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10 Apr 19. AM General to supply 648 M997A3 ambulances to US Army. Automotive military systems provider AM General has secured a $185m contract to deliver 648 M997A3 high mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicle (HMMWV) ambulances to the US Army Contracting Command. The company will start providing the first chassis systems to the Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center (JMTC) at Rock Island Arsenal (RIA) as part of their public-private partnership. The shelter fabrication and final assembly of the ambulance will take place at JMTC. AM General plans to deliver the first M997A3 ambulance in the second quarter of this year. The company said it will apply the same quality control processes throughout the entire programme build to achieve the high standards.
AM General US Defense executive vice-president Chris Vanslager said: “Our commitment to the warfighter’s safety and success in the battlefield drives the continuous improvement in our vehicle systems.
“We are excited to field additional orders and build upon our already strong partnership with the Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center at Rock Island Arsenal to provide modernised, rugged and capable HMMWV ambulances.”
The HMMWV combat ambulances, which can be heated, ventilated or air-conditioned, are equipped with advanced armour protection and were built to transport causalities from the battlefield to medical aid stations.
Last September, AM General received a requirements contract from the US Army Contracting Command for the production of new M997A3 HMMWV ambulances.
As the prime contractor for the project, the company will produce up to 2,800 new ambulances. AM General designs, engineers, manufactures, supplies and supports specialised vehicles for military and commercial customers across the globe. It also manufactures tactical vehicles. (Source: army-technology.com)
05 Apr 19. SAIC to build Marine Corps Armed Reconnaissance Vehicle (ARV) with state-of-the-art advanced vetronics. U.S. military researchers are asking Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC) in Reston, Va., to build a prototype reconnaissance armored combat vehicle to enable U.S. Marine Corps battlefield reconnaissance units to fight through the enemy to gather and disseminate crucial intelligence information from the battle front.
Officials of the U.S. Office of Naval Research in Arlington, Va., announced a $19m contract to SAIC on Thursday for a portion of the Armed Reconnaissance Vehicle (ARV) program that involves advanced high-risk technology development called “at the edge.”
The future ARV will be able to fight for information on a complex and contested battlefield using an automatic rapid-fire medium-caliber cannon, remotely operated medium-caliber machine gun, and open-architecture advanced vetronics to include sensors, communications, and battlefield networking. The project seeks to build two ARV variants — a base model and an at-the-edge model — to evaluate technologies, performance, and battlefield concepts. Contractors will build two demonstrators of each variant. SAIC has been selected for the at-the-edge model. Other contractors will handle the base variant.
SAIC engineers will develop an at-the-edge ARV demonstrator with relatively high-risk technologies — some of which could have limited operability with development paths that would lead to full capability. This demonstrator is to push the upper limits of capability and performance.
The at-the-edge variant that SAIC will build will be operational, but isn’t supposed to have the durability necessary to withstand sustained operations on the battlefield. It is to demonstrate enabling technologies at technology readiness level 5, which seeks to validate components in a simulated or real environment.
SAIC’s at-the-edge demonstrator will push the limits of combat vehicle enabling electronic technologies such as a self healing cyber-safe electrical and data distribution architecture; and power generation for all on-board systems with a 25 percent power buffer, with support for 100 percent power growth within 10 years for power and distribution, data distribution and processing, and memory storage.
Other electronics that SAIC engineers will address in this project are communications with technology refresh updates every four years that supports secure voice, video, and data exchanges in GPS-denied environments; interfaces to launch, control, retrieve, and recharge unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs); modular electronic architectures to support insertion of emerging technologies and multi-mission payloads; and manned and unmanned teaming operations with robotics and autonomy.
The SAIC ARV demonstrator also will have protection from direct fire, underbody, and top attacks; energy-attenuation seats to protect the crew from IED attacks; water mobility sufficient for shore-to-shore operations; transportability aboard a landing craft air cushion (LCAC); and crew vision systems for reconnaissance.
The ARV demonstrators will be designed to collect mobility data, determine reconnaissance and sensing capabilities, determine unmanned systems integration and operation, evaluate platform lethality, determine platform survivability, and evaluate overall performance.
Technology demonstrators will have modular open systems architectures, with an eye to future integration of third-party hardware and software and will enable third-party repair.
The base variant and its vetronics will have an average manufacturing unit cost of $6m per platform for 500 units, with initial operating capability (IOC) in 2027. The SAIC at-the-edge version, with its advanced high-risk technologies, has no IOC date.
The ARV is to a possible replacement for the U.S. Marine Corps legacy Light Armored Vehicle (LAV). It would support light armored reconnaissance battalions within the Marine divisions.
The vehicle will have new ways to sense and communicate, will be able to destroy heavily armored threats close-in and at range, and will be transportable with the naval expeditionary force by military and commercial trailers, railway, C-17 fixed-wing aircraft, naval amphibious warfare ships and surface connectors, and military sealift command and commercial ships.
The ARV will have persistent surveillance capability using manned and unmanned vehicles; modern command, control, communications, and computers (C4I) vetronics; cross-country and on-road land mobility with shore-to-shore water mobility; passive and active force protection; direct and indirect weapons; be similar size and weight to the legacy LAV; drive-by-wire capability; and a modular interoperable open-systems architecture.
The new reconnaissance vehicle will identify weapons and targets through obscurants, beyond threat range, and beyond line of sight. It also will be able to transmit sensing and targeting information among the crew, the dismounted scout team, other ARV crews, and other Marine Corps sensors, as well as collect, process, and exploit sensor information and disseminate it to other Marine Corps units.
It also will be able to communicate voice, video, and data where sensors and communications are degraded. Its command and control system will handle weapons fire control; secure voice, video, and data exchanges; battlefield situational awareness in GPS-denied environments; and control unmanned systems beyond line of sight. Its communications network suite also will be able to operate through cyber attacks, and the vehicle will minimize its visual, infrared, RF emissions, radar cross section, and acoustic signatures.
The ARV will be survivable against weapons as large as heavy machine guns, artillery fragmentation rounds, land mines, and improvised explosive devices (IEDs). The Marine Corps is interested in modular and upgradable armor.
Related: Army to approach industry for armored combat vehicle prototypes to demonstrate unmanned technologies
The ARV will achieve standoff with active and passive protective systems to sense, orient, classify, track, and defeat incoming rocket-propelled grenades, anti-tank guided missiles, and precision-guided munitions.
The contract to SAIC has options that could increase its value to $20.5m. SAIC will do the work in Reston, Va., and with options should be finished by April 2023. (Source: https://www.militaryaerospace.com)
09 Apr 19. Estonia receives last CV90s from Netherlands. Estonia has received the last of 44 CV9035NL infantry fighting vehicles from the Netherlands, the Baltic News Service reported on 1 April. The vehicles were delivered following an extensive maintenance and refurbishment programme conducted in the Netherlands, and will be supported in Estonian service by Milrem under a contract signed with BAE Systems in April 2018.
The first delivery of CV90s was made in October 2016 and the second in December 2017. The completion of deliveries means that the procurement has been completed on time according to the 2019 deadline given on the Estonian Ministry of Defence (MoD) website. The vehicles were ordered in 2014 as part of Estonia’s efforts to modernise its armed forces in the face of an increasingly assertive Russia. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
09 Apr 19. Protected 4×4-Patsas For Special Forces. At the Special Operation Forces Innovation Network Seminar SOFINS 2019 in Camp de Souge near Bordeaux, Arquus presented three vehicles that meet the requirements of special forces. Arquus has developed a range of vehicles for special Forces, focusing on autonomy, robustness, versatility and firepower. These vehicles include the Sabre, the Trapper and the Bastion.
Building on the success and experience of the VLRA (Véhicule Léger de Reconnaissance et d’Appui), the Bastion Patsas has been developed as a robust vehicle for off-road mobility. The Patsas is a light, open armoured vehicle specially developed for special units. Its chassis, derived from the VRLA 4×4, combines tactical mobility, robustness and easy maintenance.
The armoured hull of the Patsas provides excellent protection for the crew and propulsion against ballistic threats, mines and IEDs. In the standard version, the vehicle offers space for five people including full equipment. The vehicle in the 12-ton class is suitable for air transport, for example with the C-130 Hercules. The Patsas was presented at the DSEI 2010 defence exhibition for the first time. It was developed for the French Special Forces and is currently used by many African and Middle Eastern states in peace, reconnaissance and combat operations.
(Source: ESD Spotlight)
08 Apr 19. India’s Cabinet Committee on Security approves procurement of 464 T-90MS tanks. India’s Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) has approved the INR134.48bn (USD1.93bn) procurement of 464 Russian-made T-90MS main battle tanks (MBTs) for the Indian Army (IA). Official sources told Jane’s that the move by the CCS, which convened in early April and is headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is the penultimate step in the process of acquiring the MBTs and will be followed by the signing of a contract between India’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) and Russia’s arms export agency, Rosoboronexport, during the next few months. The MoD’s Defence Acquisition Council approved the procurement of the tanks in November 2016. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
08 Apr 19. Bruiser Tech unveils MRAP to meet African requirements. Key Points:
- There are multiple insurgencies in Africa, and many countries operate mixed fleets of protected mobility vehicles
- Mixed fleets, derived from used and new vehicles, complicate maintenance
South Africa’s Bruiser Tech has revealed its first mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicle, the Bruiser 112. Jarco du Toit, the lead engineer for Bruiser Tech, told Jane’s development of the vehicle started about two and a half years ago, with the intention of designing a platform that was specifically suited to the demands of the African continent.
Although the Bruiser 112 has a low profile for an MRAP, its ground clearance is greater than that of the MaxxPro Plus. This is vital for increasing the survivability of the vehicle in a blast event.
Du Toit said, “Many African nations have purchased surplus MRAPs from various users, these vehicles can’t be supported because spares aren’t available.” Accordingly, the Bruiser 112 is intended to be straightforward to operate and maintain, while providing high levels of ballistic and blast protection for its weight class, he added. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
08 Apr 19. ACV Training. The Marine Corps’ New Equipment Training Team has started preparing for initial training efforts to assist users with transitioning to the new Amphibious Combat Vehicle from the current Amphibious Assault Vehicle. The NETT is currently assisting the ACV program office set up a four-month logistics demonstration that will begin this fall, and look to evaluate the maintainability and sustainability of the new vehicle. In January 2020, Marines from Delta
Company, 3rd Assault Amphibian Battalion, 1st Marine Division will be the first group of users to start vehicle training with the NETT. Marine Corps officials also said the program office expects to receive the first set of low-rate production vehicles this summer. (Source: Defense Daily)
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.