Tuesday, September 28, 2021

U.S. Army is one step closer to fielding autonomous vehicles

The new semi-autonomous technology is nearly ready to integrate into the Army’s support and sustainment structure. A self-driving heavy tactical vehicle under development by Army engineers is one step closer to becoming a reality.

Army Futures Command Commander, Gen. John Murray, got first-hand experience with Tactical Wheeled Vehicle Leader Follower (LF) Technology at U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Ground Vehicle Systems Center, according to a recent service news release.

Leader-follower is a capability for an optionally-manned vehicle (In this case, a PLS, or Palletized Load System) to lead other autonomous follower vehicles, and/or to become an autonomous follower behind another optional-manned vehicle.


Leader-follower technology will give a greater sustainment throughput capacity, a means to self-secure transportation convoys, while giving the commander options for protecting Soldiers in a hostile environment.

The first issuing of this technology to Soldiers is coming shortly with the first thirty systems being issued to the 41st Transportation Company at JRTC and Fort Polk, Louisiana, in September and next thirty systems being issued to the 15th Transportation Company at Fort Sill and Fires Center of Excellence, Oklahoma, in January.

Photo courtesy of Ground Vehicle Systems Center

Photo courtesy of Ground Vehicle Systems Center

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Dylan Malyasov
U.S. defense journalist and commentator. Aviation photographer. Dylan leads Defence Blog's coverage of global military news, focusing on engineering and technology across the U.S. defense industry.