The Republic of Korea Army (ROKA) is banking on innovation as part of its plan to emerge as a futuristic combat forces in the coming decades. Taking a step closer to its objective, the ROKA unveiled, at the ongoing ADEX, its vision of future combat force with reduced reliance on manpower and greater use of technology.
The ROKA has maintained a manpower focussed 2.5 generation force, However, with the postponement in introduction of next generation weapon systems, the gap with future joint forces is widening. To reduce this gap, the ROKA will place a greater emphasis on survivability and combat efficiency with use of technologies of the 4th industrial revolution.
Transformative Innovation of Ground forces Enhanced by the 4th industrial Revolution technology or TIGER 4.0 is the name of the new initiative for which the ROKA has adopted ‘Hoguki’ as its mascot, a character representing the Mt. Baekdu Tiger.
Till 2020, the ROKA will conduct combat experiments and make use of wheeled APCs, prototypes of network equipment, purchase and lease drones for combat experiments. From 2023- 2025, battalion level integration trials will start, and these will focus on improving the capabilities of 2 APC infantry battalions with RCWS for trial purposes. The usage of already integrated drone and network equipment’s is also planned.
As part of TIGER 4.0, Infantry units will be made more manoeuvrable with greater availability of bulletproof vehicles and sensor-to-shooter features. Maneuverability, Network and Artificial Intelligence will enable the ROKA to cope with various threats more effectively and efficiently in the future.
There will be a much greater emphasis on the connectivity between the sensor to shooter into an integrated network and C4I system. Identify targets, recommend and determine the most feasible strike methods for each target using AI. Infantry units will receive greater manoeuvre capability through use of warrior platforms, dronebot combat systems and wheeled armoured personnel carriers.
Every individual solder will be equipped with a personal combat system called Warrior Platform along with cutting edge firearms and communication devices.
Wheeled APCs will serve as the for- ward base in conjunction with sensors, RCWS and capabilities to supply power to drones. Remote Controlled Weapon Station (RCWS) will ensure protection of operating crew through RCWS.
A key aspect of TIGER 4.0 for the ROKA is the creation of a hyper connected network of combat platforms with a multi-level communications system and establishment of an integrated database to create an AI environment.
This will call for establishment of a multi-level communications system with integrated satellite, air and ground nodes in order to combine every platform in one single network. As a result, information collection and processing will be a key aspect of the new initiative. Sensors in each and every one of the platforms are to be combined with AI.
Sensors will be used to detect and alert troops to enemy presence and then recommend an optimal way to conduct combat after overall analysis and evaluation of the situation.
There will also be a wheeled command carrier which will be optimised for combat C2 and execution of various missions. Each vehicle will contain a C4I system onboard for each echelon.
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