Issue 55 Uncrewed Systems Technology Apr/May 2024 Sellafield’s UAV equipment l Applied EV Blanc Robot l Battery tech l Robotican’s Goshawk l UGVs l UAVHE RW1 rotary l Roboat UVD l Autopilots l Arkeocean UVD l UMEX 2024 l CycloTech UVD

38 its navigation algorithms. This means tight turning circles are performed with inbuilt error to account for the vehicle’s inertia and centre of gravity, and to optimise dead reckoning in corners to reduce the potential for slip. Lithium-titanate oxide The Blanc Robot is designed with considerable battery pack space to allow for the higher end of customers’ range requirements, but Applied EV has taken care not to oversize the battery pack. Doing so would inevitably add a disproportionate degree of extra weight, given that the gravimetric energy density of battery cells remains far lower than 1 kWh/kg – estimates range from 0.01-0.2 kWh/kg, depending on the cell chemistry. Therefore, an oversized battery pack would have made integrating a considerably more heavy-duty powertrain necessary to overcome the added inertia. That would then have increased the rate at which energy was consumed, which would have created the need for more onboard battery energy, thus resulting in a vicious cycle that has affected electrified vehicles for some time (and it is a major reason why many are far heavier than their equivalent ICE-powered counterparts). The company has targeted 400 km of maximum range on the standard-issue Gen 6 Blanc Robot, the team having surmised that cabinless, softwaredefined vehicles should not need to travel more than 400 km between opportunities to charge or swap packs. Once the end-user’s driving cycle is identified, the charging cycle, and thus the battery, can be right-sized to maximise useful payload space. Due to the ladder frame of the Jimny, the available space in the Blanc Robot for a battery is not square in shape. Instead, it measures about 700 x 170 x 2000 mm. By targeting 51 kWh of energy in the battery pack, Applied EV’s team has left enough space and carrying capacity (and put in enough energy) for a usable payload capacity of 1500 kg. For previous generations, the company had constructed its own packs in-house, including performing its own laser welding and producing its own highvoltage BMS and junction boxes, mostly due to the difficulty of shipping prototype battery packs via airfreight. The anode chemistry chosen for the cells in Applied EV’s Generation 5 Blanc Robot is lithium-titanate oxide (LTO), which we also saw in Clevon’s CLEVON 1 roadgoing UGV for logistics April/May 2024 | Uncrewed Systems Technology 4G and 5G LTE, as well as wi-fi and Bluetooth, are integrated as standard for connectivity in different industrial services Applied EV plans to continue testing and maturing its technology for deployment in a wide range of applications and architectures