Israel Aerospace Industries and the Carmel AFV Programme

Israel's MoD has selected IAI as the prime contractor to develop technologies for the future armoured fighting vehicle (AFV), the Carmel.

11 October 2021
IAI's two-man, closed hatch AFV uses autonomy and AI to locate and destroy time-sensitive targets (Credit: IAI)


Israel Aerospace Industries' two-man armoured fighting vehicle (AFV) with a closed hatch has been selected by the Israel Ministry of Defense (IMoD) for the Carmel Future Armoured Fighting Vehicle programme.

The ImoD selected IAI as the prime contractor for the Carmel programme following its successful live demonstration of its two-man, closed hatch AFV, which is based on automatic and autonomous systems that complement the two-man team, and operate the central subsystems – the vehicles’ mission planning and management, situational awareness, driving and lethality.

These capabilities allow the team to define, supervise and interfere only when there is a necessity or need, and enables it to cover a wider area of concern while effectively meeting the challenges faced by the manoeuvring forces. The system has the ability to locate and destroy time-sensitive targets with small footprints, through quick acquisition and effective engagement of targets.

“The central principles behind the company’s concept of land combat include intelligence gathering and acquisition of targets in the battlefield, conducted autonomously,” explained IAI President and CEO, Boaz Levy. “The Carmel solution, as demonstrated by IAI, brings to the world of land combat the concept of system of systems championed by IAI, and includes a combination of capabilities, systems, groundbreaking innovation and connection to the world of artificial intelligence as an additional strategic capability the IDF can use in the future battlefield. Carmel will enable complex ground operations with less risk to human lives, which will transform ground combat strategy as we know it today.”

IAI will develop the next phase of the Carmel programme, which entails the development and demonstration of technologies for a multi-dimensional combat team, which will enable significant improvement in the system's manoeuvrability.

The Carmel concept is groundbreaking on a global scale, and has grabbed the attention of many industries and militaries around the world. The program combines an innovative operational concept with the latest and most advanced state-of-the-art technologies, which provide solutions in the future battlefield based on a small team, and  extensive reliance on autonomous capabilities based on artificial intelligence (AI), all while minimizing the risk to human lives in a ground campaign, minimizing collateral damage, and streamlining battle management.

The central technologies IAI is developing for land manoeuvring forces include:

  • Command System – the brain, in charge of planning and managing the combat team’s missions autonomously.
  • Situational Awareness System – combining advanced capabilities in the areas of radars, SIGINT, and electro-optics, simultaneously locating threats on land, in the air and more that fall within the combat team’s field of interest, classifying targets in real time and quickly and accurately differentiating and prioritizing between friend or foe.
  • Lethality System – in charge of classifying and prioritizing targets in real time, by allocating the most appropriate lethal tool for each target from a range of munitions at the combat team's disposal.
  • Mobility System – in charge of planning optimal routes of advancement for each of the vehicles in the combat team during missions.
  • Operations System – team members can observe the battlefield in several dimensions, and thus gain a better understanding, and an innovative user interface will enable combat soldiers to receive optimal decisions when they are required to make them.


Watch IAI's Carmel future armoured fighting vehicle technologies in action