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Enhancing Law Enforcement Training with NEO: Integrating Advanced Robotics at FLETC

Enhancing Law Enforcement Training with NEO: Integrating Advanced Robotics at FLETC
For Immediate Release
By: Brandon Spragins, FLETC OPA

GLYNCO, Ga. - The Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC) have always been at the forefront of incorporating cutting-edge technology into their training programs. The latest addition, NEO, a 70-pound Quadrupedal Unmanned Ground Vehicle (Q-UGV), exemplifies this commitment to innovation from the FLETC Cyber Division (CYD), Technical Investigations Branch (TIB). 

Despite this robot not being truly autonomous, nicknamed NEO; the robot boasts remarkable features, including 360-degree video capability, obstacle avoidance, a PTZ electro-optical camera, and thermal camera. These capabilities significantly enhance situational awareness and safety for law enforcement officers in the field.

FLETC Director, Benjamine C. Huffman talked to the new technology at the Border Security Expo, in El Paso, Texas, on May 21, where he boasted NEO and some of the great advancements coming to FLETC. 

“Together, we foster a culture of continuous improvement, staying ahead in developing relevant, cutting-edge training programs,” expressed Director Huffman. “Together, we forge the path to excellence, ensuring our graduates are resilient, agile, and ready to safeguard our communities.”

One of the primary applications of NEO in the field includes clearing structures, vehicles, and perimeter surveillance. These tasks are typically high-risk for law enforcement officers, making NEO’s ability to extend officers' eyes and ears invaluable. The robot NEO is operated using a mesh network of nodes driven by Radio Frequency, significantly amplifying its command-and-control capabilities.

Michael Bates, a CYD, TIB Senior Instructor with 35 years of federal service, underscores the value of integrating emerging technologies into FLETC’s training regimen. 

“As instructors, we need to share our expertise and experience with our students, especially when it comes to improving safety in the field,” Bates emphasizes. His insights are crucial as the program looks to leverage NEO in various training scenarios within a multitude of FLETC programs and courses.

CYD is also exploring ways to incorporate Q-UGV technology to illustrate Internet of Things (IoT) threat mitigation and denial of service scenarios, broadening the scope of its utility. The integration with CYD’s already-deployed mesh radio systems ensures that NEO will seamlessly fit into the existing framework used for classroom and scenario-based training.

The upcoming courses and training opportunities involving NEO are still under review by FLETC, but the potential for its use across various FLETC programs appears limitless. By harnessing NEO’s capabilities, FLETC aims to provide a more comprehensive and realistic training experience, preparing law enforcement officers to face modern challenges more effectively.

The introduction of NEO into the FLETC training ecosystem marks a significant step forward in utilizing advanced robotics for law enforcement training. With additional training from the creators of NEO and the development of future policies for its use in the field, this innovative robot promises to be an indispensable asset for both instructors and students, ultimately enhancing safety and operational effectiveness.

For instructors or partner organizations interested in witnessing a demonstration of the Q-UGV’s capabilities, please contact FLETC Cyber Division or call (912)267-2485. This hands-on experience can provide unparalleled insights into the tactical advantages offered by this cutting-edge technology, preparing law enforcement personnel for the challenges of modern security operations.

Federal organization personnel interested in any of FLETC training programs or courses should contact their agency training officer to register, contact FLETC Admissions with any additional questions, or call (912) 267-3447. State, local, and tribal officers requesting training should register online. If organizational support is required or you have additional needs, please contact FLETC Admissions. International (non-US) personnel should email

Enhancing Law Enforcement Training with NEO: Integrating Advanced Robotics at FLETC
NEO, a 70-pound Quadrupedal Unmanned Ground Vehicle (Q-UGV), exemplifies the Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers commitment to innovation from the FLETC Cyber Division (CYD), Technical Investigations Branch (TIB), in Glynco, Ga. on May 29, 2024. (FLETC CYD/ Michael Bates)






















Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers
Office of Public Affairs
Contact: 912-267-2447