South Korea’s Agency For Defense Development (ADD)-led unmanned ground surveillance vehicle (USV) has entered the systems development phase.

The milestone follows the completion of the USV’s exploratory development. ADD is affiliated with the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA)

Hanwha Defense is responsible for the 6×6 USV’s vehicle manufacturing and communication and surveillance systems integration.

In 2018, the USV’s exploratory development commenced with a focus on testing and evaluating operational capabilities and readiness of major technologies.

The vehicle was put through field testing between last December and this February. During the trials, the USV proved its capability by meeting major operational requirements.

Last month, the USV achieved Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 6 related to key unmanned technologies.

These technologies included self-driving, obstacle detection / avoidance and surveillance.

Hanwha Defense spokesman said: “This unmanned surveillance vehicle can be used to remotely lead mechanised units across a variety of terrains, including tactical roads, off-road, and unpaved roads.

“The vehicle is designed to conduct many different operations such as reconnaissance, target guidance, engagement with the enemy.”

The USV is powered by hybrid power systems and can operate autonomously or remotely.

Some unmanned functions of the vehicle include follow-me, travel-route control, path planning and more. It is equipped with a machine gun mounted on a remote-controlled weapon station.

In February, the Australian Department of Defence (DoD) received three prototype test and evaluation vehicles from Hanwha Defense Australia.