High Consequence, Automation, & Robotics

Research & Development

Our six core research areas serve as the building blocks for the design and development of unique, robust solutions for complex and challenging problems.
Mine safety robot


Our unmatched facilities enable leading edge robotic and intelligent systems research and development.
  • Advanced Controls
    We specialize in the development of advanced control technology that enables a range of applications, from the control of multiple heterogeneous unmanned systems by one operator, to the control of a swarm of robotic platforms operating toward a common goal. Our leading edge control technology is advancing the state-of-the-art in unmanned systems and robotics technology and is enabling ground-breaking applications of such technology. Our control technology is derived from our legacy in the design and development of high-consequence systems and is designed to be robust to a variety of failure modes.
  • Advanced Manipulation
    We have a long history of automating robots for difficult manipulation tasks. Leveraging Sandia-developed sensor technologies to locate objects in the environment, coupled with automated motion planners and force sensing and control technologies has enabled the development of advanced robot manipulators that can move to desired locations, perform safe interactions with hazardous materials, and can even perform fine manipulation tasks such as opening doors and performing surgery.
  • Unique Mobility
    With expertise in mechanical design and fabrication, video and vision processing, communications systems, embedded computing, control, and navigation, we develop advanced mobility systems that are able to overcome a variety of obstacles and terrains, and are used for a variety of tasks including: surveillance and reconnaissance, autonomous exterior/interior intrusion detection, de-mining, Improvised Explosive Device (IED) disablement, and accident response.
  • Perception and Decision Tools
    We specialize in the development of advanced perception technologies and decision tools that enable robotic and unmanned systems to perform more complex and autonomous tasks, such as the automated mapping of a building. Our perception capabilities include 3-D geometric modeling and texture mapping, 3-D video motion detection, Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM), and augmented reality training.
  • Cybernetics
    Leveraging Sandia's expertise in materials science, microsystems, and advanced modeling and simulation, we design and develop advanced cybernetic technologies for a variety of applications. Cybernetics includes the development of mechanical, physical, biological, and cognitive systems that enable advanced man-machine interface technologies. Our work in this area has led to the development of dynamic prosthetics technology, implantable sensors with neural interfaces, and modular integrated microsystems.
  • High-Consequence Automation
    We're the leader in developing cost-effective, reliable, automated systems to handle materials used in conventional and nuclear weapons. Applications range from flexible systems for automated disassembly of outdated munitions to systems for the destruction of hazardous waste. Leveraging the high-consequence design and control principles used in these systems, we have developed other applications that require the same level of robustness and safety, including Remotely Operated Weapons Systems (ROWS) technology, explosives automation, and guided bullet technology.


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