The THeMIS unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) delivered by Milrem Robotics to Ukrainian armed forces are being taken full advantage of during demining, route clearance, re-supply and other missions.
Milrem Robotics has delivered 14 THeMIS UGVs to Ukraine. Seven of the systems are intended to carry cargo and for casualty evacuation (CASEVAC) and seven, equipped with payloads from the French CNIM, for route clearance and demining operations.
“The UGVs delivered to Ukraine are being used to clear areas from anti-tank mines as well as unexploded ordnances (UXOs), transporting equipment to areas that are not accessible with conventional vehicles or where the risk of losing that equipment is high,” said Cpt (res) Jüri Pajuste, in charge of the Ukrainian program in Milrem Robotics, naming a few use-cases based on information gathered from the end-user. “However, the most important benefit comes not from avoiding the loss of equipment but the loss of life,” Pajuste added.
“Casualty evacuation and route clearance are two labor-intensive activities where soldiers perform these tasks immediately become targets for the enemy. UGVs, on the other hand, can be operated from a distance, keeping the soldiers in a safe location,” Pajuste added.
The THeMIS’ have also been used by engineers to carry anti-tank mines to accelerate mining operations.
“The operators of the UGVs noted that during the bezdorizhzhia, as the muddy season is referred to in Ukrainian, the THeMIS can act as a re-supply vehicle instead of heavy trucks that tend to get stuck. Also, the small size and low height of the UGV makes its discovery by the enemy difficult and that has increased its survivability,“ Pajuste said.
Milrem Robotics recently signed a cooperation agreement with the Ukrainian Defense Industry (UDI), which consolidates national defense industry companies, that details several development and manufacturing activities between the company and the members of UDI.
According to the agreement, the parties will start strategic cooperation in identifying Ukraine’s requirements and use cases for robotic systems which can enhance the capabilities of Ukraine’s armed units.
Thereafter the companies involved will integrate Ukraine’s battlefield experience into Milrem Robotics’ existing robotic and autonomous systems and develop new products to create Ukraine’s manned and unmanned multi-domain capabilities.
Additionally, the parties will investigate manufacturing THeMIS Combat (with HMG and anti tank capabilities), Combat Engineering (mine detection and demining), CASEVAC unmanned ground vehicles and other Milrem Robotics’ products in Ukraine.