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nScorpion Project

The Department of National Defence conducts research into the utility of unmanned ground vehicles (UGV).  

The long term goals of this research is develop a UGV that is not only capable of navigating from point A to B using

obstacle avoidance and path planning techniques, but which can also learn trafficability factors from its environment as it traverses varying types of terrain.

 DRDC-Suffield has undertaken a research project to advance the state of the art in unmanned ground vehicle capabilities and

has issued a number of sub-contracts in support of this objective.  The nScorpion Project consists of modifying a Foster-Miller TalonExplosive Ordinance Disposal Robot (EODR) 

to remove some proprietary electronics and add more functionality. 

The new electronics package, designated the Intelligence Module, will allow DRDC-Suffield Personnel

to integrate the modified Talon with other instruments and sensors to further their research.

Project Objectives

The overall objective of the project was to modify a Foster-Miller Talon for use as an unmanned ground vehicle by DRDC-Suffield Personnel.  To accomplish this goal, the following tasks were carried out: 

  • Examination the Talon robot to determine which original components to keep
  • Selection of appropriate infrared (IR) and ultrasonic sensors
  • Mechanical design (mounting of components to match original robot performance)
  • Design of the Intelligence Module to control the EOD robot
  • Design of the Power distribution system
  • Set up Linux development environment
  • Creation of software for communication, control and data processing
  • Unit testing of all components and software
  • Installation & testing of Intelligence Module on Talon

The paramount concern during each of these tasks was to ensure that each modification made and that each component built would allow the Talon to function as an EOD robot and maintain the original level of performance.

Controller Electronics

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