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QinetiQ Sells TALON Robots To Royal Netherlands Army

TALON robots (pictured) can take a punch and stay in the fight. One was blown off the roof of a US Humvee in Iraq, while the Humvee was crossing a river via a bridge. TALON flew off the bridge and plunged into the river below. Soldiers later used its operator control unit to drive the robot back out of the river and up onto the bank so they could retrieve it.
by Staff Writers
Amsterdam, The Netherlands (SPX) Jul 18, 2006
QinetiQ has just shipped six TALON explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) robots to the Royal Netherlands Army for immediate deployment in Afganistan with its Air Force. This is the first European order placed via QinetiQ for the TALON vehicles, developed by its wholly owned US subsidiary Foster-Miller.

TALON robots will provide Dutch forces with a cost effective, easy to deploy and dependable EOD solution. The Royal Netherlands Army assessed a number of comparable systems but needed a fieldable solution that would help protect its forces and TALON, which is proven operationally in hostile environments as an effective solution, continues to save lives and ticked all the boxes.

TALON robots are robust, durable, lightweight tracked vehicles that are used for many types of operation. These are typically EOD, reconnaissance, communications, sensing, security, defence and rescue. They have an all-weather, day/night and submersible capability and can navigate virtually any terrain. Sensors and various payloads can be easily attached and configured onto the TALON platform making it highly versatile and easy to keep operational in the field.

Dr William Ribich, president and CEO of Foster-Miller recently stated that TALON robots are increasingly becoming the soldier's preferred choice for EOD operations. They have already successfully completed more than of 50,000 missions where they have been used to neutralise roadside bombs and improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

As one EOD soldier said: "No other robot was able to handle the rigours of day-to-day operations and the amount of IEDs rendered safe while over in Iraq this last deployment like the TALON."

"QinetiQ and Foster Miller are collectively making significant step changes in the development and delivery of robotic systems for military and commercial applications," stated Chrys Stevenson, Director Business Development, for QinetiQ's Land Division. "The TALON platform is one of the most versatile and robust systems available with a growing number being sold worldwide.

By combining QinetiQ's long established and distinguished heritage in robotics with Foster-Miller's proven robot design and manufacturing facilities means we are now able to offer our customers one of the most sophisticated and reliable systems available."

TALON key characteristics comprise:

- Man-portable - At less than 100 lb (45 kg), TALON can be easily transported and is instantly ready for operation.

- Rugged - TALON robots can take a punch and stay in the fight. One was blown off the roof of a US Humvee in Iraq, while the Humvee was crossing a river via a bridge. TALON flew off the bridge and plunged into the river below. Soldiers later used its operator control unit to drive the robot back out of the river and up onto the bank so they could retrieve it.

- Fast - TALON is one of the fastest robots on the market today with seven speed settings.

- High payload capacity - Long-term system versatility optimizes investment. TALON has the highest payload capacity and payload-to-weight ratio, allowing for the incorporation of a broad array of sensor packages.

- Mobile - Climbs stairs, negotiates rock piles, overcomes concertina wire, ploughs through snow and surf; plus can right itself.

- Intuitive - an easy robot to operate; joystick controls.

- Withstands repeated decontamination - Demonstrated at Ground Zero after 2001 World Trade Center attack in New York City. Electronics withstood 45 straight days of being decontaminated twice a day without failing.

- Long battery life - TALON robots have good battery life for a man-portable robot.

Related Links
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The latest in Military Technology for the 21st century at SpaceWar.com

Armor Holdings Acquires Innovative Ballistic Fiber Technology
Jacksonville FL (SPX) Jul 14, 2006
Armor Holdings has announced that it has acquired Integrated Textile Systems, Inc. ("ITS"), a Monroe, North Carolina-based manufacturer of the high-strength material, Tensylon. Tensylon, derived from an ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene polymer, has a wide variety of applications, including advanced fiber composites for use in ballistic products.







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