Integrated Microwave Technologies, LLC, a Business Unit within the Vitec Group’s Videocom Division, and a leader in advanced digital microwave systems for MAG (Military, Aerospace & Government) markets, announces that its STx Compact HD/SD COFDM transmitter has been integrated into American Unmanned Systems’ Guardbot, enabling it to deliver real-time MPEG-4 video streams.
The GuardBot is an unmanned amphibious vehicle system that hosts cameras and other sensor suites to deliver advanced sensor communications in a mobile format. Robust and lightweight, it boasts impressive off-road performance and quiet maneuverability. Its cameras/sensors and mechanics are protected inside its sealed sphere. The electric vehicle can be operated by remote control, or programmed to navigate by GPS as a robotic mobile platform. Its Augmented Reality User Interface (ARUI) is highly intuitive, boosting operator alertness and control. Weighing 63 lbs, GuardBot has superb mobility and won’t get stuck in sand, mud or snow. It moves quietly and efficiently from land to water and back, at up to 6 mph (10 km/h) for more than eight hours.
“By integrating IMT’s STx transmitter into the GuardBot, we are able to provide real-time video streams via MPEG-4 transmission,” says Peter Muhlrad, CEO, American Unmanned Systems. “Having state-of-the-art, reliable equipment is vital to the GuardBot’s success, and with IMT’s reputation and top-quality equipment, we know we are going to be able to transmit a solid signal time and again.”
The STx delivers its HD/SD output at 250 mW and occupies less than five cubic inches. It supports video/audio/data transmission with selectable modulation bandwidths of 6, 7 and 8 MHz or optional 1.25- and 2.5-MHz narrow-band (NMCOFDM) modes. The STx features superb H.264 SD and HD encoding capabilities and operates in the standard 2k DVB-T COFDM mode. It features AES decryption capabilities, making it ideal for public security monitoring, covert surveillance and other secure transmission applications.
For longer-range requirements, the STx can output 250 mW. Users can reduce it to low-power 20 mW with the simple press of a button. They can also program the built-in video test pattern generator in the STx to be controlled externally, through the preset switch. Users can also program it to be automatically enabled when the video input is lost. The STx has an ASI input and output, providing the ability to stack or multiplex multiple units. This allows for the encoder of one STx to be connected to a primary STx and both video streams to be sent over a single RF channel.
“IMT is excited to be a part of this innovative technology offering,” says Integrated Microwave Technologies Divisional Chief Executive Stephen Shpock. “Having our products incorporated into unmanned solutions, such as American Unmanned Systems’ Guardbot, further reinforces our goal of creating technologies applicable not only to the end user, but to our partners in the industry as well.”
GuardBot can be integrated into virtually any existing legacy systems using plug-and-play functionality (video streams are transmitted via MPEG-4 wrapped in RTP/RTSP). Its surveillance capabilities give it many possible military and potentially life-saving applications. Currently, service members search harbors, docks and ships for threats in rigid-hull inflatable boats. GuardBot can be used as an amphibious tool to check these shallow-water locations for such threats as mines or other explosives, greatly reducing the risk to human life. In addition, the GuardBot can check underneath aircraft for bombs.
IMT’s MobilCMDR receiver is the perfect complement for viewing the dynamic live images the GuardBot’s STx transmits. The MobilCMDR (C-COFDM M-Mobile D-Diversity R-Receiver) is a ruggedized COFDM (DVB-T-compliant) dual-diversity handheld receiver/monitor. It offers exceptional RF performance and durability, combined with true ease of operation and superb H.264 decoding. The unit displays received video images on a built-in eight-inch-class high-brightness display. The display also features an easy-to-use menu-driven interface. The MobilCMDR is also available with AES decryption capabilities for applications requiring it.
The unit includes a wide array of video input and output formats, including ASI and HD/SD SDI. Its milled aluminum chassis and ergonomic hand grips are weather resistant. All of these features provide an unequaled value in a high-quality COFDM receiver/monitor. Much more than a COFDM handheld receiver, the MobilCMDR can send video over Ethernet to remote software or hardware decoders, allowing multiple remote viewers to monitor the same video simultaneously.