ADEX 2019: Hanwha Defense, Hyundai Rotem display prototype UGVs

Sunil Nair

South Korea’s Hanwha Defense and Hyundai Rotem each displayed a prototype unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) at the Seoul International Aerospace & Defense Exhibition 2019 (ADEX 2019) taking place from 15 to 20 October.

The development of both multipurpose UGVs, which are aimed at meeting future requirements of the Republic of Korea Army (RoKA), has been supported by South Korea’s Agency for Defense Development (ADD), which has tested each of the prototypes in different conditions to simulate future operations with RoKA infantry units.

Hanwha Defense displayed a multipurpose 4x4 UGV equipped with a K3 5.56 machine gun and an EO/IR sensor unit at the ADEX 2019 exhibition. (IHS Markit/Sunil Nair)

Hanwha Defense displayed a multipurpose 4x4 UGV equipped with a K3 5.56 machine gun and an EO/IR sensor unit at the ADEX 2019 exhibition. (IHS Markit/Sunil Nair)

The smaller and lighter of the two is Hanwha Defense’s multipurpose UGV, which features a 4×4 electric drive system as well as an auxiliary power unit (APU).

Weighing 940 kg, the platform has a payload of 160 kg, can attain a maximum speed of 20 km/h, and is capable of negotiating a maximum gradient climb of 60% and slide slope of 30%.

The UGV displayed at the show was equipped with a K3 5.56 machine gun and an electro-optical/infrared (IO/IR) system featuring a day-light and uncooled thermal camera. According to Hyun Sup Eun, a senior engineer at Hanwha’s Defense Robotics systems team, the UGV is intended for future use only by the RoKA and there are no export plans.

Hyundai Rotem’s Sherpa multipurpose infantry support UGV is 2.4 m long, 1.5 m wide, 0.9 m high and features a 6×6 electric drive system, a skid steering system and airless tyres.

Hyundai Rotem displayed its Sherpa 6x6 multipurpose UGV at the ADEX 2019 exhibition. (IHS Markit/Sunil Nair )

Hyundai Rotem displayed its Sherpa 6x6 multipurpose UGV at the ADEX 2019 exhibition. (IHS Markit/Sunil Nair )

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Sunil Nair

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