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30 Aug 18. First BMP-3 spotted in Iraq. Iraq has received its first BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles, it has been confirmed. Photographs published by the Tactical Cell Facebook site on 28 August showed at least one transporter carrying a BMP-3 painted in the camouflage already seen on Iraq’s new T-90 tanks. Russia’s Interfax-AVN news agency cited an informed source as confirming the delivery on the following day. The head of Russia’s Tractor Plants Concern, which controls the BMP-3 manufacturer Kurganmashzavod, said in September 2015 that Iraq had requested 500 BMP-3s. Tactical Cell reported that the deal was frozen until defence minister Khaled al-Obeidi was replaced in August 2016. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
30 Aug 18. BAE to Compete for Army’s New All-Terrain Vehicle. BAE Systems has announced its intention to compete for a joint Army and National Guard program seeking an all-terrain vehicle that can operate in the most rugged off-road conditions and “swim” across rivers and lakes. The Army released a request for information document in June for the “all terrain all weather support vehicle,” which will replace a diminishing number of the Guard’s small unit support vehicles. The military had about 1,100 of the small unit support vehicles, which were first fielded in the 1970s, but their numbers have dwindled to only a few dozen, Jim Miller, director of combat vehicle business development at BAE, told reporters Aug. 30. They are used in cold weather operations in Alaska by Guard and active duty units.
“Those vehicles are really at the end of their life expectancy. … They’ve got parts issues, resupply issues, they are just aging vehicles so not many of them are actually being used,” Miller said.
The Army Contracting Command in Warren, Michigan, and the product director for medium tactical vehicles issued the RFI seeking a vehicle capable of performing four missions: transporting a combat-loaded infantry-like squad element; emergency medical evaluation; command and control; and general cargo transportation.
“The JAASV shall be a tracked vehicle that has excellent on- and off-road mobility in extreme cold temperatures, deep snow, rugged uneven terrain, thick brush or forest, soft wet ground, rivers, streams and lakes, and mountainous terrain,” the RFI said.
The infantry squad configuration must carry nine soldiers plus a driver. The vehicle should be transportable by CH-47 and UH-60 helicopters and C-130 aircraft, the RFI stated.
“It’s a pretty unique vehicle that they are describing,” Miller said. While it was not mentioned in the RFI, it will most likely also have a disaster response/humanitarian relief mission as it will be used by the National Guard during fires, floods and blizzards, he added. It is also an articulated vehicle — it comes in two parts — which allows it to operate in all the conditions described in the RFI, he said.
Miller said the Army may post a request for proposals in the late summer, early fall time frame. BAE plans on offering its armored BvS10, which has been around since 2004 and is in service with several militaries. It also has a new unarmored version, the Beowulf. The company was the contractor in the 1970s for the small unit support vehicle, which was designed by its Swedish business unit. BAE considers the BvS10 the “son of the small unit support vehicle,” as it is also tracked, articulated, and traverses rivers and lakes, Miller said.
It was designed in Northern Sweden, so it performs well in Arctic conditions, he added. Five countries use the vehicle and it has seen action in Afghanistan, he said. The Army and National Guard have not revealed how many of the all-terrain vehicles they will purchase, Miller said. It is also unknown whether they will use a traditional acquisition contract or a nontraditional means such as other transaction authority, which would allow them to speed up the process. (Source: glstrade.com/National Defense)
29 Aug 18. US Army secretary: welding issues hinder Paladin howitzer production. The M109A7 Paladin Integrated Management (PIM) programme, a long-running effort to field significantly updated 155 mm self-propelled howitzers (SPHs), has been set back by some manufacturing issues, Secretary of the Army Mark Esper told reporters during a 29 August breakfast meeting. The vehicles are based on a Bradley infantry fighting vehicle chassis, power train, and suspension, with a modified turret and electrical system. Contractor BAE Systems and the PIM programme have been awaiting approval from the army to enter full-rate production. Government quality control inspections had “discovered that there was insufficient welding happening on the vehicles, on the chassis” at BAE Systems’ manufacturing facility in York, Pennsylvania, Esper said, adding that he thinks “we have it under control now; they have it under control”. Bloomberg News first reported in July that the Pentagon’s Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA) had found the company was experiencing supply-chain, part quality, and delivery issues, and that 50 howitzers that had been delivered to the army were recalled for inspection because of possible welding issues.
Esper said, “There were management issues there” at York. The facility also builds the US Army’s upcoming Armored Multipurpose Vehicle (AMPV) that is to be rushed to units in Europe to meet a need there. The secretary said he plans to travel to York “in the coming weeks” to see what BAE Systems is doing to improve its management and quality control, and to ensure that quality control issues on PIM are addressed and are not also impacting the AMPV programme.
“In close co-ordination with the army customer and DCMA, we have taken corrective actions to improve our manufacturing process moving forward,” a BAE Systems spokesperson told Jane’s. “While there was no material impact to the vehicles’ performance, survivability, or lethality, we modified aspects of our welding practices.”
The spokesperson added: “BAE Systems is investing heavily in its production and manufacturing network to include its York facility as well as the supplier base. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
29 Aug 18. Russia details latest variants of Armata-based armoured vehicles. The Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD) has previously announced the acquisition of 132 Armata-based systems, including T-14 main battle tanks (MBTs) and T-15 heavy infantry fighting vehicles (HIFVs), and the first nine vehicles could be supplied as early as this year. The MoD detailed a variety of recent armour development programmes at the Army 2018 defence show near Moscow, and for the first time published specifications of the newest vehicles, which it said could enter service in the early 2020s. A military source told Jane’s that the MoD may get some T-14 tanks this year and some T-15s next year. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
29 Aug 18. US Army to bring new vehicle protection technologies to fleet as early as 2020. The U.S. Army is planning to bring new vehicle protection technologies to the fleet as early as 2020 to include reactive armor tiles as well as laser warning and signature management capabilities, according to Col. Glenn Dean, the program manager for the service’s Stryker combat vehicle. Dean is also in charge of bringing active protection system capabilities to the current fleet. The service has been rigorously testing APS for the Abrams tank, Stryker and Bradley Fighting Vehicle. Israeli company Rafael has already been chosen to provide an interim APS system for Abrams. Other systems are being evaluated for Stryker and Bradley. In addition to the service’s plans to rapidly field interim systems for its combat fleet, it is preparing to evaluate other kinetic energy defeat capabilities, Dean told reporters in an Aug. 24 interview. The service recently put out a request for proposals to industry for state-of-the-art capabilities for defeating tank-fired, long-rod kinetic energy penetrators. The Army doesn’t expect to find anything ready for prime time just yet, Dean said.
“Frankly, I will be surprised if we find anything that is really ready to go,” he said. “We are doing that technical maturity assessment so that we can make a determination how the Army should consider investing in the future as we look at truly advanced protection capability to defeat tank-fired, long-rod penetrators.”
Beyond the effort to look at defeating specific threats to combat vehicles, the Army is initiating its first round of vehicle protection systems programs that will be delivered to the fleet beyond the interim solutions the service is now qualifying, according to Dean.
And capability will not just go on the current Bradley, Stryker and Abrams fleets but also potentially the Army’s Mobile Protected Fire Power solution — which industry is currently competing to build — and the Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle, or AMPV — which BAE Systems is producing. The solutions could even feed into the Army’s Next Generation Combat Vehicle program.
The first program will look into signature management capabilities to address “all of the various signatures — visual, infrared, radar, sound, electromagnetic — that a vehicle puts off,” Dean said. The capability will begin to “control and reduce those to reduce the detectability of the platform and its vulnerability to threats,” he added. The service will also continue its work on advanced reactive armor tiles for AMPV as part of its base vehicle protection. But that advanced technology will be shared across multiple other platforms in the Army’s fleet, Dean said.
While the program is not considered the most technologically challenging, there is a manufacturing challenge associated with it, he said.
Like any program, “you’ve got a new design and have to transfer it into production and work through the manufacturing readiness steps,” Dean said.
Out of the three main technology programs the Army is advancing, signature management is the most mature, according to Dean: “Frankly, we could deploy that next year if we were funded right now. It’s not in the 2019 budget, so we are looking for opportunities.”
The Army will also devote effort to a laser warning program “that will provide the ability to detect, identify and then locate laser sources” such as laser range finders or beam-riding anti-tank missiles, Dean noted.
For all three programs, the Army is interested in incorporating technologies that have come out of its own research and development base, but will also turn to commercially available solutions where appropriate, Dean said, such as in the case with laser warning capabilities. The Army plans to hold a laser warning rodeo to evaluate commercial systems “a little bit later this year,” Dean said, noting it might be possible to speed up its fielding of a laser warning capability depending which systems are evaluated. While laser warning capabilities are already commercially developed, integration onto military platforms will be challenging, Dean said.
The three programs are “obviously funding-driven,” he noted, and the timelines will depend on the availability of money. But the Army anticipates being reading to field the three technologies in the 2020-2022 time frame for the current combat vehicle fleets. The service also plans to focus on other VPS technologies transitioning out of its science and technology efforts, Dean added.
“There is a study effort that is getting underway,” he said, “that is looking in greater depth and out into the future for things like soft-kill active protection, things like jamming, spoofing and other types of systems.”
For hard-kill options, the Army is evaluating solutions beyond current off-the-shelf technology such as “what we call hostile fire detection,” which offers another way to alert the vehicle crew to incoming fires across a range of threats, according to Dean.
The three programs underway as part of the VPS portfolio are meant to roll out to the fleet before its future Modular Active Protection System, or MAPS, architecture is ready for delivery, Dean said. Depending on the long-term strategy, the Army will decide whether to bring those capabilities into the MAPS architecture. The MAPS program will be demonstrating hard-kill integration in 2019, he said, “and we will actually do a layered demonstration where they are layering a hard-kill and soft-kill defeat system onto the same platform.”
MAPS, which is currently a science and technology program, will transition to the VPS program office at the end of 2019. (Source: Defense News)
28 Aug 18. After security clearance hiccup, Czech Republic selects a contractor for armored vehicle deal. The Czech Ministry of Defence has awarded a contract to supply 62 Titus six-wheel drive armored vehicles, jointly developed by France’s Nexter Group and Czech vehicle-maker Tatra Trucks, to local defense company Eldis Pardubice.
“Acquiring the Titus vehicle has been one of the military’s priorities for several years. Soldiers need this technology, and it is my objective to complete this project successfully and quickly,” said Czech Defence Minister Lubomir Metnar, as reported by local broadcaster Ceska televize.
The ministry decided to change the contractor from Tatra Export to Eldis Pardubice after the former company failed to obtain a relevant security clearance, including a license from Nexter Systems. Deliveries of the vehicles are scheduled for the years 2020-2025, according to the minister. The contract is estimated to be worth about 6.7bn koruna (U.S. $303.1m). Both Tatra Export and Eldis Pardubice are part of the country’s defense industry giant Czechoslovak Group. The Titus is mounted on a chassis made by Tatra Trucks. Czechoslovak Group reported sales of more than 24bn koruna for 2017. The holding is operated by a workforce of about 8,000, according to data from Czechoslovak Group. (Source: Defense News)
28 Aug 18. Ashok Leyland wins tender for Indian Army’s tracked combat vehicles. India-based Hinduja Group firm Ashok Leyland has won a tender for developmental works for the Indian Army’s defence tracked combat vehicles. Under the deal, the automobile company will work in collaboration with the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) laboratory Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (CVRDE). The two organisations will jointly carry out the production, assembly and testing of a lightweight clutch in order to design and develop weight-optimised 1,500hp automatic transmission for the army’s main battle tanks.
Ashok Leyland Defence head Amandeep Singh said: “For over three decades, Ashok Leyland has been a vital part of our defence forces through our mobility solutions.
“For over three decades, Ashok Leyland has been a vital part of our defence forces through our mobility solutions. As part of our strategy to enhance our contribution to our defence forces and to expand our business scope within our focus area of ‘Solutions for Mobility on Land’, we have been working on tracked vehicles. With this win, we mark yet another milestone where we start working on the tracked vehicles that our soldiers use.”
According to Singh, the company sees a potential opportunity to upgrade and repower the BMPs or tanks in service with the Indian Army. In addition, Ashok Leyland is engaged in building indigenous solutions for power packs and running gear that would help overhaul both the service’s existing fleet of infantry combat vehicles (ICVs) and the new future infantry combat vehicles (FICVs).
Singh added: “We are proud that we are the only vehicle manufacturer in India having indigenously designed, developed and manufactured power packs beyond 350HP. “The tracked combat vehicle opportunity also exists in several other countries which use Russian-made combat vehicles.” (Source: army-technology.com)
27 Aug 18. Global Military Land Vehicle Electronics (Vetronics) Market 2018-2028 – ResearchAndMarkets.com. The “The Global Military Land Vehicle Electronics (Vetronics) Market 2018-2028” report has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com’s offering. Global Military Land Vehicle Electronics (Vetronics) Market 2018-2028 report offers a detailed analysis of the industry, with market size forecasts covering the next ten years. This report will also analyze factors that influence demand for vetronics, key market trends, and challenges faced by industry participants. The increasing complexities in modern day war techniques have resulted in a heightened requirement for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) activities, which has resulted in several key defense spenders to invest heavily in the research and development of ISR systems, such as thermal sights, infrared vision systems, and laser target designators. The rising demand for new sighting devices as well as infrared cameras and thermal imaging systems is therefore contributing significantly to the growth of the global military vetronics systems market.
• The Global Military Land Vehicle Electronics (Vetronics) Market, valued at US$2.3bn in 2018, is projected to grow at a CAGR of 3.78% over the 2018-2028 period, to reach US$3.4bn by 2028.
• The market consists of three categories: ISR Systems, Vehicle Protection Systems and C4 Systems. The market is expected to be dominated by the ISR Systems segment, which is expected to account for 52.6% of the market, followed by vehicle protection systems and C4 Systems with shares of 26.4% and 21.1%, respectively.
• The North America region is forecasted to dominate the sector with a share of 29.9%, followed by Europe and Asia Pacific with shares of 28.74% and 19%, respectively
• Thales Group
• SAAB A.B.
• Elbit Systems Ltd
• Oshkosh Corporation
• General Electric Company
• Lockheed Martin Corporation
• General Dynamics Corporation
• BAE Systems PLC
• Ultra Electronics Ltd
• The Raytheon Company
• FLIR System
(Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
28 Aug 18. ARQUUS, a hundred years of Defense innovation. ARQUUS will be presenting its autonomous DAGGER at the MEDEF’s Summer Seminar, as well as all the guidelines which define its policy on innovation. Expert in the fields of high mobility, protection and systems integration, ARQUUS keeps investing in developing high-end technologies. ARQUUS’ sustained efforts in the fields of R&D grants the company a special place in the ranks of all the Defense and Security industry companies. It also enables to constantly renew and improve its ranges to keep up with all operational doctrines and needs. ARQUUS’ focus on R&D feeds current works on the future of land forces, and aims at:
– Designing and improving reconnaissance, intelligence, logistics and contact vehicles;
– Developing and qualifying protection solutions against the evolutive threats of the battlefield;
– Integrating more and more complex tactical systems of communication, monitoring and command;
– Adapting and broadcasting fleet support solutions, thanks to hardened and innovative information technologies.
On the seminar’s innovation booth, ARQUUS will be presenting its video: Innovation is not an option but an obligation. François Deloumeau, R&D Director, will be showcasing the company’s researches, from system architecture to survivability in operations.
On its outdoors booth, ARQUUS will show its autonomous, remote-controlled, armored liaison vehicle: the DAGGER. In 2017, ARQUUS showcased its ELECTER demonstrator, which illustrates the compatibility between hybrid technology and the use of reconnaissance medium armored vehicles.
24 Aug 18. Rostec reveals BMP-1AM ‘Basurmanin’ upgrade. Rostec showcased for the first time its BMP-1AM ‘Basurmanin’ during a firepower demonstration at the Army 2018 International Military-Technical Forum held in Russia. The upgraded vehicle addresses most of the weaknesses inherent in the BMP-1 design, and includes a 30 mm cannon as well as an anti-tank weapon, a more powerful engine, and modern mission systems. The BMP-1AM is armed with the BPPU-1 Modular Weapon System that originally equipped the BTR-80A and BTR-82A. The BPPU-1 is armed with a 2A72 30mm cannon and 7.62 mm PKTM machine gun, and the former enables the BMP-1AM to engage armoured targets at a range of 2,000m. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
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.