Posts Tagged ‘DARPA’
The DARPA 2005 Challenge is a once in a lifetime chance for robotic engineers, companies and engineers to show their stuff. What is learned during such contests probably saves the Department of Defense hundreds of millions in Research and Development costs. To the taxpayers this is exceptional news indeed.
Recently I had a conversation with one of the teams, which is poised to win this years contest, although many would agree upon reviewing all these teams that they are all winners, as they bring to the table the future of robotics a frontier, which will be conquered indeed. This team told me that since they were using Off-The-Shelf Technology for their platform vehicle, meaning it was your basic SUV, that they were not sure if it had enough of a gas tank to make the whole trip. In fact since the speeds would be around 20-25 miles per hour over rugged terrain and since the vehicle would be running the modified electrical system full blast, with two alternators, RV style air-conditioning system and computer processors that it would be a gas hog? And you thought you paid a lot for gasoline? In any case this unmanned ground vehicles or UGV would be very inefficient indeed.