SBIR-STTR Award

Canine non-LOS Directional Control System
Profile last edited on: 9/11/2021

Program
SBIR
Agency
Army
Total Award Amount
$890,717
Award Phase
2
Principal Investigator
Keyy A Mann
Activity Indicator

Company Information

Mantel Technologies

2401 Research Boulevard Suite 204
Fort Collins, CO 80526
   (970) 631-6917
   mc@manteltechnologies.com
   www.manteltechnologies.com
Multiple Locations:   
Congressional District:   04
County:   Larimer

Phase I

Phase I year
2019
Phase I Amount
$162,433
Multi-purpose canines (MPCs) attached to Army Special Operational Forces (ARSOF) units play pivotal roles in small unit tactics as a force multiplier. The ARSOF canine handler’s inability to effectively communicate with the MPC in non-line of sight (non-LOS) scenarios limit ARSOF Soldier maneuverability, survivability, lethality and unit tactical advantage. Current techniques for off-leash directional control require red, visible lasers to “push” MPCs to specific locations within the canine handler’s line of sight. Line of sight directional control greatly limits the operational utility and activities of MPCs in combat scenarios, clandestine operations, surveillance and remote detection events. In this SBIR, Mantel proposes a unique, simple, low cost solution that leverages COTS hardware, experience in electronics integration into soft goods, and military working dog experience to address the current need.

Phase II

Phase II year
2020 (last award $$: 2020)
Phase II Amount
$728,284
The Army Research Office (ARO) and Army Special Operational Forces (ARSOF) have identified a need to provide directional control to multi-purpose canines (MPCs) when they proceed into non-line of sight environments. The overall objective of this SBIR program is to create a Canine Non-Line of Sight Directional Control System (NLOS-DCS) that considers canine physiology and perception and does not impair the ability of the MPC to operate. Mantel successfully executed the Phase I program and created a prototype device that exceeded the desired specifications of ARO. The Mantel Non-Line of Sight Directional Control System (NLOS-DCS) provides near real-time directional commands to a canine and low latency head mounted (sub 50 msec) video to a handler. The NLOS-DCS sends video and commands up to 110 meters and through three walls. During the development of the NLOS-DCS, Mantel established key relationships with end users and component manufacturing partners. In Phase II, Mantel will undertake an iterative design process to improve the capabilities and characteristics of the NLOS-DCS. Using the Phase I prototype device as the starting point will speed that iteration by rapidly and affordably informing design decisions and allowing for hands-on testing by end users.