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Proceedings Paper

Covert non-line-of-sight communication links for small unmanned ground vehicles
Author(s): Sherrie J. Burgett; James R. McMinn
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Paper Abstract

The U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command (AMCOM), Research, Development and Engineering Center (AMRDEC), in support of the Unmanned Ground Vehicles/Systems Joint Project Office (UGV/S JPO), has developed, tested and demonstrated the feasibility of use of expendable, thin-buffered, fiber optic cable for tele-operation of unmanned ground systems. Complete Non-Line-of-Sight (NLOS), high bandwidth, expendable, fiber optic cable payout systems have been designed, leveraging other Army programs, and integrated on several ground vehicles. A number of tests have been conducted to prove the viability of fiber optics for UGV datalink applications. These successful tests led to the initiation of the development of miniature fiber optic dispensers for small UGVs. Based on the outcome of the Engineer Urban Robot Concept Experimentation Program (URBOT CEP) conducted at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO in 1999 that focused on the feasibility, capability, efficiencies and operational effectiveness of small robots for reconnaissance of bunkers, subterranean sewers and tunnels, and Military Operations in Urban Terrain (MOUT), a design concept was formulated for small robot tethered communications. Miniature fiber optic dispensers have now been fabricated and tested. This paper will present a brief history of the technology transfer and development associated with fiber optic datalinks for unmanned ground vehicles and will focus on the recent research and development of miniaturized deployment systems for small robot applications.

Paper Details

Date Published: 20 September 2001
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 4364, Unmanned Ground Vehicle Technology III, (20 September 2001); doi: 10.1117/12.440001
Show Author Affiliations
Sherrie J. Burgett, U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command (United States)
James R. McMinn, Morgan Research Corp. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4364:
Unmanned Ground Vehicle Technology III
Grant R. Gerhart; Chuck M. Shoemaker, Editor(s)

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