The US Army wants to field light, medium, and heavy robotic combat vehicles to prepare for future combat on the modern battlefield as part of a rapid modernization effort.
American defense firm Pratt Miller tweeted about a week before Christmas that it delivered two Robotic Combat Vehicle-Light unmanned ground vehicle prototypes (RCV-Ls) to the Army.
“RCV-L’s 3 and 4 were delivered to GVSC today, 2 weeks ahead of schedule. This completes the full contracted delivery of Robotic Combat Vehicle – Light in preparation for 2021 testing and experimentation,” Pratt Miller tweeted.
Pratt Miller partnered with U.K.-headquartered defense contractor QinetiQ. Both firms were awarded the contracts in January.
“Robots have the potential to revolutionize the way we conduct ground combat operations,” Brig. Gen. Ross Coffman, director of the NGCV CFT, told Defense News earlier this year.
“Whether that’s giving increased firepower to a dismounted patrol, breaching an enemy fighting position, or providing [chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive] reconnaissance, we envision these vehicles providing commanders more time and space for decisions and reducing risk to soldiers,” Coffman said.
RCV-Ls can operate in human or semi-autonomous modes and are equipped with hybrid-electric motors for longer-range reconnaissance or attack missions.
The Army also awarded contracts to QinetiQ and Textron to build four light (RCV Light) and four medium (RCV Medium) sized robotic tanks.