing in Nevada and Maryland, to evaluate both their blast and ballistic protection capability.


The third vehicle remains at the Army’s Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center, known as TARDEC, for testing there.


The TARDEC began development of three Ultra Light Vehicles, or ULVs, in fall 2011, at the request of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. While the ULV will not be fielded as a combat vehicle, it does serve as a research and development platform that will ultimately yield data that can be used by other TARDEC agencies and program managers, as well as sister services to develop their own vehicles and equipment in the future.


“It’s all about sharing the data,” said Mike Karaki, the ULV’s program manager. “If we have an ability to share the data internally within TARDEC, and externally within the program managers and program executive offices, and beyond that with other government agencies, we will attempt to do that. It’s helping shape and inform future programs.”


Karaki said the ULV program might help development of survivability in future vehicles, and may also help development of other hybrid vehicles as well.


“You want to be able to use anything and everything you can from this program to help reduce the duplication of efforts in the future,” he said.


The ULV is a hybrid vehicle that includes lightweight advanced material armor, lightweight wheels and tires and other automotive systems, blast-mitigating underbody technology and advanced command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment inside.


“We tried to push the envelope in terms of state-of-the-art and out-of-the-box materials throughout the entire development process,” said Karaki.


The vehicle, from design to delivery, took only 16 months, Karaki said.


“We show there are some successes in the rapid design, development, fabrication and integration of the effort,” Karaki said. “It’s doable. It’s high risk and high reward. Can you do it in a rapid time frame? We’ve proven we can do that.”


The ULV is hybrid vehicle powered by a diesel engine that drives an electric generator. That generator in turn powers two electric motors that turn the wheels. Two electric motors provides redundancy should one of the motors fail.


Karaki said choosing a hybrid system came from the need to develop a more survivable vehicle for Soldiers. He said the contractor was concerned about how to make the vehicle perform better in a blast event, and came to the conclusion that a hybrid was the better choice.


Because it is a hybrid vehicle, it has none of the standard equipment underneath the vehicle. It features instead a “clean underbody” that makes it more capable of withstanding something like an explosion from an improvised explosive device.


“If you keep less equipment, accessories, systems underneath the vehicle, and you allow the underbody geometry to do what it needs to do — have a clean underbody — you will be able to improve your chances of being able to direct a blast away from the vehicle,” he said.


The primary customer for the ULV vehicle, which is a test vehicle, is the Office of the Secretary of Defense. The program came with four research objectives, which are a 4,500 pound payload, a vehicle weight of 14,000 pounds, protection that is comparable to the currently fielded mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicle, and a price of $250,000 each for a hypothetical 5,000-unit production run.


Karaki said the program is meeting or is expected to meet those objectives.


“On paper, the stuff upfront, the size, the weight, the cost, the timeframe, we checked those boxes,” he said. “The testing and evaluation of all these advanced survivability systems are in process right now.”


Two of three vehicles are undergoing survivability testing now. The third vehicle is in Warren, Mich., at TARDEC’s Ground Systems Power and Energy Laboratory undergoing automotive testing and to evaluate its hybrid electric setup. Karaki said eventually the two ULVs undergoing survivability testing will be destroyed as part of that testing. The third vehicle, the one at TARDEC, will be kept as a test platform.


The ULV is not a replacement for the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program or the Humvee. It is an experimental vehicle used for testing purposes. The program will wrap up in fiscal year 2014.

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10 septembre 2013 2 10 /09 /septembre /2013 17:20
Ultra Light Vehicle (ULV) concept vehicle

Ultra Light Vehicle (ULV) concept vehicle

September 9, 2013 by Tamir Eshel - defense-update.com


The U.S. Army’s latest “research prototype vehicle” has entered advanced testing phase with the Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC). The new vehicle known as the Ultra Light Vehicle (ULV) was built as a Concept Vehicle for TARDEC’s Detroit Arsenal. The new hybrid tactical vehicle targets safety, fuel-efficiency and versatility. It was developed in the past 16 months using commercial technologies. Final testing is beginning on the ULV vehicle platform with evaluating its capability to support Soldiers on missions across a full spectrum of mobility challenges while keeping occupants safe and using fuel efficiently.


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