Oshkosh Truck Teams With Rockwell Collins To Develop Second-Generation Self-Navigating Robotic Truck
OSHKOSH, Wis. (December 21, 2004) – Oshkosh Truck Corporation [NYSE: OSK], a leading manufacturer of specialty trucks and truck bodies, announced today that it has teamed with Rockwell Collins [NYSE: COL] to develop Oshkosh’s second-generation, self-navigating robotic TerraMax™ vehicle to compete in the Pentagon-sponsored $2-million 2005 DARPA Grand Challenge.
In its second year, the U.S. Department of Defense is sponsoring the DARPA Grand Challenge through its Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The agency is responsible for overseeing the development of advanced technology used by the military.
“We’re very excited to work with Rockwell Collins in our quest to win the 2005 DARPA Grand Challenge,” said Robert G. Bohn, Oshkosh Truck chairman, president and chief executive officer. “Rockwell Collins and Oshkosh Truck are leaders in bringing new technologies to the industries they represent, and autonomous-vehicle research and development can only benefit from this relationship.”
Rockwell Collins brings considerable experience in the area of aviation autonomy, such as aircraft autopilot systems – advanced technology that will be well suited on a vehicle that, with a human driver, is considered by many to be the most mobile production truck in the world.
The completely autonomous TerraMax vehicle will attempt to traverse a rugged, 175-mile off-road course in the Mojave Desert, scheduled for Oct. 8, 2005. Based on sensor data, TerraMax must make its own decisions on route planning, obstacle avoidance and speed, without the aid of any human intervention once en route. During the next 12 months, engineers, computer programmers and development experts from Oshkosh and Rockwell Collins will undertake an ambitious effort to give TerraMax the intelligence it needs to successfully navigate autonomously through the desert.
The platform for TerraMax is Oshkosh’s combat-proven Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement (MTVR). Originally built for the U.S. Marine Corps, the MTVR is equipped with breakthrough technology such as the Oshkosh TAK-4® independent suspension, Command Zone™ Advanced Electronics and “on-the-go” central tire inflation. Already a combat-proven workhorse used extensively in Afghanistan and Iraq, it is also a popular platform for militaries worldwide. Additionally for the 2005 Grand Challenge, TerraMax will be given rear-wheel steering for superior turning capability.
In 2004, TerraMax was one of only seven entries to complete the 1.3-mile qualifying course. The vehicle’s 1.2-mile run into the desert on race day went beyond expectations. To learn more about the TerraMax truck and its related technologies, visit the robotic vehicle home page at www.oshkoshtruck.com/darpa.
About Rockwell Collins
Rockwell Collins [NYSE: COL] is a leader in the design, production and support of communications and aviation electronics solutions for government and commercial customers worldwide. Additional company information is available at www.rockwellcollins.com.
About Oshkosh Truck Corporation
Oshkosh Truck Corporation [NYSE: OSK] is a leading manufacturer of specialty trucks and truck bodies for markets including: defense, fire and emergency, concrete placement and refuse hauling. Oshkosh Truck is a Fortune 1000 company with products marketed under the Oshkosh®, Pierce®, McNeilus®, Medtec®, Geesink, Norba and Jerr-Dan® brand names. The company is headquartered in Oshkosh, Wis., and had annual sales of $2.3 billion in fiscal 2004. To learn more, visit the company’s Web site at www.oshkoshtruckcorporation.com.
This press release contains statements that the company believes are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements other than statements of historical fact, including statements regarding the company’s future financial position, business strategy, targets, projected sales, costs, earnings, capital spending and debt levels, and plans and objectives of management for future operations, are forward-looking statements. When used in this press release, words such as the company “expects,” “intends,” “estimates,” “anticipates,” or “believes” and similar expressions are generally intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks, uncertainties, assumptions and other factors, some of which are beyond the company’s control, that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These factors include, without limitation, risks related to reductions in government expenditures, the uncertainty of government contracts and the possibility that expected cost savings will not be achieved nor future plans realized. Additional information concerning these and other factors is contained in the company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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