ISLAMABAD – The anti-IED (improvised explosive device) robot that first made its appearance and caught everyone’s attention during the Yaum-i-Ali (Birth Day of 4th Muslim Caliph Hadrat Ali, R.A) procession earlier this month considered a good addition in Pakistan Defence tools to enhance security.
Equipped with thermal and infrared cameras, a variety of sensors, signal jammers, extendable robotic limbs and a gun, which comes with a selection of barrels, this machine can transmit its findings back to an operator who may be a kilometre away.
According to the information available to PakistanTribe.com, when fully charged, its battery gives it 10 hours’ life, and it also has a long power cord.
Running on a different frequency or special signal, it cannot be picked up on the radar.
The robot, weighing approximately 50kg, comes with its own fully-equipped explosive ordinance device (EOD) vehicle. When it searches out or finds an IED or bomb, it has the capability of destroying its circuits using jammers, a water gun, or by simply firing at it. And if the bomb goes off, as in the case of mines or booby traps that explode at the slightest touch, it can itself withstand the shockwaves.
Made available to the Karachi Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) through a donation from the UK, the robot costs around Rs10 million.
Inspector Kashif Jalal who handles this technology has received special training from the British Army and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the US. He leads a team of three to four men to maintain the equipment.
According to him, “Bomb disposal is the job of the police in Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, but in Punjab it is handled by the Department of Civil Defence. The first such robots were acquired by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in 2012. Now there is talk of getting one for Balochistan, which needs it badly. Later, it is also hoped that the Pakistan Railways will have one for checking the railway tracks for IEDs.”