A Rodeo for Bomb Disposal Robots Looks Dangerous

By Attila Nagy on at

During a five-day “robot rodeo” this week, police and military bomb squads challenge each other’s defusing routines by practising complex and dangerous situations with their robots.

The Western National Robot Rodeo and Capability Exercise, which started this week in Albuquerque, New Mexico, is designed to simulate emergencies that bomb disposal teams face in real life. “We design problems and scenarios that take our state and local bomb squad teams way outside their comfort zones, outside the known techniques and procedures to see how they can handle it,” said Jake Deuel, a Robot Rodeo coordinator manager. The following photos show off exactly what it’s like to be at a Robot Rodeo.

A Rodeo for Bomb Disposal Robots Looks Dangerous

Remotely controlled bomb disposal robots and their human masters


A Rodeo for Bomb Disposal Robots Looks Dangerous

Challenging tasks for bomb squad teams


A Rodeo for Bomb Disposal Robots Looks Dangerous

A robot opens a potentially dangerous box and removes the target object


A Rodeo for Bomb Disposal Robots Looks Dangerous

A robot infiltrates a cinema, to disarm a suicide bomber human (see the top image)


A Rodeo for Bomb Disposal Robots Looks Dangerous

A bomb disposal robot removes a suspicious package in a training operation at Sandia National Laboratories.


A Rodeo for Bomb Disposal Robots Looks Dangerous

A robot performs a rescue operation on a dummy victim in a training exercise at a previous Robot Rodeo.

Photos: Randy Montoya/Sandia Labs