Blueprint Lab and VideoRay LLC have jointly announced a new partnership to further integrate and field Blueprint Lab's Reach Alpha, the world's smallest, lightest, subsea manipulator system. A key application of this technology is rendering safe underwater mines on ships, shipping lanes, ports, and offshore infrastructure.

Blueprint Lab, with headquarters in Sydney, Australia, specializes in lightweight robotic arms for remotely operated vehicles (ROVs). The company develops systems for the military, oil and gas, and scientific communities. The Reach Alpha is a field-proven manipulator. Since it is highly modular and configurable, with 3-, 4- and 5-function versions available, it is well suited to the difficult and challenging tasks involved in underwater mine countermeasures.

Photo 2 APhoto 2 BThese two photos show the master arm and cutter on Blueprint Lab’s Reach Alpha, the world’s smallest, lightest subsea manipulator system. Photo credit: Blueprint Lab

VideoRay LLC, with headquarters in Pottstown, Pa., is a global leader in the field of ROVs used for observation and inspection. VideoRay has been awarded a contract by the Defense Innovation Unit to develop the Navy's next generation EOD response vehicle. Since 1999, VideoRay has been designing, manufacturing, and marketing ROVs to transform the way people work underwater.

The partnership between VideoRay and Blueprint Lab will further their close collaboration with the U.S. and other allied navies in the iterative process of refining tools, techniques, and mission planning to keep our forces safe and effective in the evolving technology of undersea warfare. VideoRay and Blueprint Lab are working under the VideoRay Integrator program, which empowers partners to develop and customize Mission Specialist technology to meet specific customer missions.

3 Defender Reach Alpha 4The VideoRay Defender equipped with Blueprint Lab’s Reach Alpha, the world’s smallest, lightest, subsea manipulator system

Anders Ridley-Smith, Business Development Manager of Blueprint Lab, is excited about the opportunity. "Blueprint Lab has worked incredibly hard to develop robotic arms that are robust, dexterous, and intuitive to use. We're excited to bring these to the Navy through collaboration with VideoRay. Their ROV platform provides an advanced, powerful delivery system to bring our manipulators to bear on the threat environment and we look forward to pushing the boundaries of what's possible underwater."

"We're very excited about this collaboration, and what it means in extending the state of the art in EOD response underwater," said Scott Bentley, CEO of VideoRay. "The combination of the best underwater vehicle technology – our power, flexibility, and precise underwater navigation, and Blueprint Lab manipulator capabilities in dexterity, durability, and operator interface – are providing the best tool for our warfighters by far."

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