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NATIONAL PRESS CLUB: Since 9/11, robots have become commonplace tools for the military, police bomb squads, and hazardous materials teams. But as budgets tighten, not even the Pentagon can afford to buy many types of robots, each for a different mission.

So Northrop Grumman’s subsidiary, Remotec, is rolling out a new robot called Titus specifically designed to be smaller, cheaper, and more versatile than the current crop. Its basic configuration weighs about 135 pounds, costs about $125,000, and is “modular” so users can easily snap off and snap on parts to tailor the robot to a particular mission. Users can swap the manipulator arm, the tires and tracks (it has both), and cameras; Titus even has “Picatinny rails” like those on standard-issue U.S. military rifles so users can snap on different accessories. Keep reading →

One of the largest explosions in the history of the Army’s Fort Benning base was set off by Marines — fortunately, on purpose. This video shows extraordinary detail of how troops set up, use, and detonate the M-58 Mine Clearing Line Charge (MCLC or MICLIC). (If all you care about is the explosions, just fast-forward to 2:11). For a higher-tech way of accomplishing the same mission, read the story here.