By Andy Choi
A large number of representatives gathered at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina in San Diego, California to participate in the 2012 Ground Robotics Capabilities Conference and Exhibition, hosted between March 21 and 23, 2012. This annual conference was graced by more than 600 attendees from the military, government, and industry.
Ground Robotics Champion Lieutenant Colonel Stuart Hatfield, USA, Chief, Lethality Branch, Maneuver, Aviation, & Soldier Division, TRADOC
Co-sponsored by the Joint Ground Robotics Enterprise (JGRE) and the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA), this conference manifested the vision from Ground Robotics Vision report released by the Department of Defense.
General sessions at the conference included poster presentations, speakers and expert panels, and 45 exhibits that represented the expansion in the Ground Robotics market. Furthermore, several special events were hosted which included demonstrations on advanced robotic technologies, award ceremonies, and SPAWAR Facility Tour.
NDIA recognized Ground Robotics development experts during the award ceremonies. Prestigious awards were presented to renowned robotics professionals who succeeded in incorporating ground robotic systems in military for effective combat operations.
The award-winners were recognized based on:
- Excellent public presentation skills such as spokesperson or advocate promoting the technological developments and broad implementation of ground robotic systems
- Effort while implementing ground robotic systems for military operations
- Representative of civil service, military, congress, or outside the government.
The 2012 Ground Robotics awards for Champion, Technology Innovator, and Air Force Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician were presented to Lieutenant Colonel Stuart Hatfield, Dr. James Albus, and Sergeant Michael A. Newton, respectively.