Translate this page
Marines with 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, learn to operate an R2C robot during a training exercise aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., March 11. R2C robots can scout for roadside bombs, search buildings and vehicles and are capable of going up to 800 meters away from the control point.
Marines with 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, learn to operate an R2C robot during a training exercise aboard Marine Corps Base Cam...
An R2C robot, operated by a Marine with 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, maneuvers over an obstacle during a training exercise aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., March 11. The robot is controlled through a computer and handheld controller, and is used to go places too dangerous for Marines. The robot can climb stairs and maneuver any terrain.
An R2C robot, operated by a Marine with 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, maneuvers over an obstacle during a training exercise aboa...

New robots keep Marines safe, explosives at armís length


Friday, March 28th, 2014
Issue 13, Volume 18.
You need Flash player 8+ and JavaScript enabled to view this video.


CAMP PENDLETON – The Robotic Systems Joint Project Office conducted new equipment training on the Route Reconnaissance and Clearance, or R2C, robot with Marines from the 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion at Camp Lejeune, N.C., March 10-13. The training event included classroom instruction, practical exercise and an end-of-course test to certify the Marines to operate the R2C robot.†

"The R2C robot is a [counter-improvised explosive device] tool," said Lou Anulare, assistant program manager for Marine Corps Unmanned Ground Vehicles under the RS JPO in Warren, Mich. "This system provides a new option for route reconnaissance and clearance operations to be used in place of putting Marines in harmís way."

As the office responsible for everything from acquisition to sustainment of unmanned ground systems for the Army and Marine Corps, RS JPO reports to both the Armyís Program Executive Officer for Ground Combat Systems and Marine Corps Systems Command.†

They have fielded 22 R2C robots to Marine operating forces since January.†

The R2C robot features an improved communications system with two radio frequencies so it can operate in the continental United States and overseas. The robot is also equipped with a fiber-optic spooler, allowing it to be tethered to the controller in situations where radio frequency cannot be used.

"While under radio frequency operation, the R2C increases the Marinesí arm length to over 800 meters, providing them a safe distance to do interrogation of possible IED threats," Anulare said. "So far in theater, weíve had more than 800 robots destroyed. We believe each one of those losses represents a Marine or soldierís life or limb saved."†

Additionally, a three-link arm gives the robot increased reach for more flexibility. The robot also has multiple cameras, providing Marines improved visibility when evaluating potential threats.†

The R2C robots were fielded to Marine combat engineers who support ground forces by performing demolition, construction, mine clearing, maintenance and repair operations.†

"This robot is a great piece of gear," said Sgt. Jared Mount, a combat engineer with the 2nd CEB. "This is the sixth or seventh robot Iíve worked with. It definitely tops the robots weíve used. The controllers are easier to use, and it can pick up more weight with the heavier arm. The cameras and new arm make it much easier to maneuver. Itís going to save more Marinesí lives."††

The R2C robot is based on the Armyís FasTac robot, a legacy commercial-off-the-shelf platform. The Army provided excess FasTacs to the Marine Corps, which reduced the time it took to field the capability to Marines, said Col. Ben Stinson, RS JPO project manager.†

The Marine Corps worked with Army engineers and logisticians from the Detroit Arsenal Team to modify and upgrade the FasTacs to meet Marine Corps requirements, Stinson said.†

"Additionally, [Marines] are embedded with the Army at RS JPO," Stinson said. "Their knowledge and expertise played heavily in our ability to establish a production line to upgrade the robots. RS JPO has a depot-like maintenance capability, so the expertise of how to tear apart and rebuild the robots was resident because of the mission weíve had for the last 12 years supporting [Operation Enduring Freedom]."†

The R2C robot is the first robotics program of record for the Marine Corps.†

"Being a program of record means the robot now has the ability to exist after the war," Stinson said. "It is in the base funding for R2C, will be incorporated into the school house [curriculum] and provisioned through the Marine Corps supply system. We transitioned a commercial item procured for OEF to an enduring program that will be used after the war."


 

0 comments


arrow Be the first to share your opinion on this article!
 

Add your Comment


Name

Images, Formatting, or HTML is not allowed : plain text only. You may post up to 5 website addresses within your comment.




Disclaimer

The Valley News has tightened its' policy regarding comments.
While we invite you to contribute your opinions and thoughts, we request that you refrain from using vulgar or obscene words and post only comments that directly pertain to the specific topic of the story or article.
Comments that are derogatory in nature have a high likelihood for editing or non-approval if they carry the possibility of being libelous.
The comment system is not intended as a forum for individuals or groups to air personal grievances against other individuals or groups.
Please, no advertising or trolling.
In posting a comment for consideration, users understand that their posts may be edited as necessary to meet system parameters, or the post may not be approved at all. By submitting a comment, you agree to all the rules and guidelines described here.
Most comments are approved or disregarded within one business day.

RSS FeedFacebookTwitter



Advertisement for Temecula Dining





Subscribe


Most Commented


Reach Local Customers



The Valley News The Valley News
760-723-7319 - 1588 S. Mission Rd. Suite 200, Fallbrook CA 92028
All contents copyright ©2014
About Us
Earthquake Information
Business Listings
Contact Us
Letter to the Editor
Report a website error
Sitemap
Online Digital Edition
RSS Feeds
Login