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Thursday, March 31, 2011

QinetiQ North America Sends Unmanned Systems to Japan

It is a sad and shocking thing to read reports about the Fukushima 50, those workers at Japan's stricken nuclear power facility who have already received lethal doses of radiation. They continue to return to the site so they can save the lives of their countrymen. So tragic and maddenly sad that there were no robotic devices to do the work now killing these men. Hopefully, the machines detailed below will arrive on station in time to keep other workers from the necessity to sacrifice themselves as well. http://www.redorbit.com/news/technology/2020671/qinetiq_north_america_sends_unmanned_systems_to_japan/

Reston, VA (Vocus/PRWEB) March 28, 2011

QinetiQ North America today announced that the government of Japan has accepted its offer to provide unmanned vehicle equipment and associated training to aid in Japan’s natural disaster recovery efforts. QinetiQ North America’s technology and services will allow Japan’s response teams to accomplish critical and complex recovery tasks at a safer distance from hazardous debris and other dangerous conditions.

The equipment being staged in Japan for rapid, on-call deployment includes QinetiQ North America’s Robotic AppliquĂ© Kits, which turn Bobcat loaders into unmanned vehicles in just 15 minutes. The kits permit remote operation of all 70 Bobcat vehicle attachments, such as shovels, buckets, grapples, tree cutters and tools to break through walls and doors. The unmanned Bobcat loaders include seven cameras, night vision, thermal imagers, microphones, two-way radio systems and radiation sensors, and can be operated from more than a mile away to safely remove rubble and debris, dig up buried objects and carry smaller equipment.

QinetiQ North America is also staging TALON and Dragon Runner robots in Japan in the event they are needed. TALON robots have previously withstood rigorous deployment and twice daily decontamination at Ground Zero. The TALON robots are equipped with CBRNE (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive) detection kits that can identify more than 7,500 environmental hazards including toxic industrial chemicals, volatile gases, radiation and explosive risks, as well as temperature and air quality indicators. The TALON robots provide night vision and sound and sensing capabilities from up to 1,000 meters away.

QinetiQ North America’s lightweight Dragon Runner robots, designed for use in small spaces, will be available for investigating rubble piles, trenches, culverts and tunnels. Thermal cameras and sound sensors on the Dragon Runners can provide data from up to 800 meters away, permitting the robot’s “eyes and ears” to serve in spaces too small or dangerous for human access.

In addition to the unmanned equipment, a team of QinetiQ North America technical experts will provide training and support to Japan’s disaster response personnel.

“We are honored to have this opportunity to support Japan’s recovery efforts,” said QinetiQ North America Technology Solutions Group President JD Crouch. “Our unmanned vehicles will provide reliable, effective, first responder technology to help protect the brave men and women who are working to save lives and restore critical services.”

QinetiQ North America is a world leader in robotic technology solutions that save lives in defense, security and first responder environments. For more information, follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/qinetiqnarobots or Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/qinetiqnarobots.

About QinetiQ North America
QinetiQ North America delivers world-class technology, responsive services, and innovative solutions for global markets, focusing on US government and commercial customers. More than 6,000 QinetiQ North America engineers, scientists and other professionals deliver high quality products and services that leverage detailed mission knowledge and proven, reliable tools and methodologies to meet the rapidly changing demands of national defense, homeland security and information assurance customers. Headquartered in McLean, Virginia, QinetiQ North America had annual revenues of more than $1 billion in the fiscal year that ended March 31, 2010. QinetiQ North America is part of QinetiQ Group PLC (LSE:QQ). For more information, please visit http://www.qinetiq-na.com/.

Contact:
Jennifer Pickett
QinetiQ North America
Technology Solutions Group
703.480.0715 (m) 703.217.7781

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