Military Trends, Technology, and International Developments > Unmanned Vehicles

Chinese-made Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV)


China closing the UGV gap with US, Russia | Janes - 23 November 2018

--- Quote ---China is closing the technology gap with the US and Russia in the development of unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) that feature autonomous capabilities such as waypoint navigation, targeting, obstacle avoidance, and terrain mapping.

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An example of this technological advancement is Sany Heavy Industry's Giant Tiger UGV, which is equipped with a host of sensors and dual satellite positioning systems that enable waypoint navigation in addition to autonomous route patrol. The tracked platform, which was shown at Airshow China 2018 armed with a 12.7-mm machine gun, is 1.4 m high, 4.2 m long, and 2.0 m wide. The armoured vehicleweighs 2.1 tonnes and can carry a payload of 800 kg.

Another example is an autonomous all-terrain vehicle (ATV) developed by the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC). The platform, which resembles a quad bike and can be fitted with the TL-4 anti-tank-guided weapon (ATGW), can be used to attack multiple targets within several kilometres.

The China North Industries Corporation (Norinco) is the company leading the way in the country's UGV production. At Airshow China 2018 Norinco displayed four prototype UGVs, each of which was designed with a specific mission in mind. However, all these vehicles can autonomously avoid obstacles and automatically track and aim at targets.
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The Giant Tiger UGV was displayed at Airshow China 2018. Source: Via Sing Tao Global Network News

China’s Norinco rolls out new combat, reconnaissance, and logistics UGVs | Janes - 30 November 2018

--- Quote ---Prototype UGVs showcased by the Beijing-based company include the 6 tonne King Leopard Tracked Reconnaissance and Assault UGV, which has been specifically designed to provide light attack and reconnaissance support to combat and tactical vehicles in high-threat environments.

The King Leopard is powered by a diesel engine and armed with an electrically powered 23 mm chain gun. It is understood that the weapon can fire a variety of ammunition natures, including armour piercing incendiary (API) and high-explosive (HE). A mast-mounted electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) sensor payload comprising a high-definition daylight camera, thermal imager, and laser rangefinder enables to perform day/night reconnaissance and targeting missions in place of manned assets.

Norinco is also developing the 1.2 tonne Cavalry Lightweight Tracked Multi-Purpose UGV, which is equipped with a modified UW1 remote weapon station (RWS) and armed with a 7.62 mm machine gun and a pair of unguided 80 mm anti-armour or breaching rocket launchers. The electric-powered vehicle is also equipped with an extensive EO/IR suite comprising the RWS' integral daylight camera and thermal imager, as well as a mast-mounted sensor payload that can traverse independently to improve situational awareness.
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--- Quote ---Norinco’s Sharp Claw I UGV in service with Chinese army
15 April 2020

In an announcement made on 13 April via its Sina Weibo account the PLA's Eastern Theatre Command confirmed an 11 April report by the China Central Television 7 (CCTV 7) channel stating that the tracked, combat, and reconnaissance UGV was now in service with the Chinese military.

No information was provided as to when exactly it entered service, the number of platforms being acquired, or which PLAGF units will deploy it.

The UGV, which was first unveiled at the Airshow China 2014 exhibition in Zhuhai, weighs 120 kg, is 60 cm high, 70 cm long, and has an operational range of 1 km, according to Jane's Land Warfare Platforms: Logistics, Support & Unmanned .

The platform, which can be carried in the cargo bay of the larger Sharp Claw II UGV, has been designed for use in remote areas unsuitable for personnel to detect and attack targets "in all weather conditions during the day and at night", according to the manufacturer.

The platform, which Norinco claims can operate autonomously, can be armed with a 7.62 mm light machine gun.
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A screen grab from a CCTV 7 video showing the Norinco Sharp Claw I UGV. On 13 April the PLA’s Eastern Theatre Command confirmed via its Sina Weibo account media reports that the UGV is now in service with the PLAGF. Source: CCTV 7


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