Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) pose a serious security threat worldwide, but more particularly in the regions with ongoing armed conflicts. These unconventional explosive weapons are used against military forces and terrorist activities in civilian environments. IEDs kill and injure people and livestock every year and also cause significant infrastructure damage. The psychological impact on the affected communities further adds to the damage caused by these unconventional weapons.
The widespread use of IEDs requires a comprehensive counterstrategy involving ensuring access to the latest Improvised Explosive Device Disposal (IEDD) machinery to detect, disrupt, and neutralise IEDs. Armtrac has long been working to facilitate the process with its state-of-the-art IED disposal machines.
Armtrac’s IED Disposal Machinery
Armtrac offers a range of IED disposal machines. This is one of the most versatile explosive clearance machines and how it can help with IED disposal.
▪ Armtrac 20T C-IED Robot
This Mk2 Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) can perform a range of conventional demining, explosive ordnance clearance, and counter-IED operations. It is controlled remotely and can perform two different functions at the same time, from the front and rear ends. For example, in counter-IED operations, the robot can perform detection and disruption of IEDs simultaneously. Armtrac 20T is capable of performing disposal of both surface and sub-surface IEDs. Moreover, it can serve as a mechanical surrogate scout for dismounted food patrols and also support route clearance operations.
The robot features four highly useful and versatile toolkit solutions that come in handy during IED disposal operations:
- Tiller or Flail – The front mounted tiller/flail tool can disrupt improvised explosive devices up to 150 mm deep into the ground. It can also serve as a vegetation cutter.
- Front Mounted Bucket –The front mounted bucket can be fitted when clearing rubble from hard surfaces where there is a threat from IEDs. This has been used extensively on the A20T inside damaged buildings where terrorists seek to injure those involved in clear up operations.
- Hydraulic Robotic Arm – This useful tool of the Armtrac 20T is fitted on the rear of the robot and, along with many other functions, can operate with a scrape bucket for digging out and exposing sub-surface IEDs, a gripper for moving IEDs once exposed, a vegetation cutting strimmer to expose IEDs in thick scrub or a sand blower to expose IEDs buried in sand. The robotic arm can also be fitted with a camera to provide the remote operator with live video footage of the specific operation.
- Disruptor –This tool can befitted to the excavator for disrupting IEDs once located and exposed and as most clients like to use their own make and model of disruptor, Armtrac will normally just fit a bracket to fix the customers’ disruptor onto.
Some other distinguishing and valuable features of Armtrac 20T are its small size, heavy-duty rubber tracks, and low centre of gravity and power. These allow for its use in restricted and challenging terrains. In addition to the robotic arm, cameras can be attached to the front and rear ends of the robot as well as to the robotic arm system. All in all, the disposal vehicle can support four cameras, which play a key role in the remote investigation and improving the overall situational awareness for counter-IED operations.
Lastly, the robot features a 74 HP diesel water-cooled Kohler engine, which is highly fuel-efficient. This means it can continue to function with the same efficiency for several hours without the need for re-fueling.
The Sum Up
Armtrac 20T C-IED Robot is a flexible machine capable of performing multiple explosive clearance roles, including IED disposal. The versatility and high efficiency of the unmanned vehicle make it a valuable addition to the explosive clearance industry.