The new generation of
"smart weapons" includes intelligent robotics systems. To
be effective, weapons of this type must be able to navigate in the
field, communicate with other robots, update the command center and
leverage machine vision and acoustic sensor technologies. They must
provide maximum functionality in a very small space, consume low
power, be low cost, and offer high maneuverability and reliability.
parameters in mind, we developed distributed, multiple embedded
microprocessor systems dedicated to each of the core subsystems,
which included navigation, motion control, vision, sonar, acoustic
and communications. In addition, we designed real-time operating
systems for TMS32020 DSPs, Zoran Vector Processors, 68020
processors, as well as a custom array processor. Finally, we created
a PC-based Command Center with a rich, graphical interface which is
used to coordinate the field robots, load the terrain maps, and
display sensor information.