Nexter Robotics a subsidiary of the French Company Nexter Group announced the first sale of its NERVA® LG robot to Myanmar. Nexter Robotics designs and manufactures small-scale robots capable of performing reconnaissance and counter-IED (Improvised Explosive Devices) missions for route clearance, while also offering new applications for Civil Security units.
The two 4 kg Nerva 4x4 mini-robots will be tested by Myanmar and could meet a total requirement estimated at 50 robots. Myanmar ordered the systems in November 2013.
Nerva has been designed to meet military specifications, and is designed for all-weather, all-terrain usage, with a robust (throwable) design and is backpack transportable.
Designed for military users, Nerva is being sold under civilian contract for Myanmar, in order to avoid any blockade from French government export commission. Accordingly, the system's electro-optic infrared (EOIR) sensor has been downgraded in order not to fall foul of export restrictions of military technology to Myanmar. They have, however, been fitted with additional battery packs to provide an improved 24 hours of operational capability.
This is first order that could be followed by a contract for 50 systems. The Nexter Robotics NERVA® sold to Myanmar is a civilian version with degraded sensors.
The NERVA LG UGV (Unmanned Ground Vehicle) is stated to be fully waterproof and throwable. In addition to being operated by 15 remote control, it can have semi-autonomous capabilities to reduce the operator’s workload, such as waypoint navigation or automatic back homing when the mission has been completed.
To meet different user requirements, the NERVA LG can be fitted with different payloads. A typical reconnaissance payload would consist of an infrared thermal camera for almost all-weather observation and a 360° panoramic day camera.
Nexter Robotics is currently under negotiations with two other Asian countries ( Vietnam and Philippines) to sell a dozen robots to each country.
The Nerva robots purchase by Myanmar will be used for surveillance missions using night vision capabilities and extra batteries to increase autonomy.