Estonia’s Milrem Robotics has reported that the THeMIS unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) delivered to Ukrainian armed forces are making significant contributions in various missions, including demining, route clearance, and re-supply, according to feedback received from the end-users actively utilizing the technology.
The 14 THeMIS UGVs, strategically delivered to Ukraine, are being utilized for tasks such as clearing areas from anti-tank mines and unexploded ordnances (UXOs), as well as transporting equipment to challenging terrains inaccessible to conventional vehicles. Captain (res) Jüri Pajuste, overseeing the Ukrainian program at Milrem Robotics, emphasized the critical role of the UGVs in minimizing the loss of life, a benefit surpassing the avoidance of equipment loss.
The THeMIS UGVs are divided into two categories: seven designed for cargo transport and casualty evacuation (CASEVAC), and seven equipped with payloads from the French CNIM for route clearance and demining operations.
Pajuste highlighted the efficiency of UGVs in labor-intensive activities like casualty evacuation and route clearance, where soldiers are vulnerable targets. The unmanned operation of UGVs from a safe distance enhances the safety of military personnel involved in these tasks.
One notable application is the use of THeMIS by engineers to expedite mining operations by transporting anti-tank mines. Additionally, during challenging conditions such as the muddy season (bezdorizhzhia) in Ukraine, the UGVs serve as re-supply vehicles, avoiding the limitations faced by heavy trucks prone to getting stuck. The compact size and low height of the THeMIS UGVs contribute to increased survivability by making detection difficult for the enemy.
For security reasons, the units utilizing the UGVs and deployment locations remain classified.
In a recent development, Milrem Robotics formalized a cooperation agreement with the Ukrainian Defense Industry (UDI). This agreement outlines collaborative efforts in identifying Ukraine’s requirements and use cases for robotic systems to enhance the capabilities of the country’s armed forces during and after the ongoing conflict. The partnership aims to integrate Ukraine’s battlefield experience into Milrem Robotics’ existing robotic systems and develop new products to bolster Ukraine’s manned and unmanned multi-domain capabilities.
The agreement also includes plans to explore 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.
Milrem Robotics, recognized as the leading European robotics and autonomous systems developer, has offices in Estonia, Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands, and the US. The company is renowned for its THeMIS and Multiscope UGVs, the Type-X Robotic Combat Vehicle, and the MIFIK autonomy kit.