The Republic of Korea Army has set up an action plan to trial the Redback infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) developed by Hanwha Defense, as the tracked combat vehicle returns home in March after its Australian tests and evaluations during 2021.
Redback was one of the two final candidates for the Australian Army’s LAND 400 Phase 3, a program that aims to procure up to 450 IFV with a decision expected by the end of the year.
Once it completes trials in Australia, the Redback will be handed over in April to an armored cavalry unit of the ROK Army for two months of trials aimed at reviewing the vehicle’s operational capabilities.
The trials will be focused on the Redback’s mobility, operability and maintainability, as the futuristic tracked IFV has successfully navigated the Risk Mitigation Activity tests and evaluations conducted by the Australian Defence Force from February to October 2021.
For mobility tests, the vehicle is set to be assessed on paved and unpaved roads with various driving skills, including pivot, obstacle clearance and night maneuvering with situational awareness equipment.
Operability trials will include evaluation of situational awareness cameras, operation during hard breaking, load space and the ergonomics of various seating configurations. Tactical operations of the auxiliary power unit and turret systems are also to be tested. To review the Redback’s operational sustainability, the vehicle will also be assessed in various recovery situations.
During trials, the Redback is also scheduled to demonstrate its Offboard Health and Usage Management System (HUMS), which monitors and diagnoses component faults in their early stages.
The Redback is also equipped with high-tech sensor systems such as Iron Vision, which allows the crew to see through the vehicle’s armor by projecting the image outside the vehicle onto their helmet-mounted displays, and the Iron Fist active protection system.
In addition to trials in Australia and now South Korea, Redback is a contender in the US Army’s optionally manned fighting vehicle (OMFV) program to procure a successor for the Bradley IFV. The South Korean company has teamed up with Oshkosh Defense for that competition.