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14 Jan 21. BAE Systems Receives $500m Contract to Provide New Turret for Netherlands’ CV90s. BAE Systems has signed an extensive mid-life upgrade contract worth more than $500m with the Dutch Defence Materiel Organization (DMO) for the Royal Netherlands Army’s fleet of 122 CV90s, with an option for an additional 19 vehicles. The upgrade program with a new turret will vastly improve the vehicle’s capabilities while providing crews with improved protection and ergonomics for increased combat efficiency.
The new CV90 turret, developed by BAE Systems Hägglunds in Örnsköldsvik, Sweden, represents a leap forward in design and functionality. The main weapon position is changed to provide even better vehicle balance and enable new ways to introduce a variety of weaponry for increased lethality. It also offers significant ergonomic improvements to benefit the vehicle’s crew.
The enhanced turret design is built on years of combat-proven experience, continuous vehicle improvements, and data analysis from the CV90 User Club – the seven nations currently operating CV90 fleets. The improvements are also based on a recent study conducted by the Royal Netherlands Army, and a BAE Systems’ analysis of cognitive load on Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) crews to address man-machine interaction. The result gives crews increased advantages, such as the ability to choose intuitive and effective modes of operation as well as shorten the time to detection, identification, decision-making, and engagement.
“This is an important step to make sure that our Infantry Fighting Vehicles and our Army are well prepared for many years to come. This mid-life upgrade will also result in a lowering of the vehicles lifetime cost, at the same time as keeping our soldiers safe in the face of new threats,” said Colonel Norbert Moerkens, the Royal Netherlands Army’s head of strategy and plans.
Work is already underway to equip the Dutch CV9035 vehicles with several enhanced capabilities such as an Active Protection System (APS) and Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM), as well as a new Electro-Optic Aiming System (EOPS) which gives additional situation awareness. The latest upgrade also includes future-proofing the electronics by upgrading to the fourth generation digital backbone, with embedded and more robust cybersecurity.
“We are committed to delivering the most modern and adaptable IFVs to meet our customers’ requirements and are extremely proud of the technological developments underway as part of this significant mid-life upgrade program,” said Tommy Gustafsson-Rask, managing director of BAE Systems Hägglunds. “We look forward to supporting our Dutch customer increase its combat efficiency on the future battlefield.”
More than 20 Dutch companies are involved in the supply chain for the mid-life upgrade program to include mechanical and electrical components to BAE Systems Hägglunds and the main subsystem suppliers, which will support the Dutch defense industrial base for many years to come.
There are about 1,300 CV90s of numerous variants in service with Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the Netherlands. The vehicle has a combat-proven track record and is designed to accommodate future growth to meet evolving missions. (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
14 Jan 21. Pentagon’s weapons tester gives update on Navy’s new long-range anti-ship missile. The U.S. Navy’s new Long Range Anti-Ship Missile must go through more rigorous and realistic testing, according to the 2020 annual report from the director of operational test and evaluation.
Citing “multiple hardware and software failures” in the first iteration of the LRASM missile, the DOT&E report calls on the Navy to put the new LRASM 1.1 through a rigorous testing process under realistic combat conditions to ensure it will “demonstrate mission capability in operationally realistic environments.”
The LRASM is a weapon that has generated a good deal of excitement among Navy leaders. It has a published range of about 300 nautical miles, is jam resistant, and is designed to locate targets with onboard sensors rather than relying on guidance from another source such as a drone’s sensors or another ship. The missile is also difficult to detect.
The missile was tested on a B-1B Lancer bomber in 2018 and an F/A-18 Super Hornet the following year. It was also test-fired during the Navy’s Valiant Shield exercise in September, which this year involved the Japan-based aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan and the amphibious assault ship America.
Lockheed Martin, which makes the missile, successfully demonstrated it from a vertical launching system, which means that at some point the missile could be a surface-to-surface weapon if the Navy chooses.
The Navy is planning a second increment of the LRASM, which will be competed in the 2028-2030 timeframe. In the meantime, the service is working out the bugs from LRASM 1.0 in LRASM 1.1.
The report recommends the Navy put the LRASM 1.1 through initial operational test and evaluation soon by “stressing the system by using the full set of expected operational conditions.” (Source: Defense News)
14 Jan 21. Romanian government approves Naval Strike Missile buy. The Romanian government has approved and sent to the parliament a draft bill that will allow the country to buy Naval Strike Missile coastal defense systems through a foreign military sales (FMS) procedure.
“The anti-ship missile systems that are to be purchased include, but are not limited to, four mobile launch vehicles, a platform for command, control and communications, transport and loading/unloading platforms, sensors, initial logistics support, maintenance and testing equipment,” the Romanian Ministry of National Defence said in a statement.
Developed by Raytheon and Kongsberg, the NSM is a sea-skimming, over-the-horizon, anti-ship missile. Last October, the U.S. State Department approved its potential sale after Bucharest requested to purchase two coastal defense systems.
The potential contract is estimated at roughly $286m, but its precise value is to be determined when the acquisition procedure begins, according to the ministry.
Previous estimates put the procurement’s expected value at €137m, or $166.5m. Under Romanian law, purchases of weapons and military equipment worth more than €100m must be approved by the country’s parliament.
The ministry said it aimed to acquire the systems by 2024.
The Romanian center-right coalition government controls a majority of the seats in both the upper and lower chamber of the parliament which means that lawmakers are most likely to pass the government’s bill. (Source: Defense News)
14 Jan 21. Bharat Dynamics Ltd, Thales sign Starstreak teaming agreement. India’s Bharat Dynamics Ltd (BDL) will produce the Starstreak close air defence system under a new teaming agreement with Thales, with the companies aiming to meet future demand from the Indian Armed Forces and international customers.
BDL will become part of the system’s global supply chain, with the potential to export Indian-manufactured Starsteak systems – and individual components – to existing and future customers, according to the two companies.
The deal would allow BDL to offer what the companies term a ‘Made in India’ Starstreak solution for the country’s army and air force, with about 60% of the system manufactured in that country. Starstreak is currently produced in Thales’s Belfast facility; the new deal will not negatively impact operations at that site, according to Thales, and it will continue to manufacture the system. Instead, the companies view the arrangement as complementary. A company spokesperson told Janes that while it is now a formal requirement in India that a significant amount of work must be performed domestically, at the same time, success in India will require a ramp-up of production in the UK in order to meet the need for such large numbers of systems. It will result in an increase in jobs in both the UK and India. (Source: Jane’s)
11 Jan 21. China’s New High Mobility Truck Artillery. Referred to as PCL-171 it appears to employ a six-wheeled version of the Dongfeng Mengshi CTL181A off-road high mobility vehicle. Dongfeng Motor Group, the developer, is noted for its next generation family of light tactical vehicles specifically designed for the PLA and offering significantly improved mobility off-road and in more rugged terrain.
The vehicle configuration shown mounts the 122-millimeter gun howitzer on the rear bed. The 6 X 6 model has a curb weight of 6000kg and 4,150 kg payload making it an ideal platform for the gun and its stowed ammunition. The compactness and relatively lightweight of this gun-vehicle system allows it to meet the indirect fire support needs of light forces in a solution that offers superior mobility and therefore survivability and responsiveness over previous towed howitzer alternatives.
This high mobility tactical vehicle mounted howitzer replaces previous towed artillery. It offers the capability of quickly moving into position, halting, deploying, firing, and displacing to new positions in as little as several minutes. This reduces its vulnerability to counter-battery fires while assuring it can remain close enough to support the forward combat forces. It also has the benefit of being serviced with a a crew of only three (plus the driver), fewer than required for towed guns.
This system follows an increasing trend toward introducing truck mounted howitzers. It does, however, represent an application of technology by permitting the integration of a howitzer with its associated firing and recoil forces on such a light vehicle.
The PLA has fielded other truck howitzers like the although these have been on heavier medium truck chassis. The PCL-171 joins the PCL-09 122mm medium truck based howitzer, PLC-181 155mm 25 tonne medium truck based howitzer and other heavier truck mounted guns that have been recognized in the last several years. This wide introduction of truck-howitzers suggests the PLA’s possible intent toward a more dispersed and fluid approach to the future battlefields. (Source: AMR)
08 Jan 21. Army Tries (Again) To Protect Stryker: Rafael or Rheinmetall? Miniaturized missile defenses work well on heavy tanks, but efforts to fit such Active Protection Systems on light vehicles like Stryker have failed – so far. Now the Army will test two lightweight options: Rafael’s Trophy VPS and Rheinmetall’s ADS.
year, the Army will fire live anti-tank warheads at two rival Active Protection Systems to assess how best to protect lightweight armored vehicles like its 8×8 Stryker. The contenders in this “live fire characterization activity” – it isn’t officially a test – will be the German Rheinmetall Active Defense System (ADS) and the Israeli Rafael Trophy Vehicle Protection System (VPS). Not participating, our sources tell us, is the American Artis Iron Curtain, which was the Army’s original pick to protect the Stryker but was subsequently rejected after Army testers found it wanting.
Now, the Rheinmetall ADS and the Rafael Trophy VPS won’t be installed on actual Stryker vehicles. Instead, they’ll be set up on specially designed armored targets. That will allow the Army to measure precisely what damage, if any, gets through the active protection systems from different kinds of attacks.
“The Army intends to conduct live fire characterization activities with the two hard-kill active protection systems on platform agnostic test rigs,” said Ashley John, spokesperson for the Program Executive Officer – Ground Combat Systems (PEO-GCS), in an email to Breaking Defense. “The performance data collected on these two systems will help determine potential suitability for ground combat vehicles, to include Stryker.”
A “hard kill” system, like ADS and VPS, is one that physically shoots down incoming anti-tank missiles and rockets. “Soft kill” decoys and jamming, by contrast, just make the enemy miss. Hard-kill has worked well on heavy tanks. Israel, Russia and the US all use it. But, as the Army has painfully discovered, it’s much harder to get it to work on lighter vehicles – which need protection the most. For the Stryker in particular, while the reliable, affordable vehicle has become an Army workhorse around the world — with variants carrying everything from infantry to anti-aircraft missiles, 30mm cannon, jammers, and even lasers — the service has struggled for years to make it more survivable in high-intensity combat.
What’s the hold-up? Historically, hard-kill Active Protection Systems are heavy and bulky; they need a lot of electrical power to run radars and targeting computers; and when they intercept incoming warheads, they may cause them to prematurely detonate or burst into shrapnel – “residual penetration” that a heavily armored tank can shrug off, but which a Stryker or other lightly armored vehicle cannot.
The Germans and Israelis have taken different approaches to solving this problem. Rheinmetall’s ADS uses a large number of small explosive charges distributed around the vehicle, computer-controlled to detonate at the precise millisecond to cut apart incoming warheads just before they detonate. Rafael’s Trophy uses a compact missile launcher, which lobs mini-missiles at incoming anti-tank missiles and rockets to intercept them further out. There’s a big debate over which of the two approaches is safer, both for the vehicle being protected and for foot troops or nearby civilians.
Rheinmetall has not made public which countries, if any, use its ADS. Rafael’s Trophy has a 10-year track record in Israel. It’s been in combat on Israeli Merkava tanks since 2011 and was picked for the American M1 Abrams in 2018.
Just this week, Rafael and its American partner, Leonardo DRS, announced they had completed urgent deliveries of enough systems to protect every M1 Abrams in four Army brigades. How many is that? While the Army and the contractors are leery of giving exact figures, a typical Armored Brigade Combat Team has six tank companies with a total of 84 Abrams, plus backup vehicles in case of breakdowns. With enough Trophy APS now delivered for four brigades, that would bring the total close to 400 systems – and a further contract for spare Trophies is in the works.
But the current Trophy APS is a multi-ton system. So while it’s been installed successfully on 60-plus-ton main battle tanks – Abrams and Merkava – the usual set of radars and launchers just doesn’t fit on lighter vehicles like the 30-ton M2 Bradley or the 20-ton Stryker.
By contrast, “distributed systems” like Rheinmetall’s ADS or Artis’s Iron Curtain rely on smaller sensors and relatively tiny, lightweight explosive charges. That means they can be installed on lighter vehicles – potentially even unarmored trucks.
Currently, the Army is buying a rival Israel active protection system for its Bradleys, Elbit’s Iron Fist-Light. But to compete for Bradley and Stryker, Rafael and Leonardo have developed a slimmed-down variant of Trophy, the Trophy Vehicle Protection System, that they say is up to 40 percent lighter. (The exact weight depends on how it’s installed on a specific vehicle). The latest version of Trophy VPS also requires less power to operate its radars and other electronics, a big bonus for vehicles like Bradley whose aging electrical systems are already overloaded.
Yet, the companies claim Trophy VPS performs just as well in testing as the full-size version. It even carries the same number of mini-missiles as the original, which is crucial, because that allows it to shoot down the same number of incoming threats before running out of ammo. But almost every other component has been modernized and miniaturized. Since Trophy system was first used in combat in 2011, sensors, processors, and power systems have all gotten lighter. The new components also consume less power, which lets the power supply shrink even more. The companies have even streamlined the wiring and used new, lighter-weight materials in the physical structure.
The resulting lightweight Trophy was first tested, to our knowledge, in Israel in 2018, installed on a M2 Bradley chassis. The US Army did at least some testing in 2019 to see how Trophy VPS would work on Stryker. But Trophy’s greatest test will come this year, in a head-to-head comparison with Rheinmetall’s ADS. (Source: Breaking Defense.com)
11 Jan 21. USN works to equip Zumwalt destroyers with conventional prompt strike weapon. Responding to a recent mandate by US lawmakers, the US Navy (USN) is working now to develop and integrate a conventional prompt strike system on the Zumwalt-class guided-missile (DDG 1000) destroyer, Rear Admiral Paul Schlise, director, USN Surface Warfare Division said on 8 January.
“This has been under discussion for a little while,” Rear Adm Schlise said during a media discussion in advance of the virtual Surface Navy Association 2021 National Symposium, which begins on 11 January.
“It’s in the law now,” he noted. “We are moving out on that on the studies of the hull form, and what’s going to be done to modify it to incorporate that capability down the road.”
Developing a conventional prompt strike (CPS) capability will augment USN firepower potential in part by getting the service to increase the potential size of the vertical launch system, he noted. “We think a larger diameter round like a CPS round is part of our future.”
Such a missile, he explained would “extend [USN] range substantially, [and] put a larger set of targets at risk”.
He added, “The CPS round is still very much a developmental round.” But the USN expects such a weapon could offer greater options for both maritime- and land-attack roles.
Zumwalt work will also help with the development of systems for other ships.
“We are working on the Large Surface Combatant,” he pointed out. “The requirements have now just been approved. A version of the larger diameter launcher and a round like the CPS will be part of that platform. What we learn from DDG 1000 integration will be applied going forward.” (Source: Jane’s)
12 Jan 21. USN will use LCS ASW testing to develop new frigate ops. The US Navy (USN) will use the testing done on Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) anti-submarine warfare (ASW) mission packages to help develop those types of operations for the new guided-missile Constellation-class (FFG 62) frigate, Rear Admiral Paul Schlise, director, USN Surface Warfare Division said on 8 January.
The USN also plans to use the LCS mission-package testing for LCS to help determine what kind of ASW equipment will be required for the Constellation-class frigates, Rear Adm Schlise said during a media discussion in advance of the virtual Surface Navy Association 2021 National Symposium, which begins on 11 January.
“What we’re doing in the ASW mission-package testing is directly tied to what we will eventually field on the FFG 62 Constellation-class frigate,” Rear Adm Schlise said.
Speaking about specific LCS mission-package systems, he said, “We are pretty excited about the progress we’ve made with variable-depth sonar system. That is a piece of the ASW mission package the Connie (Constellation)-class frigate will have. We are joined at the hip there, for the small-surface combatant, between the LCS and the frigate.”
Speaking during the same media discussion on 8 January, US Marine Corps Major General Tracy King, director of USN Expeditionary Warfare, also noted the importance of countermine mission-package development for the LCS programme. The navy is building those mission packages and should start fielding them within the next two to three years, he said.
While the LCS is a “tremendous platform” for countermine operations, there are also other vessels of opportunity for those packages, he said. (Source: Jane’s)
14 Jan 21. DARPA’s operational fires ground-launched hypersonics enters new phase. DARPA’s Operational Fires (OpFires) program, which is developing a ground-launched intermediate-range hypersonic weapons system in partnership with Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, is advancing to a new phase.
Phase 3b will involve full-scale missile fabrication, assembly, and flight testing from a launch vehicle, Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control was awarded this new contract modification after leading a successful Phase 3a integrated system preliminary design review that resulted in a comprehensive design and test plan.
OpFires aims to demonstrate a novel system enabling hypersonic boost glide weapons to rapidly and precisely engage critical, time-sensitive targets while penetrating modern enemy air defences.
Lieutenant Colonel Joshua Stults, DARPA program manager for OpFires in DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office, said, “The objectives of DARPA’s OpFires program remain unchanged. The system design that Lockheed is developing continues to achieve the desired tactical mobility and system performance in line with the Department of Defense’s push to deliver an intermediate-range surface-to-surface missile.”
The program is developing an advanced booster capable of delivering a variety of payloads at multiple ranges and compatible mobile ground launch platforms that can be rapidly deployed.
In early 2020, Lockheed Martin began work on OpFires weapon system integration under a DARPA contract.
OpFires is an innovative ground-launched system that enables a hypersonic boost-glide missile system to penetrate modern enemy air defenses and rapidly engage time-sensitive targets.
Hypersonic missiles typically go one speed: as fast as they can. OpFires features a unique throttleable booster rocket motor that can vary its thrust to deliver payloads across the medium-range spectrum without energy bleed maneuvers. Less time in the air enhances survivability and mission success.
OpFires is designed with the soldier in mind, for the user, it operates off-road, supports rapid loading and reloading and can shoot and scoot within minutes, and it travels light.
OpFires engineers are designing OpFires with affordability in mind by reusing proven precision fires subsystems. For example, they are adapting proven High Mobility Artillery Rocket System electronics and precision fires subsystems for interoperability with US Army Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System infrastructure. (Source: Defence Connect)
12 Jan 21. A new superior feature for Patria Nemo. Capability to fire-on-the-move in direct and indirect fire missions. Patria Nemo is a global market leader in modern mortar systems with its state-of-the-art properties. To date, Patria has finalized the qualification of the fire-on-the-move capability on land-based systems in both direct and indirect fire missions. This new outstanding feature allows troops to be in constant movement during the fire mission and therefore it does not form a clear target for the counter-battery fire. With the fire-on-the-move capability locating a target, aiming and opening the fire is remarkably faster and more efficient without stops in the fire mission. Patria Nemo is a real game changer on the battlefield.
As a turreted, light weight and remote-controlled 120 mm mortar system with a high level of mobility, protection and accuracy, Patria Nemo is capable of both direct and indirect fire. One of the features that makes Patria Nemo mortar system particularly advanced is its fire-on-the-move capability. “Patria has originally developed the fire-on-the-move capability for Patria Nemo Navy version several years ago, but due to tightened customer expectations and the prospects of the battlefield, the development was taken a step further”, explains Kari Reunamäki, Vice President of the weapon systems business line.
Patria Nemo mortar system, weighing 1,900 kg, has a full 360º traverse and weapon elevation from -3 up to 85 degrees. Depending on the platform, vehicle equipped with Patria Nemo can stow 50-60 rounds of 120 mm ammunition. Patria Nemo enables the full potential of modern mortar systems with its usability on land and at sea, operation on the move, and high level of protection and firepower.
11 Jan 21. US Army aims to have Iron Dome deployment ready by September. The US Army is training soldiers on how to operate Rafael’s Iron Dome, with the goal of having the first battery ready to deploy by September and the second by about December, the service told Janes.
Israel delivered the first air-defence battery to the army in September 2020 and the weapon is now at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, Donald Herrick, a spokesman for the Air and Missile Defense Cross Functional Team, wrote in a 6 January email. The army then received the second battery in early January and Herrick said this one should arrive at the missile range by early March.
As for the manning part of the equation, the service activated two air defence artillery batteries at Fort Bliss, Texas, in November 2020.
“These units will test and evaluate the Iron Dome system and explore its potential for interoperability into the army’s existing air and missile defence architecture,” Herrick added.
More specifically, from January through July the soldiers will participate in a new equipment fielding and training programme, which will include a live-fire engagement in June where the service will test out Iron Dome’s ability to down a surrogate cruise missile.
If all goes as planned, the army could have the first battery ready to deploy in September and the second in December, Herrick said. It is anticipated that each battery will require between 50 and 75 personnel to operate. (Source: Jane’s)
11 Jan 21. ASW-capable variant of Z-20 helo may soon enter PLA Navy service. A photograph posted on the WeChat social media platform of the People’s Liberation Army Navy’s (PLAN’s) South Sea Fleet (SSF) suggests that the anti-submarine-warfare (ASW)-capable variant of the Harbin Z-20 helicopter is close to entering service.
Published in early January the image is the first to be released to the public showing the aircraft operating at sea. It is also one of several photographs posted by the SSF illustrating activities during recent large-scale exercises.
The Z-20 is very similar in appearance to the Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk and the first prototype is thought to have flown in 2013. The utility variant used by the PLA Ground Force has been in production since about 2018 and at least two Army Aviation brigades have received several of these aircraft, some of which have deployed to support ground forces stationed in Tibet.
Low-resolution images of a naval utility variant first emerged in October 2019 and in April 2020 photographs of an ASW-capable variant appeared on Chinese online forums. The most obvious distinguishing feature of the ASW variant, which is thought to be designated Z-20F, is the addition of a radome mounted beneath the cockpit floor to house a surface-search radar, making it similar in appearance to the Lockheed Martin/Sikorsky MH-60R Seahawk. (Source: Jane’s)
11 Jan 21. General Atomics Awarded Army Contract Modification to Mature Gun Launched Guided Projectiles. General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) announced today it has been awarded a contract modification from the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Armaments Center (DEVCOM AC) to further the development and maturation of hypersonic projectiles. The projectiles will be launched in high G-force and electromagnetic field environments to verify that the projectiles and the gun-hardened guidance and control electronics within them perform as designed to intercept moving airborne targets during live fire events scheduled through the end of 2021.
“This is a critical next step toward the goal of integrating guided projectiles for railgun technologies into the air and missile defense command network, and closing the fire control loop to enable precision engagement and intercept of airborne targets,” stated Scott Forney, president of GA-EMS. “Over the past few years we have made significant advancements in developing, manufacturing, and testing gun-hardened electronics, projectiles, and railgun weapon system technologies and components. Working closely with the Army’s DEVCOM AC, we will leverage our expertise and lessons learned to bring these disruptive technologies forward to provide greater defended range and strike capabilities for air and missile defense and long range precision fires missions.”
In addition to its on-going efforts to advance railgun weapon systems, GA-EMS has made a significant investment in internal research and development to advance and mature critical gun-hardened guidance electronics, projectile structural components, and mechanical systems. Under this contract modification, GA-EMS will manufacture guided projectiles to undergo test firings from the Navy’s railgun located at the White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) in New Mexico using the Navy’s armature and sabot package.
“We have a successful track record verifying the survivability of our projectiles and establishing in-flight two-way data links, having previously conducted multiple test firing events at Dugway Proving Ground,” said Nick Bucci, vice president of Missile Defense and Space Systems at GA-EMS. “The projectiles for this new round of testing include our fourth generation gun-hardened guidance electronic units and enhanced telemetry components. We are looking forward to verifying the projectiles’ capability to sustain data links, control its trajectory via actuated control surfaces using command guidance, and hit moving airborne targets, all while undergoing incredible G-forces and at hypersonic speeds. For the future battlespace, this will mean greater precision and accuracy to meet and defeat airborne threats.” (Source: ASD Network)
11 Jan 21. Plasan In-House Testing Developed. Due to the complicated interactions between human ergonomics, equipment packaging, hull design, kinetic and blast protection, the earlier in the design process an OEM starts working with Plasan, the lighter, more efficient, less compromising, and more effective the protection solution will be at a lower total platform weight.
Plasan’s has all in-house testing capabilities, required for the Combat Vehicles realm, that can assist OEMs with assessing their vehicle performance through:
Kinetic Energy Armor Testing – Internal Ballistic Lab, A2LA certified, parallel shooting tunnels firing up to 30mm cannon fired munitions (STANAG4569 Vol.1 Levels 1 through 6) Underbelly Blast Testing Facility
Side attack IEDs testing (152mm, 155mm, EFP, DFFC, Blast charge)
Drop tower testing for Energy
Attenuating Seats RPG Testing – either Live fire testing or through inert gas cannon test facility.
Reactive Armor Testing. Knowledgeable in simulation of: blast effects on a vehicle, Kinetic penetrators, fragmentation, shaped charges penetration, Underbelly explosions, metals and composite materials simulations, vehicles off-road maneuverability and ride quality and vehicle safety Real tests. (Source: Linkedin)
11 Jan 21. Lockheed Martin delivers HELIOS laser weapon to U.S. Navy. A long-awaited seaborne defensive laser weapon system known as HELIOS was delivered to the U.S. Navy for testing, builder Lockheed Martin announced on Monday. The Navy is scheduled to test the 60kw High Energy Laser with Integrated Optical-dazzler and Surveillance, or HELIOS later this year, and will go to sea aboard an unnamed guided missile destroyer assigned to the Pacific Fleet.
HELIOS, designed in a $150m contract with Lockheed Martin, is designed to “burn the boats,” or unmanned drones, with a high-energy laser beam.
It follows a 2019 demonstration of laser power, although with half the wattage of the device announced on Monday, aboard the amphibious transport dock USS Ponce.
The scalable laser design architecture combines multiple kilowatt fiber lasers to attain high beam quality at various power levels, according to Lockheed officials.
HELIOS was designed as a weapon capable of burning small speed boats, notably of the type the Iranian military deploys in armed groups, as well as unmanned aerial vehicles.
It can also merely “dazzle” a UAV’s electro-optical sensors, damaging them and preventing them from performing their missions.
The system can be used as an alternative to firing missiles or other projectiles at enemy craft, and can theoretically fire an unlimited number of laser blasts at targets.
HELIOS is one of a number of laser weapons the Navy is currently working to develop. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/UPI)
Arnold Defense has manufactured more than 1.25 million 2.75-inch rocket launchers since 1961 for the U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force and many NATO customers. They are the world’s largest supplier of rocket launchers for military aircraft, vessels and vehicles. Core products include the 7-round M260 and 19-round M261 commonly used by helicopters; the thermal coated 7-round LAU-68 variants and LAU-61 Digital Rocket Launcher used by the U.S. Navy and Marines; and the 7-round LAU-131 and SUU-25 flare dispenser used by the U.S. Air Force and worldwide.
Today’s rocket launchers now include the ultra-light LWL-12 that weighs just over 60 pounds (27 kg.) empty and the new Fletcher (4) round launcher. Arnold Defense designs and manufactures various rocket launchers that can be customized for any capacity or form factor for platforms in the air, on the ground or even at sea.
Arnold Defense maintains the highest standards of production quality by using extensive testing, calibration and inspection processes.