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Army orders more robots for IED disposal

BEDFORD, Mass., Feb. 3 (UPI) -- The U.S. Army has contracted iRobot Corp. for the company to deliver its PackBot improvised explosive device threat disposal technologies.

Massachusetts-based iRobot was awarded the contract from the Army Program Executive Office for Simulation, Training and Instrumentation. Officials say the award marks the eighth order under an indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract.

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"As we have seen on a daily basis with our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, robots are taking a more active role in military operations," Joe Dyer, iRobot president of government and industrial robots, said in a statement.

The $5.5 million order is for iRobot to deliver another 72 of its PackBot 510 robots with FasTac Kits. The PackBot 510, widely deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, is designed to keep soldiers out of harm's way during IED detection and disposal operations in combat zones.

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