The US Army is developing a new off-road, high-speed unmanned ground vehicle prototype for urban reconnaissance and natural disaster relief missions.
Called the “Deep Orange 14,” the robotic vehicle will be produced in collaboration with South Carolina-based research institution, Clemson University.
According to the university, the prototype will be able to navigate through unknown and challenging terrain to support missions in areas other military vehicles cannot reach.
It will include critical functions and autonomy algorithms to plan missions, gather information, and update maps.
Although the prototype is unlikely to enter service soon, developers said the Deep Orange 14 could be used as a test-bed for the army’s future unmanned ground vehicle programs.
The new robotic vehicle will have a 53-kilowatt battery to support up to eight hours of silent operation.
It will also have a 3.0L V6 onboard diesel generator that can recharge the battery in 30 minutes, extending Deep Orange 14’s range.
The platform will be equipped with an intuitive user interface, cameras, and state-of-the-art sensors for obstacle avoidance up to 18 inches (1.5 foot) high.
The robot also has 24-inch (2 feet) tracks and can travel up to 45 miles (72 kilometers) per hour.
“With its tracked design and advanced series-hybrid powertrain, the vehicle can conquer various obstacles, while its autonomous features, including an array of camera and lidar sensors, offer invaluable data collection and urban reconnaissance capabilities,” chief vehicle engineer Kaivalya Khorgade said.