The elite Yahalom unit of the IDF, a commando force of the Combat Engineering Corps, recently inaugurated the new Talon IV for the purpose of clearing planted explosives.
A single black robot advances toward a red ribbon hung in front of a line of light-colored robots. The Talon II robot brings the scissors to Chief Engineering Officer Brig. Gen. Yossi Morali and Head of the Ground Technology Division (GTD) Brig. Gen. Haim Rubin. Together, the two commanders cut the ribbon, symbolizing the introduction of the Talon IV.
This was the scene as the Yahalom unit’s latest tanks were recently inaugurated in an official ceremony. Also in attendance were Yahalom commander Lt. Col. Ido Mizrahi, Yahalom’s maintenance personnel, and representatives of the Ground Technology Division who took part in the project.
Yahalom, the elite special force of the Combat Engineering Corps, operates in various terrains. It specializes in robotics, diffusion of bombs, minefield neutralization, and destruction of enemy infrastructure and outposts. It is also trained for active combat, such as the planting of bombs in enemy territory. The unit’s explosives disposal detachment is to begin using the Talon IV robots in the near future, bolstering its ability to thwart attempts to kill and injure Israelis using planted explosives.
“The explosives disposal detachment’s robots are a significant and critical part of the unit’s functioning. From my perspective, the new robot doubles the power of the Combat Engineering Corps,” Brig. Gen. Morali emphasized just before the ribbon cutting. “We will continue to receive new equipment in the coming months, and I am convinced that by the end of 2014 Yahalom will look different in terms of strengthening and developing its force.”
The new model joins Yahalom after a number of months of intensive preparatory work by the Chief Engineering Officer’s headquarters, the Ground Technology Division and the Ground Forces’ Weaponry Department.
Brig. Gen. Rubin also addressed the ceremony, discussing the cooperation between units in the development and implementation of cutting-edge technology.
“The winning combination of the Engineering Corps in general – and Yahalom in particular – and the Ground Technology Division is reflected here, but it also exists in the corps’ other systems,” he said. “Cooperation is facilitated by a group of highly motivated people driven by a deep understanding and an awareness of the importance of integrating advanced technological systemsin real time, in short time spans that undoubtedly save lives.”