Although many know Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) as a provider of emergency response training and technical assistance, TEEX also offers unique product testing capabilities through the TEEX Testing and Innovation Center (TT&IC). The TT&IC leverages the knowledge, experience, facilities, and subject matter experts of TEEX, along with the research capabilities of the Texas A&M University System, to become a premier resource for public safety technologies.
Recently, the TT&IC has been working with Howe & Howe Technologies, a company that has developed a line of firefighting robots. They have brought these robots to TEEX’s facilities so first responders and subject matter experts can test them in real-world contexts.
On a cold January morning, two of the firefighting robots, RS1 and its big brother RS3, rolled onto TEEX’s Brayton Fire Training Field, ready for action. RS3 worked beside a team of industrial firefighters fighting a fire on a railroad tank car prop. The team positioned the robot where they needed high-volume water, using it as another hose team. In addition to serving as a hose team, the robot can assist by spraying high-pressure foam and moving heavy objects to clear pathways.
After testing, technology developers get feedback from TEEX’s subject matter experts. At the end of the testing cycle, TEEX provides the company with a report, and they publish a performance review for first responder departments who may want to purchase this product.
This is just one more way that TEEX makes a difference: helping technology developers, engineers, and businesses improve the safety of emergency responders. One of TT&IC’s main goals is to provide unbiased assessments of products and solutions to assist federal, state and local governments and departments with purchasing and use decisions.
TT&IC Technology Evaluation Manager Ray Ivie says, “TEEX is a thought leader in the professional communities we train and serve. By leveraging the exceptional facilities, subject matter experts and access to professionals in the field, our goal is to provide a valuable service through testing and evaluating products and solutions that improve capabilities and make these professions safer.”
Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service
Vita Vaughn | Director of Marketing and Communications/CMO