Unmanned Ground Vehicles


Search SwRI


               SwRI Home | Print Version

  image of unmanned ground vehicle

Unmanned Ground Vehicle

The unmanned ground vehicle program at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) was designed to participate in basic and applied research to advance the state of the art in unmanned ground vehicle performance, efficiency, safety, and cost for urban and extreme environments.


With more than 50 years of experience in the automotive industry, SwRI has the expertise and capabilities that benefit the unmanned ground vehicle industry.

  • Robustness and Reliability

    Extensive experience in manned and unmanned weapons systems gives SwRI an edge when developing rugged, highly reliable, fault-tolerant control systems.

  • Real-Time Operating Systems (RTOS)

    • Vehicle management systems

    • Engine and vehicle structure health monitoring

    • Ground control stations

    • Hybrid vehicles

    • Traffic monitoring systems

    • Hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) simulation

  • Terrain Modeling for Convoy Operations

    Recent internal research includes a simulation package to model sparsely manned convoys.

  • Model-Based Design

    In compliance with SwRI's ISO 9001:2000 processes, SwRI uses model-based design techniques as part of its system design process. SwRI staff members create system models and controllers using the design tools and extensively test and evaluate their performance against the system requirements. The design tools produce software that eliminates the need for manual conversion and reduces development time.

  • Unmanned Ground Vehicle Capabilities

    • Positioning:  GPS and inertial navigation system (INS)

    • Integration:  Commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware and software

    • Intelligence:  Layered control scheme

    • Perception:  Obstacle detection and path acquisition

    • Communications:  DSRC, JTRS, Software-Defined Radio (SDR)

    • Command and control:  Smart user interface, drive-by-wire

  • Applications of Research

    • Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS)

    • Integrated Vehicle-Based Safety Systems (IVBSS)

    • Perimeter and border patrol

    • Automated inspection vehicles

    • Hazardous waste and explosive ordnance disposal

    • Emergency response vehicles

    • Autonomous and semi-autonomous convoy operations

    • Vehicle to Vehicle (V2V) and Vehicle to Infrastructure (V2I)

  • Software Languages

    • C/C++

    • Java®

    • Microsoft®.Net™

    • MATLAB®, Simulink®

  • Facilities

    • Proving Ground: 1.16-mile track

    • Urban Environment Vehicle Test Bed

    • Test Platform: Drive-by-wire, real-time controller, quad rack-mounted computers

    • Two million square feet of office and laboratory space

For more information about our unmanned ground vehicle capabilities, or how you can contract with SwRI, please contact Christopher E. Camargo at ccamargo@swri.org or (210) 522-2095.


Contact Information

Christopher E. Camargo

Unmanned Ground Vehicles

(210) 522-2095


Related Terminology

unmanned ground vehicle

basic research

applied research

unmanned ground vehicle performance

unmanned ground vehicle safety

urban environments

vehicle management systems

engine health monitoring

vehicle structure health monitoring

ground control stations

hybrid vehicles

traffic monitoring systems

hardware-in-the-loop simulation

manned weapons systems

unmanned weapons systems


Avionics and Support Systems Department

| Avionics and Support Systems Department | Aerospace Electronics, Systems Engineering and Training Division | SwRI Home |


Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®), headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, is a multidisciplinary, independent, nonprofit, applied engineering and physical sciences research and development organization with 11 technical divisions.

August 06, 2014