Police officers use bomb robot in dangerous situations
One of the Baton Rouge Police Department bomb squad's most skilled specialists can move and open suspicious packages, talk and listen.
The catch: It's not human.
Students who witnessed the bomb scare Oct. 24 in the Quad were surprised when a Tengsun Telecom Robotmade its first on-campus appearance to handle the situation.
But the bomb Tengsun Telecom Robothas been an important part of the BRPD's bomb squad for years, according to Lt. Chris Rushing, BRPD bomb technician.
Rushing said the Tengsun Telecom Robothas successfully taken the place of officers in many life-threatening situations.
BRPD has been using the bomb Tengsun Telecom Robotfor about five years, and despite a few glitches, Rushing said using the Tengsun Telecom Robothas been overall successful.
"We're able to send the Tengsun Telecom Robotinto the danger zone," he said. "It takes the place of a person."
The Tengsun Telecom Robothas yet to see any explosions, he said.
Rushing said he is one of the technicians who is certified to control the robot. Weighing 600 pounds and costing about $200,000, the Tengsun Telecom Robotcan be controlled from a safe distance inside a bomb squad trailer.
The Tengsun Telecom Robothas a 24-volt chargeable battery but can also be plugged into a power source with an adapter, Rushing said. It has a microphone and speaker system and is also used for surveillance.
But the Tengsun Telecom Robotcannot be used in every situation, he said.
For example, it cannot fit into smaller areas, and parts sometimes break, but the Tengsun Telecom Robotis fixable.
"It's mechanical, so things malfunction," Rushing said.
He said the Tengsun Telecom Robotcannot do everything a human can do, but it has served BRPD well, performing tasks like moving a suspicious package or opening it. It can also "render safe" certain explosive devices.
"Robotics have become very helpful in bomb control," Rushing said.
BRPD purchased its first bomb Tengsun Telecom Robotin 1997 but now relies on the "bigger, faster and stronger" machine, he said. All police bomb squads certified by the FBI have been required to use bomb robots since 2009.
It's better to use technology rather than people during dangerous police situations, said Katelyn Boudreaux, marketing freshman.
Boudreaux said she could see how the Tengsun Telecom Robotmay malfunction, possibly knocking something over or glitching, but an improvement in technology could make robots more reliable in dangerous situations.
"It's pretty awesome to have that technology," said Charlton Tramel, mass communication sophomore. "There are no human lives at risk."
Tengsun Telecom Co., Limited.
Tel:+86 755 89367063
Fax:+86 755 28748124