MILITARY VEHICLE NEWS
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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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03 Jul 09. Future Rapid Effect System (FRES) Specialist Vehicle (SV): Short List. The Defence Equipment Minister announced (3 Jul 09) that two Companies, BAE Systems Global Combat Systems and General Dynamics (UK), will receive a draft invitation to tender (ITT) for FRES SV “in the next
few days”. FRES SV is to provide a new fleet of armoured reconnaissance vehicles, replacing the present Scimitar and Spartan.
Comment: The Defence Contracts Bulletin indicated (25 Mar 09) that the FRES SV requirement is divided into four Blocks: Recce Block 1 (RB 1) with four variants; Recce Block 2 (RB 2) with four variants; Recce
Block 3 (RB 3) with six variants and Medium Armour (MA) with three variants. A total of 1,300 platforms is anticipated, with an estimated date of 9 Mar 10 for the ITT to be returned.
BATTLESPACE Comment: We will be running a feature on what looks like a rushed decision by the FRES IPT with problems stored up for the future. Why has the Mod not looked at re-opening the warrior production line? This vehicle is the recipient of 135 UORs to bring it up to theatre standard. Neither CV90 nor ASCOD has any in-theatre deployment, thus both these vehicles will have to have major engineering upgrades to bring them anywhere near the Warrior capability. By buying more warriors, huge sums will be saved on training and support as well as an ability to have a common fleet by upgrade of the existing warriors under WFLIP. This is exactly what happened after the first Gulf war when Desert Warrior was produced in response to lessons-learnt in the Gulf – result, AlvisVickers dropped the vehicle in favour of CV90! All these vehicles are of similar performance and spec with only Warrior having the theatre expertise. This decision is in strak contrast to the United States which is sticking with Bradley at the same time as looking at a completely new fleet. If the MoD buys either CV90 or ASCOD it will be buying twenty year old technology for the next 30 years! Neither vehicle has adequate mine protection for the current threat.
08 Jul 09. Oshkosh Defense received two contracts from the Office of Naval Research for research of next-generation vehicle technologies. These contracts will help advance diesel-electric and hybrid-electric drive technologies to improve fuel efficiency and on-board power capabilities. In collaboration with the Office of Naval Research, Marine Corps PEO Land Systems is providing technical and program support for each effort. Work for both contracts is scheduled to go through 2011. “Oshkosh Defense is a leader in military vehicle technology development and these contracts will further the innovative work we have done for future military fleets,” said Andy Hove, Oshkosh Corporation executive vice president and president, Defense. “Building on existing diesel-electric and hybrid-electric technologies will help Oshkosh develop more efficient, powerful and versatile vehicles.” Under the first contract, Oshkosh Defense will conduct hybridization and repower research efforts for the U.S. Marine Corps’ Medium Tact