Ukraine | Ironclad UGV deployed in the operational theatre
Defence Redefined
Published on 26/09/2023 at 17:15

Besides the aerial and naval unmanned systems, Ukraine is developing a quite promising domain of unmanned ground vehicles that are already on the battlefield.

These projects, such as Roboneers’ Ironclad Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV), were initiated before the Russian full-scale invasion and are now in service with the Ukrainian Armed Forces on the frontline.

Ukrainian Minister of Digital Transformation, Mykhailo Fedorov, said that this UGV is on a trial service with the Ukrainian Defence Forces aiming to take part in assault, reconnaissance, and fire support missions. 

Also read: Hanwha Defense | Presentation of Unmanned Ground Vehicles

It is worth noting that Ironclad has been underway for a while now. Starting in 2018, the UGV has been a regular participant in annual Defence and Security fora, while multiple versions were created and promoted for service with the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

One of the most important capabilities of Ironclad is the Shablya M2 combat module, equipped with a thermal imaging camera for enhanced situational awareness. Its primary purpose is to enhance reconnaissance efforts by swiftly detecting targets on the battlefield and effectively engaging enemy combatants (watch the relevant video at the end of the article).

Also read: 20 URAN-9 Unmanned Combat Ground Vehicles (UCGV) for the Russian Armed Forces | Video

Shablya M2 technical characteristics:

  • Weight: 180 kg (without a weapon or ammunition)
  • Length: of 1,22 meters 
  • Width: 0,83 meters 
  • Height: 0,51 meters
  • Operational detection range (object/human): 5 km / 1,8 km with a 360° coverage 

The UGV’s armor provides protection against small arms fire up to 7.65×54 mm, while its armament consists of the M2 variant of the Shablya remotely-controlled combat module.

Ironclad UGV’s technical characteristics:

  • Weight: 1,800 kg
  • Payload capacity: 400 kg (a portion of this capacity allocated for the combat module)
  • Maximum speed on-road/off-road: 20 km/h / 10 km/h operating on a 4×4 configuration
  • Communication range (remote-controlled): 5 km
  • Ground clearance: 40 cm 
  • Fording: 40 cm 
  • Trench: 50 cm
  • Length: 2,8 meters
  • Width: 1,85 meters
  • Height: 1,46 meters 
  • Engine: diesel generators driving hub-mounted electric motors, the UGV 
  • Endurance: up to four hours in hybrid mode (or ten hours without payload) 
  • Maximum range: 130 km 

Also read: “Marker” | Russia enters the era of autonomous ground-based combat robotic systems – VIDEO

One distinctive advantage of Ironclad is its chassis and its high maneuverability, attributed to its ability to achieve a tighter turning radius. This feature is particularly valuable in navigating challenging terrain, such as damaged buildings, forested areas, minefields, and large trench networks, and reduces the risk of collisions with other vehicles or obstacles on the battlefield, enhancing overall safety and effectiveness.

The development and production of the Ironclad UGV were carried out by Roboneers, a Ukrainian company comprising teams of engineers, electronic engineers, ex-military personnel, and IT specialists specializing in remote control modules, software, situational awareness programs, and remotely controlled platforms. 

Also read: Rheinmetall unmanned vehicles in Cyprus – Exercise with National Guard personnel participation – Photos & VIDEO




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