Soldiers Soon to See Robotic Mules and Tougher Bomb Bots in the Field

The S-MET program aims at lightening Soldiers' loads by providing Infantry Battalions a robotic "mule" capability. A phased, rapid acquisition plan has allowed the Army to make informed program decisions from Soldier feedback on commercially available technology -- fielding faster than typical processes allow (Army).

The S-MET program aims at lightening Soldiers' loads by providing Infantry Battalions a robotic "mule" capability. A phased, rapid acquisition plan has allowed the Army to make informed program decisions from Soldier feedback on commercially available technology -- fielding faster than typical processes allow (Army).

December 3, 2019 | Source: Army Times, www.armytimes.com, Todd South , 23 November 2019

The Army recently picked a couple of new robots to help troops in the field.

One is a new heavy robot designed to help bomb technicians and another “robotic mule” to carry a squad’s load on dismounted patrols.

Both are some of a larger effort to bring robotics technology into nearly every area of Army operations.

The Small Multipurpose Equipment Transport (SMET), formerly known as the Squad Multipurpose Equipment Transport, was selected in recent weeks following a process that began in 2017, according to an Army release.

The SMET, which will be produced by General Dynamic Land Systems, will include both unmanned and optionally manned capabilities with the capability of carrying 1,000 lb, operating over a distance of 60 miles in a 72-hr period while also producing 3 kW of power while stationary and 1 kW while moving to charge or run equipment and batteries.

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