The global trend of replacing manned crew-served weapon systems on military vehicles with remote-controlled counterparts continues to gain traction. This shift aims to enhance crew protection, improve precision, minimize collateral damage, provide superior situational awareness, and increase the effectiveness of deployed weapon systems. Simultaneously, armed forces worldwide are incorporating 8×8 wheeled Armoured Fighting Vehicles (AFVs) into their operational fleets. Keeping these developments in mind, Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace (KONGSBERG) of Norway has been collaborating closely with Krauss Maffei Wegman (KMW) (now KMW+Nexter Defense Systems (KNDS)) of Germany for over two years. Their objective has been to integrate the KONGSBERG PROTECTOR RT60 Remote Turret onto the Boxer Armoured Fighting Vehicle.
Initially showcased at the opening of the KNDS Boxer manufacturing facility at WFEL, Stockport in May 2021, the continued cooperation between KONGSBERG and KNDS has resulted in the successful development of an impressive, integrated capability of the RT60-Boxer, which recently completed platform and turret testing. The RT60 builds upon the lineage of the RT20, delivered to the US Marine Corps as part of the ACV Programme, and the RT40, delivered to the US Army STRYKER Programme. It enhances these capabilities, delivering a technologically advanced and highly reliable remote turret capability well-suited for present and future military operations. KONGSBERG Remote Turrets have already been successfully integrated onto a wide range of vehicles, including various Unmanned Ground Vehicles, where the remote-controlled operation and firing of turrets via radio control have been thoroughly validated.
This successful live-fire testing and demonstration of the RT60-Boxer in Norway, witnessed by a large international audience, provides tangible evidence of the cooperation between KONGSBERG and KNDS. This significant milestone offers potential end-users a technologically advanced, low-risk, integrated Remote Turret and Boxer configuration suited for modern Land Forces,” stated Eirik Tord Jensen, Executive Vice President of the Land Systems division, at the conclusion of the successful demonstration.
It includes an advanced sensor suite comprising a day camera, thermal camera, and laser range-finder, along with an enhanced weapon suite featuring a Mk44 30 x 173mm cannon, a 7.62 coaxial weapon, a Commander’s Independent Remote Weapon System (PROTECTOR RS4) with compatibility for multiple weapon system integrations, and twin under-armour Anti-Tank Guided Missiles. The seamless integration of the RT60 onto the Boxer, facilitated by the combined expertise of KONGSBERG’s remote turret technology and KNDS’ platform experience, has yielded rapid and straightforward integration, surpassing all testing with resounding success thus far. Expanding on the capabilities of the RT20 and RT40, the RT60 equips infantry or reconnaissance forces with a diverse range of functionalities.