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Ground robots with varying degrees of autonomy are rapidly becoming critical for ground forces worldwide. Cargo transport and surveillance are some of the most obvious applications. While some of the new robots carry weapons, Western manufacturers have shied away from connecting their most advanced autonomy algorithms to the process of firing them.
A new ground robot for armed reconnaissance has been unveiled. The system is designed to execute high-risk scouting missions and deliver a real-time common operating picture without putting soldiers in danger.
Rheinmetall showcased a new scouting configuration of its Mission Master ground robot, ratcheting up competition in a European market segment that is set to heat up in the coming years.
The new version features a suite of sensors mounted on a collapsible, 3.5-meter mast, including an infrared sensor, a surveillance radar and a 360-degree camera. A laser rangefinder and target designator are also included on the vehicle, as is a 7.62mm gun on a remote-controlled weapon station, according to a company statement.
The six-wheeled vehicle’s autonomous functions are powered by the company’s PATH kit, claimed to be a means to turn any vehicle into an unmanned platform.
Multiple vehicles can be combined to operate as part a “Wolf Pack” cluster, a technology enabling communications, cueing and targeting toward a common mission objective, as reported by defensenews.com.