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