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Autonomous Russian Warfighter

A new Russian military vehicle can search, detect, track, and eliminate targets entirely on its own, and therefore is a practical example of an autonomous warfighting robot. In a conversation with Jane’s, a world authority on weapons systems, Russia’s Military Industrial Company (VPK), noted that “Tigr-M” has a remote control weapons system armed with a 30 mm Shipunov 2A72 cannon and a 7.62 mm Kalashnikov PKTM coaxial machinegun. “The new vehicle is fully unmanned, as it can search, detect, track, and eliminate targets in automatic mode.” 

Tigr-M weighs 8,200 kg, and carries 200 30X165mm rounds and 1,000 7.62X54R mm cartridges.  It can be driven remotely at a 3km distance. Tigr-M can destroy land targets at a 5,000meter distance by day and at 1,000 meters by night. It features an electro-optical fire control system with an automatic target tracking device. This weapons system edges toward what many ethicists consider to be a dangerous area, one in which lethal decisions can arguably be made by machines. However, international norms support a fire control system in which humans must be in the decision process when lethal force is used.