DOD Adopting Commercial Technology to Control Unmanned Ground Vehicles – Department of Defense

There has been a revolution in the techniques and capabilities of uncrewed ground vehicles occurring in the private sector over the past two decades. We’re eager to bring these matured technologies back into the Department of Defense where initial work was inspired by the DARPA Grand Challenges.”

Kevin O’Brien, technical director for the Defense Innovation Unit’s autonomy portfolio

Substantial technical breakthroughs in unmanned ground vehicles have led to their use in high-risk missions, such as reconnaissance, with the goal of reducing dangers for troops and increasing risks for adversaries.  

The Army partnered with the Defense Innovation Unit to prototype a software package, as well as a process to adapt uncrewed vehicle technology to unmanned ground vehicles.  

The Ground Vehicle Autonomous Pathways project will prototype software for the navigation of uncrewed vehicles by fusing data from multiple sensors and allowing teleoperations of unmanned ground vehicles, said Kevin O’Brien, technical director for DIU’s autonomy portfolio.  

The use of teleoperators ensures humans are in the control loop.  

The project will also provide a technical pipeline to continue rapid development and deployment of autonomous features as they become commercially available, he added.  


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