Several South Korean K-9 self-propelled guns are seen on standby in an area near the western border with North Korea. South Korea should take advantage of its competitive edge in ground forces in future conflicts with the North, a South Korean researcher said. Photo by Yonhap News Agency
SEOUL, June 8 (UPI) -- North Korea could be engaging in plutonium production at its Yongbyon nuclear site, but South Korea should look into robotics technology when it comes to combat, a researcher said.
Kim Do-jong, a South Korean researcher at the Agency for Defense Development, said robotics are a part of "reverse asymmetric weapons systems" that can effectively deter the North, Yonhap news agency reported Wednesday.
Earthbound military robots could give South Korea military forces a competitive edge over the North. North Korean ground forces are not as well prepared to cope with conflict on land, according to Kim's research.
Reverse asymmetric weapons refer to military technology that isn't available in the North.
"Taking into account North Korea's trends of developing [robots], [South Korea] can take advantage of robots as crucial reverse asymmetric military forces in the future," Kim wrote in his recent report.
Small robots are already used in the South to detect explosive devices on the frontlines, Kim stated.
South Korea is also developing military robots that can move heavy equipment across rugged mountains and save wounded soldiers from combat zones, the researcher said.
Seoul has been looking into more large-scale systems to defend against the North, including the advanced missile defense system THAAD.
On Monday, unidentified military officials told local media the government is considering several areas for THAAD deployment.
China and Russia have raised concerns regarding the placement of THAAD in South Korea.