Stephen Bornstein, who is the CEO of Cyborg Dynamics Engineering from Australia and works on robotic technologies and artificial intelligence, answered Defence Turk’s questions about company activities and UGVs(Unmanned Ground Vehicles)
As Turkey is a member of the NATO alliance, Cyborg would be open to possible collaboration with local industry suppliers.
Defence Turk: What does Cyborg Dynamics Engineering predict for unmanned ground vehicles in the future? What tasks do you think they will undertake in the battlefield?
Stephen Bornstein: I think UGVs will initially provide load carriage and logistic capabilities before moving into combat roles. From there, there are endless possibilities with UGVs able to replace humans insome of the most dangerous missions.
Defence Turk: Unmanned ground vehicles are critical systems that many countries have started to work on and attach importance to. Cyborg Dynamics Engineering is one of the companies working in this field. Do you have any plans of exporting the systems you develop?
Stephen Bornstein: Yes, we have export plans in the next 12 months once getting our product, supply chain and maintenance policies to a point where we are comfortable with supporting international customers.
Defence Turk: One of the main problems of UGVs is communication and communication range. Do Cyborg Dynamics Engineering use their own solutions for communication? How do you think such problems can be resolved?
Stephen Bornstein: Cyborg partners with a number of leading communications companies to help solve this problem. Weare actively engaged in joint developments with a number of critical comms suppliers to help tackle this problem. The solution is two found in our opinion:
- Resilient communications systems which are able to operate in contested environments providing a battlefield mesh.
- Ensure that if comms / GPS is lost, that the vehicle is able to react appropriately and safely.
Defence Turk: Are you open to new options and initiatives such as joint production and technology development with various countries? Do you have any restrictions on export?
Stephen Bornstein: Yes Cyborg is open to new opportunities with various countries assessed on a case by case basis depending on strategic interests and export restrictions. There are possible export restrictions but as mentioned, these are assessed on a case by case basis and discussed with Australia’s export body DFAT.
Defence Turk: You currently have one UGVs named WARFİGHTER as stated on your website). Is there a different class of UGV project you plan to advance on the basis of the current ones? Do you have an unmanned system solution developed for the civil market?
Stephen Bornstein: Yes we have our next product variant about to commence in the coming 6 months which will hopefully be announced then. We believe it is effectively solving a problem that hasn’t been looked at extensively yet by the UGV market. BIA5 (who make the base robotic platform) offer a commercial varient which is currently used for fire fighting on mining sites and available.
Defence Turk: Cyborg Dynamics Engineering offers solutions for UAVs as well as UGVs. Do you have any solutions for these systems to operate together?
Stephen Bornstein: Cyborg is not primarily a UGV manufacturer. We have supported some UAV developments such as Cerberus GL from Skyborne technologies. The UGV and UAS from Skyborne are able to operate in a ‘teaming’ role whereby the Small Unmanned Aerial System (SUAS) can launch from the UGV and provide recon strike capability from a common ground controller and on a common mesh network with the UGV. The UAS can also designate targets for the UGV to then slew the RWS onto the target.
Defence Turk: What are the features of the UGVs you have developed, and what are the weapon systems used or planned to be used?
Stephen Bornstein: The UGV has a number of unique features with the main being the double acting suspension from BIA5 providing superior recoil damping and vibration absorption. This makes it able to shoot whilst moving and give a smoother ride to a casualty being evacuated. Current qualified weapons systems are the 50cal and 7.62mm machine gun with heavier weapons being assessed by our partners at EOS.
Defence Turk: Are there any plans to transfer the know-how of the unmanned systems you have developed to naval systems? Are there any existing or planned projects?
Stephen Bornstein: Currently we are not operating in the naval market. There may be consideration towards this in the future to look at capabilities such as some of the AI and autonomy aspects.
Defence Turk: Do you have any civil or commercial system projects for logistics and supply of your UGVs? How is your corporate approach to the commercial market?
Stephen Bornstein: BIA5 mostly look at the commercial market, with a fire fighting UGV being a product offered. Other use cases will likely be considered in the future to this market.
Defence Turk: Are there any efforts or projects to cooperate with different defence ındustry companies? Do you have any plans in this regard? Also, do you consider cooperating with Turkish defence industry companies?
Stephen Bornstein: We currently cooperate with a variety of other defence players, both small businesses and primes. We are continuously looking for local industry content to support entry into new markets. As Turkey is a member of the NATO alliance, Cyborg would be open to possible collaboration with local industry suppliers.
“We thank Stephen Bornstein for taking the time to answer our questions.” – Defence Turk