Hyundai Rotem announced on 7 July that it has handed over to South Korea's Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) two multipurpose unmanned ground vehicles (MPUGVs) based on the HR-Sherpa prototype for use in six-months-long evaluation trials with the Republic of Korea Army (RoKA).
The company said in a statement that the move, which marks the RoKA's first introduction of unmanned ground vehicles, comes after it won a contract in November 2020 to supply the 6×6 platforms – along with associated training and support – under an accelerated acquisition scheme aimed at introducing new capabilities to the military.
The vehicles, which the company described as being more capable than the HR-Sherpa, can be used in a variety of roles, including in close combat and surveillance and reconnaissance missions, as well as for ammunition and expendables resupply and casualty evacuation.
Equipped with day-and-night cameras that provide real-time images to the operator, the MPUGVs come with various modes for unmanned driving, including leader-follower, remote driving, and autonomous driving along a pre-designated route, noted the company.
The battery-powered vehicles, which weigh less than two tonnes, have also been equipped with a remote weapon station (RWS) and feature a loading box in the back capable of carrying more than 200 kg of cargo or of transporting patients in case of an emergency. Each of the wheels, which feature airless tyres, is equipped with an in-wheel electric motor that powers each of them independently.
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