Sarcos Defense and BAE Systems Partner on Contract for Air Force Research Laboratory

Industrial robotics and defense leaders to develop system to advance artificial intelligence and machine learning through enhanced perception and sensing capabilities for autonomous platforms

 SALT LAKE CITY and FALLS CHURCH, VA. – August 16, 2021 – Sarcos Defense, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sarcos Robotics (“Sarcos”), a leader in the development of robots that augment humans to enhance productivity and safety, and global defense, aerospace, and security leader, BAE Systems plc, today announced that the companies are partnering to develop advanced perception and sensing capabilities for autonomous platforms for Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), to benefit Department of Defense (DoD) operations.

Sarcos and BAE Systems FAST Labs™ were awarded a $1.699M contract by AFRL (Rome, NY) to work on a Collaborative Sensing platform (BAA FA8750-20-S-7014). The work is expected to continue through 2023, culminating with the demonstration of the new solution.

This platform will aim to address the complex issues that involve the coordination of both individual and multiple cooperating heterogeneous autonomous platforms, including unmanned aircraft systems (UASs) and unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) equipped with standard multi-modal sensors, such as cameras, radar, and LiDAR. The expected result will coalesce multiple environmental inputs and combine with artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies to enable unmanned systems to work together in greater harmony, both alone and coordinating with each other in “swarm” scenarios. The platform will enable better situational awareness and safety, including accurate detection, tracking, and classification of time-critical objects, particularly in unstructured environments.

Sarcos expects to apply this research in its commercial robotics products, particularly in its forthcoming Cybernetic Training for Autonomous Robots (CYTAR™) AI platform, which Sarcos is also working with AFRL to develop. Learnings will be leveraged to further improve situational awareness and safety for Sarcos’ robotic technologies, including its Guardian® XT highly dexterous teleoperated robot and Guardian® XO® full-body, battery-powered industrial exoskeleton.

 “This collaboration represents an exciting opportunity to bring together a team of world-renowned experts from both academia and DoD contractor organizations to develop a solution that will enable the military and other entities to operate autonomous platforms with greater speed and efficacy,” said Dr. Denis Garagić, chief scientist, advanced systems and AI, Sarcos. “This project has wide-reaching implications, enabling safer and much more accurate deployments of autonomous platforms while improving data quality and overall operational efficiency. At Sarcos, we believe this technology will also assist us with the operation of our own technologies, including our CYTAR AI platform for autonomous robots.”

“We look forward to seeing the results of this research project and the potential impact it may have on our U.S. defense operations,” said Dr. Peter Zulch, Air Force Research Labs. “Better perception and improving sensing lags are critical challenges, particularly as autonomous systems become more widely used. Sarcos and BAE Systems are best positioned to develop a solution that will enable these platforms to better communicate and share information to enhance safety and help us make critical operational decisions faster.”

For more information about Sarcos Defense, please visit For more information about BAE Systems, please visit

Cleared for public release by the Air Force Research Laboratory, Case Number AFRL-2021-2504.


About Sarcos Defense
Sarcos Defense, based in Salt Lake City, Utah, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sarcos Robotics, a leader in robotic systems that augment humans to enhance productivity and safety. Sarcos Defense is led by an elite team of proven retired U.S. military officers who understand the current and future threat environment and are uniquely equipped to deliver solutions that meet the needs of the modern military. Working closely with the U.S. Department of Defense and other federal and international government agencies, Sarcos Defense identifies capability gaps and undertakes research and development efforts, as well as rapid systems integration, to transform Sarcos’ commercial products into specialized, mission-ready solutions that meet the specified requirements. For more information, please visit

On April 6, 2021, Sarcos announced that it will become publicly listed through a merger transaction with Rotor Acquisition Corp. (NYSE: ROT.U, ROT, and ROT WS) (“Rotor”), a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021, at which point the combined company’s common stock is expected to trade on Nasdaq under the ticker symbol STRC.

Press Contact:

Sarcos Robotics
Benjamin Mimmack
(801) 419-0438