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Millbrook, based in Bedfordshire, UK, makes a significant contribution to the quality and performance of military vehicles worldwide. Its specialist expertise is focussed in two distinct areas: test programmes to help armed services and their suppliers ensure that their vehicles and systems work as the specification requires; and design and build work to upgrade new or existing vehicles, evaluate vehicle capability and investigate in-service failures. Complementing these is driver and service training and a hospitality business that allows customers to use selected areas of Millbrook’s remarkable facilities for demonstrations and exhibitions.
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22 Jun 11. ST Kinetics has completed the delivery of the Warthogs in the £150m Urgent Operational Requirement contract with the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD). The conclusion of the contract was marked by the delivery of a troop carrying variant, one of four variants specially customised from the Bronco All Terrain Track Carrier for the UK MOD. For this contract, Thales (UK) was the main partner, responsible for the integration of UK specialist electronic counter-measure equipment and communication systems, whilst other UK specialist companies were involved in the supply of other subsystems such as the bar armour and armour glass. The Warthog variants include the Troop Carrier, Ambulance, Command and Repair & Recovery. The command variant of Warthog was on display at the Protected Mobility Display and Sustainment Conference. The Warthog’s proven mobility across a wide range of terrain and climatic conditions allows the vehicle to exploit unconventional routes of advancement, thereby significantly increasing the warfighter’s survivability. The Warthog is also very survivable and has received much positive publicity in its ability to safeguard the lives of troops in Afghanistan from both soldiers and the media. The fact that the Warthog was fully delivered within a very challenging delivery schedule bears testimony to the commitment and close working relationship the ST Kinetics project team has with the UK MOD, to ensure that the programme meets all the stringent requirements and the needs of the soldiers on the ground.
22 Jun 11. The Pentagon is asking Congress for approval to shift $182m away from buying new Humvees toward upgrading the U.S. Army’s existing fleet of trucks, according to a new reprogramming request. The Army needs to improve the survivability of the vehicle because the current Humvee cannot withstand the blast from improvised explosive devices, according to the document signed June 10 by Pentagon Comptroller Robert Hale. During a review of its tactical wheeled vehicle portfolio, the Army determined it had already bought enough Humvees and decided the money would be better spent upgrading the trucks in its inventory.
“Rather than procure additional vehicles, the Army plans to recapitalize portions of its existing fleet with survivability and mobility enhancements,” the reprogramming request says. The $182m will go toward these improvements, including an enhanced power train and improved suspension “to increase the weight-carrying capability, support for enhanced crew protection, and safety upgrades,” according to the reprogramming request. The power train upgrades should reduce sustainment costs by reducing fuel consumption. “Survivability and safety enhancements include relocating the batteries away from the crew compartment and moving the fuel tank to provide additional ballistic protection,” the request says. The funds will be used to upgrade an estimated 1,200 of the Army’s 154,000 Humvees. “In a separate action, DoD has requested funds to pursue the ‘chimney’ upgrade to the [Humvee],” the reprogramming request says. The Marine Corps and the Army have been working with the U.S. Defense Advanced Re