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BAE Systems Australia and EPE to collaborate on autonomous ground vehicles

Brisbane-based EPE and Adelaide-based BAE Systems Australia will collaborate on the development of autonomous technologies through BAE Systems’ Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) program, which began this year. The collaboration was announced at L:and Forces 2022.

Focused on implementing BAE Systems’ advanced vehicle management systems on to UGVs, the collaboration with EPE aims to develop soldier support systems for the Australian Army.

As Australian agents to the HDT Hunter WOLF (Wheeled Offload Logistics Follower) UGV platform, EPE was initially contracted to provide platform, integration and engineering support as well as test facilities, using the company’s state-of-the-art UGV test and evaluation facilities in south-east Queensland.

Operating within a multi-domain autonomy architecture, the program focuses on the integration of UGV mission systems to enable prototyping that will develop certifiable mission systems.

“We are pleased to partner with EPE to help develop and grow sovereign autonomous capability here in Australia” said Andrew Gresham, BAE Systems Australia’s Managing Director for Defence Delivery. “It’s critical for businesses like ours to collaborate with Australian industry so we can successfully support the ADF. Working with companies such as EPE provides opportunities to work as one team, creating an environment that fosters innovation.

“Having access to the EPE’s unmanned ground vehicle platform and magnificent test facilities here in South-East Queensland has helped us make significant advances in ground autonomy technology, and we look forward to furthering this work together,” he added.

BAE Systems Australia is an industry partner and the Land Domain Lead in the Trusted Autonomous Systems Defence Cooperative Research Centre. Commercialisation of this technology will be accelerated through these collaborations.

EPE’s Director Innovation and Commercialisation Ben Sorensen said:

“It’s been an extremely positive experience working with BAE Systems on a shared pursuit of a multi-domain, collaborative and autonomous robotics for Defence at our MILTECS test and assurance facility.

“Our technical teams are working collaboratively, both virtually and face-to-face, to advance the technology, enhance capability and significantly de-risk future Defence programs.”

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