U.S. Department of Defense


Date of this Version



Journal of Terramechanics 49 (2012) 191–196; http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jterra.2012.04.001


The military is constantly expanding the use of unmanned ground vehicles in warfighting applications that often involve complex environments. Part of the focus of military research is to improve or validate existing routing algorithms which are used to predict vehicle mobility. Routing algorithms are based on the time required for vehicle movement through a series of obstacles such as trees or fences, thus requiring an assessment of the ability to override such obstacles as compared to finding an alternate maneuver path. The required overriding force can be computed and compared to a vehicle’s tractive force to determine the best viable option. If overriding the obstacle is an option (tractive force exceeds the required overriding force), the delay in overriding can be assessed as compared to the delay in maneuvering around the obstacle. This study provides a quick and reasonable calculation of the force required to override specific types of vertically embedded obstacles to support the determination of movement capabilities for unmanned ground vehicles on the battlefield.