Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) Competition: Telexistence Phase 2

Closing Date: 06/04/2022

Funding available to develop a complete telexistence system that will enable those working in hazardous environments to undertake tasks without being physically present.

The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) is part of the UK Government’s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), run by the Ministry of Defence. It consists of personnel from the Ministry of Defence, the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, Defence Equipment and Support, and the Home Office. The Accelerator funds proof-of-concept research that offers a high potential benefit to defence and security in the UK and which thereby supports UK economic growth and prosperity.

This DASA competition has been launched on behalf of the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) to develop a complete telexistence system.

Telexistence technology has the potential to give those working in hazardous environments the capability to undertake tasks without physically being present, which can decrease risk and reduce the logistical burden associated with dangerous operations. This is achieved using a remotely-operated system, and relies on integrating:

  • Telepresence, which enables the operator to see and hear as though in the remote environment.
  • Robotics/wearable assistive technologies, which enable the operator to interact with the remote environment.
  • Haptic feedback/sensors which enable the operator to touch / feel the remote environment.

Proposals submitted in response to this call will involve the integration of telepresence, robotic and haptic technologies on to a single platform. Solutions must enable the user to experience and interact with the remote environment as if they were physically there.

Funded projects are expected to achieve at least Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 4 (proof-of-concept) to TRL 6 (demonstration in a relevant environment) by the end of the contract. Systems currently at or above TRL 6 in a civilian environment may be eligible for funding where the technology requires development to operate in a Defence and Security environment (potentially lowering the TRL).

Successful suppliers will be invited to evaluate the capabilities of their systems against a series of tasks that are representative of a Use Case chosen by each supplier from the following:

  • Specialist Nuclear Decommissioning Tasks.
  • Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD).
  • Defence and Security Medical applications.

Proposals should include a clear demonstration of how the system capabilities will be developed to be able to complete the pre-determined test battery of tasks.

Proposals should last no longer than 10 months. The contracts will aim to start at the beginning of July 2022 and complete before the end of April 2023.

Funding body Defence Science & Technology Laboratory (Dstl)
Maximum value £400,000
Reference ID S23319
Category Engineering and Physical Sciences
Science and Technology

Fund or call Fund