Introducing the Harris T7 – the MoD’s new £1m bomb-disposal robot

Written by Sam Trendall on 13 September 2017 in News
News

Ministry announces major deal to acquire 56 specialised machines

The Harris T7 has what the MoD claims is a state-of-the-art 'tactile feedback' system  Credit: MoD

The Ministry of Defence has announced a deal to acquire a fleet of £1m bomb-disposal robots.

The MoD is to purchase a total 56 T7 models (pictured above) from US-based manufacturer Harris, in contract worth up to £55m. The ministry claims the robots – which are intended to be deployed within three years – offer a form of “tactile feedback”, which permits users to virtually “feel” their way through potential threats from a safe distance.

The Harris T7 also comes equipped with all-terrain treads and high-definition cameras, the MoD said, and is able to disarm both conventional ammunition and improvised explosive devices.

Defence secretary Michael Fallon said: “With our rising defence budget, we are investing in the latest equipment for our Armed Forces to tackle the growing threats we face. These state-of-the-art bomb-disposal robots will be powerful and reliable companions to our troops on the battlefield, keeping them safe, so they can help keep us safe.”


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The £55m deal follows the successful completion of a £4m demonstration exercise. The rollout and maintenance of the 56 machines will be supported by staff based at a Harris facility in Brighton, where the MoD claims “the contract will sustain 10 highly skilled jobs”.

“This contract has been designed to deliver future-proof, world-leading technology at the best value to the taxpayer,” said Tony Douglas, chief executive of Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S), the ministry’s dedicated procurement organisation. 

He added: “Innovation is central not only to the success of this remarkable system, but also to the relationships across DE&S, industry, and the frontline commands, which allowed this agreement to be reached.”

 

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Sam Trendall is editor of PublicTechnology

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