A Sandia National Laboratory-built robotic system is helping the U.S. Army deactivate submunitions of the Multiple Launch Rocket System.
The automated system consists of nine robots and has so far demilitarized over 700K submunition units, the laboratory said Thursday.
The system, located in Alabama, is part of an MLRS recycle facility that works to help the Army dismantle unused ammunition and rockets under the Department of Defense's demilitarization program.
The service branch uses the system to recycle aluminum warhead skin, steel and copper at accelerated rates.
“We were able to remove people from a potentially very dangerous situation and created something that allowed products to be recycled and reused, which is what the DOD demilitarization program is about,” said Walt Wapman, a mechanical engineer who serves as project lead at Sandia.