Watch: This self-drive combat vehicle could redefine wars of the future

  • German defence company Rheinmetall has developed an autonomous driving combat tank called the Autonomous Combat Warrior Wiesel.
Screengrab taken from video posted on YouTube by Your Future Car.
Screengrab taken from video posted on YouTube by Your Future Car.

Remember Iron Man 2? This Marvel Universe movie presented the idea of autonomous drones and bots at wars as a key plot point, based on the argument that it would help in bringing down the number of casualties working at the frontline, drastically. While autonomous war bots are still mostly a thing in the movies, autonomous driving technology is now steadily taking over the mobility industry, and the concept that was presented over a decade ago in the movie seems to be coming alive.

German defence company Rheinmetall has created an autonomous combat tank that may change how wars (god forbid!) can look in the future. Named the Autonomous Combat Warrior Wiesel (ACW Wiesel), this self-driving combat tank is driven by an autonomous kit which reportedly is applicable to multiple vehicles, both tracked and wheeled, such as Boxer, Lynx or HX tactical trucks. One can control the ACW Wiesel either manually or through remote control or can be driven in a fully autonomous mode by programming waypoints on a tablet.

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Based on a report by MilitaryLeak, the ACW Wiesel combat tank is capable of avoiding hurdles all by itself and it can follow a lead vehicle in convoy mode as well. Reportedly, the next-generation features of this military vehicle include detecting soldier behaviour and off-road terrain.

In a research program called Autonomous Combat Warrior (ACW), Rheinmetall's German, Australian and Canadian developmental teams are collaborating with research teams from the Defence Science and Technology (DST) group, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) with an aim to create advanced robotics and automated vehicle technologies. The goal of this collaboration is to change the way land vehicles support military operations.

First Published Date: 28 Sep 2022, 08:49 AM IST

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