08 Sep 03. United Defense Industries, Inc. (NYSE: UDI – News), under the Integrated Army Active Protection Science and Technology Objective (STO) at TACOM, announced the successful test of a combat vehicle defeating live threats while traveling at 20 mph. The test vehicle was equipped with an active protection system developed by the company under the multiyear survivability program at the U.S. Army’s Tank-automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM).
The Integrated Army Active Protection System (IAAPS) successfully defended the moving vehicle against live anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) using the “hard kill” active protection system and “soft kill” electronic jammer. This achievement follows the successful completion of 12 months of stationary IAAPS testing where the system equipment and computer programs, which are fully integrated on a U.S. combat vehicle under a TACOM contract, repeatedly defeated a wide range of threats.
According to the company, the continued success of the IAAPS hardware and software is demonstrating that a Future Combat Systems requirement for an integrated suite of sensors, processors and countermeasures is technologically achievable. “The survivability of 20-ton FCS vehicle platforms will be highly reliant on active protection, combined with advanced lightweight armor, to defeat the most lethal anti-armor threats,” said Mark Middione, IAAPS program manager at United Defense. “Our successful stationary and on-the-move IAAPS test results continue to place the system on track for FCS increment 1.”
United Defense has integrated a suite of survivability equipment and computer programs from teammates BAE SYSTEMS and Northrop Grumman Space Technology that includes United Defense’s field-proven platform survivability processor as the foundation. The System Design & Development-ready platform survivability processor, developed and refined over the past six years, controls the system and includes a user-optimized soldier machine interface (SMI) with networked revenge kill capability built in. The IAAPS suite – designed to greatly increase vehicle survivability while allowing for a decrease in armor and, therefore, vehicle weight – includes two types of passive sensors, electronic warfare countermeasures and an active protection system composed of launcher, radar and a deployed countermeasure.
In a series of ongoing tests, the IAAPS team has consistently demonstrated the defeat of a variety of threats fired against a ground combat vehicle equipped with IAAPS. This specially equipped vehicle successfully stopped the threats, sustained no damage, and demonstrated “point protection” of the attacked vehicle as well as “area protection” of a limited surrounding area. The IAAPS active protection system, built by Northrop Grumman, has demonstrated exceptional tracking and fire control accuracy, while the electronic countermeasure system, built by BAE SYSTEMS, has demonstrated the ability to handle more than one threat concurrently. Future growth of the IAAPS system includes incorporation of the objective active protection countermunition for hardened threats and specifically large caliber long rod penetrators.
The IAAPS program is an Army STO. The current phase of the IAAPS contract will continue through FY05 and involves defeating incoming threats while the vehicle is moving cross-country at tactical speeds.