Johns Hopkins APL, Harsco Form Unmanned Rail Security Tech Alliance; Jim Resio Comments

rail lineHarsco’s Protran Technology unit and Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory have formed a partnership to market an unmanned vehicle technology designed to help operators manage the safety and security of rail operations.

The alliance seeks to introduce the Instrumented Rail Inspection System offering to the entire Harsco network of railway and urban transit system customers as well as to the transportation and mining industries, Harsco said Wednesday.

“With the new (IRiS), security inspection and ’first response‘ work can now be done robotically, with almost no risk of human injury or fatality,” said Jim Resio, director of Protran Technology.

The unmanned platform is designed with near-infrared video and photographic technology and sensors for chemical, radiation and optical detection missions.

APL developed the platform for two years with funding from the Transportation Security Administration and the product underwent live tests in metro transit systems for performance demonstration, Harsco noted.

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