In a significant step toward enhancing airbase security operations, the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) has initiated trials of an advanced unmanned ground vehicle (UGV). The RSAF unveiled the eight-wheeled UGV at a public event commemorating its 55th anniversary, hosted at the Paya Lebar Air Base from September 9 to 10. The UGV’s public display is a vital component of an exhibition highlighting the RSAF’s future capabilities. During an exclusive media preview of the exhibition, RSAF representatives confirmed that the UGV is currently undergoing trials at an undisclosed airbase.
While specifics such as the number of units being evaluated and the trial’s expected conclusion date were not disclosed, the RSAF’s proactive approach to adopting cutting-edge technology signals its commitment to strengthening security measures. The RSAF remained tight-lipped regarding detailed technical specifications of the UGV. Still, experts and observers have noted its striking resemblance to the Jaeger 8 multirole UGV, a product of Singapore’s defense prime, ST Engineering. The Jaeger series, developed by the Kinetics Advanced Robotics division of ST Kinetics, commenced in late 2015 and gained public attention when the Jaeger 8 was first unveiled at the 2016 Singapore Airshow.
The Jaeger 8 boasts a 2.8-meter length, a weight of approximately 1,000 kg, and an impressive payload capacity of up to 750 kg. With a top speed of 16 km/h, the UGV can be equipped with a remote-controlled weapon station armed with a 7.62 mm machine gun, enhancing its potential for security applications. The vehicle’s foundation is rooted in a commercial all-terrain platform with steering, though the supplier remains undisclosed. The Jaeger 8 is powered by lithium-ion batteries, offering a four-hour operational window that can extend to 24 hours through charging from an onboard electric generator.
This electric drive system ensures quiet operation and a maximum speed of 16 km/h, even when fully loaded. The Jaeger UGV operates in two distinct modes: remote control and semi-autonomous navigation. Equipped with an obstacle detection system utilizing a front-mounted laser and GPS unit, it has the potential to incorporate a “follow-me” mode in future developments. Controlled by an intuitive and user-friendly operator control unit with a range of approximately 1 km, the Jaeger UGV exemplifies the RSAF’s commitment to innovation and its readiness to embrace cutting-edge technology to bolster airbase security.