Russia expects to deploy battle robots to protect intercontinental ballistic missile launch sites by 2020, Defense Ministry spokesman Dmitry Andreyev told journalists Monday.
Testing of the automatic weapons system is currently under way, and is set to wrap by year's end, Andreyev said in comments carried by Interfax.
Andreyev refrained from elaborating on the finer details of the battle robot, which he referred to as a "remote-controlled firing system."
But Russia's Strategic Missile Forces said in April — when the robots initially entered testing — that the silo protector weighs 900 kilograms, wields a 12.7-mm machine gun, can speed up to 45 kilometers per hour, fight for up to 10 hours and remain operational in standby mode for up to a week, according to Vesti.ru.
Russia will begin training its own military robot operators next year at the branch of the military forces' Peter the Great Academy in the city of Serpukhov outside Moscow, Andreyev said.
Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin announced last March that Russia had begun developing a remote-controlled android with driving and shooting skills. He too shied away from disclosing details of the project.