Posted by Courtney E. Howard
OSHKOSH, Wis., 23 Aug. 2011. An Oshkosh Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement (MTVR) equipped with the company’s TerraMax unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) technology has completed its first limited technical assessment for the U.S. Marine Corps Cargo UGV initiative. Oshkosh personnel will now begin training Marines to conduct autonomous convoy missions for evaluation.
For the Cargo UGV initiative, engineers installed TerraMax UGV technology on an MTVR—a combination designed to deliver an unmanned vehicle with the potential to increase operators’ situational awareness and/or reduce warfighters’ exposure to lethal attacks. The project is sponsored by the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory (MCWL) and the Joint Ground Robotics Enterprise (JGRE) Robotics Technology Consortium (RTC).
“The first limited technical assessment of Oshkosh’s TerraMax technology on the MTVR involved numerous tests and successful results, including obstacle avoidance, leader-follower behavior, GPS-denied operation and water crossings,” says John Beck, chief unmanned systems engineer for Oshkosh Corp. “We are excited to be getting this technology into the hands of the Marines next week, when we train them to operate the system and gain their valuable feedback on its performance in a tactical environment.”
Accomplishments achieved during the Cargo UGV initiative’s first limited technical assessment included:
Completion of more than six miles of driving without GPS input
Avoidance of all obstacles
Tracking of a variety of cooperative and non-cooperative vehicles
The Oshkosh TerraMax UGV technology, designed to retain a vehicle’s original payload and performance capabilities, is provided as a scalable kit able to be integrated on vehicles as they are produced or retrofitted on existing vehicle fleets.
Oshkosh engineers have advanced TerraMax technology to deliver road-following behavior, even in the absence of GPS, and incorporating short-range radars to provide 360-degree, close-proximity obstacle detection and avoidance. The radars enable a TerraMax-equipped vehicle to operate safely around pedestrians and in traffic.