Portland Air National Guard Base became the first of its kind to employ a new defense technology called the Quadrupedal Unmanned Ground Vehicle (QUGV), AKA a robot dog.
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Jamie Cuniff, Tech. Sgt. with the 142nd Security Forces Squadron and logistics and resources NCO, has been working with the robod dog since December of last year. “We’re kind of spearheading this whole side of security, this autonomous defender, as they say, which makes me feel really good and proud to be in the unit,” said Cuniff.
“From a security standpoint, it’s going to benefit us in the way that it provides some real-time video feedback and also acts as a deterrent,” Cuniff said. The Tech Sergeant was an advocate for the robot dog and played a key roll in adopting the new technology as part of the unit’s security mission.
The robot dog, officially called The Ghost Vision 60, developed by Ghost Robotics can conduct tasks including “remote inspection, intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, mapping, distributed communications, and persistent security.”
The robot dog, which can be ‘woken up’ with the push of a button, is designed to “decrease human exposure to dangerous situations.” It’s advances detection capabilities is expected to increase security on the Air National Guard base by enhancing mission effectiveness.
The QUGV is capable of patrolling multiple forms of terrain and can scan its sector with multiple camera systems. It can also securely send data to base Security Forces.
Lieutenant Colonel Ryan Barton, 142nd Security Forces Commander, said, “This is the type of change that we should all strive for. Maybe not a robot dog, but to find things that humans don’t necessarily have to do, or don’t do well and incorporate technology or some version of innovation to free up the manpower while also enhancing capability.”
According to LTC Barton, the base intends to acquire two more robot dogs.