On display at DSEI this year, Ironclad™ is a new Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) designed to take on some of the most dangerous jobs that soldiers currently face.
Ironclad is small enough to negotiate tight urban environments, but maintains the mobility needed to handle extreme cross-country terrain. It can also be fitted to carry out reconnaissance, combat and casualty evacuation roles.
Craig Fennell, Future Programmes Director at BAE Systems Land (UK) explained: "Ironclad has a unique set of capabilities for a UGV. Using high endurance battery power, it offers near silent running up to a 50km range and will come with a set of mission systems that can be quickly changed in the field. A modular connection system allows two vehicles to be connected together to handle additional loads, such as a specialised stretcher. It is also protected against blast and small arms fire to increase mission survivability."
"The next step is for Ironclad to act autonomously as part of a battlegroup, interacting with other vehicles and ground troops to follow mission objectives. This is being tested on existing vehicles as the technology – already at a high state of readiness – is developed."
Each Ironclad is built with a hardware interface that allows the different mission fits to be attached easily. This connection supplies both power and command from the main vehicle chassis, which houses the battery and a two-way remote control unit. The chassis is designed so that hardware needed for autonomous capability can be added at a later stage.