Type-X armored combat robot equipped for unmanned convoy protection
Estonia-based Milrem Robotics and Belgium’s John Cockerill Defense have unveiled Milrem’s Type-X Robotic Combat Vehicle. Based on a modular design and equipped with the Cockerill Protected Weapons Station Generation II (CPWS II) turret, the Type-X is a platform for below-12-tonne unmanned armored vehicles built for rapid deployment.
Ever since Milrem debuted its robotic Tracked Hybrid Modular Infantry System (THeMIS) at the 2016 Singapore Airshow, the company has been expanding the capabilities of its combat platform, which can be equipped for a wide variety of missions. The addition of the CPWS II turret is the latest step in producing an unmanned armored combat vehicle that can be integrated into conventional mechanized units as well as deployed by parachute or heavy-lift helicopter.
The Type-X is armored and though it can be remotely controlled, it’s augmented Artificial Intelligence (AI) allows it to support conventional troops or act independently in robotic formations.
Key to this is the CPWS II, which is a low profile, lightweight, remote-controlled turret that can fit on both 4×4 and 6×6 vehicles, and it can carry a M242 25 mm x 137 mm Bushmaster cannon or the 230LF, 30 mm x 113 mm cannon as well Anti-Tank Missiles like Alcotan, MMP, Javelin or SPIKE. It has a new hatch that can be fully closed, elevated, fully opened, or removed completely to accommodate mission needs and for easy maintenance and munitions loading. In addition, it’s equipped with a 360-degree panoramic sight, and CCD, thermal, and fused imaging cameras.
The Type-X can also accept larger turrets.
“One of the first realistic roles for unmanned fighting vehicles will be convoy defense and perimeter or base defense,” Simon Haye, the Chief Marketing Officer for John Cockerill Defense. “The Type-X with the CPWS can be placed in the front and rear of a convoy to provide additional eyes and firepower for the convoy. Rarely does a convoy have available 25 mm firepower and given the system is unmanned, tactics like rushing an ambush site, or maneuvering on the enemy’s position are now legitimate options for a convoy under fire. The lead/follow functions of unmanned vehicles is well-developed technology and spreading some operator stations through the convoy can provide redundancy and quick response. Further FOB security can now be in the form of a mobile unmanned fighting vehicle. Instead of putting soldiers at risk on the wire, these Guardian Systems can provide relentless observation and the capability to maneuver and disperse an attack instead of just absorbing it.”
Dr. Hans C. Mumm