Getting ready to release its middle-class unmanned ground vehicle this year, HAVELSAN will make unmanned ground, aerial, submarine and surface vehicles communicate with each other so that they can perform duties together.
Working on an unmanned vehicle for a while, HAVELSAN is now about to finalize it. The company is preparing to make unmanned land, aerial, submarine and surface vehicles talk to each other through an algorithm that they work on to ensure that these vehicles can carry out joint operations.
Training and Simulation Technologies Gen. Mng. Asst. of HAVELSAN has been carrying out various works in relation to autonomous systems since 2018. In this context, R&D works are carried out in the areas of Swarm Robotic Systems and Robotic and Autonomous Ground Systems.
R&D works produced results, and a prototype of middleclass unmanned ground vehicle was recently designed and developed in 2019. Driving and on-site tests are currently being conducted for the prototype vehicle.
The prototype is being developed as a unit suitable to its physical environment, decisive and robust, comprising various features in it, including the autonomous vehicle control unit, motor control system, battery monitoring system, LIDAR, RADAR and other environmental sensors as well as a data fusion unit, artificial intelligence module and health status monitoring module.
A “department” has been established for unmanned systems
Dr. Mehmet Akif Nacar, HAVELSAN’s General Manager, informed about their efforts in the area of unmanned systems.
Stating that there have been significant developments since they exhibited the unmanned ground vehicle for the first time in International Defense Industry Fair held in Istanbul, Nacar said that they have finalized the organizational works in relation to this field within the company and they have established a unit as a “department”, where more than 20 personnel are now assigned to work.
Saying that they carry out R&D works for autonomous systems with their own resources, Nacar emphasized that their aim is to develop autonomous vehicles in 4 different categories, which are unmanned ground, aerial, surface and submarine vehicles.
“Equipped with Swarm intelligence”
Dr. Mehmet Akif Nacar noted that they, as HAVELSAN, mostly focus on the development of algorithms and autonomous control of these vehicles rather than improvement of their mechanical features.
Highlighting the fact that the vehicle had a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Threat Detection System when it was first exhibited, Nacar said:
“That system is still available. There are also new telecommunication systems introduced in line with it. The useful load can be turned into another system such as a surveillance-reconnaissance system instead of KBRN, when needed. Moreover, we have launched our tests for swarm intelligence, we have now developed that algorithm, as well. We are improving swarm intelligence rather than focusing on autonomous working of a single vehicle, so that the vehicles can carry out various duties as a swarm, rather than individually. Various tests were conducted and tests related to task performances were also carried out. Tests were particularly conducted outside and on-site with many factors including snow, mud and rain. The performance of the vehicle is pretty good. From now on, we will keep coming up with new systems by using similar technologies in unmanned aerial, submarine and surface vehicles as well.
Countdown to mass production
Drawing attention to the fact that they have made great progress with a team working highly efficiently in a very short period of time like 1 year, Nacar said, “We will get this vehicle ready this year. It will be in a position to provide services to institutions specifically in line with their demands. Following the prototype tests and qualification tests, the vehicle will be ready to be mass-produced.”
Pointing out that Presidency of Defense Industries has already ongoing projects on unmanned ground vehicles at varying phases, Nacar said:
“We have chosen the middle-class vehicle for ourselves. However, on request, we are ready for any tasks assigned to us such as developing sub-systems for large-type vehicles or original vehicles.