Unmanned Robotic Combat Vehicle Being Tested
Israel’s Ministry of Defense (MoD) will begin trials of an unmanned robotic combat vehicle – dubbed the Medium Robotic Combat Vehicle (M-RCV) – in 2023.
The vehicle was developed as part of an autonomous battlefield concept, in a collaboration among several Israeli arms firms; including the Ministry’s Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D), the Tank and APC Directorate, and Israeli security industries.
The new robotic vehicle looks like a robotic tank, and features autonomous driving and environment sensing capabilities, a capsuled drone for reconnaissance missions and an autonomous turret topped with a firing station.
An in-built system for receiving and transporting UAVs and a missile launcher are also included.
The vehicle was unveiled this month at the Eurosatory Defense and Security Exhibition at Elbit Systems’ pavilion.
“The M-RCV’s capabilities include a highly autonomous solution for forward reconnaissance, and controlled lethality in all-terrain conditions,” according to the Ministry’s press release. “It is operational during the day and night in all-weather scenarios, while emphasizing operational effectiveness, simplicity, minimum operator intervention and integration into heterogeneous unmanned arrays.”
This is not the first time Israel’s army has turned to autonomous robots in its defense industry. In April, the nation’s MoD trialed Iron Beam; a laser-based missile defense system, while in 2021 the nation tested a semi-autonomous machine loaded with machine guns, dubbed Jaguar, which is intended to substitute combat soldiers.