Micro UGV To Neutralize IEDs
Counter-IED system disables bombs using non-explosive rocket technology…
A new micro-UGV armed with eight pencil-sized rockets could be the counter-IED (Improvised Explosive Devices) system of the future. The Pincher, developed by Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, is designed to disable IEDs from a long distance with minimum collateral damage.
Seen here mounted atop a miniature UGV, the Pincher comprises of a remotely operated multi-launcher system, integrated with a robotic platform, sensors, aiming devices and remote control.
Pinchers 20cm rockets reduce collateral damage by ‘consuming’ the explosive in a non-violent process. To do this, the rockets use a unique pyrophoric material, made from metal powders such as titanium-boron-Teflon, that combust at a very high temperature as it penetrates the target. This reaction instantly disintegrates the IED without causing an explosion.
Rafael’s Ram Fabian explains:
“Instead of detonation, where the speed of the shockwave is ultrasonic, we developed a special material that causes deflagration, where the speed of the shockwave is subsonic and does not cause sig¬nificant damage…
“The rocket causes the charge to burn, instead of explode (a process called ‘deflagration’), eliminating the risk of blast, shrapnel and debris.”
Israel’s Ministry of Defense Research & Development Directorate has already tested representative miniature arrows for possible use on miniature unmanned ground vehicles. Such mini UGVs could be employed in ‘micro-tactical’ applications, used indoors to seek targets, locate and deactivate IEDs, clearing buildings while avoiding excessive risk to soldiers and innocent human lives.
The micro-rocket system called ‘Pincher’ is currently in prototype phase, and could become operational next year.
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