• The Autonomy of Hazardous Scene Assessment (AHSA) Defence and Security Accelerator competition, which will change the way chemical and bio-hazards are investigated, has announced the latest competition winners. This Centre for Defence Enterprise (CDE) themed competition was created to investigate the use of autonomous systems to assess scenes that are potentially contaminated with hazardous materials, and the submission in this round of contenders has been very interesting.
    Phase 1 of the competition, which ran for 6 months until July 2017, funded 18 development projects and was worth £1.37million. Four of those initial phase 1 winners were then selected to develop their concepts further in this second phase. Early prototypes will be demonstrated by October 2018. Just over £1.6 million total funding was awarded to the following phase 2 winners:
    BMT Defence Services, with an unmanned aerial vehicle which has gas-sensing technology
    Horiba MIRA, which has a robot with its own neural networks which can deploy on decontamination missions
    Loughborough University, with a pocket-sized drone which can search for chemicals
    Snake Eyes, by Autonomous Devices Limited, which can be posted through a letter box and relay 3D images of a space and can detect chemical agents.
    Peter Stockel, from Dstl, said: “After a fast-paced first phase, we are now delighted to rapidly move the project forward into phase 2 with four highly innovative and technically exciting system propositions to tackle this priority challenge for UK Defence and Security.

  • The SmartRayVision DR X-Ray system is now the only DR X-Ray system to be approved for EOD use by NSWC IHEODTD, Indian Head, Maryland.

  • 3M announced on October 4th that it has completed its acquisition of Scott Safety from Johnson Controls for a total enterprise value of $2.0 billion.

  • Persistent Systems, LLC (“Persistent”), a leader in Mobile Ad hoc Networking (MANET) Technology and developer of Wave Relay®, announced on September 13 that it was awarded an $8.9 million contract award to provide more than 950 MPU5 radios to the U.S. Army National Guard’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Teams (WMD-CSTs).

  • Endeavor Robotics has been awarded the United States Department of Defense’s Man Transportable Robotic System Increment II (MTRS Inc. II) contract to build a fleet of unmanned ground vehicles.

    The contract also has an option for an additional $58 million worth of deliverables.  The program, MTRS Inc. II, called for bids to build medium-weight, remotely operated, man-transportable robotic systems that provide increased stand-off capability for the American warfighter. The primary use for the UGVs will be to detect and confirm potentially lethal threats, such as IEDs, chemical hazards and other biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) situations.
    Endeavor Robotics CEO Sean Bielat said “We are honored to win and look forward to delivering a great robot to the US Army,”

  • Bruker launched the new ALPHA II, the latest generation of the ALPHA series of compact FTIR spectrometers.The ALPHA II features fully-automated test routines for validation regarding operational qualification (OQ) and performance validation (PQ) as well as innovations in temperature-stabilized detector and high quality IR source technology. The ALPHA II now features an optional touch panel PC of industrial grade and OPUS-TOUCH, touchscreen software for easy and highly intuitive use which features build-in routine application workflows.
    Other new innovations include IR-source that utilizes Bruker’s CenterGlowTM technology guaranteeing a constantly high intensity, and a life-time of at least 5 years. CenterGlowTM optimizes the location of the glowing area within the source to maximize the light flux. The detector of the ALPHA II is temperature-stabilized to accomplish a high robustness of the system against changes of the ambient temperature.

  • The United States Marine Corp (USMC) have awarded a contract for the delivery of PlumeSIM, Argon’s instrumented CBRN training system.

  • Emergent BioSolutions Inc. announced today that it has been awarded a contract valued at up to $25 million by the U.S. Department of State to supply TROBIGARD™ auto-injector (Atropine Sulfate [2mg]/Obidoxime Chloride [220mg]), a drug and device combination product for emergency use in the event of nerve agent or organophosphate poisoning. Trobigard is designed for intramuscular self- or buddy-administration of atropine sulfate and obidoxime chloride for pre-hospital intervention.

  • Further to the agreement signed with NSPA (NATO Support and Procurement Agency), IBATECH Tecnología has supplied a BSL-3 mobile laboratory designed specifically for the detection of anthrax. The project will test samples of land potentially contaminated with anthrax, with the aim to strengthen the customer nation’s CBRN capabilities and mitigate risk posed by hazardous biological agents.
    The BSL-3 lab has been built to fit into a 20ft ISO container in order to enable effective transportation and deployment. The lab has been fitted with a stand-alone energy unit and, jacks for loading/ offloading, a HEPA filter and pressure system, climate control, and decontamination equipment.

  • Announced on October 2nd, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has allocated the first funding under Project BioShield for Ebola countermeasures.
    This funding will add add two vaccines and two treatments to the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS): a single-dose vaccine licensed by Merck, a prime-boost vaccine regimen from Johnson & Johnson, and monoclonal antibody treatments from Mapp Biopharmaceutical and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals.
    The $170.2 million in Project BioShield funds covers late-stage development and buys up to 1.13 million vaccine regimens and an unspecified number of treatment courses of the two drugs.

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