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The Robot Report Goes In-Depth on Chemical Weapons Project

Podcast interviews CRG Automation President James DeSmet

NOVEMBER 5, 2021LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY — Leading automation industry publication The Robot Report today published an interview with CRG Automation President James DeSmet about the company’s projects with the U.S. Department of Defense to more efficiently and safely destroy the Army’s aging stockpile of chemical weapons.

“My big takeaway here is that this is a great story about collaboration and combining expertise from different companies,” said The Robot Report’s Steve Crowe in conducting the interview for the publication’s podcast. “There's been a lot of great use cases of robotics and automation over the years, but decommissioning chemical weapons, I can't think of anything that's better than that.”

Staring down an aggressive 2023 destruction deadline, the military took the unprecedented step in mid-2019 of rethinking the entire process. With that ambitious timeline in mind, the government activated a contracting mechanism first established in NASA’s 1950s race to space to bring in private-sector industry leaders and turned to CRG Automation to help develop the critical systems needed.

“As a past member of the military, this project took on a special importance for me,” DeSmet said. “The perplexing engineering problems to solve, the rapidly approaching deadline and the severity of the chemical agents involved all added up to a challenge we wanted to tackle.”

Click here to listen to the interview by The Robot Report, which offers automation industry insight weekly through their conversations with leading roboticists, innovative robotics companies and other key members of the robotics community.