Mike Farry, Principal Scientist and Vice President, Socio-Cognitive Systems, delivered an invited talk on the novel opportunities provided by robotic swarms at MIT Lincoln Laboratory’s Human-Machine Collaboration for National Security Workshop. Alongside other commercial, government, and academic contributors, Farry discussed how the massive potential of swarms can be best harnessed to bolster national security.
“The focus of my talk was how novel swarm capabilities—such as our Swarm Algorithms and Tactics for Urban Reconnaissance and Isolation (SATURN) effort—introduce new challenges. We’re not dealing with simple evolutionary advances here; rather, the novel capabilities afforded by swarms are introducing entirely new kinds of research into human-machine collaboration,” said Farry. “People are starting to use unmanned autonomous vehicles in creative ways, each of which has a different impact on national security. It is imperative that we study these new classes of challenges to avoid surprises from bad actors.”
Warfighters use a drone for scouting during a military operation
Charles River Analytics is one of the “sprinter” teams selected for DARPA’s Swarm-Enabled Tactics (OFFSET) program. SATURN’s capabilities will provide resilient swarm behavior to decentralized, heterogeneous swarms of unlimited size, enabling our swarms to achieve military objectives despite interference from adversaries.
Farry said, “This decentralized method of operation enables swarms to independently provide mission support capabilities. But this independence must come with transparency about how individual vehicles, and the swarm as a whole, are meeting their objectives.” Effective human-machine teaming with drone swarms allows the swarm to perform risky missions, such as intelligence gathering and surveillance, keeping our Warfighters safer.
SATURN complements other techniques and applications Charles River has developed to support autonomous and unmanned systems, such as the MINOTAUR interface for controlling robotic leader-follower systems, the AMPT framework for supervising unmanned vehicles, and the CROWSNEST maritime traffic awareness solution for an unmanned surface vessel.
To learn more about Charles River or our current projects and capabilities, contact us.
Charles River Analytics conducts leading-edge AI, robotics, and human-machine interface R&D and leverages that R&D to create custom solutions for your organization.
At Charles River Analytics, we come to work every day because we want to develop technology for the hardest human-machine teaming problems that impact critical operations and decision-making. In 1983, we began focusing on research that leads to results, initially working for the US government. We became an employee-owned company in 2012, setting the stage for the next generation of innovation, service, and growth. Today, we have nearly 200 employees who work on R&D and commercial programs that make a difference for a “who’s who” of government and industry.
We have a stellar track record developing successful solutions for Government and commercial clients across a diverse collection of markets—defense, intelligence, medical technology, training, transportation, space, and cyber security. Our success is based on our expertise with advanced algorithms, machine learning, autonomous systems, advanced human-system interfaces, and agile software and hardware engineering. Focused research can make a positive difference, and that is our goal on each project we undertake. Our customer-centric focus guides us towards problems that matter, while our passion for science and engineering drives us to find impactful, actionable solutions.