ELROB 2010 – Ein Kommentar / A commentary

ELROB 2010 – A com­men­tary

Die ELROB 2010 orga­nized by the Ger­man Army and the Bun­deswehr Arma­ments Direc­torate showed for the third time (M‑ELROB*) the state of devel­op­ment of the land robot­ics sys­tems. The first time vis­i­tor of the tri­als could expe­ri­ence a well orga­nized, infor­ma­tive and inter­est­ing event. The vis­i­tor who attend­ed the event for the sec­ond or even for the third time unfor­tu­nate­ly had to real­ize that the land robot­ics sys­tems had bare­ly fur­ther devel­oped and par­tial­ly the observ­er had the impres­sion to be part of an exhi­bi­tion for remote con­trol cars with a mount­ed web­cam than for land robot­ics sys­tems.

ELROB 2010
Exem­plary for some of the shown sys­tems
Click to enlarge

It has to be men­tioned that regret­ful­ly less com­pa­nies had attend­ed the tri­als as exhi­bi­tion­ers and par­tic­i­pants than in 2008. Big com­pa­nies like Rhein­metall Landsys­tems, Thales or Diehl which were at the ELROB 2008 did not par­tic­i­pat­ed this year.

The land robot­ics sys­tems have been designed to reduce and in the best case to elim­i­nate any dan­ger and to sup­port the deployed sol­diers. Whether for EOD, recon­nais­sance, NBC-detec­tion or as means of trans­port the var­i­ous sys­tems are used in action nowa­days.

While the unmanned aer­i­al vehi­cles (UAV) and the unmanned under­wa­ter vehi­cles (UUV) are field-test­ed for years, the unmanned ground vehi­cles (UGV) are still at the begin­ning of their ser­vice. The fol­low­ing head­line of the press release of the US Army shows the back­log and lack of exper­tise and devel­op­ment in the field of UGVs in Europe: “Army Reach­es 1 Mil­lion Unmanned Flight Hours in the U.S. Cen­tral Com­mand area of oper­a­tions”.

You can only hope that the Euro­peans and in par­tic­u­lar the Germans/Bundeswehr do not keep neglect­ing the field of landsys­tems and that Ger­many becomes in the sense of the secu­ri­ty of our sol­diers a cen­ter of high tech­nol­o­gy again.

*Mil­i­tary ELROB