No single UxV is perfectly suited to all task assignments. A homogeneous UxV team, for example, a troop of identical UGVs, brings redundancy and reliability to a specific class of tasks. Heterogeneous UxV teams, for
example, a troop of UGVs, a flight of low flying rotorcraft, and a high flying UAV, provide increased capability.
They can tackle multiple tasks simultaneously through cooperative decision making, distributed task allocation,
and collective mapping. Together, they can convoy payloads, provide communications, observe targets, shield
troops, and, ultimately, deliver munitions. nUxVs have the potential to share, learn, and adapt information
between like platforms and across platform types, to produce expanded capability and greater reliability. Current
research exploits simple vehicle state exchange, communications relay and formation keeping. Our near-term
research areas include map sharing and integration, task coordination, and heterogeneous nUxV teaming. Future
research will address military nUxV C2; nUxV capability definition and understanding; behaviour-based and
reactive nUxVs, emergence and stigmergy; and collaboration and interaction between human-robot teams.
In support of Canadian Forces transformation, Defence R&D Canada (DRDC) has established an ongoing program to develop machine intelligence for semi-autonomous vehicles and systems. Focussing on mine clearance and remote scouting for over a decade, DRDC Suffield has developed numerous UGVs controlled remotely over point-to-point radio links. Though this strategy removes personnel from potential danger, DRDC recognized that human factors and communications bandwidth limit teleoperation and that only networked, autonomous unmanned systems can conserve these valuable resources. This paper describes the outcome of the first autonomy project, Autonomous Land Systems (ALS), designed to demonstrate basic autonomous multivehicle land capabilities.