General Robotics goes non-lethal

By Paolo Valpolini

General Robotics of Israel displayed at DSEI a number of new or upgraded systems of its portfolio, the main innovations being the add-on of non lethal capabilities to existing lethal ones, both in the RCWS and the UGV fields.

Leveraging the development work done on its Pitbull RCWS the Israeli company developed the Pitbull-3 antidrone system. The new system maintains the general architecture of the original weapon station, which can be armed with a light machine gun such as an IWI Negev in 7.62 or 5.56mm calibre or an FN Herstal MAG in 7.62mm, the optronic package being installed on the right side. A radar ensures a 5 km detection distance against Group 1 UAVs, while a jamming system working on five different frequency bands is capable to disrupt the various data-link used by the UAV for command, GPS and video download. The machine gun, exploiting the Point & Shoot technology available on the Pitbull, provides hard-kill capability up to 800 meters against hovering UAVs and 500 meters against manoeuvring drones. Overall the Pitbull-3 in this version has a weight of 75 kg and maintains the dual axis stabilisation.

The need to support antiterrorism units in their daily fight led Israeli companies to develop state of the art systems, General Robotics making no exception. Its Dogo has been around for some time, however the company based in Bet Nehemia, 20 km south-east of Tel Aviv, is constantly improving its product and at DSEI presented the Mark II version with new systems. An 11.5 kg robot with tracks and flippers, its dimensions being 490 x 380 x 140 mm, it can climb stairs and obstacles and cope with a 40° slope and 30° side slope, endurance varying from two to five hours, depending on mission profile. In Line-of-Sight it can be controlled up to 300 meters distance, eight colour video cameras together with a GPS module and an inertial navigation module based on three accelerometers allowing the operator to maintain full situational awareness, increased by a two-way audio system. In the past the main effector was the 9 mm pistol, fitted to the UGV, which exploited the Point & Shoot technology, which in the latest iteration allows faster target acquisition, to ensure maximum effectiveness; with a 14 rounds magazine and the capacity to shoot two rounds in one second, the lethal module has been in use for some time, the Dogo being in service with numerous customers. At DSEI General Robotics exhibited the Dogo Mk II with fully integrated non-lethal systems, including a pepper spray module, with a range of 6 meters, that sprays a continuous stream of pepper spray and invisible UV light dye, the system containing 57 grams of the substance. The second non-lethal effector is a dazzling light. “The idea is to deploy two such robots, one with the pepper spray and one with the dazzler, to provide the Special Forces with a few seconds of advantage over their opponents in order to ease their task,” a General Robotics representative told EDR On-Line.

Photos by Paolo Valpolini and General Robotics