Army to Assess Robot-Combat Tactics

Kris Osborn

VIDEO ABOVE: New Shaped Trajectory Excalibur Round Changes Course in Flight, Destroys Tanks Hiding Under Bridges

By Kris Osborn - Warrior Maven

(Washington, D.C.) Testing front-line enemy defenses, bringing advanced surveillance in front of advancing mechanized forces, carrying supplies and ammunition, networking air-and-ground assets and even attacking enemy formations with weapons—are all missions the Army envisions for its emerging class of 10-ton robots. Later this year, the service plans to conduct a “soldier touch point” exercise at Fort Carson, Colo., wherein unmanned vehicles perform a range of combat missions in tandem with manned crews containing human operators. The exercise, which has been slightly delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, seeks to replicate various key aspects of future war. The Army seeks a light, medium and heavy fleet of Robotic Combat Vehicles as part of an emerging program to support infantry and armored units on the move.

“The mediums are probably about 10-tons or so and that is what we were going to do some experimentation with at Fort Carson. We have not yet done experimentation with what we call heavy class... 20 to 30-ton class vehicle,” Gen. John Murray, Commanding General of Army Futures Command, told Warrior in an interview.

The exercise will explore various combat tactics, maneuvers and scenarios as part of the Army effort to fast-track the technology. The concept is clear—enable human soldier decision makers operating in a command and control capacity to receive organized, fused and integrated combat data in real time from robots. Unmanned vehicles could carry ammunition, cross bridges into enemy fire, perform forward recon missions to test enemy defenses, coordinate with air attack assets and—when directed by human authorities—destroy enemy targets with mounted weapons. Not only will these kinds of technical steps expand attack options and combat lethality while better protecting soldiers from enemy fire, but they will further disperse or disaggregate advancing forces, bringing additional tactical advantages. The robots could also support dismounted infantry in some cases by traversing rigorous terrain and bringing armored support to advancing ground units.

Murray explained that “networking” manned and unmanned nodes is a key part of the technical and strategic effort. “You can imagine that the higher up you go in weight, the more you can put on it. We are looking at algorithms that enable them to cross terrain. So we have spent a lot of time looking at the secure link between the robotic vehicle and the soldier in the vehicle itself,” Murray said. ..... Read More in The National Interest here...

Special Series: ARMY WAR ON CORONAVIRUS -

War on COVID Part I - Saving Soldiers with Remdesivir HERE

Part II - Warrior Intv With Gen. Murray on COVID War HERE

Part III - Army Tests Prototype COVID 19 Vaccine HERE

Part IV - Army Scientists May Have Discovered New COVID-Killing Antibodies HERE

Part V - Army & Harvard Test Prototype Nasal Swab HERE

Part VI - Army COVID 19 Task Force Reviews Weapons HERE

Part VII - How Coronavirus Could Change Future Warfare HERE

Part VIII - Army Weapons Programs "On Track" Despite Coronavirus HERE

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Kris Osborn , the Managing Editor of Warrior Maven, is the new Defense Editor for the National Interest. Osborn previously served at the Pentagon as a Highly Qualified Expert with the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army—Acquisition, Logistics & Technology. Osborn has also worked as an anchor and on-air military specialist at national TV networks. He has appeared as a guest military expert on Fox News, MSNBC, The Military Channel, and The History Channel. He also has a Masters Degree in Comparative Literature from Columbia University.

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