Unmanned combat robot disarmed for reconnaissance duties

2022-06-16 03:19:13 By : Ms. Carrie Chan

Milrem Robotics has rolled out its latest THeMIS Observe battlefield robot variant based on its modular THeMIS UGV platform, with an emphasis on Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), as part of the EU's fourth iMUGS project demonstration in Belgium.

The Integrated Modular Unmanned Ground System (iMUGS) is a permanent PErmanent Structured COoperation (PESCO) project by the EU with the goal of producing a European standardized Unmanned Ground System (EUGS). Key to this is Estonia-based Milrem Robotics' THeMIS modular robotic system that allows for the easy development of robot variants by swapping out payload modules on a common mobility and control module for missions that range from resupplying troops to deploying remote-controlled weapons.

Supported by the Estonian Ministry of Defense, the THeMIS Observe started out as a platform for transporting and launching a tethered quadcopter drone, and last year the THeMIS platform fitted with a 7.62-mm machine gun carried out live-fire exercises. In the latest variant, the drone has been fitted with ISR equipment, including a Z:Sparrowhawk camera from HENSOLDT, Squire radar by Thales, Metravib Defense Pearl acoustic shot detection, Rapid Obscuring SYstem (ROSY) by Rheinmetall, and a mast by the Teksam Company NV.

According to Milrem, a light remote weapon can be added to the THeMIS Observe, which also incorporates Milrem’s Intelligent Functions Kit with follow-me functions, and waypoint navigation with obstacle detection and avoidance.

The purpose of this is to provide soldiers with a reconnaissance platform that can move quickly to seek out and react to new threats using multi-sensor identification, while keeping humans as far from danger as possible. The company says that this is a capability gap that was not previously available to light infantry units.

"A UGV based ISR system significantly increases a tactical unit’s reaction speed on targets as well as the stand-off distance from enemy units," said Captain (reserve) Jüri Pajuste, Defense Research Director at Milrem Robotics. "Thanks to that the capability and survivability of tactical reconnaissance units will increase considerably."

The video below introduces the latest THeMIS Observe.