Textron Systems is collaborating with the Horstman Group to enhance the M5 Robotic Vehicle – Medium (RV-M) with HydroCore suspension technology. The two companies announced the collaboration at the Eurosatory 2022 conference in Paris.
Textron Systems’ M5 RV-M is an unmanned variant of the company’s M5 RIPSAW manned vehicle. The M5 RV-M has a flat deck design that supports a diverse set of payloads for various military missions to remove soldiers from the riskiest places in the battlefield. As a hybrid-electric robotic unmanned ground vehicle, the M5 RV-M is designed to support near silent maneuvers, without compromising power or mobility.
The Horstman Group’s HydroCore is claimed to be the first integrated hydropneumatic spring and damper product developed under the Horstman Scalable Mobility architecture. The HydroCore strut provides improved levels of stability, ride quality and speed-over-terrain performance.
“Launching the HydroCore at [Eurosatory] is the culmination of over two years of internal research and development,” said Ian Pain, chief executive officer for the Horstman Group. “With this product we have developed a solution that takes the best attributes and lessons learned from 15 years of Hydrostrut, semi-active, fully active, Ride Height Control System (RHCS) and track tensioner experience to create a product that offers true flexibility and affordable upgrades to our customers.”
Over the next two years, the Horstman Scalable Mobility architecture and HydroCore upgrade kits will be fully field tested. The Horstman Scalable Mobility architecture means that when the M5 RV-M has the HydroCore strut installed at the time of vehicle manufacture, a new functionality can be added to the strut at a later date through the application of one or more upgrade kits – all without modification of the HydroCore strut.
The HydroCore strut is available in either a passive damping kit, semi-active damping kit or fully active kit configuration.
Speaking about the benefits of the addition of the HydroCore to the M5 RV-M, David Phillips, senior vice president for Land and Sea Systems at Textron Systems, said, “The vehicle dynamics, efficiency and maintenance benefits we expect from HydroCore will help make the M5 RV-M the most capable, high-performance unmanned ground vehicle in its class available for the warfighter.”