Throwable Robots to Aid Navy

Acknowledgements to Stars and Stripes and to iRobot
Release Date:  December 13, 2015
Stars and Stripes article by Matthew M. Burke

The Naval Surface Warfare Center has purchased $4M worth of model 110 FirstLook robots and accessories. “FirstLook is light enough and rugged enough to be thrown through a window or down a flight of stairs, and its capabilities are expandable with the addition of different payloads,” said Tom Frost, senior vice president and general manager of iRobot’s Defense & Security business unit.

It’s pretty cool technology. It can check things out without risking service-member lives.  It can be thrown through a window or around a corner, it can tumble down stairs and right itself, it can see in the dark or in smoke, it can look for explosives and bad guys.  Used by tactical officers, soldiers and emergency response teams, the iRobot 110 FirstLook is an expandable, lightweight robot that provides immediate situational awareness, performs persistent observation and investigates dangerous and hazardous material while keeping its operator out of harm’s way.

Weighing in at 5 pounds it’s compact at 4” tall, 9” wide and 10” long. It’s rugged and agile being capable of surviving a 15-foot drop onto concrete and it’s waterproof down to 3.3 feet.  The robot is equipped with flippers that help it overcome obstacles up to 7” high, turn in place, and self-right when flipped over.

The contract was placed in August 2015 and final deliveries are expected next month.

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