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October 11, 2022 | International, Land

Robotics companies don't want robots weaponized '€” will anyone listen?

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  • Oshkosh unveils hybrid electric Joint Light Tactical Vehicle

    January 26, 2022 | International, Land

    Oshkosh unveils hybrid electric Joint Light Tactical Vehicle

    Oshkosh has developed a hybrid electric Joint Light Tactical Vehicle as militaries worldwide warm up to the concept.

  • After Hurricane Michael, the Air Force moved Tyndall AFB’s contracting data to the cloud

    November 5, 2018 | International, C4ISR

    After Hurricane Michael, the Air Force moved Tyndall AFB’s contracting data to the cloud

    By: Valerie Insinna WASHINGTON — After Hurricane Michael ravaged Tyndall Air Force Base in October, airmen took on an unusual mission: recovering the servers base officials used to write, release and award contracts. Reclaiming those servers — which contain data and contract vehicles used by Tyndall's two contracting squadrons to order everything for the base from supplies for the base to spare parts for aircraft — was a relatively minor victory when compared to the larger devastation faced by the installation. But the mission was an important one in that it allowed remaining base personnel to manage contracts in the wake of the disaster, Air Force officials told Defense News. “Obviously, the base is devastated ... but it's clear that there were open, existing contracts whether that was for simple things like cutting the lawn or delivering food to the chow hall on base,” said Richard Aldridge, the Air Force's program executive officer for business and enterprise systems. “Someone has got to either terminate them, or put them on pause or make sure vendors are getting paid for work that they had already done before the contract.” In the days after the hurricane, airmen from Gunter Annex in Alabama worked with the state's civil air patrol to fly into the Florida panhandle, obtain Tyndall's servers and transport them back to Maxwell Air Force Base, where Gunter is located. Then, the service transferred data from the legacy contract writing system into a new cloud-based system called CON-IT, short for Contracting Information Technology. The servers from Tyndall weren't necessary for base officials to use CON-IT, said Mike Allen, the Air Force's CON-IT program manager. But without them, contract officers would be left with no digital record of past contracts, and would be forced to draw up new contracts for mundane goods and services that would normally be bought through indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contracts that allow for multiple orders. "We were then able to migrate [the data from the servers] into CON-IT so that existing [indefinite delivery-indefinite quantity contracts] or ordering vehicles were available to them, and all of their existing contracts would be available to work with,” said Allen. “They weren't starting from a blank piece of paper.” And moving to a cloud-based environment means that Tyndall's contracting data will no longer be vulnerable to future disasters, Aldridge added. “It's ubiquitous; it doesn't matter where you are, you can access it,” he said. Allen and Aldridge said the program office was able to transition Tyndall's data and train users on the new system, but were unable to provide details on how Tyndall's contracting officers had since used the new system. The plan is to move all of the Air Force's current contract data from existing legacy systems to CON-IT by the end of 2019. The system, built by and originally developed by Appian for use by the Defense Information Systems Agency, has deployed to 1,100 users in 30 locations so far, Allen said. CON-IT will replace three legacy systems: the standard procurement system that supports operational users; ConWrite, which supports the weapon system acquisition and research and development; and the automated contract preparation system for logistics contracts.

  • UK Ministry of Defence Exercises Option to Purchase T7 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Robots from L3Harris Technologies

    July 31, 2019 | International, Land

    UK Ministry of Defence Exercises Option to Purchase T7 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Robots from L3Harris Technologies

    MELBOURNE, FLA. Jul 30, 2019 Highlights: L3Harris T7TM robotic system to provide U.K. security forces with advanced EOD capabilities Features unique, highly intuitive control interface, haptic feedback and human-like dexterity Contract modification reaffirms program success and strategy to grow robotics business globally The United Kingdom's Ministry of Defence (MOD) has exercised a $46 million (£36 million) contract option with L3Harris Technologies (NYSE:LHX) to provide T7™ robotic systems to support domestic explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) missions. This award is an option to the $70 million (£55 million) contract the MOD awarded L3Harris in 2017 for T7 robotic systems for the military's overseas EOD missions. The T7 robot's interface provides ease of use for operators and unmatched command and control. The robot provides operators with human-like dexterity and haptic force feedback from the robot arm to the remote-control handgrip. Its precision control and dexterity shorten task completion time and improve mission effectiveness, and its rugged track system provides outstanding mobility and maneuverability required for rough terrain, which uniquely positions T7 as a ready-made solution for all large EOD robot requirements around the world. A variety of attachments enable use of standard-issue sensors, disruptors and tools that support a wide range of missions, including hazardous materials (HAZMAT) and the ability to disable and defeat improvised explosive devices (IEDs) planted inside vehicles. The systems will be part of the MOD's Project STARTER and will help to defeat a wide variety of explosive threats within the U.K., including IEDs and unexploded ordnances (UXO). The T7 supports the demanding requirements of domestic deployed missions, including HAZMAT cleanup, EOD, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) and special weapons and tactics missions. L3Harris is producing the systems at its Palm Bay, Florida factory and has established a repair depot in Brighton, U.K. “This award will bring life-saving technology to U.K. armed forces and reaffirms the importance of highly reliable, precise and easy-to-use robotic systems for EOD operators,” said Ed Zoiss, President, L3Harris Space and Airborne Systems. “The exercising of this contract option reaffirms that Project STARTER program execution has gone exceptionally well and performance of the T7 systems to date are exceeding the customer's expectations.” L3Harris has been supporting U.K. customers for more than 100 years. The company has about 2,000 employees in 21 locations throughout the U.K., supporting a variety of government and commercial programs. L3Harris' Space and Airborne Systems segment provides space payloads, sensors and full-mission solutions; classified intelligence and cyber defense; avionics; and electronic warfare solutions. About L3Harris Technologies L3Harris Technologies is an agile global aerospace and defense technology innovator, delivering end-to-end solutions that meet customers' mission-critical needs. The company provides advanced defense and commercial technologies across air, land, sea, space and cyber domains. L3Harris has approximately $17 billion in annual revenue and 50,000 employees, with customers in 130 countries. Forward-Looking Statements This press release contains forward-looking statements that reflect management's current expectations, assumptions and estimates of future performance and economic conditions. Such statements are made in reliance upon the safe harbor provisions of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The company cautions investors that any forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results and future trends to differ materially from those matters expressed in or implied by such forward-looking statements. Statements about the value or expected value of orders, contracts or programs and about system capabilities are forward-looking and involve risks and uncertainties. L3Harris disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

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