The US Army has awarded the National Robotics Engineering Centre (NREC) a US$14.4m contract to build a fully autonomous battlefield robot.

NREC (based at Carnegie Mellon University) will update an existing 6.5t, six-wheel drive unmanned ground vehicle, the Crusher, which uses advanced processing to navigate difficult terrain.

NREC will improve the vehicle’s manoeuvring capabilities before integrating it with existing military organisations.

Last month, a team from Carnegie Mellon won the DARPA Urban Challenge, with their robotic sport utility vehicle nicknamed “Boss”.

By staff writer