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10-09-13, 03:16 AM
September 9, 2013 at 17:49

JLTV Programs Enters The Final Round of Testing

Posted by Tamir Eshel

Three prototypes for the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle are undergoing testing. The AM General Prototype is on the left, Oshkosh JLTV in the center, and the Lockheed Martin prototype is on the right.

Full-pace, full-scope testing of the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle prototypes began Sept. 3 and will last for 14 months. Each of the three vendors — Oshkosh Defense, Lockheed Martin and AM General — delivered 22 vehicles and six trailers for testing to three sites — Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md.; Yuma, Ariz.; and Rrs 14 Medstone Arsenal, Ala. according to Col. John Cavedo, the Joint Program Office managerThe test program includes rigorous reliability testing over various terrains and in different weather conditions and protection-related testing is being conducted.

JLTV Testing & EMD Schedule – 2013-2018

Cavedo said the program is still on track despite this year’s sequestration and the continuation of continuing resolutions, but warned that if the budget issues are not resolved by next year, he could not rule out a slip in the schedule. “We’re doing everything we can to keep the program on track,” he said, emphasizing the importance of the program to meeting asymmetrical threats like those experienced in Iraq and Afghanistan.

With military forces facing ‘asymmetric’ warfare in contemporary conflicts, that notion of front lines and rear area was no longer applicable after 9/11. As the military has deployed to Iraq in the mid 1990s ‘soft’ vehicles such as the Army’s ‘Humvee’ became vulnerable to improvised explosive devices no matter where they were. Up-armor was added for protection but the enemy adapted to that with more lethal explosives.

The added weight of the up-armor taxed the Humvees’ performance and further limited its payload, which now included network gear. And, the Humvees were just getting old, with the first ones rolling off the assembly line about three decades ago.

Soldiers and Marines continued to be vulnerable, so the mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles, known as MRAPs, were developed. These had good payload and protection and helped save many lives over the last six years, but performance was sacrificed and Soldiers could not move with speed and agility around the battlefield, especially in the difficult terrain in parts of Afghanistan, he said.

Furthermore, the heavier versions of the earlier MRAPs could not be moved around the battlefield by helicopter and required strategic lift, which in turn required adequate runways for these big cargo planes to take-off and land.

The sustainment cost for the MRAP program increased over time, he said, as more variants were developed by different vendors. Parts were not interchangeable and mechanics had to get follow-on training, he said.

The JLTV closed the capability gap, addressing “the iron-triangle of payload, performance and protection,” he said. Its payload and protection is similar to an MRAP and its performance exceeds that of a Humvee.


Besides addressing the “iron-triangle,” Cavedo said the JLTV is designed to meet the needs of the commander for a variety of missions.

The commander can decide what level of protection JLTV needs for the mission, he said, pointing out that armor kits will be available for vehicles going into harm’s way. Also, some of the JLTVs will be equipped with heavy weapons, including TOW missile systems, while others can be used as light, utility vehicles.

Other kits include command and control and network gear. He said JLTV “plug and play” open-architecture technology allows for future networks and electronic devices to be installed without a vehicle redesign.

While different vehicles will have different kits, all vehicles come equipped with automatic fire extinguishers, multiple egress options, fuel-tank fire suppression systems and combat locks.

Powering the 21,000-pound gross weight JLTV and whatever kits and trailers are added on is a 300-horsepower fuel-efficient diesel engine. JLTVs also will be able to tow the thousands of legacy trailers that are still useable.


“We’ve managed to hold cost down by promoting better competition between vendors, incentivizing productivity and conducting an analysis of alternatives,” he said. By “analysis of alternatives,” he means ordering the right number of kits and mission packages. “We don’t want surplus kits stockpiled in warehouses across the country.”

Incentivizing productivity, he explained, means that after giving the original equipment manufacturer, or OEM, the specs, like protection, speed, weight and so on, it is up to them to determine how it’s built and what the tradeoffs are.

He provided an example. Besides armor kits, the basic JLTV requires a certain level of protection, he said. There might be very exotic metals out there that are lightweight and offer exceptional protection, but the cost involved would be astronomical. So a tradeoff might be reached where steel or aluminum is used to keep the cost down but still meet the basic requirements. To be competitive, however, the thickness or type of material used might exceed basic standards but be within a reasonable price range.

Tradeoffs like this apply to the power and transmission features and to everything else on the vehicle, he said. They’re trying to be as innovative and competitive as possible with the other OEMs, yet they must stay below the $250,000 assembly-line figure.

There are other ways cost has been controlled. Instead of requiring each OEM to supply 35 vehicles, they were required to provide 22 for the testing phase, he said. That number is reasonable and adequate for an effective evaluation.

Also, instead of a cost-plus type contract, the JLTV is on a firm-fixed price contract.

“In the past, the production price was set after down-select,” he said. “Our intent was to set production prices during competition so as we go forward into the competitive down-select we’ll have production prices set at that point and not negotiated for the years out.”


Source-selection evaluation will start in early 2015, and conclude by July of that year when a single vendor will be selected.

At that time, 2,000 vehicles will be produced and be tested for three years with the focus on fine-tuning the assembly line, full-up system testing and so on.

Full-scale production will begin in fiscal year 2018 with the ratio of organic to contract work determined by the third quarter of fiscal year 2015.

By 2018, the first Army brigade will roll with new JLTVs, he said.

Production will total 49,000 JLTVs for the Army and 5,500 for the Marines, with the production cycle ending sometime in the 2030s.

Kits will initially be produced by the selected OEM but follow-on kits might use a different vendor, he said.

In conclusion, Cavedo said the JLTV comes at the right time at the right cost, and is the perfect match to the Army’s shift to the Pacific, regional alignment strategy and meets the requirements of the Defense Strategic Guidance of 2012 and the Army’s 2014 Equipment Modernization Plan.

10-09-13, 10:37 AM
Tuesday, September 10, 2013, 09:05 AM

Amsafe Bridport Ltd displays Tarian® lightweight RPG armour system at DSEI 2013.

AmSafe Bridport Ltd is displaying Tarian® at DSEI, in London’s ExCel Centre from 10-13 September 2013. This revolutionary, lightweight and durable rocket propelled grenade (RPG) armour system can be seen fitted to a Navistar MXT™-MV (Husky) vehicle in the Land Display Zone (stand br5). This is the first time Tarian has been shown in service ready standard on this vehicle.

Husky armoured vehicle with AmSafe Bridport Ltd lightweight and durable rocket propelled grenade (RPG) armour system.

Following February 2013’s announcement that AmSafe Bridport had won the UK MOD contract for its Improved Rocket Propelled Grenade Protection requirement, AmSafe Bridport has been working on executing the contract which will see Tarian RPG Armour System kits for a number of British military vehicle types delivered by the end of 2013. Tarian has been in use in Afghanistan with the British Armed Forces since 2009.

Additionally, AmSafe Bridport continues to develop its relationships with global military vehicle manufacturers, such as Turkey’s FNSS Savunma Sistemleri A.S. (Defense Systems Inc.) and Singapore Technologies Kinetics of Singapore, with whom AmSafe Bridport has recently extended a Memorandum of Understanding. These relationships enable the highly effective Tarian Armour Systems to be cooperatively developed and offered to customers either as original equipment or retrofit.

In response to the very significant international interest in Tarian, AmSafe Bridport has expanded its Tarian international marketing team with the establishment of a dedicated North America team and an expanded UK based team. The North America team is based at AmSafe Bridport’s Erie, Pa facility and is led by Chris Witts as Senior Sales Manager. The UK team has been strengthened with the appointment of Cindy Barfoot as Sales Manager, and Matt Aujla as Sales Engineer. Doug Stewart, Senior Sales Manager continues to lead the UK based team and is responsible for marketing Tarian in all territories outside of North America.

Neal McKeever, Sales & Marketing Director of AmSafe Bridport, said:

“DSEI presents a fantastic opportunity for AmSafe Bridport to demonstrate Tarian’s unique adaptability to fit a wide variety of vehicle types, as well as fulfilling the requirement from the military for a lightweight, higher performance and more robust alternative to other RPG protection systems.”

10-09-13, 05:03 PM
September 10, 2013 at 07:03

Supacat Debut the LRV 400 Light Recce Vehicle at DSEI 2013

Posted by News Desk

The Supacat LRV 400 unveiled today at DSEI 2013 is a militarized variant of Qt Services’ successful `Wildcat` off-road motorsport vehicle, which has a proven record on the Rally Raid circuit and has earned a reputation for rugged reliability and high speeds over rough terrain.

Supacat is launching the Light Reconnaissance Vehicle 400 (LRV 400) at the DSEi 2013 exhibition opened in London today. The vehicle is designed as a low cost, high performance capability for special forces, border patrol, reconnaissance, rapid intervention and light strike roles. Offering light forces supreme levels of all-terrain mobility, the LRV 400 is able to be tactically loaded within a CH-47 Chinook with its full operational payload on board.

The LRV 400 is a militarized variant of Qt Services’ successful `Wildcat` off-road motorsport vehicle, which has a proven record on the Rally Raid circuit and has earned a reputation for rugged reliability and high speeds over rough terrain.

Using a fresh approach, Supacat have teamed with Qt to modify and integrate the COTS vehicle to military standards, thus providing an affordable capability using proven technology. The LRV 400 fills the gap in Supacat’s product portfolio between the heavier `Jackal` surveillance, reconnaissance and patrol vehicle and the smaller All-Terrain Mobility Platform (ATMP).

“The LRV 400 meets the gap in the military market for a light reconnaissance vehicle with an overall capability as close to that of Jackal as possible, but smaller and at less cost by adopting a COTS approach. We’ve taken motorsports’ best of breed in Qt’s Wildcat and modified it to military specification using Supacat’s proven expertise in developing Jackal,” said Jamie Clarke, Head of Marketing & Communications, Supacat. “Supreme performance and tactical CH-47 internal loading have been key targets on this project. The users will be able to drive in and drive out without the need to offload their payload or to conduct any lengthy preparation for flight. When they get there, they will be afforded the very best terrain access and operational capability. Applying motorsport technology to Defence applications is an exciting approach and one that will deliver unrivalled performance”.

The LRV 400 has evolved out of customer feedback on a proof-of-concept closed cab demonstrator developed by Supacat and Qt in 2011. Wildcat’s tubular space-frame chassis and state of the art suspension are critical to the LRV’s performance and rugged reliability. The display vehicle at DSEi is shown in a three crew configuration of commander, driver and gunner but the flexibility of the space-frame design allows the LRV 400 to be easily re-configured to meet different operational roles.

With a Gross Vehicle Weight of 3500kg, a width of 1.8m and a height of 1.8m (weapon removed or lowered) the LRV 400 is easily air portable in a CH-47 Chinook helicopter. It boasts a maximum speed of 106 mph (170km/h) and a range of 1000km. Payload is up to 1400 kg, depending on customer specification and configuration. It can be fitted with a range of powertrain options – the display vehicle has a Ford 3.2-litre, 5-cylinder diesel engine developing 236 hp and 550 Nm torque coupled to a Ford-supplied 6-speed automatic gearbox and two-speed transfer box however, other engine and transmission options are available.

10-09-13, 09:13 PM
DSEI 2013: Ruukki launches new Ramor 550 grade armour

10 September 2013 - 6:00 by Tim Fish in London

A new Ramor 550 armour product from Ruukki that is six times harder than mild steel is being launched at the DSEI exhibition.

Ruukki, a specialist steel producer and steel construction company from Finland, has designed the latest Ramor variant to specifically protect against explosions or ballistics threats.

The company said that the improved ballistic properties of Ramor 550 steel mean up to 10-20% lighter structures, which in turn cuts fuel consumption and enables higher payloads.

Jani Kastell, Ramor sales manager, at Ruukki stated: ‘Tested and certified, Ramor 550 steel is ideal for armoured vehicles, military vehicles and equipment, safe rooms and other applications where structural weight saving is required without compromising on protection properties.’

Ramor 550 has achieved a hardness value of 550 Brinell units (HBW) and Ruukki produces other Ramor products at 500 and 450HBW.

For 550 it recommends a minimum plate thickness ranging from 3.9mm for FB4+ protection from an 8g 7.62 x 39mm AK-47 (M43) round fired from a range of 10m at 720m/s; up to 10.7mm for Level 2 protection from a 7.77g 7.62 x 39mm AK-47 API BZ round fired at a range of 30m travelling at 695 m/s.

The dimensions of the Ramor 550 plates are 6-15mm in thickness and 3-6mm cut lengths with mill edges.

Ruukki says that it uses direct-quenching technology to achieve high hardness and strength, and that the Ramor steels have good cutting, bending and can be welded using all conventional welding methods.

11-09-13, 03:45 AM
More on the LRV 400..........interesting new lightweight! Via Army Recoginition.....

Tuesday, September 10, 2013 08:56 PM

Supacat launches LRV 400 Light Reconnaissance Vehicle at Defence Exhibition DSEI 2013.

Supacat is launching the Light Reconnaissance Vehicle 400 (LRV 400) at DSEi 2013 as a low cost, high performance capability for special forces, border patrol, reconnaissance, rapid intervention and light strike roles. Offering light forces supreme levels of all-terrain mobility, the LRV 400 is able to be tactically loaded within a CH-47 Chinook with its full operational payload on board.

New Supacat LRV 400 Light Reconnaissance Vehicle at DSEI 2013, Defence Exhibition in London, United Kingdom.

The LRV 400 is a militarized variant of Qt Services' successful `Wildcat` off-road motorsport vehicle, which has a proven record on the Rally Raid circuit and has earned a reputation for rugged reliability and high speeds over rough terrain.

Using a fresh approach, Supacat have teamed with Qt to modify and integrate the COTS vehicle to military standards, thus providing an affordable capability using proven technology. The LRV 400 fills the gap in Supacat's product portfolio between the heavier `Jackal` surveillance, reconnaissance and patrol vehicle and the smaller All-Terrain Mobility Platform (ATMP).

"The LRV 400 meets the gap in the military market for a light reconnaissance vehicle with an overall capability as close to that of Jackal as possible, but smaller and at less cost by adopting a COTS approach. We've taken motorsports' best of breed in Qt's Wildcat and modified it to military specification using Supacat's proven expertise in developing Jackal," said Jamie Clarke, Head of Marketing & Communications, Supacat. "Supreme performance and tactical CH-47 internal loading have been key targets on this project. The users will be able to drive in and drive out without the need to offload their payload or to conduct any lengthy preparation for flight. When they get there, they will be afforded the very best terrain access and operational capability. Applying motorsport technology to Defence applications is an exciting approach and one that will deliver unrivalled performance".

The LRV 400 has evolved out of customer feedback on a proof-of-concept closed cab demonstrator developed by Supacat and Qt in 2011. Wildcat's tubular space-frame chassis and state of the art suspension are critical to the LRV's performance and rugged reliability. The display vehicle at DSEi is shown in a three crew configuration of commander, driver and gunner but the flexibility of the space-frame design allows the LRV 400 to be easily re-configured to meet different operational roles.

With a Gross Vehicle Weight of 3500kg, a width of 1.8m and a height of 1.8m (weapon removed or lowered) the LRV 400 is easily air portable in a CH-47 Chinook helicopter. It boasts a maximum speed of 106 mph (170km/h) and a range of 1000km. Payload is up to 1400 kg, depending on customer specification and configuration. It can be fitted with a range of powertrain options - the display vehicle has a Ford 3.2-litre, 5-cylinder diesel engine developing 236 hp and 550 Nm torque coupled to a Ford-supplied 6-speed automatic gearbox and two-speed transfer box however, other engine and transmission options are available.

11-09-13, 05:38 AM

A Defense Technology Blog

Mix And Match

Posted by Bill Sweetman2:05 PM on Sep 10, 2013

Some four years after winning the contest to provide a mobile, agile and protected vehicle for the British Army, General Dynamics (formerly Force Protection) and its subcontractors are in the process of filling a 376-unit order, and the basic version of the type -- named Foxhound by the customer -- was deployed operationally in 2012. Relatively small, with a V-hull, composite armor, four-wheel steering and a sophisticated suspension, the type combines high ballistic and mine protection with both cross-country and urban mobility.

Now, the company has expanded the family (which it calls Ocelot) to four vehicles, two new members of the family being unveiled at the Defense & Security Equipment International show here.

This is less complicated than it sounds because the basic design places the engine and running gear on a "strongback" assembly, with the crew in a separate pod that is attached by four fasteners, with simple electrical and mechanical connections. In the new family, the Ocelot-S resembles the Foxhound, with an enclosed cab for a driver, commander and four soldiers, but the pod is steel -- less costly than the Foxhound's composite pod, for users facing less severe threats. The Ocelot-U is a logistics vehicle with a protected cab, while Ocelot-O is a classic special-forces "WMIK" (weapons mounted installation kit) vehicle with an open cab, rollover structure and weapons mounts.

The Ocelot-O at DSEi resembles an enclosed vehicle from a distance, being liberally covered with the Saab Barracuda MCS camouflage system adopted by the British Army for all its new combat vehicles. Its key feature is an infrared barrier that reduces the vehicle's thermal signature significantly, reducing the detection range of infrared sensors.

The Foxhound and the Ocelot-U are also on show here. GD is proposing that customers can buy extra mission pods and reconfigure their vehicles according to the requirements of the theater where they are deployed. Swapping out bodies takes about half a day, the company says.

11-09-13, 01:44 PM
Wednesday, September 11, 2013, 10:35 AM

Nexter unveils new TITUS Tactical Infantry Transport & Utility System vehicle at DSEI 2013.

United Kingdom, London. At DSEI 2013, French manufacturer Nexter unveils its new 6x6 armoured vehicle TITUS (Tactical Infantry Transport & Utility System)

Nexter TITUS Tactical Infantry Transport & Utility SystemVehicle at DSEI 2013

TITUS is the ultimate armored vehicle designed by Nexter in order to meet all the constraints of the modern hybrid warfare. Continuing a famous long lineage, including Leclerc MBT, VBCI and Aravis, all combat proven in many theatres of operation, Nexter combined the best of its experience and technology in TITUS. The tactical commander disposes now of a 6x6 vehicle customizable for an evolving environment. TITUS is the versatile armoured vehicle of the XXIst century. From Infantry transport to combat support and combat service support functions, from Peace Keeping Operation to Counter Insurgency, TITUS brings the technology and the Nexter touch into the heart of the action.

TITUS is mounted on a Tatra 6x6 chassis, coupled with an engine of 440Hp (550Hp in option) offering an exceptional mobility. Wrapped with an armored skin of last generation, from level 2 to level 4, TITUS is also protected against mines (4a/4b) and IEDs blasts (up to 150kg), by the original Nexter SAFEPRO design (hanged floor, energy absorbing seats…). RPG protection (PG Guard can be added). Thus, the units can be committed into the battlefield quickly and safely. Furthermore, to allow the crew (Driver, Gunner and Tactical commander) and the embarked squad to last a long time on the terrain, an exceptional effort of habitability has been done by Nexter in the hull. Internal volume is beyond 14m3, added by 4m3 of storage, and, as the hull -without obstacle from front to back- opens towards outside by a ramp with a minimal ground step (280mm), egress and ingress are really facilitated.

Stay tuned ! Following soon the video of the vehicle.

Nexter TITUS Tactical Infantry Transport and Utility System 6x6 armoured vehicle DSEI 2013
Published on 11 Sep 2013

United Kingdom, London. At DSEI 2013, French manufacturer Nexter unveils its new 6x6 armoured vehicle TITUS (Tactical Infantry Transport & Utility System).

Army Recognition
Military magazine for Defense & Security Industry
mail: marketing@armyrecognition.com
Tel +32 81-56.73.67

Key informations
27t Class
Transport of Infantry troops
Combat, combat support and combat service support tasks
Full modularity of the configuration by mission kits

Nexter TITUS Tactical Infantry Transport & Utility SystemVehicle at DSEI 2013

Nexter TITUS at DSEI 2013 ...BEING UNVEILED..........

Nexter TITUS at DSEI 2013

11-09-13, 04:27 PM
Wednesday, September 11, 2013, 10:35 AM

Iveco displays LMV 4X4 CBRN at DSEI 2013.

At DSEI 2013,Iveco Defence Vehicles displays the The CBRN Reconnaissance vehicle that incorporates CBRN equipment produced by Cristanini, an Italian company specialising in this field. The mission fit includes detectors for Chemical, Biological and Radiological hazards. With the crew fully protected inside, the sampling capability enables the area surveyed to be automatically marked with flags. As part of its Command, Control and Information Management System, the mission system also supports CBRN Warning and Reporting messaging.

Iveco LMV CBRN at DSEI 2013

Through its high mobility, the vehicle ensures the immediate management of contamination in all types of terrain. It is possible to mark and delineate contaminated areas (Stanag 2002) and perform sampling missions (in accordance with Stanag on SIBCRA AEP-66). Warning and Reporting will be managed by the operator in accordance with NATO Standard procedure ATP-45 version D.

The LMV CBRN recce vehicle on display provides a full suite of capability including stand-off chemical agent detection (up to 5 km), chemical agent detection and air monitoring, biological detection, radiation monitoring, meteorological measurement, and automated sampling and marking. Besides the integrated detectors, the vehicle incorporates portable detection instruments, with integrated CBRNe software and a message reporting system. As an option, the vehicles can be further equipped with a laser warning system and roof mounted RF IED counter measures. This innovative solution ensures the highest level of protection to the crew facing CBRN agents.

13-09-13, 11:51 AM
Thursday, September 12, 2013, 4:35 PM

Oshkosh showcases its L-ATV vehicle for the first time in Europe at DSEI 2013.

At DSEI 2013, Oshkosh Defense,exhibits its L-ATV which can help fill a vital capabilities gap for protection and mobility that global militaries face with their current light-vehicle fleets. Many historical light vehicle fleets, such as the High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV), Eagles and Land Rovers, are nearing the end of their useful life cycle and were never designed to accommodate the armour and equipment that is needed for modern conflicts.

Oshkosh L-ATV at DSEI 2013

“The ability to operate on a battlefield with a wide range of threats and terrain is increasingly critical for forces around the globe,” said John Urias, Oshkosh Corporation executive vice president and president of Oshkosh Defense. “The L-ATV was specifically designed to fulfil that mission. The platform offers unprecedented levels of protection and off-road mobility to navigate even the harshest environments.”

The L-ATV’s superior mobility is largely attributable to the Oshkosh TAK-4i intelligent independent suspension system. The TAK-4i system expands on the success of the proven TAK-4® system to deliver more than 50 centimetres of independent wheel travel – a 25 per cent increase over currently fielded vehicles. The TAK-4i system enables the L-ATV to shift power to the wheels that are in contact with the ground to provide control and manoeuvrability on dangerous terrain.

The L-ATV offers advanced troop protection against IEDs and other battlefield threats with a scalable armoured capsule optimized for protection, weight and mobility. The capsule’s modular, adaptable design can accept multiple armour configurations, allowing the vehicle to accept future enhancements.

Oshkosh Defense can deliver L-ATV fleets with fully integrated and tested command, control, communications and computer (C4) equipment. This includes factoring the mechanical, electrical and user interfaces into the vehicle design process to optimize overall system performance and the user experience. Oshkosh performs C4 installation in-house, either during the production process or after, to reduce time and costs. Oshkosh integrated C4 systems into the Oshkosh M-ATV, which contributed to the vehicle being designed, produced and delivered at a rate of more than 1,000 per month – all in less than one year.

“We blended the latest design and proven technologies in the L-ATV to create a vehicle with superior performance and reduced sustainment costs,” added Serge Buchakjian, senior vice president and general manager of international programs for Oshkosh Defense. “Our global life-cycle support offerings, from training and parts supply to maintenance support and remanufacturing, help keep vehicle fleets at peak readiness anywhere the mission requires.”

13-09-13, 12:46 PM
DSEI 2013: Thales showcases electronic architecture for GVA

13 September 2013 - 11:49 by Jonathan Tringham in London

Applies to all vehicles, tracked or wheeled...........

Thales has unveiled a product integration demonstration pod at the DSEI exhibition in London, designed to illustrate new concepts in Generic Vehicle Architecture (GVA) systems design.

Amyas Godfrey, product line manager for mission system integration at Thales, said a key concept the company wanted to communicate was that the electronic architecture (EA) on display was agnostic.

‘Integration is not a product, it’s an activity. It could be a Foxhound, Mastiff, Bushmaster, it could even be an ISO container in a base – it doesn’t matter what the platform is, it’s what we’re doing inside. We are integrating the systems,’ Godfrey told Shephard.

The display unit reveals an electronic architecture designed to British MoD-standard, and presents an evolution of the system currently installed on the Foxhound.

‘The system is primarily comprised of three boxes and some cabling, which are directly analogous to your home network set up consisting of a power source, broadband hub, and your laptop.

‘The GVA standardisation of this architecture is also comparable to your home network. It doesn’t matter what [brand of] products you use, it’s about bringing [different] systems together in an effective integration. This concept is at the heart of an electronic architecture, it is there to enable better integration of systems,’ Godfrey explained.

The current Foxhound EA only has LSA (local situational awareness) cameras with limited capability. Thales used the example set-up to show how this capability can be significantly added to in a more or less ‘plug and play’ fashion.

‘To demonstrate how much we can put on to one system, we’ve added [to the Foxhound EA] a remote weapon station from Kongsburg, a ROTOS [remotely operated thermal sight] mast-mounted camera, a VMASS [vehicle mounted acoustic sensor system] for shot detection, and LSA cameras with 360 degree angles and drivers TI [tactical information] front and rear,’ Godfrey said.

‘Each individual mission system can then be shared around any crew position.’

The unit also included a MILTRAK alert and tracking system, in addition to an Open Asset software program, developed by Thales, to enable the health and usage monitoring system information collected by the vehicle to be utilised.

‘As long as each component complies to the GVA standard, then it doesn’t matter which supplier they come from – it will all work,’ Godfrey concluded.

13-09-13, 12:49 PM
DSEI 2013: Jankel launches new seating technology

13 September 2013 - 11:07 by Tim Fish in London

All forms of vehicles with troop-carrying compartments..........

Jankel has launched its new third generation BlasTech seat technology, which provides improved protection for soldiers and crew of MRAP vehicles during an IED contact, at the DSEI exhibition.

The company said that the seating provides additional protection reducing the severity of injuries to the spine and brain by allowing the seat itself to move and absorb the impact of the initial blast as well as the secondary slam-down of the vehicle.

Jankel's head of R&D, Eric Charleston, told Shephard that the third generation seat ‘has incorporated far more aluminium extrusion components, which has led to economies of scale and repeatability of form’.

By reducing the need to form and weld sheet steel components, it has improved accuracy and reduced time to assemble leading to a reduction in cost.

‘All components have been reviewed in order to reduce complexity and increase reliability, together with a large reduction in weight,’ Charleston said.

The latest generation seats are smaller and lighter, offering advantages in vehicle performance, ergonomics and integration possibilities within a given envelope.

‘The basic function of how the seat operates is mostly unchanged… By improving the fit of components using extrusions they could gain much more repeatability in the seat function. This in turn allowed them to improve on the ability to better protect occupants. For instance, functions such as the automatic weight adjustment now has a higher degree of fidelity,’ Charleston said.

Vehicle manufacturer Jankel has used its knowledge of vehicle design to produce ergonomic seating that offers improved protection. Most recently the company launched its Pegasus Special Operations Vehicle last year.

13-09-13, 03:14 PM
German Army Awards Polaris Contract to Supply Military ATVs

(Source: Polaris Industries Inc.; issued September 12, 2013)

MINNEAPOLIS --- Polaris Industries Inc. (PII), the leading manufacturer of off-road vehicles, today announced the company was awarded a contract to provide MV850 ultra-light tactical vehicles to the German Army.

“Defense forces around the world are seeking Polaris Defense Military vehicles to take advantage of our ability to make modifications to our commercial off-the-shelf technology (COTS), insert customer requirements and quickly deliver an end product that meets their needs,” said Rich Haddad, general manager of Polaris Defense. “It is our goal to match the warfighter’s mission requirements with our best value product.”

The highly-mobile MV850 platform, which was built specifically for the U.S. military and allied forces, allows for the transport of military personnel and gear through extreme off-road terrain. It features a 600 lbs./272 kg capacity metal rack system, 11.75 gal/ 4.5 L fuel capacity, blackout lighting with IR light capability and an optional litter mount.

Polaris is a recognized leader in the powersports industry with annual 2012 sales of $3.2 billion. Polaris designs, engineers, manufactures and markets innovative, high quality off-road vehicles, including all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and the Polaris RANGER and RZR side-by-side vehicles, snowmobiles, motorcycles and small vehicles.


14-09-13, 01:52 AM
Much better pics and details of the Polaris ATV from Soldier Systems blog.............

DSEi – Polaris Defense

September 13th, 2013

With a top speed of 52 MPH, the Polaris Defense Sportsman MV 850 features a 850cc, 77 hp engine that runs on Mogas from a 11.75 gallon tank. It also integrates electronic power steering and military blackout drive.

So far, Polaris hasn’t offered the Terrainarmor Non-Pneumatic Tires for use with other vehicles or for commercial sale because they were are engineered specifically for this vehicle. They will sustain the vehicle for over 5,000 miles with a full combat load, over 1,000 miles with a railroad spike driven into them, over 1,000 miles after being shot by a 5.56mm or 7.62x39mm round and over 350 miles after being shot by a .50 round.

The rear rack will accommodate 400 lbs and the front rack at 200 lbs with a total vehicle load capacity of 850 lbs. The Sportsman MV 850 has a towing capacity of 1,500 lbs.


14-09-13, 02:14 AM
More on the LRV 400...........

New Supacat recce vehicle inspired by motorsport legend

Contributor: Defence IQ Press

Posted: 09/13/2013 12:00:00 AM EDT | 0

For an industry scrambling to diversify into adjacent markets such as the automotive sector as defence budgets dry up and militaries press for increasingly innovative engineering solutions, it’s edifying to see that trend be reversed with Supacat’s latest armoured vehicle variant.

The Light Reconnaissance Vehicle 400 (LRV 400), a recce vehicle for Special Forces and light strike roles, was unveiled at DSEI in London this week to “fill the gap” in Supacat’s portfolio between its heavy Jackel patrol vehicle and the smaller All-Terrain Mobility Platform (ATMP).

The LRV 400 is based on the Wildcat off-road rally car, which was designed to tackle the turbulent and brutal Dakar course. The platform had be to be robust and flexible enough to cope with the punishment of the Dakar Rally, most of which is in the desert. Since the environment has a great deal of cross over with the British Army’s in-theatre operations, the engineers at Supacat used the Wildcat as their inspiration for the LRV 400.

Weighing just 3.5 tonnes, the LRV 400 has been designed to be a fast-moving, rapid intervention vehicle. To build a truck as light as that there had to be many compromises and creative weight-saving solutions factored into the design phase.

One example is the gunner’s seat. You may think it’s obvious to call it a seat since that is where the gunner, in fact, sits. But that's true only around 20% of the time. The rest of his journey is spent standing behind the armament, observing his surroundings and ready to react to any situation. ArmourWorks, a UK-based provider of survivability solutions, designed and manufactured a seat that fulfilled Supacat’s requirements: A lightweight, convenient solution that is primarily a standing platform but could also be used as a comfortable and safe seat.

It’s only through innovations such as this that Supacat has been able to develop its next generation recce vehicle, which can be tactically loaded onto a CH-47 Chinook with its full operational payload on board.

“We’ve taken motorsports’ best of breed in Qt’s Wildcat and modified it to military specification using Supacat’s proven expertise in developing Jackal,” said Jamie Clarke, Head of Marketing & Communications, Supacat.

“The LRV 400 meets the gap in the military market for a light reconnaissance vehicle with an overall capability as close to that of Jackal as possible, but smaller and at less cost by adopting a COTS approach."

21-09-13, 05:45 AM
The Department of Cheaper Ocelots

Posted on September 20, 2013 by Think Defence in News and Information

General Dynamics have released a few interesting images of their Ocelot-S range of vehicles, the Ocelot of course being the GD name for the British Army Foxhound.

S stands for Steel which is much cheaper than the composites used on the Foxhound, it also adds nearly 2 tonnes which illustrates just how composite materials can save weight.

It was also shown at the recent DSEi exhibition with a fully GVA compliant systems fit.

The logistics variant can carry a couple of NATO standard pallets up to a total of 2 tonnes in weight, the ambulance variant can carry two stretchers and there is a 6.5m Long Wheel Base version shown in the images above.

Other suggestions include a military working dog carrier, 105mm Light Gun Limber, fuel bowser and protected shelter carrier. A 6×6 version is also reportedly possible.

This makes obvious sense, to build up the 400 Foxhound fleet to include other variants could potentially displace various versions of the the Land Rover, Duro and Pingauer fleets.

23-09-13, 12:13 PM
Boeing to Showcase New and Agile Solutions at Modern Day Marine

• Exhibit includes Phantom Badger high-performance tactical vehicle, Ground Launched Small Diameter Bomb

Boeing [NYSE: BA] is highlighting a diverse warfighting equipment portfolio – including an advanced high-performance tactical vehicle – during this year’s Modern Day Marine exposition.

The Marine Corps League event takes place Sept. 24-26 at U.S. Marine Corps Base Quantico. Boeing will display the Phantom Badger, a combat support vehicle that is small enough to fit in a MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft for transport.

The Boeing exhibits at Booth 2304 also will illustrate the versatility of aircraft such as the H-6U Unmanned Little Bird and MV-22 Osprey, as well as the latest in directed-energy and secured applications to protect assets and critical information for warfighters on the ground, in the air and in cyberspace.

“With the backdrop of world events, this year’s Modern Day Marine expo gains additional importance,” said Boeing Marine Corps Systems Vice President Dewey Mauldin. “We are combining our established expertise in aircraft, weapons systems and network capabilities with innovative and cost-effective solutions for present and future Marine Corps missions.”

Source : The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA)

Published on ASDNews: Sep 20, 2013

Read more: http://www.asdnews.com/news-51221/Boeing_to_Showcase_New_and_Agile_Solutions_at_Mode rn_Day_Marine.htm#ixzz2fiHonlDt

Meet the Phantom Badger

By Katie Perdaris

The Phantom Badger can be transported inside a V-22 Osprey.

Boeing’s latest technology is robust yet sleek, versatile and speedy, and it doesn’t even leave the ground. Meet the Phantom Badger.

To design a vehicle the customer needs Boeing turned to the Special Forces. To increase its capabilities they turned to a team of NASCAR-experienced engineers. To test the Phantom Badger engineers took it four-wheeling in North Carolina, and off-roading in the Nevada desert.

A small company in North Carolina, MSI, developed the Phantom Badger’s shocks and suspension to tackle the challenging terrain and obstacles military customers would encounter.

“This is a vehicle that will last the customer a long time, and we truly think this weight class of vehicle closes a big capability gap,” said John Chicoli, Boeing’s Phantom Badger program manager.

Check out the video to see the Phantom Badger in action.

25-09-13, 01:57 AM
Oshkosh Delivers M-ATVs to UAE

Company Says It's Working on Saudi Deal

Sep. 24, 2013 - 06:24PM


Oshkosh Defense recently delivered the last of the 750 M-ATVs sold to UAE. (Oshkosh Defense)

QUANTICO, VA. — Oshkosh Defense finished shipping the last of the 750 MRAP-All Terrain Vehicles (M-ATV) sold to the United Arab Emirates, and is working on a deal with Saudi Arabia for an undisclosed number of the lighter MRAPs, company officials here said.

John Bryant, senior vice president of defense programs for the company, said that Oshkosh is working on a long-term maintenance and supply agreement with the UAE to keep those M-ATVs humming. The UAE deal was announced in July 2012, and deliveries were completed this past August.

Since the potential Saudi deal is still in its early stages, Bryant said he could not provide any additional details, though he does expect announcements to be made by the end of the year.

Since the program came on line in 2009, the US Army, Marine Corps, and Special Operations Command purchased about 8,700 M-ATVs for use in Afghanistan, but as part of the overall divesture of its wartime MRAP fleet, the government will keep about 5,600 of them, with the Special Ops Command retaining about 250 vehicles.

Bryant said that the US government is planning on re-fitting almost all of the vehicles that come back from Afghanistan at its own government depots, but that Oshkosh’s supplier base should still see plenty of work funneling parts and technical expertise to the depots to finish up the work.

He also said that the company’s supplier base should stay pretty healthy over the next several years given the amount of work they have servicing Oshkosh’s heavy and medium vehicle fleets, as well.

“We don’t see any drying up of our supply base,” he said.

The company is also working on a series of safety, survivability, and mobility upgrades for the vehicles as they come home, including suspension upgrades and a new communications suite for international customers that would allow them to integrate more — and different — radios onto the platforms.

As one of the three finalists for the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program, Bryant is concerned about the fact that the program’s managers say that they’ll run out of money to continue testing by next summer, unless they receive an infusion of cash.

Still, he said, the company is continuing to perform its own testing on the JLTV, and is eager to share that information with the government if they need it.

25-09-13, 11:19 AM
Oshkosh Defense Answers USMCs' Light Vehicle Needs

• Oshkosh JLTV solution on display at Modern Day Marine

Prototype L-ATV...........

The U.S. Marine Corps is reshaping its light vehicle fleet to equip Marines with the right mix of protected mobility for future missions. Oshkosh Defense, a division of Oshkosh Corporation (NYSE:OSK), has developed vehicle and upgrade offerings to meet those requirements, including a Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) solution that will be showcased at Modern Day Marine in Quantico, Va., Sept. 25-27.

“The last decade of conflict combined with an aging light vehicle fleet has shaped the Marine Corps’ priorities for its future vehicle fleets,” said John Bryant, senior vice president of Defense Programs for Oshkosh Defense. “Chief among those priorities is the JLTV, a transportable vehicle that will allow Marines to operate in rugged, off-road environments, while keeping them safe in high-intensity combat situations.”

The Oshkosh JLTV solution, the Light Combat Tactical All-Terrain Vehicle (L-ATV), delivers unprecedented levels of off-road mobility for a light vehicle. Using the Oshkosh TAK-4i™ intelligent independent suspension system, the vehicle delivers a 25 percent improvement in independent wheel travel over most mobile vehicles currently fielded, giving Marines greater off-road performance across rough terrain. Marines already rely on Oshkosh’s combat-proven vehicles with today’s gold standard in off-road capability, such as the Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement (MTVR) and MRAP All-Terrain Vehicle (M-ATV).

Oshkosh Defense was down selected for the Engineering, Manufacturing and Development (EMD) phase of the JLTV program in August 2012 and delivered its 22 JLTV prototypes for government evaluations last month ahead of schedule. Oshkosh will provide vehicle training and support for the prototypes as they undergo 14 months of robust military testing.

HMMWV Upgrade Solutions

In addition to the procuring JLTV, the Marine Corps is seeking to upgrade a portion of its aged High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) fleet. Up-armoring HMMWVs in recent conflicts has diminished key vehicle capabilities, including off-road performance, ride quality and reliability.

Oshkosh Defense has developed modular and scalable HMMWV upgrade solutions that provide varying levels of capabilities at a range of price points. The upgrades can be provided individually or as more complete solutions for upgrading all critical vehicle systems. Oshkosh’s comprehensive, cost-effective approach addresses requirements for engine and powertrain, suspension, driveline, hubs and brakes, frame and hull, electrical, cooling, and auxiliary automotive improvements to meet the Marine Corps needs.

For example, Oshkosh has tailored its industry-leading TAK-4® independent suspension system to deliver higher levels of mobility, including a 70 percent off-road profile capability, improved ride quality and a 40 percent increase in the vehicle’s maximum speed. The TAK-4 system also gives the HMMWV greater whole-vehicle durability, a restored 2,500-pound payload capacity and a restored ground clearance of 17 inches. Oshkosh also can deliver a modern engine option that’s more powerful than the HMMWV’s stock engine and provides increased fuel efficiency.

Normal Hummer (left) with Hummer with TAK-4 suspension on right..........

Source : Oshkosh Corporation (NYSE: OSK)

Published on ASDNews: Sep 24, 2013

Read more: http://www.asdnews.com/news-51262/Oshkosh_Defense_Answers_USMCs__Light_Vehicle_Needs .htm#ixzz2ftiwd1tP

25-09-13, 03:41 PM
Polish Army Eyes New Biological Reconnaissance Vehicles

Sep. 25, 2013 - 09:12AM


WARSAW — The Polish Defense Ministry has launched a technical dialogue to select defense manufacturers willing to supply seven new biological reconnaissance vehicles to the Polish Army, the ministry’s Armament Inspectorate said in a statement.

According to the released technical specification, the designed high-mobility vehicle will have a medium loading capacity. The vehicle must carry a crew of seven and weigh a maximum of 16 tons. The seven vehicles are also to be enabled for air transport by the Lockheed C-130E Hercules aircraft. Polish Air Force has six such transport aircraft in its fleet.

Under the plan, the vehicle contract will also cover servicing and maintenance.

Applications are to be submitted by Sept. 30, according to the Armament Inspectorate. After the applications are reviewed, the ministry aims to meet with the manufacturers to discuss the technical and financial aspects of their initial offers by Oct. 18. The Polish ministry has already established a task team to handle the application and evaluation process.

Delivery of the vehicles to the Polish Army is scheduled for 2014.

25-09-13, 05:40 PM
According to the released technical specification, the designed high-mobility vehicle will have a medium loading capacity. The vehicle must carry a crew of seven and weigh a maximum of 16 tons. [...] Delivery of the vehicles to the Polish Army is scheduled for 2014.

Sounds about right for Patria AMV 6x6.

26-09-13, 12:32 AM
Yup, the 6x6 was listed from the beginning as a possibility for the Polish Army and this need seems to be ideal?

26-09-13, 12:44 AM
GD Inks 2nd SOCOM Ground Vehicle Contract in a Month

Sep. 25, 2013 - 12:45PM


General Dynamics' Advanced Light Strike Vehicle, a variant of the Flyer vehicle, was awarded a test and evaluation contract by US Special Operations Command. (General Dynamics)

QUANTICO, VA. — General Dynamics has scored a perfect two for two this year when gunning for US Special Operations Command ground vehicle contracts. It won the $562 million Ground Mobility Vehicle (GMV) 1.1 bid in August — though the award is stalled by protests from AM General and Navistar — and has now secured a $5.8 million evaluation contract for a lighter, CV-22 Osprey transportable vehicle on Sept 12.

On Wednesday, GD spokeswoman Laurie VanBrocklin confirmed that the company’s Advanced Light Strike Vehicle — a variant of the “Flyer” vehicle that won SOCOM’s GMV contract — was awarded the 12-month test and evaluation contract that includes training and parts.

A government website outlines a contract “for a minimum basic quantity of 2 vehicles each with the ability to purchase 8 additional vehicles.”

The idea behind the program is to give operators a fast, protected, but lightly armored off-road vehicle that can roll out of the back of an Osprey and begin firing mounted weapons within 60 seconds.

In May, Defense News reported on comments made by Marine Lt. Col. Ken Burger, program manager for the Family of Special Operations Vehicles, who told an industry gathering that SOCOM’s plan is to request funding for the program beginning in the fiscal 2015 budget, and that Air Force Special Operations Command will begin doing combat evaluations of prototypes in 2014.

27-09-13, 12:42 AM
Pentagon Kicks Off JTLV Testing

By Michael Hoffman Thursday, September 26th, 2013 12:10 pm

QUANTICO MARINE BASE, Va. — The three competitors in the program to build the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle remain confident in the program despite budget uncertainties as the Defense Department kicks off testing as part of the Engineering and Manufacturing Development phase of the program.

AM General, Lockheed Martin and Oshkosh Defense — the three companies awarded EMD contracts — delivered 22 prototype vehicles to the Army and Marine Corps for testing this summer. Each one delivered the vehicle ahead of schedule.

The Defense Department has started the earliest phases of testing to include weighing each component of the vehicle. Of course, the weight may be one of the most important aspects of the JLTV to the Marine Corps.

Corps officials have harped on the size and weight of the JLTV emphasizing the need for the vehicles to fit on ships and be transported by helicopter. Arguments over weight requirements almost killed the program as costs skyrocketed as defense companies experimented with new materials to reduce the weight.

The Army and Marine Corps have since pared down the requirements for the program and similarly the price per vehicle to $250,000. However, the Marine Corps has wavered in its commitment after Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos said his service would have to re-evaluate its position in the program because of the sequestration budget cuts.

Initial plans had the JLTV replacing the Humvee in the Army and Marine Corps fleets. Budget restraints have forced the service to temper their initial plans. The Army now plans to acquire as many as 49,000 JLTVs and the Corps plans to buy 5,500. As a whole, the Defense Department has about 180,000 Humvees in its fleet.

Thus far, officials from the defense companies who have submitted prototype vehicle have received very little feedback, if any at all.

“The testing has only just begun so there’s not much feedback yet,” said Chris Vanslager, AM General’s executive director for program management.

John Bryant, senior vice president of Defense Programs for Oshkosh Defense, said he is looking forward to seeing how the vehicles stand up to the wear and tear following the significant mileage the Army testers will put on the vehicles.

Kathryn Hasse, Lockheed Martin’s JLTV program director, explained that for all three of the companies, many of the tests the Defense Department will do on the vehicles, have already been carried out by the companies. However, she said Lockheed has an advantage because it is the only company to win an EMD contract that also took part in the Technology Development phase of the contract.

All three companies supported the decision by the JLTV’s joint program manager to not delay the testing schedule and reevaluate the program next summer. Col. John Cavedo, the JLTV’s joint program manager, made the announcement in August.

“It shows he’s committing to staying on schedule,” Bryant said at the Modern Day Marine Exposition here on Monday.

27-09-13, 01:25 AM
Via DiD........

The US Army’s Tank Automotive Research, Development, and Engineering Center (TARDEC) is working on an Ultra Light Vehicle (ULV) prototype with DARPA’s help to try and revert the trend of ever heavier military vehicles. Their website is offline at the moment, but here’s a short video ..............

TARDEC - Ultra Light Vehicle (ULV) Research Prototype Advanced Testing Phase [1080p]
Published on 16 Sep 2013

9 Sep 2013. Ultra Light Vehicle (ULV) is U.S. Army's latest "research prototype".
Hybrid tactical vehicle targets safety, fuel-efficiency and versatility.
Using commercial technologies, only 16 months from design to build.

U.S. ARMY DETROIT ARSENAL, WARREN, Mich. - While no military strategist can predict with absolute certainty where future conflicts will happen, Army researchers have designed the Ultra Light Vehicle (ULV) Research Prototype to meet a wide range of challenges by making it fuel efficient, versatile and survivable in nearly any environment.

At the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC), final testing is beginning on the ULV vehicle platform with technologies to equip Soldiers for missions across a full spectrum of mobility challenges while keeping occupants safe and using fuel efficiently.

Funded by the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the ULV project was set up to design, develop and build three identical lightweight tactical research prototype vehicles emphasizing survivability for occupants and meeting four research objectives:

Payload - 4,500 lbs
Performance - at 14,000 lbs curb weight
Protection - comparable to the currently fielded Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected (MRAP) vehicles
Price - $250,000 each in a hypothetical 5,000-unit production run.

TARDEC's Ground System Survivability group partnered with non-traditional defense contractors bringing the engineering expertise of both to the project. In only 16 months, the team moved from design to prototype.

"The Army's approach was to create synergistic survivability," explained TARDEC GSS Associate Director Steve Knott. "Soft deliverables — such as data and lessons learned — and hard deliverables — such as test assets and spare automotive components — will help shape, inform and support tactical vehicle programs, technology demonstrator efforts and/or TARDEC Innovation Projects to maximize the overall return on investment."

The team produced three vehicles: two will be used for mobility, mine blast and ballistic survivability testing and the third is moving into TARDEC's Ground Systems Power and Energy Laboratory (GSPEL) for mobility and fuel efficiency testing. Results are expected to be available in early 2014.

Vehicle information — including specifications, photos and videos — is located here:

Highlights of ULV's powertrain, design, communications and protection, focusing on mobility and survivability, include:

Powertrain -- With two electric motors (front and rear) the ULV's hybrid powertrain improves both mobility and survivability. By eliminating the need for a driveshaft, the underbody can be designed to perform well in a blast event. And either of the electric motors can power the vehicle, providing redundancy. A lightweight diesel engine powers the electric motors and also enables:

 Immediate launch
 Stealth drive
 Silent watch
 Exportable power generation
 High torque at low/near zero speeds
 Improved fuel economy

Design -- ULV's final design was developed by lead contractor Hardwire LLC
(www.hardwirellc.com). The relatively spacious crew-accommodating cab provides increased interior space than similarly equipped tactical vehicles. Remote-mounted and remote-controlled vehicle electronics reduce HVAC loads and create space. "Clamshell" front and rear doors open away from the B-pillar creating a protected area for Soldiers to exit.

"The cab is designed to have seven egress points facilitated by quick-release and removable components, stowage space for personnel and mission-specific items and 360-degree situational awareness through front- and rear-mounted ultra wide-angle thermal imagers," explained TARDEC engineer Vladimir Gendlin.

Communications -- ULV features lower-weight Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) technologies focused on warfighter needs.

Survivability/Ballistic Protection -- The hybrid design allows for a "clean underbody" through the elimination of various automotive components potentially allowing for blast-mitigation technologies to perform uninhibited during a blast event. This design provides added opportunities to integrate various blast-mitigating kits under the hull for higher threat levels. Interior technologies include a crushable floating floor system that decouples the crew's feet and legs from the steel hull and absorbs energy, adjustable stroking seats, five-point restraint systems, and spatial accommodations to mitigate head impacts and flail injuries. ULV also utilizes highstrength steels and advanced composite materials offering lightweight ballistic protection from a number of threats to include a newly developed transparent ceramic armor system to keep the vehicle's overall weight down.

To be honest, this prototype looks better than some of the production vehicles being developed..............:1010

03-10-13, 09:26 AM
Guns Up for Australian Army 6x6 G-Wagons

The Australian Army will soon take delivery of the first Mercedes-Benz G-Wagon 6x6 surveillance reconnaissance vehicles (SRV) fitted with a new customised weapons suite.

Under Phase 3A of Project Land 121, around 200 G-Wagon 6x6 SRVs will each receive front and rear weapon mounts developed by Australian weapon mount specialist W&E Platt.

In a AUD$2.5 million contract with Australia’s Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO), the company is currently building the mounts at a rate of about 10 sets per week. The contract also includes a spare parts package and technical documentation.

In collaboration with the DMO, Platt undertook extensive in-house design and engineering evaluations of the bespoke weapon mount solutions throughout much of 2012, including Commonwealth of Australia sponsored live fire trials of advanced prototype mounts.

Designed specifically for the unarmoured 300 CDI G-Wagon 6x6 SRV platform, the weapon mount fit comprises a front rail mount for both left and right-handed gunners that is installed on the upper dash structure for the vehicle commander; and a rear skate mount fixed to the rear stowage compartment. The latter enables the gunner to engage targets left, right and to the rear of the vehicle but not to the front of the vehicle, where arcs of fire are restricted by rotation stops.

Each weapon mount can accept a Minimi 5.56mm light machine weapon or a MAG-58 7.62mm general purpose machine gun.

Australian Army units earmarked to receive the 6500kg gross vehicle mass G-Wagon 6x6 SRV include the three Regional Force Surveillance Units: the Pilbara Regiment, NORFORCE and the 51st Battalion, Far North Queensland Regiment. It is understood that Royal Australian Air Force Airfield Defence Guards units will also receive the vehicle.

Delivery of the Platt weapon mounts will continue through the first quarter of 2014.

Source : W&E Platt Pty Ltd

Published on ASDNews: Oct 2, 2013

Read more: http://www.asdnews.com/news-51420/Guns_Up_for_Australian_Army_6x6_G-Wagons.htm#ixzz2ge4pCqc6

09-10-13, 03:12 PM
October 4, 2013 at 13:00

Colombia has Shown Interest in an Israeli MRAP

Posted by newsdesk

The MKII Zibar Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) developed by Zibar in Israel has been demonstrated to the Colombian Army and Marine Corps, reportedly arousing great interest in its performance.

Photo: Zibar

The Zibar is offered also as MRAP, with shields allowing it to successfully withstand explosions IEDs, as well as impacts of 5.56 x45mm caliber ammunition and 7.62 x39mm.

This version has been developed for use in desert environments and for COIN type operations, thanks to 4×4, which provides great maneuverability in rough terrain, having the ability to carry up to six men, with their respective team-and also having weapons station in the middle of the vehicle to which it is accessed by a turret, that can mount a machine gun – a Browning M-2HB-QCB 12.7 mm or a U.S. Ordnance M-60 7.62 mm.

One option is to fit a Rafael remote controlled weapon station on the Zibar.

zibar pick up 2013
Published on 26 Feb 2013


16-10-13, 01:09 AM
BAE Shutters Texas Factory, JLTV Production Moved

Oct. 15, 2013 - 04:19PM | By PAUL McLEARY

Moving JLTV: Lockheed Martin will shift production of the JLTV to its Camden, Ark., facility after BAE Systems announced it would close its facility in Sealy, Texas. (Lockheed Martin)

WASHINGTON — In a surprise announcement with serious implications for the US Army’s ground vehicle industrial base, BAE Systems announced today that it is shuttering its Sealy, Texas, production facility by the end of June 2014.

A total of 325 employees will be put out of work between November and June, and some of the work being done at the facility will be moved to other BAE facilities, a spokesperson for the company said.

The facility at Sealy was focused on wheeled vehicle production. With orders having dried up for mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles and the family of medium tactical vehicles, and no new orders coming in, the company said it didn’t have enough work to keep the line open.

“We explored every possible option to maintain the viability of the facility, but the decline in US defense spending has made it necessary for us to continue rationalizing our business base,” said Erwin Bieber, president of BAE Systems Land & Armaments sector, in a statement. “This was a difficult decision, but it in no way reflects upon the hard work and commitment of the employees. We will do all we can to assist them during this difficult transition.”

The move has implications beyond BAE Systems. The company had an agreement with Lockheed Martin to manufacture Lockheed’s Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) at Sealy, but the company said that it will still provide the armored cabs, protection solutions and manufacturing expertise.

Lockheed said today that it is moving production of the JLTV to the company’s Camden, Ark., manufacturing facility.

Kathryn Hasse, director – JLTV at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, said on a conference call Monday afternoon that “BAE remains a key partner with us on our JLTV team,” but with the shift in production locations, “the terms and conditions of the agreement will be modified” between the two companies.

Hasse wouldn’t elaborate on those new conditions might be, but said it is almost certain that some engineers who had worked for BAE at Sealy would come aboard at Lockheed and move to the Arkansas plant.

She also said that since production is moving to a new facility, the company will have to invest to make some modifications to the new plant in order to accommodate JLTV production. But given that the next milestone in the program won’t come until 2015, the work would be done well before then.

Lockheed is also claiming that the shift to a Lockheed facility will allow the company to reduce overall production costs from the program, but when asked why they didn’t make the move earlier in order to reduce costs, Hasse said that it was due to the teaming agreement with BAE.

In August, 22 JLTV prototypes left the Sealy line en route to the Army as part of the program’s Technology Development and Engineering and Manufacturing Development phases.

“BAE Systems remains committed to Lockheed Martin and our JLTV program,” Mark Signorelli, vice president and general manager of Combat Vehicles for BAE Systems said in a statement.

Lockheed Martin’s Camden line has already produced gear such as the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System launchers, Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missiles and Terminal High Altitude Area Defense ground vehicles.

BAE executives have been warning of layoffs for some time. During a tour of the company’s experimentation facility in Michigan in September, Signorelli expressed concern about the company’s manufacturing facility in York, Pa., as well. While the company has reached deals with the Army to keep the production line there humming through 2014, the work will run out about halfway through 2015.

“We mitigated the major risks in ‘14,” he said, but “we still can’t support the entire supply base. There will be layoffs.”

BAE Systems acquired the Sealy plant as part of its purchase of Armor Holdings in 2007.

Email: pmcleary@defensenews.com.

17-10-13, 01:01 AM
Pentagon Slows Ground Vehicle Purchases

By Michael Fabey

Source: Aerospace Daily & Defense Report

October 16, 2013

Credit: Lockheed Martin

The U.S. Army and Marine Corps are in no hurry to rebuild their ground fleets following the accelerated acquisition of vehicles capable of protecting troops from improvised explosive devices (IED) and related threats in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Such is the case as the services develop the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV), a program the Army shares with the Marine Corps, to replace the Humvee, which has been in service since 1985.

“They are being very deliberate,” says John Bryant, senior vice president of Defense Programs for Oshkosh Defense, which along with AM General and Lockheed Martin received JLTV Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) contracts in August 2012, worth a total of $185 million for the program. The JLTV Technology Development contracts were awarded in October 2008 and the planned single, low-rate initial production contract is not scheduled until 2015.

Congress and defense analysts took the Pentagon to task for spending large sums of money to quickly ramp up production and deployment of mine-resistant, ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicles for Iraq, as well as other specially built vehicles for Afghanistan. But now the services are throttling back a little with JLTV, Bryant says, to make sure requirements and capabilities match up at a reasonable cost.

Right now government estimates put the research and development costs for a program to develop and buy 54,599 vehicles at about $497.1 million, while the procurement cost is estimated at about $22.2 billion, for a total funding package of about $22.7 billion.

Bryant says the JLTV program should fare well as it comes under scrutiny—like other major acquisition efforts—from the Congressional Research Service (CRS) and Government Accountability Office (GAO). CRS notes there could be some congressional concerns over “reported possible JLTV budget shortfalls starting in fiscal 2015.”

Bryant also acknowledges there could be some funding issues later in the program associated with sequestration. And, as GAO points out, JLTV will have to battle it out with other major ground-related Army programs.

“The Army plans to move ahead with the procurement of JLTV at about the same time that it plans to start the procurement of other new and costly programs like the Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV) and the Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV),” GAO says. “The procurement of all three programs is expected to continue for a decade or more.”

The AMPV fleet is the proposed replacement for the M113 family of vehicles in the heavy brigade combat team, focusing on five missions: general purpose; medical evacuation; medical treatment; mortar carrier; and mission command. The proposed Army AMPV buy runs higher than 3,100 vehicles.

The first GCV variant is intended to be the service’s next infantry fighting vehicle, replacing a portion of the current M2 Bradley fleet. The total GCV program price tag is estimated at $37.9 billion, with $7 billion of that needed for research and development and $25.4 billion for procurement.

The Army needs about 30 development models and plans to buy 1,874 production models, according to defense analysts’ estimates.

18-10-13, 02:48 AM
REF Lab Finds Fix for MRAP Weakness

by Matt Cox on October 17, 2013

Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles are tough but their tires have not faired well in Afghanistan. Last year, the air valves that protrude off of MRAP tires were breaking easily when the vehicles brushed up against other vehicles or dirt walls, causing the tires to go flat and bringing vehicles to a halt.

The Rapid Equipping Force soldiers and engineers, working out of the REF’s Expeditionary Lab in Afghanistan, found out about the problem last year and and ginned up a simple, bolt-on fix that has saved a lot of tires since then, Master Sgt. Willian Pascual, operations NCO with the REF at Fort Belvoir, Va.

“The trucks run up against the wall or a berm or something and that little stem valve gets broken, tire goes flat and the unit is left out there until another unit can help pick them up,” Pascual told reporters during at an Oct. 16 tour of one of the labs at Belvoir.

REF officials at the lab designed several prototype covers for the valves, using the lab’s 3D printer to build them out of plastic. They fit tested them, made changes and then milled them out of alluminum for testing. It took about five weeks to create a finished product.

The REF deployed two of these highly-mobile labs to Afghanistan last year. These “Ex Labs” cost about $2.8 million each and include state-of-the-art equipment such as a Rapid Prototyping 3D Printer, a machine that can produce plastic parts that may not even exist in the current inventory. There’s also a similar device known as a Computer Numerical Control Machining system for producing parts and components from steel and aluminum.

In addition to the high-tech prototyping equipment, the labs include portable equipment carts filled with tools such as plasma cutters for precision metal cutting, welders, magnetic mounted drill-presses, electric hacksaws, routers, circular saws and jig saws.

“We can build stuff out of plastic; w can build stuff out of metal,” Pascual said. “We can well, we can help with their electronic components … and we can help them with their kit work – say their is a certain part of their bag they need moved from one part to the other, we can do that as well.”

The labs also include satellite communications equipment for conducting video teleconferences with REF officials and engineers in the states. Once in theater, these expeditionary labs can be transported by truck or airlifted by helicopter to wherever they are needed.

As the Pentagon begins to drastically scale down its presense in Afghainstan, the REF may shrink in size but these labs can be used anywhere troops are deployed, said REF Director Col. Steven Sliwa.

“I’m pretty sure that the Army wants to resource its operations globally,” Sliwa said. “ Under this new fiscal environment … what is the right size of the REF? How do we expand and contract so we are right sized but also to be able to grow to the required size in order to meet the demands of any operation? We don’t want to lose the 12 years of lessons that we have learned.”

21-10-13, 03:57 PM
Pakistan Struggles To Fund Counterinsurgency Vehicles

Oct. 20, 2013 - 12:04PM | By USMAN ANSARI

Pakistan has ordered three Serbian-built Lazar 2 multirole armored vehicles for evaluation to improve its land warfare capabilities. (Wikimedia image by Srdan Popovic)

The Pakistani's need high mobility armoured vehicles so they go to SERBIA!!???? Gee, don't remember many of them being in Iraq or Afghanistan! IF they truly wanted such vehicles then BAE South Afrca or Oshkosh could easily, and happily, help......a huge range of vehicles to pick from too, from real heavy duty down to LW armoured 4x4's..........totally stupid to go to Serbia!

ISLAMABAD — Economic problems are hampering Pakistani efforts to acquire needed counterinsurgency vehicles, but domestic and international options offer some hope, officials said.

The deaths of Maj. Gen. Sanaullah Khan and Lt. Col. Tauseef Ahmed in a Sept. 15 Taliban improvised explosive device (IED) attack near the Afghan border hammered home the need to improve counterinsurgency vehicles. Khan and Ahmed had been inspecting troops in the region.

Years of efforts to acquire more suitable counterinsurgency vehicles have not borne fruit, and even the long-awaited indigenous Burraq mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicle has not entered service. A spokesman for state-owned Heavy Industries Taxila said, “Burraq is on hold,” but gave no reason.

Brian Cloughley, former Australian defense attaché to Islamabad, said, “the major problem, as always, is cash.”

Any substantial procurement would be difficult to make as Pakistan is seeking aid from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, he said.

Foreign offers of surplus vehicles have also been declined however, again mainly for financial reasons.

“The Army didn’t want the surplus US vehicles from Afghanistan, not just because they want to cut reliance on US equipment wherever possible, but because of operating costs and complexity,” Cloughley said.

Nevertheless, options are being explored.

At the Serbian “Partner 2013” defense exhibition in June, local media quoted the nation’s Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Aleksandar Vucic as saying that Pakistan had ordered three Lazar 2 eight-wheel-drive multirole armored vehicles developed by state-owned Yugoimport SDPR.

These are thought to be for evaluation, with local production in Pakistan a possibility.

The Lazar 2 is a more multirole version of the Lazar 1 vehicle and is configurable for a wide range of roles with various weapon options.

Yugoimport SDPR would not comment on details of a deal, and the Serbian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Serbian Embassy in Beijing, (from where Serbia is represented in Pakistan), also declined to comment.

The Ministry of Defence here was unable to give any details.

The spokesman for Heavy Industries Taxila, however, confirmed no co-production deal had yet been signed.

Cloughley said the company can quickly manufacture the Lazar 2, but added, “The Army doesn’t need a [multirole combat vehicle] for the eastern front, and the armoured/mech infantry divisions seem to be comparatively low priority at the moment,” he said.

Analyst Usman Shabbir of the Pakistan Military Consortium said the Army may have to think smaller.

The Army “certainly needs better 4x4 vehicles in [the Federally Administered Tribal Areas] region, ... something that could provide a certain level of protection against small arms fire and limited protection against small size IEDs,” he said.

One possible option is a new version of the Mohafiz four-wheel-drive security vehicle developed by Taxila. Now based on a Toyota Land Cruiser 79 chassis, the Mohafiz III offers improved protection.

“The Mohafiz III is most likely the cheapest and easiest solution available,” Shabbir said, but it remains to be seen if it will enter service the Army.

21-10-13, 10:11 PM
The Pakistani's need high mobility armoured vehicles so they go to SERBIA!!???? Gee, don't remember many of them being in Iraq or Afghanistan! IF they truly wanted such vehicles then BAE South Afrca or Oshkosh could easily, and happily, help......a huge range of vehicles to pick from too, from real heavy duty down to LW armoured 4x4's..........totally stupid to go to Serbia!

Maybe so, especially as Pakistan seems quick to acquire chinese aircraft and naval vessels but apparently _not_ chinese armor ?yet? The article states the rationale: reduce dependence, operating costs and complexity. Maybe they don't only want to hedge western hardware with far eastern but do something else as well ...

You can argue about Serbia's industry but they do have a coherent wheeled armor portfolio built around military logistics vehicles as a base platform. Be it mere trucks, APC's, MLRS or artillery and Serbia might be desperate enough to get large orders to make negotiations with them interesting again. And what is Taxila Heavy manufacturing these days anyways? :)

22-10-13, 12:20 AM
DARPA, Army Researchers Working on New IED-Proof Vehicles

Oct. 21, 2013 - 03:49PM | By PAUL McLEARY

Roadside bombs have caused the majority of US combat deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan. (US Army)

WASHINGTON — Over the next 18 months, the US Army, DARPA and Alcoa Defense are getting together to work on producing single-piece aluminum hulls for ground combat vehicles which, the thinking goes, would improve crew protection against buried roadside bombs.

Since a single-piece underbelly would obviously do away with welding seams that can break apart and endanger soldiers when an IED hits the vehicle, the structure would be lighter and more likely to stay in one piece.

IEDs have been the biggest killer of US and coalition troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“For decades, the Army has recognized the survivability benefits of a single-piece hull due to its thickness, size and shape for ground combat vehicles,” Ernest Chin of the Army Research Laboratory said in a statement.

Alcoa has already designed a single-piece aluminum hull that allows engineers to tailor the thickness where it’s most needed, which also allows for weight savings, since some sections of the hull would be a bit thinner.

The Army Research Laboratory kicked off its Affordable Protection from Objective Threats program in 2012. An Army planning document explaining the program says the service is looking for “new high performance alloys with little to no exposed weld/joints capable of meeting the next generation underbody blast requirements.”

Alcoa has already helped the Pentagondevelop a single-piece forging for the Joint Strike Fighter bulkhead as well as multiple replacement parts using new alloys for the US Air Force.

22-10-13, 12:23 AM
Industry Working To Give the MRAP New Life

Oct. 21, 2013 - 05:57PM | By PAUL McLEARY

The US Army is keeping about 3,000 Navistar-made MaxxPro MRAPs.

The US Army is keeping about 3,000 of the 9,000 Navistar-made MaxxPro MRAPs it purchased between 2007 and 2011 while it divests thousands more MRAPs for which it no longer has a need.

Since Navistar won the sweepstakes as the main MRAP that US forces will ride into the future, the hulking vehicle, which was built rapidly to provide protection against roadside bombs in Iraq and Afghanistan, is going to need some serious upgrades, however.

Chief among the coming tweaks that Navistar is planning is adding the communications and connectivity capability that the Army is pushing across the force, a capability that allows leaders to access streaming video, text and voice messages from soldiers in the field and intelligence assets overhead.

Given this, the MaxxPro is headed to the White Sands Missile Range, N.M., next spring to participate in the Army’s Network Integration Evaluation exercise, so the service can assess the company’s Mission Command on the Move technologies.

The new technology suite will allow brigade commanders to stay connected to dismounted troops and brigade and battalion headquarters while on the move in austere environments.

The Mission Command MaxxPro seats five passengers and features several workstations that allow soldiers to monitor the information being sent from dismounts, access feeds from UAVs and keep track of where all units in the area are operating.

One of the other big selling points that the company is pushing is the vehicle’s ability to kick out 120 kilowatts of power while sitting at idle, reducing the load of power generators deployed units need to transport on missions.

The power generation capability would also allow commanders to power an entire tactical operations center with one MRAP, allowing the unit to set up a semi-permanent base of operations and be able to access the full suite of communications and intelligence gathering technologies, all without hauling any generators

While it is heading down to White Sands for operational evaluations, the vehicle’s technology suite is only at the start of its test and evaluation process with the Army. After its trip to White Sands next spring for its initial evaluation in an operational environment, it will head back for formal testing next fall, after which the Army will make a decision about how to move forward.

Navistar is also working on signing parts and sustainment contracts with the governments of Iraq and Afghanistan, since it has sold about 9,000 military and commercial vehicles of various makes to each nation in recent years, said Bob Walsh, vice president of Navistar Defense.

22-10-13, 01:47 PM
General Dynamics to Deliver V-22 Internally Transported Vehicles to U.S. Special Operations Command

(Source: General Dynamics; issued Oct. 21, 2013)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. --- General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems was awarded a contract by the U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) for non-developmental V-22 Internally Transportable Vehicles (ITV).

The three-year indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract is for up to 10 vehicles, with integration and logistical support and training. The total value of the contract is $5.8 million if all options are exercised.

General Dynamics' Flyer ITV is a modular and mobile vehicle that traverses severe, rugged and restrictive terrain while providing off-road, cross-country mobility in all types of weather. Easily and rapidly reconfigured in the field, the Flyer ITV can be used for a variety of combat and humanitarian efforts including light assault, search and rescue, command and control and reconnaissance missions. Its modular, armored design allows it to meet an array of threat levels and environmental conditions without vehicle modifications.

The Flyer ITV is on display through Wednesday, October 23, in General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems' booth (#707) at the annual meeting of the Association of the U.S. Army in Washington, D.C.

"This award positions General Dynamics as a key provider to the U.S. SOCOM for internally transportable vehicles. By using a high percentage of non-developmental technology the Flyer can be fielded quickly and cost-effectively," said Tim Neaves, senior director of lightweight tactical vehicles for General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems. "The combined knowledge and manufacturing expertise of General Dynamics and Flyer Defense will enable us to meet SOCOM's demanding requirements, along with those of other U.S. and foreign customers seeking affordable internally transportable light-strike vehicles."

Flyer Defense, LLC, has over 15 years of experience and expertise in innovative, operationally relevant design, modeling, simulation and manufacturing of high-mobility off-road tactical vehicles and provides an array of capabilities in system design, development, and prototyping.

General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems manufactures large-, medium- and small-caliber direct and indirect-fire munitions; weapon, armament and vehicle survivability systems; as well as propellants and non-lethal and force-protection products.


22-10-13, 10:10 PM
Army Full Speed Ahead on JLTV, Marines Choosing Words Carefully

Oct. 22, 2013 - 05:05PM | By PAUL McLEARY

The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program will replace US Humvees, shown here. The government shutdown temporarily halted testing of JLTV candidates. (US Army)

The two-week federal government shutdown halted Army and Marine Corps testing of the 66 Joint Light Tactical Vehicles that Oshkosh, AM General and Lockheed Martin delivered in August for 14 months of test and evaluation, Army officials said today.

“Some of the test sites didn’t shut down at the same time and they didn’t come up at the same time,” which complicated matters as far as coordinating across multiple sites performing multiple tests, said US Army Col. John Cavedo, program manager for the JLTV program.

Even when the funding spigot was turned back on after the two-week shutdown, “starting back up has been a very difficult proposition,” he added. “We are behind our current ideal test plan right now,” but he said he’s confident the Army and Marine Corps will be able to make op for those delays over the next nine months.

But that isn’t the end of the program’s fiscal troubles.

Cavedo told Defense News in August that if sequestration remains in place and the program doesn’t receive a new infusion of cash by July, the services will have to begin curtailing test and evaluation activities, pushing back the program’s schedule.

A production award is expected in late fiscal 2015 for approximately 50,000 JLTVs for the Army, with their Marine Corps partners purchasing another 5,500 vehicles.

The Marine Corps has made noises in recent years about possibly pulling out of the program because of the $250,000-per-vehicle price tag and weight issues. But Lt. Col. Michael Burks, Marine Corps program manager, Light Tactical Vehicles, reiterated that the Marines are all in on the program — with a significant caveat.

“The Marine Corps is emphatic on maintaining a combat capacity, so we’re absolutely focused on more tooth to tail,” even as the size of the force falls over the next several years, he said.

“The focus right now is on what is good enough. I won’t speculate on how that’s going to impact across ground combat tactical vehicle strategy … so in terms of what’s good enough, I offer that right now, in the current conversation, in the context of the size of the Marine Corps that we’re looking at, 5,500 JLTVs is good enough to meet deployed commanders critical mission needs.”

Hard decisions about the testing program and the overall schedule for awards will have to be made in the second quarter of fiscal 2014 if sequester remains in place, Cavedo said. In the 2014 budget, the program took a $5 million hit under the sequester, with another $11 million taken out of its coffers by congressional marks.

Overall, the Army requested $84 million for JLTV work in fiscal 2014, while the Marines have asked for $50 million.

Kevin Fahey, head of Army PEO Combat Support & Combat Service Support, added that “our problems have had nothing to do with the program, and everything to do with the budget” in recent years, and that he needs a budget decision in the third quarter of fiscal 2014 in order to keep everything moving ahead as planned.

“Right now we’re on the path where we’re on track,” he said.

But even with those rough deadlines set for later this year, “we can’t even begin to tell you what the actual date is that we run out of money” Cavedo warned.

23-10-13, 03:26 AM
Army Vows JLTV Commitment Despite Cuts

By Brendan McGarry Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013 12:34 pm

The U.S. Army and Marine Corps still plan to buy a total of almost 55,000 light-duty trucks known as the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle despite the prospect of continued budget cuts, officials said.

The Army aims to purchase about 49,000 of the vehicles, designed to replace about a third of the Cold War-era Humvee fleet, while the Marine Corps plans to acquire about 5,500 of them, officials from both services said at the second day of the Association of the United States Army conference.

“JLTV is a priority,” Kevin Fahey, the Army’s program executive officer for combat support and combat service support, said during a briefing with reporters. He appeared alongside Col. John Cavedo, the Army’s project manager for joint light tactical vehicles, and Lt. Col. Michael Burks, the Marine Corps’ deputy to the Joint Program Office for Joint Light Tactical Vehicles.

“We still have a train on the tracks,” Cavedo said.

“We are in,” Burks said.

The comments added context to statements yesterday from top Army officials that major acquisition programs, including the Ground Combat Vehicle, were in jeopardy because of the automatic budget cuts known as sequestration. That may mean the Army will seek to replace Humvees before Bradleys.

Lockheed Martin Corp., based in Bethesda, Md.; Oshkosh Corp., based in Oshkosh, Wis.; and AM General LLC, based in South Bend, Ind., are developing JLTV prototypes.

The Army is still trying determine how many trucks it needs as it downsizes, Fahey said. It plans to submit a report on the subject to Congress sometime next year, he said.

The service already plans to shrink from about 520,000 active-duty soldiers today to about 490,000 around 2017. That figure, however, may drop to 380,000 if sequestration remains in effect, Pentagon officials have said.

The Pentagon faces about $500 billion in automatic cuts through 2021. That’s in addition to almost $500 billion in reductions already included in 2011 deficit-reduction legislation. The first installment totaled about $37 billion and began March 1 after lawmakers were unable to reach an alternative agreement on taxes and spending. The second installment totals about $52 billion and is set to take effect Jan. 1.

If and when the cuts slice into the Army’s light tactical wheeled vehicle fleet, officials will try to steer them toward the existing inventory of Humvees rather than the Joint Light Tactical Vehicles, or JLTVs, Cavedo said.

The JLTV quantity for the Army and Marine Corps “remains the target that we’re shooting for and reductions to match force structure may come at reduced numbers of 30-year-old Humvees,” he said.

The recent government shutdown and short-term funding measure known as a continuing resolution have disrupted prototype testing, Cavedo said. Sometime after Jan. 1, the program office will decide whether to slow spending on the program, he said. The congressional deal that reopened the government will fund agencies through Jan. 15 and raise the federal debt limit through Feb. 6.

The services requested a total of about $135 million for the program in fiscal 2014, which began Oct. 1, including $84 million for the Army and $50 million for the Marine Corps, according to budget documents. But that funding — which is about $50 million more than last year — is at risk under the continuing resolution, which only provides funding at levels similar to last year, Fahey said.

23-10-13, 11:50 AM
Tuesday, October 22, 2013 09:53 PM

Lockheed Martin presents the latest version of JLTV Joint Light Tactical Vehicle at AUSA 2013.

At AUSA 2013, Lockheed Martin presents the latest version of the JLTV (Joint Light Tactical Vehicle) which was just delivered to the U.S. Army and Marine Corps on Aug. 14, 2013 for 14 months of test and evaluation. A production award is expected in late fiscal 2015 for approximately 50,000 JLTVs for the Army, with their Marine Corps partners purchasing another 5,500 vehicles.

The latest version of the Lockheed Martin JLTV (Joint Light Tactical Vehicle)

The primary goal of Lockheed Martin JLTV is to provide a Family of Vehicles (FOV), with companion trailers, that are capable of performing multiple mission roles designed to provide protected, sustained and networked mobility for personnel and payloads across the full range of military operations.

Designed as a more capable and survivable replacement for many of the current Army and Marine Corps HMMWV “Humvees,” the Lockheed Martin JLTV is systems engineered to return crucial protection, mobility and transportability to Soldiers and Marines. In refining its JLTV EMD design, the Lockheed Martin team optimized a vehicle already proven in testing during the program’s previous Technology Development phase. The result is a lighter, more blast-resistant and more agile JLTV that maintains the proven force protection, mobility, transportability and reliability of the earlier model, while significantly reducing weight and cost.

BAE Systems is responsible for providing the JLTV's armored cabs and the vehicle’s innovative geometrically enhanced protection system, a design that enables levels of blast protection never before achieved in this vehicle class.

Designed-in reliability and supportability are hallmarks of the Lockheed Martin JLTV, with the result being reduced life-cycle costs. The vehicles showed exceptional reliability and superior fuel efficiency in more than 180,000 miles of testing.

The JLTV program creates a family of vehicles consisting of the general purpose (4-door) and utility (2 door) variants, which can be enhanced with mission kits. The variants share a high degree of commonality which reduces operations and support costs, and enhances training.

24-10-13, 04:12 AM
Via Soldier Systems blog.......


October 23rd, 2013

This is a sneak peek of the Scarab from Bombardier Recreational Products. Look for more info soon.

24-10-13, 07:05 AM
Wednesday, October 23, 2013 08:53 PM

AM General ready to produce its Joint Light Tactical Vehicle JLTV BRV-O for US Army and Marines.

The U.S. Defense Company AM General which has manufactured more military light tactical vehicles than any other in the United States is poised to produce the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV), the next-generation Light Tactical Vehicle (LTV) for Soldiers, Marines and other American service members performing their missions around the world.

AM General JLTV BRV-O at AUSA 2013, defense exhibition in Washington D.C.,United States.

AM General delivered 22 of its Blast Resistant Vehicle Off-Road™ (BRV-O™) JLTVs for the Engineering, Manufacturing and Development (EMD) phase of the program, to the United States Government in August ahead of schedule. The company manufactured the vehicles on the same Light Tactical Vehicle Assembly Line that has turned out approximately 300,000 High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWVs) for all branches of the U.S. military and more than 50 international customers.

“We are unique in the JLTV program with our fully tooled production line; long experience in high- quality, lean manufacturing; successful track record of on-time and at-cost delivery; highly skilled workforce, and network of 1,700 suppliers across 43 states,” said AM General Vice President Business Development and Program Management Chris Vanslager. “Low-risk, high-quality and affordability is what our customer requires, and we at AM General, have more than five decades of experience and the heritage of manufacturing light tactical vehicles to deliver those requirements to the men and women of the armed services.”

The company’s LTV Assembly Line has the flexibility and tooling to economically and efficiently produce the BRV-O as well as HMMWV simultaneously, in multiple variants and volumes, to meet the needs of military customers. Besides its dedicated Military Assembly Plant in Mishawaka, Ind., AM General’s manufacturing capability is supported by its Engineering and Product Development Center in Livonia, Mich., its engine manufacturing plant in Franklin, Ohio, its logistics support operations stretching from Indiana and around the globe, and its extensive LTV testing and training facilities in the South Bend, Ind. area.

“We alone bring to the table everything needed for successful, affordable and flexible manufacturing and life-cycle support to meet the needs of U.S. and international armed forces for decades into the future,” said Vanslager.

AM General has more than 50 years of experience building more than 1.5 million tactical wheeled vehicles, in the process earning recognition from the U.S. Army, Defense Logistics Agency, and other customer organizations for outstanding production, service parts and training contributions.

24-10-13, 07:21 AM
Wednesday, October 23, 2013 10:58 PM

Textron Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle System SCTV increases crew protection of HMMWV.

At AUSA 2013, Textron Marine & Land Systems and Granite Tactical Vehicle present an upgrade of armour to increase the crew protection of HMMWV light tactical vehicle. The Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle (SCTV™) System offers occupants an armored monocoque v-hull crew capsule and restores tactical mobility with proven components.

HMMWV fitted with Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle (SCTV) system at AUSA 2013, Defense Exhibition in Washington D.C., United States.

The Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle Capsule is the protective capsule that replaces the current HMMWV crew compartment in a one-for-one exchange and is an integral component of the Textron/Granite total system integration.

The SCTV™ is a lightweight, highly protected system that is low in maintenance, rotary wing transportable, and compatible with all versions of HMMVWs currently in service. The solution capitalizes on previous training and maintains the characteristics of the original HMMWV cab by utilizing most of the existing controls, linkages and drive systems - the familiar and proven characteristics that make the HMMWV the vehicle of choice.

The SCTV™ HMMVW integrated vehicle system protects in-theater troops against blast and IED threats during combat operations on the asymmetric battlefield. The continuing need for substantial and sustained deployments across the full spectrum of operations requires innovative solutions to protect troops. Crew survivability has become a key performance parameter for all vehicle platforms. The SCTV™ has a lower center of gravity than an up-armored HMMVW and is resistant to small arms fire, blasts and the secondary effects of blasts such as fire, crushing, rollover and collision.

Pre-assembled SCTV™ components are easily transported by road, sea or air. The retrofit can be accomplished in fewer man-hours than the current armor and frag kits. The SCTV™ is low maintenance and supported by the military's existing parts inventory.

24-10-13, 03:01 PM
Wednesday, October 23, 2013 10:58 PM

Textron Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle System SCTV increases crew protection of HMMWV.

At AUSA 2013, Textron Marine & Land Systems and Granite Tactical Vehicle present an upgrade of armour to increase the crew protection of HMMWV light tactical vehicle. The Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle (SCTV™) System offers occupants an armored monocoque v-hull crew capsule and restores tactical mobility with proven components.

HMMWV fitted with Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle (SCTV) system at AUSA 2013, Defense Exhibition in Washington D.C., United States.

The Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle Capsule is the protective capsule that replaces the current HMMWV crew compartment in a one-for-one exchange and is an integral component of the Textron/Granite total system integration.

The SCTV™ is a lightweight, highly protected system that is low in maintenance, rotary wing transportable, and compatible with all versions of HMMVWs currently in service. The solution capitalizes on previous training and maintains the characteristics of the original HMMWV cab by utilizing most of the existing controls, linkages and drive systems - the familiar and proven characteristics that make the HMMWV the vehicle of choice.

The SCTV™ HMMVW integrated vehicle system protects in-theater troops against blast and IED threats during combat operations on the asymmetric battlefield. The continuing need for substantial and sustained deployments across the full spectrum of operations requires innovative solutions to protect troops. Crew survivability has become a key performance parameter for all vehicle platforms. The SCTV™ has a lower center of gravity than an up-armored HMMVW and is resistant to small arms fire, blasts and the secondary effects of blasts such as fire, crushing, rollover and collision.

Pre-assembled SCTV™ components are easily transported by road, sea or air. The retrofit can be accomplished in fewer man-hours than the current armor and frag kits. The SCTV™ is low maintenance and supported by the military's existing parts inventory.

Looking at this vehicle, and there are other manufacturers with the same sort of major replacement scheme, I'd view them as major opposition to the successful adoption of JLTV in a period of fiscal rigidity (or is that stupidity?)..........doing this sort of body transplant is hugely cheaper than any JLTV competitor........................

24-10-13, 03:11 PM
USSOCOM Awards Polaris Contracts to Supply All Terrain Vehicles

(Source: Polaris Industries Inc.; issued October 23, 2013)

MINNEAPOLIS --- Polaris Industries Inc. (PII), the leading manufacturer of off-road vehicles, announced the company was awarded a contract by the United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) to provide MRZR Lightweight Tactical All-Terrain Vehicles.

This contract award spans up to five years, and allows SOCOM to manage their ultra-light tactical mobility needs to meet mission demands and emerging threats.

The MRZR2 and MRZR4 are highly-mobile, CV-22 transportable, multi-configurable off-road platforms, and will be supplied with accessories, spare parts, mechanical and operator training.



“Polaris is proud to supply the U.S. Special Operations Forces with our high-performing MRZR vehicles,” said Rich Haddad, general manager of Polaris Defense. “As a recognized industry leading original manufacturer of off-road vehicles, Polaris is uniquely positioned to rapidly develop and provide the military with purpose built mobility platforms.”

This award comes on the heels of the five-year contract awarded to Polaris, in August, to provide MV850 ATVs to USSOCOM. The MV850 is a highly-mobile single operator ATV platform, designed for the U.S. military and allied forces. These recent contract awards reflect Polaris’ commitment to serve the U.S. military and favorably positions the company to supply the US and allied militaries with ultra-light tactical vehicles and mobility solutions.

“These platforms are a modular design to meet the demanding needs of U.S. and international special operations, expeditionary and light infantry forces,” added Haddad. “Both of these vehicles are deployed and in use around the globe, in all of the U.S. military branches and special operations forces along with several allied militaries and special operations forces.”

Polaris is a recognized leader in the powersports industry with annual 2012 sales of $3.2 billion. Polaris designs, engineers, manufactures and markets innovative, high quality off-road vehicles, including all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and the Polaris RANGER and RZR side-by-side vehicles, snowmobiles, motorcycles and small vehicles.


28-10-13, 02:34 PM
Despite Budget Crunch, JLTV Purchase Plans Remain Unchanged

(Source: US Army; issued October 25, 2013)

WASHINGTON --- Despite budget cuts, furloughs, sequestration, continuing resolutions, ongoing changes in force structure, and a government shutdown, both the Army and Marine Corps are committed to buying the same amount of Joint Light Tactical Vehicles they initially set out to purchase.

The JLTV is designed to replace the Humvee, and to bring additional capability to both the Army and the Marine Corps. It is lighter and more mobile than the mine-resistant ambush protected vehicle, but it also provides more survivability than the Humvee.

The Army expects to buy 49,000 of the vehicles, while the Marine Corps expects to buy 5,500.

Col. John Cavedo, manager of the Joint Program Office for the JLTV, said even as the Army changes in size due to end-strength reductions, and the force structure changes as a result, the Army will still want the same number of vehicles.

"Reductions to match the force structure would come at a reduced number of 30-year-old Humvees," he said, indicating that the Army expects to buy all 49,000 JLTVs, and will simply eliminate Humvees more quickly than expected.

Marine Corps Lt. Col. Mike Burks, deputy manager of the Joint Program Office for the JLTV said the same.

"Let me be clear on the front of Marine Corps commitment to JLTV: We are in," he said. "Right now, in the current conversation, in the context of the size the Marine Corps is looking at, 5,500 JLTVs is good enough to meet deployed commanders critical mission needs in the Marine Corps' most dangerous combat mission profiles."

There are currently three defense contractors in competition to be named manufacturer of the JLTV for the Army and Marine Corps. Those competitors are Oshkosh Defense, Lockheed Martin, and AM General. AM General manufactured the Humvee.

In August, each of the three manufacturers delivered 22 of their vehicle prototypes to the Army and Marine Corps for testing. A total of 66 vehicles in all were delivered. Today, those vehicles are spread out across multiple sites for testing.

Kevin Fahey, Program Executive Officer, Combat Support and Combat Service Support, said the JLTV program is, despite some budget issues, largely on schedule.

"Everybody has been on schedule or ahead of schedule," he said. "The perturbations we've had have all been driven by budget and continuing resolution authority. The hardest part of what we are going through is not knowing."

Fahey said that the recent government shutdowns had an unusual impact on the JLTV program. While the program had prior-year funding available to continue testing on the vehicle, the funding doesn't cover the operating costs for the sites where the testing actually occurs.

"The proving ground was basically shut down," he said. As a result, testing had to stop on the vehicles.

When the government came back on line, the testing program was not able to start back up as quickly. "Starting back up has been a very difficult proposition," Fahey said.

The stoppage of testing during the shutdown, plus the slow restart, has delayed JLTV testing somewhat, he said, but at this point it is not significant.

"We are behind our current ideal plan, but that doesn't mean we are behind our macro schedule," he said, adding that the program office is looking daily at how it can make up for that schedule slip over the course of the next nine months. "We are pretty confident we can do that."

Right now the JLTV is funded by a continuing resolution that ends in early 2014, the second quarter of the fiscal year. Fahey said the program is on track now, but definitely by the third quarter of the fiscal year, a confirmed budget decision will need to be in place.

"The JLTV is one of those programs where if we don't get a budget approved it will impact the program," he said.

Cavedo said that for now, he's operating as though funding will arrive when the CR ends, and he thinks the JLTV program will continue to stay on track.

"We are planning for success here, and we are going to keep the train on track for as long as we possibly can keep it on there," he said. "Some really hard decisions are going to have to be made in the second quarter, mid-second quarter of this (fiscal) year. And from where I sit, I certainly hope that for JLTV, the hard decision is to keep it on the tracks. But that may not be what the Army decides."

Fahey, Cavedo and Burkes spoke Oct. 22 during a press conference at the 2013 Association of the United States Army Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C.


29-10-13, 12:59 AM
Oshkosh: JLTV will have C4 built in

Oct. 28, 2013 3:50 PM


Oshkosh Defense is touting an ability to build C4 capabilities directly into the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle.

The 22 prototypes that Oshkosh delivered to the government in August for the JLTV engineering and manufacturing development phase had C4 capabilities integrated during manufacture.

“Unlike a third-party aftermarket integration approach, which requires vehicle disassembly and a trial-and-error design approach, Oshkosh Defense integrates C4 equipment and a full range of weapons and other systems in the initial vehicle design process to reduce potential system conflicts or interference,” the company said in a news release. “Complete assembly line installation and quality control processes also eliminate the cost and quality issues related to tearing apart and reassembling the vehicle to run wiring harnesses and connectors.”

Oshkosh demonstrated this integration capability on the MRAP All-Terrain Vehicle earlier this month at the 2013 Association of the United States Army convention in Washington, D.C.

30-10-13, 12:36 AM
Officials Concerned About Stable Funding For JLTV

By John M. Doyle

Source: Aerospace Daily & Defense Report

October 29, 2013

Credit: Lockheed Martin

The U.S. Army and Marine Corps Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) remains a top priority for both services, although officials are hinting that the program could suffer setbacks if Congress fails to approve adequate funding for fiscal 2015.

Army Secretary John McHugh and Gen. Raymond Odierno, the Army chief of staff, speaking at the Association of the U.S. Army (AUSA) symposium in Washington last week, both raised concerns about future cutbacks to signature acquisition programs.

But they declined to identify which among the Army Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV), the Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV) and JLTV programs could be in trouble.

“We need all of that, but the bottom line is we can’t afford all of that,” Odierno said. McHugh said it was too soon to make a decision about the GCV, which is seen as the most vulnerable because of its anticipated high cost. But he called it “difficult to envision any significant number of our developmental initiatives that won’t be affected — some very significantly.” Some will have to be canceled, he added.

But officials overseeing the JLTV program told reporters at another AUSA briefing that replacing part of the High Mobility Multi-Purpose Wheeled Vehicle (Humvee) fleet with more than 50,000 JLTVs — 49,000 for the Army and 5,500 for the Marine Corps — was still on track despite testing delays brought on by the 16-day government shutdown.

Total funding for the program from research and development through procurement is estimated at more than $22 billion.

“We still have a train on the tracks,” said Col. John Cavedo, the Army’s JLTV program manager. Kevin Fahey, Army program executive officer for combat support, said JLTV remains “a priority.”

But both officials said if a new budget isn’t approved and Congress decides to keep the government running under a continuing resolution, which only provides funding at 2012 levels, JLTV could see its schedule slide along with other ground vehicle programs.

Lockheed Martin, Oshkosh Defense and AM General have sent a total of 22 prototypes for field tests at Aberdeen, Md., Yuma, Ariz., and other government proving grounds.

The Army has said it expects to make a downselect based on the testing outcomes by summer 2015.

31-10-13, 01:34 AM
Pentagon Inspector General to Audit JLTV

By Brendan McGarry Monday, October 28th, 2013 5:08 pm

The U.S. Defense Department’s inspector general over the next year will audit the program developing a replacement to the iconic Humvee.

The so-called Joint Light Tactical Vehicle was among nearly a dozen weapons acquisition programs and other projects identified in the inspector general’s “audit plan” for fiscal 2014, which began Oct. 1.

The objective is to determine whether the Army and Marine Corps office in Warren, Mich., overseeing the effort “is effectively managing and developing the Joint Light Tactical Vehicles for the low-rate initial production phase of the acquisition process,” according to the document released this month.

The services want to buy a total of almost 55,000 of the vehicles to replace about a third of the fleet of Humvees, a light-duty utility truck that entered military service in 1985 and whose vulnerability to roadside blasts was exposed during the U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Program managers last week said they still plan to purchase the total number of vehicles, including about 49,000 for the Army and about 5,500 for the Marine Corps, despite the prospect of ongoing budget cuts.

The forthcoming audit, however, may give more ammunition to critics of the program.

The Pentagon has already estimated the effort to develop and build the vehicles at almost $23 billion, or about $400,000 per truck, according to a June report from the Congressional Research Service. Leaders have maintained each vehicle will cost about $250,000.

“As budgets come under increasing scrutiny with the current fiscal constraints, the Department will be challenged to evaluate the usefulness of all programs,” the audit plan states.

“We will focus on the Department’s efforts to improve acquisition by focusing oversight on procurement quantities, effectiveness in preparing the program for the next major milestone decision, adequacy of testing and evaluation, and the meeting of user needs,” it states.

Lockheed Martin Corp., based in Bethesda, Md.; Oshkosh Corp., based in Oshkosh, Wis.; and AM General LLC, based in South Bend, Ind., won contracts to develop JLTV prototypes.

Lockheed, the world’s largest defense contractor, recently began running radio advertisements for the program in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan region.

Other acquisition efforts targeted for audits include the Army’s Joint Tactical Radio System’s Handheld, Manpack and Small Form Fit, the Army’s OH-58F Kiowa Warrior Cockpit and Sensor Upgrade, the Air Force’s Global Positioning System Ground Control Segment, the Air Force’s MQ-9 Reaper drone, the Navy’s Global Positioning System-based Positioning, Navigation and Timing Service and the Navy’s Ohio-Class Replacement Submarine, according to the report.

07-11-13, 12:49 AM
Thailand is also building a MRAP-style amoured vehicle..............considering the burgeoning vehicle-manufacturing capability Thailand has, not too surprising they want to expand to further military vehicle capability

Chaiseri Metal Rubber Company is the builder of the ‘First Win’ – a 4×4 armored vehicle

They also have a lightweight, short wheelbase, proposal..............

15-11-13, 02:06 PM
Test, Evaluation Squadron Receives First Guardian Angel Air-Droppable Rescue Vehicles

(Source: U.S Air Force; issued November 14, 2013)

This was one of the candidate vehicles for the SpecFor GMV program but lost out to the GD Flyer-based vehicle...........this vehicle is based on the HDT STORM......

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. --- The 88th Test and Evaluations Squadron received the first set of Guardian Angel Air-Deployable Rescue Vehicles in the Air Force's inventory Nov. 12.

The GAARV is a multi-purpose utility vehicle intended to help combat search and rescue teams retrieve individuals that have been isolated and can expand the ability to quickly reach further into the battle space to provide a more mobile rescue capability.

"The GAARV may provide capability enhancements for maneuverability, force protection and technical rescue capabilities within the ground domain," said Capt. Francis Hallada, the 88th TES Guardian Angel Test Division commander.

Operational testing of the GAARV will start in March 2014 to evaluate its suitability and effectiveness for the Guardian Angel weapon system. The GA is a non-aircraft, equipment-based weapon system and is organized into nine specific capabilities -- prepare, mission plan, insert, movement, actions on objective, medically treat, extract, reintegrate, and adapt.

"The GAARV is the first multi-purpose tactical ground vehicle intended to support combat search and rescue operations and other Guardian Angel missions," said Master Sgt. Michael Butler, the 88th Test and Evaluations Squadron Guardian Angel Test Division section chief. "This delivery marks the first vehicles delivered for operational testing of a new combat search and rescue capability that ultimately may enhance the Air Force's personnel recovery core function."

The new vehicle can enhance mission effectiveness as well as have dual roles. The vehicle will be able to move through rubble and debris fields during humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts to transport survivors and rescue equipment.

"The (GAARV) may be employed in a variety of physical environments across the range of military operations," Hallada said. "During a major combat operation, the vehicle has the potential to provide a capability for the rescue team to keep terrain and distance separation from enemy forces in order to provide enough time for the recovery package to reach the objective area."

The mission of the 88th TES is to maximize HH-60 Pave Hawk, HC-130 Hercules, and the GA weapon systems capability by fielding combat-ready solutions to combat search and rescue forces through innovation, test and evaluation, and tactics development in order to perfect lethality, survivability, and sustainability of the nation's forces.

With the first GAARV on hand, the combat search and rescue team members who use this equipment will be able to remove isolated individuals quicker, which in the end could save lives.


This is an early shortwheelbase version of it from 1-2 years ago..................

18-11-13, 11:36 AM
Interesting little Australian ATV, the TOMCAR TM-5 UTILITY Version..............Israeli orgins and the British SPRINGER is from the same family, the Brit one has a crap reputation but the Aussie one looks far more robust (not sure if that is true tho?)


..........obviously the guys masked out in the image are Hunters they're wearing Camo............:)

18-11-13, 11:44 PM
UAE To Bolster Armored Vehicle Fleet

Nov. 18, 2013 - 04:40PM | By AWAD MUSTAFA

The United Arab Emirates is making additional purchases of Nimr six-wheel-drive armored personnel carriers and four-wheel-drive multipurpose combat vehicles. (NIMR)

DUBAI — The UAE Armed Forces has signed a contract worth more than $820 million for the supply of armored personnel carriers (APCs) and multipurpose combat vehicles (MPCVs) with Emirati auto manufacturer NIMR Automotive, according to a statement released Nov. 18.

The deal, signed at the General Headquarters (GHQ) of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces with NIMR Automotive, a member of Tawazun group, will provide for the supply of six-wheel-drive Nimr APCs and four-wheel-drive Nimr MPCVs.

The UAE Armed Forces purchased 500 MPCVs that were delivered between 2007 and 2011 and are used primarily by the elite Presidential Guard units.

Another 800 MPCVs were purchased in February, and the intent to purchase another 1,000 vehicles was announced at the International Defense Exhibition in Abu Dhabi.

The latest announcement is a culmination of that work, according to a UAE source. The vehicles will be delivered within the next five years to the armed forces, he added.

The company said the deal was signed following extensive all-terrain tests for the vehicle in the UAE.

The purchase of the six-wheel-drive APC will be the first for the UAE military. The carrier was revealed and launched in January, and was designed and manufactured in the UAE over 18 months, according to Tawazun.

NIMR developed the vehicle based on requirements from the armed forces to withstand desert heat and provide comfort and protection to troops on board.

“The APC was designed with a V-shaped hull to withstand blast weights of up to 8 kilograms,” a spokesperson for NIMR Automotive said.

“We have tested the vehicle in all terrains, and it can handle 7.62mm armor-piercing rounds, and has run-flat tires with a central tire inflation system.”

The 14-ton vehicle has a range of 700 kilometers on one tank of fuel, has a top speed of 135 kilometers per hour, and can withstand chemical, biological and nuclear attacks.

“The air conditioning system is designed to operate by blocking out poisonous materials from biological, chemical and nuclear environments,” the spokesman added.

The Armed Forces General Headquarters said the decision to purchase the two variants emanated from its keen interest to keep abreast of the latest in global defense industries and to support national industrial capabilities.

“The vehicle exceeded the GHQ’s required operational standards in terms of design, performance, mobility and others,” a statement from the UAE Armed Forces said.

Tawazun CEO H.E. Saif Mohamed Al Hajeri expressed determination to use all resources, capabilities, expertise and best practices to ensure timely delivery of the vehicles.

The contract is timed with the company’s plans to open its state-of-the-art facilities within Tawazun Industrial Park in Abu Dhabi to meet the huge demand for Nimr armored vehicles, said NIMR Automotive CEO Fahad Saif Harhara.

This is the 6-wheeled APC version, images via Army Reco...............

18-11-13, 11:48 PM
This is an Extended Cab Utility version shown previously...........none ordered yet as far as I know altho there "may" be some in this latest order...............

20-11-13, 01:37 AM
Renault Trucks Defense and Thales Present A New Mobile, Integrated Command Post

(Source: Renault Trucks Defense; issued Nov. 19, 2013)

MILIPOL - VILLEPINTE, France --- Renault Trucks Defense (RTD) and Thales are presenting, for the first time, the new version of the MIDS tactical command post vehicle, integrating a mobile system for managing large-scale events and crises. The two firms, both leaders in their fields, have joined forces to offer a solution for armoured vehicles designed for forward operations and crisis centres.

This new turnkey packaged solution is designed for public security missions, protection and coordination for urban events, and for crisis management and law enforcement.

The mobile, interconnected command post is equipped with all the systems required to keep track of a tactical picture in real-time, using a suite of communications and command systems (professional mobile radio, LTE or 4G technology, satcom). The vehicle is thus able to centralise information from field units and issue new instructions in real-time. Thanks to its collaborative systems, MIDS can share information with its command centre and higher levels of command as operations proceed.

The vehicle presented at Milipol is equipped with three workstations and two commanding officer stations. It incorporates perimeter videosurveillance subsystems, a mini-UAV and an observation camera. The crew can deploy the mini-UAV to provide visibility one kilometre ahead and collect images in real time.

The vehicle is very mobile and well protected, allowing the crew to monitor an event and/or crisis continuously in complete safety. The Battlenet Inside network seamlessly integrates all the systems to bring real-time on-screen information to the vehicle’s driver and commander.

Renault Trucks Defense and Thales are long-standing partners. Together, they offer customers packaged solutions combining C4I1ready platforms from Renault Trucks Defense and information and command systems from Thales.

The MIDS is a public order vehicle based on the Midlum civil vehicle chassis. More than 50 vehicles have been sold in two countries. Several versions of the vehicle are available for transporting troops or prisoners, or to serve as a command post. The armoured vehicle provides protection against 7.62-mm munitions for a crew of two and 10 police officers. Its 24-m3 compartment is able to carry a large amount of equipment and offers sufficient comfort for long-duration missions. The MIDS comes with a 4x4 or 4x2 driveline and offers excellent urban mobility. It has already been deployed in the field for a number of operations.

Renault Trucks Defense, a benchmark manufacturer for land forces, designs and develops a complete range of armoured vehicles, with the Sherpa. A historic supplier to the French Army, with more than 4,000 VAB armoured personnel carriers in service, Renault Trucks Defense serves more than 65 client countries around the world. Renault Trucks Defense owns several brands worldwide, including ACMAT and Panhard.

Thales is a global technology leader in the Aerospace, Transportation and Defence & Security markets. In 2012, the company generated revenues of €14.2 billion with 65,000 employees in 56 countries. With its 25,000 engineers and researchers, Thales has a unique capability to design, develop and deploy equipment, systems and services that meet the most complex security requirements.


25-11-13, 02:15 PM
Final Negotiations on HGVs

(Source: Swedish defense procurement agency, FMV; issued Nov. 22, 2013)

(Issued in Swedish; unofficial translation by defense-aerospace.com)

Another big win for MAN..........

As part of the evaluation of the bids, FMV tested 12 different vehicles from four different manufacturers.

The Norwegian procurement authority FLO and FMV have begun final negotiations with Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles (RMMV) for the supply of heavy goods vehicles (HGVs).

FMV and its Norwegian counterpart, FLO, are jointly buying HGVs within the framework of Nordic cooperation for their respective armed forces. The intention is to establish a framework agreement with a supplier who can supply trucks from 2015 to 2025. The framework agreement will be a contract involving over a billion Swedish krona, says Hanan Ĺberg, FMV. Jon Inge Stensrud, FLO, the two agencies’ project leaders.

“Deliveries of the new heavy vehicles will provide the Armed Forces increased ability to operate. As older vehicles are phased out and the vehicle fleet becomes more uniform operational costs will be reduced,” says the head of the FMV vehicle department Hanan Ĺberg.

“To work with another country usually do not lack challenges. But this extra work, that all partnerships entail, has really paid off in this case,” says Ĺberg.


26-11-13, 01:00 PM
Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia Hosts LAND 121 3B Supplier Days

(Source: Rheinmetall Defence; issued November 25, 2013)

Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia (RMMVA) hosted a series of Supplier Days in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Darwin, Melbourne and Sydney in November 2013. The response has been overwhelming with more than 500 companies attending Australia wide.

These Supplier Days provided Australian industry with an opportunity to engage with RMMVA and some of its key subcontractors in order to explore opportunities relating to the LAND 121 3B defence project.

The Commonwealth of Australia has contracted with RMMVA to supply and support mission systems for a medium heavy wheeled logistic vehicle capability consisting of approximately 2,500 vehicle systems and approximately 3,000 modules under LAND 121 Phase 3B.

As RMMVA Managing Director Peter Hardisty explains, “RMMVA, in close cooperation with our key subcontractors, is actively engaging with Australian industry to enable as many Australian companies to be part of this exciting program as possible.”

“The products and services we are seeking include the design, development and production of specific hardware such as modules, some vehicle bodies, sub-systems and components as well as project management and systems integration, developmental, test and evaluation work”, adds Hardisty.

RMMVA is working together with the respective State Governments, DMO Business Access Offices and Australian Industry Associations to involve Australian industry in this ground breaking defence project.

Rheinmetall is one of the world’s leading suppliers of defence technology, including wheeled and tracked military vehicles, weapons, ammunition, simulation solutions, command and control technology, force protection systems and sensor technology.


28-11-13, 12:01 PM
Army's Ultra Light Vehicle now in survivability testing

Two of the three vehicles in the Army's "Ultra Light Vehicle" program have now entered survivability testing in Nevada and Maryland to evaluate both their blast and ballistic protection capability.

The third vehicle remains at the Army's Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center for testing there.

The TARDEC began development of three ULVs in fall 2011, at the request of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. While the ULV will not be fielded as a combat vehicle, it does serve as a research and development platform that will ultimately yield data that can be used by other TARDEC agencies and program managers, as well as sister services to develop their own vehicles and equipment in the future.

"It's all about sharing the data," said Mike Karaki, the ULV's program manager. "If we have an ability to share the data internally within TARDEC, and externally within the program managers and program executive offices, and beyond that with other government agencies, we will attempt to do that. It's helping shape and inform future programs."

Karaki said the ULV program might help development of survivability in future vehicles, and may also help development of other hybrid vehicles as well.

"You want to be able to use anything and everything you can from this program to help reduce the duplication of efforts in the future," he said.

The ULV is a hybrid vehicle that includes lightweight advanced material armor, lightweight wheels and tires and other automotive systems, blast-mitigating underbody technology and advanced C4ISR equipment inside.

"We tried to push the envelope in terms of state-of-the-art and out-of-the-box materials throughout the entire development process," said Karaki.

The vehicle, from design to delivery, took only 16 months, Karaki said.

"We show there are some successes in the rapid design, development, fabrication and integration of the effort," Karaki said. "It's doable. It's high risk and high reward. Can you do it in a rapid time frame? We've proven we can do that."

The ULV is hybrid vehicle powered by a diesel engine that drives an electric generator. That generator in turn powers two electric motors that turn the wheels. Two electric motors provides redundancy should one of the motors fail.

Karaki said choosing a hybrid system came from the need to develop a more survivable vehicle for Soldiers. He said the contractor was concerned about how to make the vehicle perform better in a blast event, and came to the conclusion that a hybrid was the better choice.

Because it is a hybrid vehicle, it has none of the standard equipment underneath the vehicle. It features instead a "clean underbody" that makes it more capable of withstanding something like an explosion from an improvised explosive device.

"If you keep less equipment, accessories, systems underneath the vehicle, and you allow the underbody geometry to do what it needs to do -- have a clean underbody -- you will be able to improve your chances of being able to direct a blast away from the vehicle," he said.

The primary customer for the ULV vehicle, which is a test vehicle, is the Office of the Secretary of Defense. The program came with four research objectives, which are a 4,500 pound payload, a vehicle weight of 14,000 pounds, protection that is comparable to the currently fielded mine resistant ambush protected vehicle, and a price of $250,000 each for a hypothetical 5,000-unit production run.

Karaki said the program is meeting or is expected to meet those objectives.

"On paper, the stuff upfront, the size, the weight, the cost, the timeframe, we checked those boxes," he said. "The testing and evaluation of all these advanced survivability systems are in process right now."

Two of three vehicles are undergoing survivability testing now. The third vehicle is in Warren, Mich., at TARDEC's Ground Systems Power and Energy Laboratory undergoing automotive testing and to evaluate its hybrid electric setup. Karaki said eventually the two ULVs undergoing survivability testing will be destroyed as part of that testing. The third vehicle, the one at TARDEC, will be kept as a test platform.

The ULV is not a replacement for the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program or the Humvee. It is an experimental vehicle used for testing purposes. The program will wrap up in fiscal year 2014.

By C. Todd Lopez

Source : US Army

Published on ASDNews: Nov 27, 2013

Read more: http://www.asdnews.com/news-52412/Army_s_Ultra_Light_Vehicle_now_in_survivability_te sting_.htm#ixzz2lwKtHhyg

Some interior shots.........love the steering wheel!

28-11-13, 12:04 PM
A few more images.............

03-12-13, 02:21 PM
Thai Defense Company Chaiseri and DRS Technologies Team for Integration Project On Chaiseri's New 4x4 Multi-Role Armored Vehicle

(Source: DRS Technologies; issued December 2, 2013)

ARLINGTON, Va. --- DRS Technologies, a Finmeccanica Company, announced that its Network and Imaging Systems group and Thailand's Chaiseri Metal & Rubber Co Ltd. have entered into an exclusive teaming agreement to integrate DRS's C4InSight™ mission command capabilities into the new Chaiseri First Win multi-role armored 4x4 tactical vehicle.

The partnership enables the Chaiseri/DRS team to deliver a combination of innovative Thai engineering with DRS's leading-edge ground vehicle mission systems integration to customers in Thailand and Southeast Asia.

Central to this initiative is the integration of DRS's Data Distribution Unit (DDU) into the Chaiseri vehicles. The DDU enables centralized communication between the C4ISR platform and weapon subsystems and provides a wide range of services including tactical router, voice cross-banding and call management, tactical server, network video distribution, cellular communications, GPS distribution, vehicle power management, peripheral control and vehicle health management. All of these systems are accessible from a connected common tactical workstation via a configurable interface. Third-party applications such as battle management systems can be hosted on a virtual machine and run concurrently with multiple VM services.

C4InSight™ system is a modular, scalable and open architecture communications system with the ability to interface and control a wide range of HF and VHF radios, SATCOM and other line of sight and below line of sight communications mediums. The DDU also provides embedded Wi-Fi for inter-vehicle and intra-vehicle communications.

"This new partnership is an exciting venture for DRS, providing us with the opportunity to establish a relationship with a world-class defense manufacturer like Chaiseri," said Mike Sarrica, president of DRS's Network and Imaging Systems group. "We are excited to team with a company that values the full spectrum of unique capabilities and experience that DRS has to offer in this field on a superior vehicle like the First Win multi-role armored vehicle," Sarrica continued.

Hiran Koolhiran, CEO and Chairman of Chaiseri said, "This teaming agreement represents a big step for our company in the development of a fully integrated and world-leading tactical vehicle that is designed from the ground up for modern network-centric operations."

DRS mission systems solutions are drawn from more than 15 years of successfully supplying its products into some of the largest military tactical command and control projects, including the U.S. Army's Force XXI Battle Command, Brigade and Below (FBCB2) and the Blue Force Tracking program, with over 180,000 systems delivered; the U.S. Army's Movement Tracking System (MTS) program with over 25,000 systems delivered and the U.K. Bowman program with 15,000 systems delivered.

Continuing this proven track record, DRS was recently awarded a $455M indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract (IDIQ) contract for the supply of the U.S. Army's next generation of tactical computing. As part of this newly announced effort, a number of these new capabilities will be integrated into the Chaiseri First Win multi-role armored 4x4 tactical vehicle.

Chaiseri will be responsible for in-country installation and on-going support and maintenance of the mission system products and systems. DRS will provide its world-class systems engineering support from its facilities in Melbourne, Florida U.S.A and Farnham U.K.

Chaiseri Metal & Rubber Co., Ltd. is a Thai company located in the province of Pathumthani, which is situated to the north of Bangkok, Thailand. One of the major new product initiatives of Chasieri is the development of the first Thai designed and manufactured multi-role tactical armored vehicle, the 'First Win'. First Win is already in service with the Royal Thai Army (RTA) and is available in a number of formats including Armored Personnel Carrie (APC), Patrol vehicle and Interior Security Vehicle.

DRS Technologies is a leading supplier of integrated products, services and support to military forces, intelligence agencies and prime contractors worldwide and is the 2013 recipient of the Defense Security Service Award for Excellence in Counterintelligence as well as three James S. Cogswell Awards for Outstanding Industrial Security Achievement. The company is a wholly owned subsidiary of Finmeccanica SpA, which employs approximately 70,000 people worldwide.


04-12-13, 03:09 PM
Ricardo Joins Forces In UK Partnership to Sustain and Upgrade the Mastiff

(Source: Ricardo; issued Nov. 28, 2013)

Ricardo is one of three leading defence companies that have formed an exclusive partnership to bid for the continued support and upgrade of the UK Ministry of Defence’s Mastiff, Ridgback and Wolfhound fleet of Protected Patrol Vehicles (the Mastiff family of vehicles)

The three companies - Morgan Advanced Materials, Ricardo and Ultra Electronics - are all UK-based and owned, with their technology development in the UK. Their combined expertise, experience and history of innovation provides an outstanding option to support and enhance the unique capabilities of the Mastiff family of vehicles for the foreseeable future.

“Ricardo is extremely pleased to be joining forces with Morgan and Ultra in what represents a highly effective and all-British partnership, drawing together world-class engineering capabilities and extensive experience in military vehicle design, development, manufacture and overhaul,” commented Ricardo UK managing director Martin Fausset.

Morgan Advanced Materials’ Composites and Defence Systems business (formerly NP Aerospace) has world-leading expertise in specialised armour technologies. It designed, developed and integrated UK-specific, specialised armour protection and electronic systems into the entire Mastiff family of vehicles from base platforms purchased from the USA. Morgan also implemented and operated the spares support processes, including configuration management, stocking and supply chain management, which kept the fleets running during combat operations.

Ricardo is renowned for its automotive engineering expertise and was responsible for the initial design, development and engineering of the Foxhound vehicles, manufacturing all 376 units ordered to date. Ricardo was prime contractor on the Vixen and RWMIK+ upgrade programmes and has also undertaken a project for the Defence Science & Technology Laboratory (DSTL) to identify improvements to the fuel efficiency of Mastiff vehicles.

Ultra Electronics is an international pioneer in vehicle information and power systems and has worked extensively on behalf of customers including the MoD, US Department of Defense and leading Tier 1 suppliers into the defence sector. Ultra is currently under contract to provide multiple electronic systems for the Warrior Capability Sustainment Programme and Scout SV development. It is the only Tier 2 supplier involved in all aspects of Generic Vehicle Systems Architecture (GVSA), Generic Soldier Architecture (GSA) and Generic Base Architecture (GBA).

The three businesses are complementary in their technological capabilities, maintain critical competencies in-house and have the financial backing of substantial parent companies. This has enabled them to demonstrate remarkable agility and innovation in meeting demanding requirements for protecting UK soldiers over the last decade. This collaboration creates an agile partnership which maintains that capability in the UK and offers the possibility of optimising electronic and power system synergies between vehicle, future soldier and base systems.

The MoD will shortly award contracts for Post Design Service, Coherence and future upgrade work. Morgan will lead the group and is bidding as prime contractor.


06-12-13, 02:41 PM
NZDF Receives New Trucks In Record Time

(Source: New Zealand Ministry of Defence; issued Dec. 6, 2013)

Pretty quick off the mark unless these are re-assigned trucks from the UK Forces production?

Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman says the NZDF has officially received 40 new Medium-Heavy Operational Vehicles at a handover ceremony in Auckland today, just seven months after they were purchased.

“The new Rheinmetall-MAN military medium and heavy vehicles are a significant step up in capability for the NZDF, replacing the old Unimog and Mercedes trucks. They are designed for modern military operations and offer better mobility, better protection, enhanced technology, and greater capacity.

“By purchasing these trucks off the same production line as the UK, the Government has ensured value for money, and has achieved a fast delivery in record time.

“This project is a good example of smart and efficient procurement. The Government is keen to work closely with our international partners to identify future procurement opportunities which could achieve similar results.

“The NZDF’s continuous drive to deliver back office savings and efficiencies means that reinvestment into frontline capabilities like these new trucks can be made. The new trucks are part of a wider programme of equipment upgrades and investment into Navy, Army and Air Force frontline capabilities.”

A total of 194 trucks are being delivered at a cost of $113 million. This includes armour protection kits, weapons mounts, a range of specialist equipment, spare parts, logistic support arrangements, and training packages.

The NZDF expects to start training personnel in February-March 2014. The trucks will be rolled out to Army and Air Force bases and they will be fully introduced into service by the end of 2015.


08-12-13, 03:56 AM
Slovakia trials new Tatrapan armoured container carrier vehicle

Miroslav Gyürösi, Bratislava, Slovak Republic - IHS Jane's International Defence Review

04 December 2013

Slovak Armed Forces put the new Tatrapan 8x8 CC through its cross country paces. Source: M Gyurosi

The Slovak Armed Forces completed an initial phase of testing with the VYVOJ Martin joint stock company's new Tatrapan 8x8 Container Carrier (CC) truck jointly with the manufacturer in late November.

The company began development of the 8x8 Tatrapan in 2009 using private company funding, but closely targeting the Slovak Armed Forces' MOKYS communication system programme.

Construction began at the company's headquarters in Martin in early 2012, with developer and builder trials in January 2013, and the final prototype design is a universal armoured platform capable of carrying ISO-1C and ISO-1D containers across all terrain types in a combat environment, according to VYVOJ Martin.

It is based on a Tatra T815-7 four-axle chassis, which is bought directly from the Czech manufacturer and outfitted with an armoured cab, container interfaces and handling system by VYVOJ Martin.

As such, it is just over 10 m long and 2.74 m tall (or 3.132 m when fitted with a 7.62 mm PKT machine gun on the roof of the cab), with a wheel gauge of 2.071 m and overall maximum width of 2.55 m. Ground clearance can be raised from 28.5 cm to 48 cm, with front and rear departure angles of 38° and 40° respectively.

Kerb weight is set at 18.7 tonnes (+/- 2%), with a maximum technically allowed weight of 38 tonnes, however the vehicle has been rated with a maximum trailer weight of 16,000 kg offering a substantial cargo boost. Irrespective, the maximum recommended weight is limited to 36 tonnes by the Michelin runflat tyres when crossing soft sand or mud.

It is powered by a EURO 3-standard Tatra T3C-928.90 turbodiesel producing 300 kW (402 hp) at 1,800 rpm. This drives all eight wheels through a Tatra 14 TS 210L main gearbox (with 12 forward gears and 2 reverse) and a Tatra 2.30 TRS 0.8/1.9 ancillary step down box.

This combination is sufficient to accelerate the vehicle to 113 km/h on road and power it up 65% slopes, with maximum slopes of 30%. The Tatrapan can cross 2.2 m wide trenches and climb 60 cm steps, with the increased ride height enabling the truck to ford 1.5 m-deep streams (STANAG 2805)

The all-welded steel three-man airtight folding cab has two doors and a circular roof hatch. Protection varies around the cabin, with STANAG 4569 Level 3 on the roof, Level 2 on the belly and glass, and Level 1 for the peripheral case and rear plate. This can be uparmoured to Level 2 or 3 all round, using pre-prepared installation kits. The additional plate can be fitted by the vehicle crew in the field in three hours for Level 2 or circa 4.5 hours for Level 3.

The vehicle is transportable to STANAG 3548, able to be carried into theatre in a C-130, ship or train and can operate in temperatures ranging from -30°C up to +50°C.

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08-12-13, 04:14 AM
Poland purchases 910 Jelcz 4x4 military trucks

Remigiusz Wilk, Warsaw - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

01 December 2013

Poland has ordered 910 Jelcz 443.32 4x4 trucks Source: Jelcz-Komponenty

The Polish Armament Inspectorate has ordered 910 military trucks from Jelcz-Komponenty company, for the Polish Armed Forces, it was announced on 29 November.

Worth PLN673.9 million (USD218 million), the order will see the firm (a subsidiary of Huta Stalowa Wola - HSW) delivery of 910 Jelcz 442.32 trucks. The first batch of vehicles are expected for delivery in 2014, with deliveries completed in 2018.

Polish Armed Forces currently have over 16,000 military trucks in service, some 13,000 of which are variants of the Star 266/266M, manufactured by FSC Star between 1973-2000; or the derivative Star 944 and Star 1466 vehicles, produced by MAN between 2000-2006.

The Star 944 light utility truck is a workhorse of the Polish military

The Star 1466 general utility truck uses a number of MAN automotive components

The order also includes a logistic package comprising repair and overhaul kits, portable diagnostic sets, and a training package for the Polish Army's Logistic Training Centre in Grudziadz.

The Jelcz 443.32 is powered by a 326 hp MTU 6R106TD21 engine with 9+1 manual ZF transmission. The vehicle is 7.98 m in length, 2.25 m wide, and weighs 15.6 tons. It is the first Jelcz-Komponenty truck powered by the German-made MTU engine, which is planned to be manufactured at the Military Engines Centre in Poznan.

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09-12-13, 02:10 PM
'Make-A-Thon' to Design Tactical Vehicle Via Online Collaboration

(Source: U.S Army; issued December 5, 2013)

WASHINGTON --- The Army's Rapid Equipping Force will host a "Make-A-Thon" event, Dec. 9-13, at Fort Benning, Ga., to develop a mobile command post that is mounted on a commonly available Army Lightweight Tactical All-Terrain Vehicle.

The effort is part of a proof-of-concept to show that the Rapid Equipping Force's, or REF's, "ArmyCoCreate" concept can use "crowd sourcing" to quickly produce viable solutions for tactical problems.

"The proof of concept is the process that could help the REF continue to innovate," said Gary Frost, the deputy director for futures at REF. "For the REF, the hardest thing we have is time. There are a lot of solutions out there, and there are a lot of people we could get to, if we had a year to go find a solution. For the REF, we have to figure out how in a very short period of time to get the most users and the most material solution providers together, so we can do a rapid prototype."

The REF set up a and invited interested individuals to sign on to be participants in an online problem-solving community. Today, the site has more than 800 participants. They include both Soldiers and civilians, many with engineering and technical backgrounds.

The idea being tested is "in a very short period of time, can we generate enough users, and enough people who would be able to provide solutions, get them in a virtual room, and come up with a solution, and then be able to build something quickly," Frost said.

Within the online community at ArmyCoCreate, about 120 ideas were submitted as challenges that the community might solve together. Ultimately, the REF picked one of those suggestions as the challenge the community would solve. That selected challenge was to create a mobile command post.

Frost said the idea was among those with the highest number of votes from the community, which he said REF felt would keep the community involved, and Soldiers as well, and which also "made the most sense."

The challenge will be to modify an existing, commercially available Kawasaki Teryx 750cc LTATV, to carry a command, control, communications and computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capability. The resulting mobile command post must be able to serve platoon and company-sized units, or approximately 30-150 Soldiers.

During development of the project, he said, there is a focus on mobility, weight, visibility, payload, operations, and transportability.

During the Make-A-Thon event at Fort Benning, the first of two such events scheduled, Soldiers with the Maneuvers Center of Excellence Capabilities Development and Integration Directorate will work with members of the online community at ArmyCoCreate to design the prototype mobile command post.

During the first event, participants will work on such aspects as vehicle platform specifications and payload capacity to see if "something needs to be tweaked" on the ATV to be able to add heavier equipment.

"What we'd expect at the end is a locked-down design," Frost said. "The design could be a cardboard cutout -- like this is how we will fit everything. That you could turn into [computer aided design] drawings, for the engineers to start building and measuring and cutting. And it will turn into 'this is the size and shape of the power and the batteries we need.' And then over the next couple weeks we are going to go procure whatever we need to modify it -- if it's batteries, a communications package, etc. -- and we will figure out online how to put this together."

By having Soldiers on the ground at Fort Benning participating in the design, he said, the effort will get much-needed feedback to ensure that what is being designed is actually usable.

"You get a user feedback; we call it a 'user jury,'" he said. "It's hands-on for that week that will kind of vet what we talked about online."

Later, at a second Make-A-Thon event, participants on the ground will actually build the mobile command post. Soldiers participating will look at the more finalized design to see if the idea is working the right way, Frost said. A second user jury will look at the design to see if it "makes sense."

"The intent is, if we can build what we think, and we are successful in it, it is a candidate to deploy to a unit," Frost said, "especially a unit in Afghanistan."

Ultimately, what is being tested is the process of defining a problem, proposing and selecting solutions, and executing those solutions using crowd-sourced expertise. This is something Frost said industry is already doing, and something he said the Army must do if it wants to be competitive.

"If we are going to keep being fast and innovate, we can't just do it on our own," he said.

Frost said that this iteration of the ArmyCoCreate concept is unclassified. But he said if need be, the same concept could be moved to a classified Army network, involving thousands of Army engineers to solve problems that require a security classification.

Assessment of effectiveness of the ArmyCoCreate project will involve looking at how long it took to build the online community, if the right kinds of people participated in the community, if enough good ideas were submitted, and how worthwhile the effort was in creating the end product.


12-12-13, 01:27 PM
Court Delays Billion-Dollar Defence Procurement

(Source: Radio Sweden; posted Dec. 11, 2013)

The Administrative Court in Stockholm has delayed a SEK 20-billion defence procurement of military trucks, newspaper Svenska Dagbladet reports. The deal should have been signed before Christmas, and is a joint procurement by the Swedish Defence Material Administration (FMV) and its Norwegian counterpart, FLO.

The German company Rheinmetall MAN placed the winning bid and was expected to have been awarded the substantial order, but competitors in the bidding process claim that the German military vehicle manufacturer raised its prices in the procurement process.

The competitors for the deal, Scania and Mercedes, claim that MAN's final bid is SEK 1.5 billion more expensive than their bids, and last week Swedish Scania appealed the procurement process to the Administrative Court.

Mats Ĺhammar, judge at the Administrative Court in Stockholm, told Svenska Dagbladet that it could take weeks before a new deal is reached.


12-12-13, 01:53 PM
Lockheed Martin Joint Light Tactical Vehicle Completes Successful Manufacturing Review

(Source: Lockheed Martin; issued December 11, 2013)

DALLAS --- The Lockheed Martin Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) team successfully completed the government's Manufacturing Readiness Assessment (MRA), an important milestone on the path to vehicle production at the company's Camden, Ark., manufacturing complex.

The MRA, which measures manufacturing maturity and assesses technical risk, took place at Lockheed Martin's Camden Operations on Nov. 18 and 19. In October, the company announced plans to produce the JLTV at the award-winning Camden facility, where program officials expect to gain significant production efficiencies and cost reductions.

"We look forward to adding another joint U.S. Army/Marine Corps vehicle-manufacturing program to our Camden Operations," said Scott Greene, vice president of Ground Vehicles for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "With proven assembly methods, a keen focus on efficiency and a highly skilled workforce, we are confident that the tremendous success we've achieved producing the HIMARS launcher for the Army and Marines will translate to an outstanding JLTV for those very same customers."

The Lockheed Martin JLTV is designed to replace many of the current Army and Marine Corps HMMWV "Humvee" vehicles, providing significant advances in survivability and capability.

Lockheed Martin's Camden Operations has received more than 60 awards over the last decade, including the 2012 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award and the Shingo Silver Medallion Award for Operation Excellence.

The Lockheed Martin JLTV is systems-engineered to provide the crew protection of Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, while returning crucial mobility, reliability and transportability to Soldiers and Marines. A patented Meritor Pro-TecTM all-independent air-ride suspension brings unprecedented agility and off-road mobility to this class of vehicles, while the dependable Cummins turbo diesel and Allison transmission combine abundant power with exceptional fuel efficiency. Rounding out the vehicle's portfolio of capabilities are an exportable power-generation with substantial margin for future growth, and state-of-the art connectivity with other platforms.

For more than three decades, Lockheed Martin has applied its systems-integration expertise to a wide range of successful ground vehicles for U.S. and allied forces worldwide. The company's products include the combat-proven Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) M270-series and High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) mobile launchers, Havoc 8x8, Common Vehicle, Light Armored Vehicle-Command and Control, Warrior Capability Sustainment Programme, Joint Light Tactical Vehicle and pioneering unmanned platforms such as the Squad Mission Support System (SMSS).

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 116,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration, and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products, and services. The Corporation's net sales for 2012 were $47.2 billion.


17-12-13, 02:19 PM
Rheinmetall Delivers Vehicles to New Zealand Military

(Source: Rheinmetall Defence; issued Dec. 16, 2013)

New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant General Rhys R. Jones recently accepted the first 40 vehicles from Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia.

The New Zealand Defence Force started replacing its current fleet of Unimogs and type with high mobility 6-tonne HX60 4x4 with cargo tray and cargo tray with winch variants. The new trucks can carry more, use up-to-date technology to deliver maximum performance and efficiency, and can be equipped with armour and weapons to protect the crew and allow them to function effectively on today’s battlefields.

The delivery is part of the contract which was awarded to Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia (RMMVA) in April 2013 to supply the country’s armed forces with up to 200 vehicles. The contract is worth NZ$113 million (€74 million).

The order encompasses trucks in three basic sizes: the 6-tonne 4x4, the 9-tonne 6x6 and the 15-tonne 8x8, in ten variants. Some of the trucks will be fitted with winches and cranes to allow completely independent operation. They include dump trucks for combat engineers, trucks fitted with specialized pallet and container handling equipment, and tractor/semi-trailer combinations to carry heavy vehicles and equipment. RMMVA is the Australian subsidiary of Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles GmbH (RMMV), the Rheinmetall Group’s specialist for logistical and tactical wheeled vehicles.

Pietro Borgo, member of the executive board of Rheinmetall Defence, said “We are delighted to provide the NZ Defence Forces with its first vehicles on time after only having signed the contract in April this year. Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles prides itself on being a dependable supplier of an outstanding vehicles system and providing reliable customer support.”

The contract includes vehicles, armour protection kits, weapons mounts and an extensive range of specialized military equipment. It also covers spares, logistic support arrangements, project management and extensive training packages.


21-12-13, 02:20 AM
Newest Army recovery vehicle wields claws, can handle most anything

December 18, 2013

By T. Anthony Bell

FORT LEE, Va. (Dec. 18, 2013) -- The Ordnance School is continuing to fulfill the training requirements of Soldiers deployed in combat environments.

Providing training on the Army's newest recovery vehicle -- the Modular Catastrophic Recovery System -- is its latest effort to prepare Soldiers for tasks and missions they are likely to encounter in the field.

The Modular Catastrophic Recovery System, or MCRS, which is currently fielded only in Afghanistan, is a multi-component recovery system that has been used in Southwest Asia for several years. The Ordnance School implemented the MCRS module into the H8 Recovery Specialist Course, a three-week Additional Skill Identifier course, in October of 2012.

Gary Winter, chief of the Recovery Division in the school's Track, Metalworking and Recovery Department, said the course has trained roughly 400 students on the MCRS thus far, and he is enthusiastic about its training value.

"I feel the Soldiers who have trained on it can be combat multipliers for the combatant commander out there," said the former Soldier. "It's basically three systems combined into one. In my opinion, it (the MCRS) makes the job easier for Soldiers who are recovering damaged or catastrophically damaged vehicles when compared to traditional wreckers."

MCRS is comprised of a M983A4 Light Equipment Transporter, Fifth Wheel Towing and Recovery Device and Tilt Deck Recovery Trailer. It can recover and tow a variety of wheeled vehicles in a variety of situations, said Adam Jenkins, senior instructor.

"The strength of the system is its versatility," he said. "The fact is that it can tow many vehicles that others can't. It's not going to replace a wrecker, but it is an awesome recovery trailer that we can use as an asset to complement our existing wreckers (the M984 and M1089)."

MCRS was originally developed as a Stryker recovery vehicle. Its trailer can hold 35 tons, giving it the capability to handle many of the mine-resistant armor-protected vehicles, known as MRAPs, that are relatively new to the Army's vehicle inventory.

Because the armored wheeled vehicles play important roles in Afghanistan from a strategic standpoint, hands-on training with them is imperative during the course of study, which is weighted heavily around several scenarios, said Sgt. 1st Class Nelson Walker, an instructor/writer.

"The scenarios we use for the MCRS provide a full range of recovery capabilities for all wheeled vehicles to include both MRAP and Stryker," he said. "They include operating the Tilt Deck Recovery Trailer, sledding a catastrophically damaged vehicle onto the Tilt Deck Recovery Trailer and performing a 90-degree pull with the Fifth Wheel Towing and Recovery Device."

During a training day last week, teams of Soldiers endured cold, wet weather to arduously perform a myriad of tasks to secure a "catastrophic" MRAP (RG33) vehicle. Winter said students are generally enthusiastic about the training.

"When they come to MCRS training, they are very highly motivated," he said. "They want to be out in the field hands-on and don't want to be in the classroom. On the end of course surveys, they always ask for more time in the field and on that vehicle because they feel like they don't get enough time."

Those who have previously operated the vehicle and later receive training at the school are grateful, said Sgt. 1st Class John Durousseau, chief instructor.

"Those who are coming back from the theater appreciate the training they are getting here because there are a few things they didn't grasp until they got here," he said. "At the schoolhouse, all the processes are worked out by the book. We are honing their skills here and they are returning to theater using the equipment to its full capacity."

MCRS is currently being added to the unit equipment rolls, but has not been fielded Army-wide, said Winter. He added no dates have been announced for when a service-wide rollout is likely to occur. In the meantime, the course is set to graduate 300-500 students during the next fiscal year.

04-01-14, 01:34 AM
Via DiD..........

Fuel Efficiency for Army Vehicles

■ Today’s video comes from the US Army Tank Automotive R&D Center (TARDEC) and shows the FED Alpha vehicle [PDF] they have been developing for about 5 years to demonstrate fuel efficiency improvements for an M-113 type of infantry vehicle:

06-01-14, 01:25 AM
Majority of US MRAPs To Be Scrapped or Stored

Jan. 5, 2014 - 09:54AM | By PAUL McLEARY

A US soldier walks alongside Maxxpro mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles in Afghanistan in May. The Army plans to keep 2,633 Navistar-made MaxxPro Dash vehicles, and 301 MaxxPro ambulances, according to Army documents. (Dibyangshu Sarkar / Getty Images)

I can understand them scrapping some in position in Afghanistan BUT there are a lot of places in S America and Africa that could happily use such vehicles. You can get rid of the Spares aspect by giving away more vehicles than people require, use the extra for scrappin for spares..........IF they give them away for free, it'd be cheaper than scrapping and disposing of them in the USA or elsewhere...........Hell, Mexico could do with a thousand or two..........M-ATV's in particular
WASHINGTON — The US Army estimates it will need to spend $1.7 billion in supplemental wartime dollars over the next several years to modernize and retain 8,585 mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles, while divesting itself of another 7,456 MRAPs it no longer needs.

But the majority of those the service will keep will be mothballed in prepositioned stocks, according to an internal Army document.

Even with thousands of vehicles sitting in warehouses awaiting the next conflict, the MRAPs that will remain in the force represent only one third of the 25,000the Pentagon bought since 2007, costing $50 billion.

Since it was a rapid acquisition program, the Defense Department had no long-term plans for the platform, and the Army and Marine Corps have been wrestling with what to do with the 25 variants in their fleets.

Saddled with so many expensive, hulking vehicles bought solely as a wartime contingency, the services are getting rid of as many MRAPs as possible — even going so far as to shred thousands in Afghanistan instead of sending them home. The military is selling the shredded metal parts to local Afghans for scrap.

But the MRAPs the service is keeping won’t come home cheaply. In addition to the $1.7 billion in overseas contingency operations (OCO) funds to be spent by the end of 2016, the Army anticipates it will require $17.6 million in base funding in fiscal 2016 and 2017 to complete the work, according to service briefing slides obtained by Defense News.

Dated Dec. 2, the slides outline Army thinking about what will be required in fiscal 2016-2020 to fund its programs of record. Army officials said they were unable to comment on the documents by press time.

The documents are part of the annual weapons systems review that all programs endure when officials put together the program objective memorandum budgets that look out five years.

As such, the numbers in the documents are not set in stone and will likely change as budgets and priorities shift in subsequent years. But they do provide a good snapshot of the current thinking in the Pentagon, and offer clues as to where managers are trying to drive their programs after absorbing guidance from Army leaders.

The documents show that if OCO funding ends before its expected expiration date of fiscal 2016, MRAP modernization activities will have to be shifted to the base budget, “which may result in the program, in its current status, becoming unaffordable.”

The defense bill passed by Congress in December includes $80 billion for the Afghanistan war, which includes $321 million for MRAP reset. While the 2015 OCO request hasn’t been made public yet, the slides reveal that the Army will request $304 million more in wartime funding in 2015 to fix up MRAPs.

Though the OCO account will decrease along with US forces in Afghanistan this year and beyond, there should be plenty of money for the Army to finish its MRAP refurbishment, said Todd Harrison of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assess*ments.

“I don’t think getting $1.7 billion in funding through OCO will be a problem,” he said. “DoD is getting some $80 billion in OCO funding this year — nearly as much as last year but with half as many troops deployed. I think they will continue to receive robust OCO funding in 2015 and 2016, so resetting MRAPs should not be an issue for the Army.”

So, what will the Army get for that money?

A full 5,036 of the 8,585 MRAPs the Army plans to keep will be stored in prepositioned stocks all over the world, with another 1,073 assigned for training activities. The remainder will be spread among the active force.

The Army will keep 5,651 Oshkosh-produced MRAP all-terrain vehicles (M-ATVs) out of the 8,700 DoD has bought since 2009, along with 2,633 Navistar-made MaxxPro Dash vehicles and 301 MaxxPro ambulances.

The M-ATV is smaller and more maneuverable than the original MRAP variants and was rapidly fielded once the Pentagon’s focus shifted to Afghanistan in 2009. The dirt roads, narrow mountain passes and weak bridges could not handle the size and weight of most MRAPs, leading to a quick fix that ended up being the variant the Army most wants to keep.

The Army is getting rid of thousands of Cougars developed by General Dynamics/Force Protection, some MaxxPro models from Navistar Defense, and several Caiman models from BAE Systems.

And the price to reset the vehicles isn’t cheap. The service estimates spending about $150,000 to reset each vehicle at the Red River Army Depot in Texas, and about $87,000 per vehicle at Livorno, Italy — the two depots that will see the majority of the work over the next three years.

Other recent Army estimates of the costs to bring MRAPs home from Afghanistan and repair them have hovered closer to the $250,000 to $300,000 mark.

An Army spokesman said the remaining MRAPs will be made available for use to other US government agencies and posted for Foreign Military Sales opportunities. If there are no takers, “the vehicles will be de-militarized and the raw materials recycled.”

It costs $12,000 to demilitarize each MRAP in Afghanistan before shipping it out of the country, so even if there are no buyers, the US will still have to pay tens of millions of dollars to clean and ship all the of the 11,000 MRAPs that it has deployed there.

As Defense News reported Dec. 4, the US has put about 2,000 MRAPs in Afghanistan up for auction on the international market instead of sending them home or destroying them in place — provided the foreign buyers pay to ship the trucks out of the country.

Overall, the US military is destroying about $7 billion worth of material in Afghanistan as US troops head for the exits, including the MRAPs.

A Pentagon spokesman said several foreign countries have expressed interest in buying the MRAPs in Afghanistan but no final agreements have been signed.

Now that the Army has a few thousand MRAPs in its formations going forward — using a vehicle that didn’t exist anywhere in its long-range plans six years ago — the critical question, as CSBA’s Harrison said, is “how many MRAPS do they need to keep and for what purpose? How do 8,000-plus MRAPs fit into DoD’s strategy for fighting wars in the future?”

08-01-14, 11:33 PM
Oshkosh Defense Canada Delivers MSVS SMP Bid with Next-Generation Capabilities for Canadian Armed Forces

Industry team members and a growing network of more than 700 Canadian suppliers set to return exceptional value to the Canadian economy

The Canadian Government is taking important steps in modernizing its logistics vehicle fleet by advancing the Standard Military Pattern (SMP) component of the Medium Support Vehicle System (MSVS) project. Oshkosh Defense Canada, Inc., a subsidiary of Oshkosh Corporation (NYSE:OSK), responded to the Government of Canada’s MSVS SMP Request for Proposal (RFP), offering a high performance, low risk solution to meet the Canadian Department of National Defence’s (DND) mission requirements and protect Canadian Soldiers for decades to come.

“Working closely with our Canadian industry partners and a growing network of Canadian suppliers, our Oshkosh MSVS SMP offering provides superior vehicle performance, sustainment across six continents, and ultimately, the best overall value for Canada,” said John Urias, Oshkosh Corporation executive vice president and president of Oshkosh Defense. “The Oshkosh MSVS SMP family of vehicles is the next generation of the world’s most trusted, battle-proven military platform in the field today. We are proud to present the Government of Canada with our MSVS SMP bid that meets or exceeds all project requirements, and most importantly, provides Canadian Soldiers with the modern logistics vehicles they need to perform their missions.”

The Best Value for Canada

Oshkosh, in collaboration with its Canadian team members and suppliers, will return 100 percent or more of the MSVS SMP contract value to the Canadian economy. Oshkosh’s strategic team members for the project include DEW Engineering and Development, General Dynamics Land Systems – Canada, and Link Suspensions of Canada – Raydan Division.

“Our MSVS SMP team aligns core Oshkosh design, production and sustainment strengths with Canada’s finest technology, manufacturing and services capabilities,” said John Lazar, senior director of Global Strategic Initiatives for Oshkosh Defense. “We are committed to supporting MSVS SMP and future Canadian vehicle modernization programs by working with companies across Canada and creating new economic value in the process.”

Exceptional Performance, Without the Risk

Oshkosh designed, extensively tested and built its MSVS SMP solution to bring the latest ground vehicle technologies to the Canadian Armed Forces. The Oshkosh MSVS SMP vehicles and trailers are built to serve a full range of logistics missions from disaster recovery at home to major conflicts abroad. Key vehicle subsystems, including a high-performance drive train, advanced suspension and braking systems, and a state-of-the-art armour protection system, allow the Oshkosh MSVS SMP to achieve a 70 percent off-road mission profile and a 98 percent mission reliability rate – both of which will enable Canada’s ground forces to more safely operate in a vast array of threat levels, climates and terrains.

The Oshkosh MSVS SMP builds upon decades of in-theatre experience around the globe and more than one billion real-world operational kilometres accumulated on the Oshkosh Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck (HEMTT) platform. The acclaimed HEMTT platform is a purpose-built military vehicle that has been chosen by the United States Department of Defense and more than 20 allies worldwide – consistently outperforming commercial vehicle derivatives in competitive scenarios.

Canada’s MSVS SMP RFP also includes five years of In-Service Support (ISS). With Canadian troops more frequently mobilized around the world for defence and humanitarian missions, complete life cycle sustainment is increasingly important to ensure mission readiness.

The Oshkosh team’s ISS offering leverages decades of performance based contracting and major repair/overhaul programs experience to minimize MSVS SMP life cycle costs while maximizing reliability and readiness rates. “Our ISS plan is based on a robust global supply chain and a mature logistics system that spans six continents,” added Lazar. “By applying our logistics supportability analysis methodology to manage fleet health, Oshkosh has helped reduced military vehicle fleet life cycle costs as much as 70 percent.”

Read more: http://www.asdnews.com/news-52911/Oshkosh_Defense_Canada_Delivers_MSVS_SMP_Bid_with_ Next-Generation_Capabilities_for_Canadian_Armed_Forces. htm#ixzz2pqv5KJHm

09-01-14, 12:21 PM
I can understand them scrapping some in position in Afghanistan BUT there are a lot of places in S America and Africa that could happily use such vehicles. You can get rid of the Spares aspect by giving away more vehicles than people require, use the extra for scrappin for spares..........IF they give them away for free, it'd be cheaper than scrapping and disposing of them in the USA or elsewhere...........Hell, Mexico could do with a thousand or two..........M-ATV's in particular

An Army spokesman said the remaining MRAPs will be made available for use to other US government agencies and posted for Foreign Military Sales opportunities. If there are no takers, “the vehicles will be de-militarized and the raw materials recycled.”

It costs $12,000 to demilitarize each MRAP in Afghanistan before shipping it out of the country, so even if there are no buyers, the US will still have to pay tens of millions of dollars to clean and ship all the of the 11,000 MRAPs that it has deployed there.

As Defense News reported Dec. 4, the US has put about 2,000 MRAPs in Afghanistan up for auction on the international market instead of sending them home or destroying them in place — provided the foreign buyers pay to ship the trucks out of the country.

Looks like that's exactly what they're doing to me...

09-01-14, 01:14 PM
I could agree except from what I hear the most interest is being shown by people looking at the scrap value NOT the future Military use............only time will tell exactly what and how they are disposed of.

The countries most interested from a Military viewpoint are also the ones least capable, in most cases, of actually arranging the movement from Afghanistan, possibly why scrapping on-location could come to the fore.

12-01-14, 01:21 AM
AM General Sues SOCOM Over Vehicle Contract

Paul McLeary / 1 day ago

GD's winning design.........based on the Flyer

On January 6, Humvee maker AM General headed to Federal Claims Court to file a lawsuit against the the US Special Operations Command over its decision to award a $562 contract to General Dynamics for its Ground Mobility Vehicle 1.1 (GMV) program.

After losing out to General Dynamics in August 2013 on the coveted contract for the competition, both AM General and fellow losing bidder Navistar submitted a formal protests with the Government Accountability Office.

The protests were denied on Dec. 19.

While the complaint is sealed, General Dynamics has also stepped in to file a Motion to Intervene and now also has legal representation involved in the case, a GD spokesman confirmed to Defense News.

The special ops command has said that it wants to buy 1,297 GMVs to replace the current 1,072 Humvee-based GMVs it has in its inventory. We reported back in May of last year that SOCOM had already planned to spend about $24 million on the program in fiscal 2014 for the first 101 vehicles, at a price tag of at $245,000 per vehicle.

“We believe our GMV 1.1 offering provides the Special Operations Command with the strongest candidate vehicle in terms of innovation, mobility, survivability and affordability,” said AM General spokesman Jeff Adams. He declined to comment further, as did representatives from General Dynamics.

When the contract was awarded in August, Defense News reported

“Barring any protests, the loss will come as a bitter pill for current GMV-maker AM General and Navistar International, companies who are looking for more business at a time when the buys of Humvees and MRAPs have ended. Oshkosh Defense was eliminated from the competition in January, after which it filed a protest which was then withdrawn in April.

Requirements documents released last year said that the GMV would have to weigh less than 7,000 pounds, have the ability to carry up to seven passengers and be transportable in an M/CH-47 Chinook helicopter.

In today’s notice about the award, the government said that it plans on spending about $14 million in already allocated fiscal 2012 and 2013 budgets for research, test and evaluation on the GMV.

Final deliveries of all GMVs are expected to be complete by September 2020.

January 10, 2014 in Acquisition, Budget, Industry, Intercepts, New Tech.

13-01-14, 12:13 AM
And now for something completely different!!!

January 11, 2014 by Tamir Eshel

Transformer Vehicle Sets for Flight Testing in California Next Month

A hybrid vehicle combining an off-road automobile and multirotor helicopter is set to become the worlds first roadable, vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft.

The ˜Black Knight Transformer’ is based on an innovative technology pioneered by Advanced Tactics, that combines the capabilities of a rotorcraft, and an off-road vehicle. Photo: Advanced Tactics

A small California based aerospace company named Advanced Tactics Inc. (AT) released first details about the AT Transformer vehicle technology this week. AT is set to test its AT Black Knight Transformer technology demonstrator within the next month, following the completion of driving tests last month. The tests are performed n Southern California. Following the first flight which will be unmanned (remotely piloted) and tethered, the Black Knight Transformer will enter more expansive, iterative flight testing program leading to a full-capability demonstration in late 2014.

AT Black Knight Transformer is based on an innovative technology pioneered by AT, that combines the capabilities of a rotorcraft, and an off-road vehicle. “This design is simple and robust, by eliminating the mechanical complexity and cost of the articulated rotor system that stabilizes and controls a conventional helicopter and replacing it with a high-speed computerized feedback control system.” Rustom Jehangir AT’s Chief Engineer told Defense-Update, “Additionally, the configuration negates the need for a tail-rotor or engine transmission.” while the multirotor concept has been familiar for almost 90 years (the first helicopters, designed in the 1920 were in fact quadrotors), their application was extremely complex and unreliable using mechanical synchronization and control. “Today we can run the rotors through direct drives, while leaving the stabilization, elevation and attitude control to the computerized system that controls the engines.” Jehangir said, adding that AT developed an application that controls the rotation speed of gas or diesel engines in the resolution that enables dynamic stabilization of the octocopter.

The full-scale transformer technology demonstrator was tested on land in December, clearing the design for the flight tests in January-February 2014. Photo: Advanced Tactics

AT engineer, Rustom Jehangir, is standing next to the transformer vehicle for scale. He is six feet tall. Photo: Advanced Tactics

The Black Knight Transformer is designed for autonomous casualty evacuation and manned or unmanned cargo resupply missions. The interior volume is comparable to a Blackhawk helicopter, thus making it suitable for cargo resupply and support missions. An unmanned transformer could be used for combat casualty evacuation (CASEVAC) while a similar optionally manned configuration could be optimized for Special Operations missions. On an typical CASEVAC mission evacuating a wounded soldier under fire from a hot battle zone, a Black Knight Transformer would dispatch to the site landing zone designated by the wounded soldier's squad. The flexibility of the vehicles transportation capability means they can drive the vehicle to areas which otherwise cannot support safe rotorcraft operation.

Development began in 2010, under congressionally funded ˜Special Interest Program" to develop an unmanned platform for combat casualty evacuation. For the first two years the program was supported by the US Army Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center (TATRC) but in 2012 the Marine Corps and Air Force Research laboratory (AFRL) have joined and expanded its scope. Despite the early start AT was not selected for the DARPA Transformer program, where transformer type vehicles are developed for similar applications. Now, with the relative maturity of the program, AT is scouting the industry to collaborate and seize joint development opportunities taking its innovative technologies into full production.

Each of the propulsion units comprises a gas-powered internal combustion engine, two-blade rotor, and fixed mounting arms carrying the gas feed and engine controls. For the operational concept design, the arms are extended with actuators. The actuators would allow the vehicle to be reconfigured in less than one minute. Photo: Advanced Tactics

In fact, the operational configuration of the Black Knight Transformer would meet (and possibly exceed) the DARPA Transformer requirements. It will be configured with 19 foot long cargo hold (19x4x4), carrying five passengers or payload capacity of over 1,000 lbs (454 kg). Loading will be supported by a loading ramp for quick roll-on roll-off loading and offloading. The Black Knight Transformer will be able to deploy in flight over a 250 nm range (463 km) and dash for 30 km over road or rough terrain at a speed of 70 mph (112 km/h). In the aircraft mode it will cruise at a speed of 130 kts (240 km/h). Designed from the start for special ops, the entire vehicle will be transportable inside the CV-22 cargo hold. An inherent difference from the DARPA Transformers will be the use of turbo diesel engines and open rotors, instead of electrical motors and ducted fan or counter-rotating rotors developed under the DARPA program.

AT began work on the Black Knight Transformer in 2010 and, beginning with electrically powered models. Two years later, AT tested the first sub-scale gas-powered ‘Panther Transformer’ and by the end of 2013 the full-scale vehicle completed the first test runs on land.

Advanced Tactics are proposing a tilt-multi-rotor propulsion system to vertically lift and operate a Medium-Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) drone from ships. Drawing: Advanced Tactics

The Black Knight and Panther Transformers both utilize the AT Transformer technology, which leverages the simplicity and robustness of a “multirotor” helicopter at a full-scale size. Like the small electric multicopters that are prevalent today, the AT Transformer uses engines with a direct drive connection to prop-rotors. The vehicle is stabilized in flight by balancing the thrust generated by opposing rotors – four pairs are employed for the Black Knight application. The vehicle is designed with commercial off the shelf elements, including the motors and rotor systems.

By using direct drive, the drive chain is simplified and more reliable. Overall, the structure and automotive systems are configured into modular, field replaceable components. To support off-road mobility the vehicle has automotive suspensions and drive-trains similar to those used in off-road trucks. Large truck tires and shocks provide excellent terrain handling and soften the vehicles’ landings. The wheels are driven by an independent engine and transaxle for speeds up to 70 mph (112 km/h).

For instance, each of the eight propulsion subsystems can be replaced in the field by two people and the payload bay can be changed from casualty evacuation life support equipment to cargo for multi-mission capabilities. Additionally, the modular automobile portion of the vehicle can be replaced with a boat hull or an amphibious hull for water operations. The AT Transformer has the ability to perform controlled engine-out flight in case of a critical component failure.

General dimension and design concept of AT Black Knight Transformer

16-01-14, 03:17 PM
Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV): Background and Issues for Congress

(Source: Congressional Research Service; issued January 9, 2014)

The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) is being developed by the Army and the Marine Corps as a successor to the High Mobility, Multi-Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) that has been in service since 1985. On October 28, 2008, awards were made for the JLTV Technology Development (TD) Phase to three industry teams: (1) BAE Systems, (2) the team of Lockheed Martin and General Tactical Vehicle, and (3) AM General and General Dynamics Land Systems.

Once testing was completed and technology requirements established, a full and open competition was expected to be conducted in the late summer of 2011 for the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) Phase; the Department of Defense (DOD) planned to award two contracts for the EMD phase, which was scheduled to last 24 months.

In February 2011, it was announced the award of the EMD contract would be delayed until January or February 2012 because the Army changed requirements for the JLTV. DOD had planned to award two contracts for the EMD phase, which was scheduled to last 24 months, but instead proposed a 48-month-long EMD. There will be two JLTV variants—a Combat Tactical Vehicle (CTV) that can transport four passengers and carry 3,500 pounds and a Combat Support Vehicle (CSV) that can transport two passengers and carry 5,100 pounds.

On January 26, 2012, the Army issued the Request for Proposal (RFP) for the JLTV’s EMD phase. Up to three EMD contracts could be awarded, and contract award was scheduled for June 2012. The period of performance for EMD contracts is 27 months, with the overall EMD phase scheduled to last 33 months. Vendors would be required to provide 22 JLTV prototypes for testing 12 months after contract award. The target cost for the base vehicle is $250,000 excluding add-on armor and other kits.

On August 22, 2012, the Army announced the award of three firm-fixed price JLTV EMD contracts totaling approximately $185 million. The three companies awarded the EMD contracts were AM General, LLC (South Bend, IN); Lockheed Martin Corporation (Grand Prairie, TX); and Oshkosh Corporation (Oshkosh, WI).

On September 3, 2013, the Army began JLTV testing, which will occur over a 14-month period at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD; Yuma, AZ; and Redstone Arsenal, AL. The Army then plans to select a single vendor by 2015, with the first Army brigade being equipped with JLTVs by 2018.

The FY2014 Budget Request for JLTVs is $84.2 million for Army Research, Development, Test and Evaluation (RDT&E) and $50.4 million for Marine Corps RDT&E, for a program total of $134.6 million. The House and Senate recommended fully funding the Administration’s FY2014 JLTV Budget Request. The House Appropriations Committee recommended fully funding the Army’s FY2014 JLTV Budget Request but recommended a $1.3 million cut to the Marines’ Budget Request citing program management growth.

Potential issues for Congress include a possible examination of why there is no longer any foreign interest in the JLTV program and how the Army’s study to revise overall tactical wheeled vehicle requirements might affect the JLTV program. This report will be updated.

Click here for the full report (11 PDF pages) hosted on the website of the Federation of American Scientists



22-01-14, 01:28 AM
California start-up readies first flight of roadable, VTOL vehicle

By: Erik Schechter New York5 hours ago

I've posted this here for now for continuation from the initial thread above BUT I may move this to the DARPA Flying Car thread in the Air Warfare thread (OR start a new one as this has nothing to do with DARPA?)

California-based Advanced Tactics plans to attempt the first flight test in a few weeks of the Black Knight Transformer, an unmanned vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft designed for the medical evacuation mission.

The vehicle, resembling a Soviet-era commuter bus with eight fixed-pitch propeller-driven engines, is designed to reach urban areas where helicopters are unable to land.

“You just can’t land a helicopter right next to the the guy and pick him up because it’ll be shot down,” Rustom “Rusty” Jehangir, chief engineer for Advanced Tactics, explains.

Image courtesy of Advanced Tactics.

The Black Knight Transformer is designed to overcome this challenge by morphing into a road vehicle for close-in extraction. The 1,810kg (4,000lb) unmanned vehicle lands at a safe distance from the firefight. The vehicle then retracts its rotor engines and drives to the casualties.

Both the US Army Telemedicine & Advanced Technologies Research Centre, in Fort Detrick, Maryland, and the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, in Quantico, Virginia, have shown interest in the operational concept and are backing the Advanced Tactics project.

Despite its ungainly look, the Black Knight Transformer sports 76.2cm (30in) tires and can clock 113km/h (70mph) on a city street.
In mid-December, the Advanced Tactics team took the vehicle for its first test drive out in the Anza-Borrego Desert, northeast of San Diego. “Our driving tests were done in rough terrain and sand, and it performed pretty well in those situations,” Jehangir says.

Now the team is planning a short, tethered flight test sometime between late January and February. Should that go well, Advanced Tactics will continue to “push the performance envelope” on the gas-powered technology demonstrator.

The ultimate goal is to build a sleeker aircraft with turbo-diesel proprotors that can ferry a maximum payload of 454kg up to 230nm.

This operational vehicle will have a cruise speed of 130kt (241km/h) and will hover out of ground effect above 15,000 ft MSL.
No Program of Record is scheduled, but company officials hope that a series of flight test successes with their demonstrator will convince military customers to fund “a more complete version that can be certified for military use,” he says.

California-based Advanced Tactics plans to attempt the first flight test in a few weeks of the Black Knight Transformer, an unmanned vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft designed for the medical evacuation mission.

The vehicle, resembling a Soviet-era commuter bus with eight fixed-pitch propeller-driven engines, is designed to reach urban areas where helicopters are unable to land.

“You just can’t land a helicopter right next to the the guy and pick him up because it’ll be shot down,” Rustom “Rusty” Jehangir, chief engineer for Advanced Tactics, explains.

The Black Knight Transformer is designed to overcome this challenge by morphing into a road vehicle for close-in extraction. The 1,810kg (4,000lb) unmanned vehicle lands at a safe distance from the firefight. The vehicle then retracts its rotor engines and drives to the casualties.

Both the US Army Telemedicine & Advanced Technologies Research Centre, in Fort Detrick, Maryland, and the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, in Quantico, Virginia, have shown interest in the operational concept and are backing the Advanced Tactics project.

Despite its ungainly look, the Black Knight Transformer sports 76.2cm (30in) tires and can clock 113km/h (70mph) on a city street.
In mid-December, the Advanced Tactics team took the vehicle for its first test drive out in the Anza-Borrego Desert, northeast of San Diego. “Our driving tests were done in rough terrain and sand, and it performed pretty well in those situations,” Jehangir says.

Now the team is planning a short, tethered flight test sometime between late January and February. Should that go well, Advanced Tactics will continue to “push the performance envelope” on the gas-powered technology demonstrator.
The ultimate goal is to build a sleeker aircraft with turbo-diesel proprotors that can ferry a maximum payload of 454kg up to 230nm.

This operational vehicle will have a cruise speed of 130kt (241km/h) and will hover out of ground effect above 15,000 ft MSL.
No Program of Record is scheduled, but company officials hope that a series of flight test successes with their demonstrator will convince military customers to fund “a more complete version that can be certified for military use,” he says.

30-01-14, 04:04 PM
General Dynamics European Land Systems Awarded Contract for 130 Additional DURO Armoured Personnel Carriers for the Swiss Army

(Source: General Dynamics European Land Systems; dated Dec. 20, 2013)

KREUZLINGEN, Switzerland --- On December 20, 2013 General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS), a business unit of General Dynamics Corporation, was awarded a contract by the Swiss Army for 130 DURO Armoured Personnel Carriers (GMTF).

General Dynamics European Land Systems previously delivered 290 DURO GMTF vehicles to the Swiss Army during the period 2008 to 2010.

The 130 additional DURO GMTF vehicles will be manufactured at the General Dynamics European Land Systems-Mowag facility in Kreuzlingen, Switzerland, with deliveries to take place between 2015 and 2017. Several other Swiss companies will contribute to this high-value program for the Swiss Army.

“The General Dynamics European Land Systems-Mowag workforce is very proud to have received this follow-on contract, as it underlines the confidence and satisfaction of our Swiss customer,” said Robert Kauth, Vice President of Wheeled Vehicles at General Dynamics European Land Systems and Managing Director of GDELS-Mowag.

About the DURO GMTF

The DURO GMTF Armoured Personnel Carrier, which was developed wholly in Switzerland, has a gross vehicle weight of 14 tons with very high ballistic, mine and IED protection, mobility and flexibility. The DURO GMTF enables the protected transport of 11 soldiers at a top speed of 100 km/h on road. The DURO GMTF manages gradients of up to 60 percent and lateral inclines of up to 30 percent. It uses a 250 hp Cummins turbocharged diesel engine, an Allison 5-speed automatic transmission, unique De-Dion axle system with patented roll stabilizer, tire pressure control system and permanent all-wheel drive. All DURO GMTF vehicles are equipped with an air conditioning system and a NBC overpressure system for enhanced comfort and protection.

General Dynamics European Land Systems, headquartered in Madrid (Spain), conducts its business through four European operating sites located in Spain, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. With 2,240 highly skilled technical employees, the General Dynamics European Land Systems operating sites design, manufacture and deliver land combat systems, including wheeled, tracked, and amphibious vehicles, bridge systems, armaments and munitions, to global customers.


30-01-14, 04:07 PM
U.S. Marine Corps Begins Testing Oshkosh Defense P-19R

(Source: Oshkosh Defense; issued Jan 29, 2014)

OSHKOSH, Wis. --- Oshkosh Defense, a division of Oshkosh Corporation, has delivered three Oshkosh P-19 Replacement Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) vehicle prototypes to the U.S. Marine Corps to undergo testing.

The Marine Corps selected the Oshkosh P-19R in May 2013 to serve as the Marines’ off-road firefighting vehicle of the future. Oshkosh will display the P-19R at Marine West, Jan. 29-30, at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif.

“We delivered three P-19R prototypes in December and will support them as they undergo rigorous government testing through this summer,” said John Bryant, senior vice president of Defense Programs for Oshkosh Defense. “The Oshkosh P-19R will replace the fleet of Oshkosh P-19A ARFF vehicles, which were first fielded with the Marine Corps in 1984 and are reaching the end of their service lives. With this vehicle, we’ve rolled into one platform our decades of experience producing military and ARFF vehicles to give Marines more advanced firefighting capabilities.”

The next-generation Oshkosh P-19R is based on the proven Oshkosh Logistics Vehicle System Replacement (LVSR) platform. It incorporates the latest tactical wheeled vehicle technologies to support fire emergency missions at military bases and expeditionary airfields.

The Oshkosh TAK-4 independent suspension system – today’s gold standard for heavy, medium and light tactical wheeled vehicles that are required to operate off-road – gives Marines greater all-terrain performance for off-runway emergencies. The Oshkosh Command Zone integrated diagnostics and automation system helps crews carry out firefighting missions with increased situational awareness.

Oshkosh Defense leveraged the expertise of the Oshkosh Airport Products Group, the industry-leading ARFF vehicle producer, to equip the Oshkosh P-19R with the advanced Striker firefighting systems. The P-19R also meets the modern requirements of the NFPA 414 standard, which sets the design, performance and acceptance criteria for ARFF vehicles.

Oshkosh Defense leadership will be available to discuss the P-19R and the company’s broad portfolio of vehicles, technologies and services at Marine West at booth #8.

Oshkosh Defense is a leading provider of tactical wheeled vehicles and life cycle sustainment services. For more than 90 years, Oshkosh has been mobilizing military and security forces around the globe by offering a full portfolio of heavy, medium, light and highly protected military vehicles to support our customers’ missions.


05-02-14, 09:08 AM
Pentagon testers pleased with M-ATV's underbody kit

Daniel Wasserbly, Washington, DC - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

02 February 2014

The first Oshkosh Defense M-ATV arrived on 1 October 2009 at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan. Source: USAF

Enhanced underbody protection on the US military's mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicle has won praise from Pentagon testers, although the armoured truck's special operations variant was criticised for limiting "situational awareness".

The MRAP All-Terrain Variant's (M-ATV's) underbody improvement kit (UIK), which underwent classified testing last year, was found to provide "protection beyond its required level". The revamped truck was judged "a significant improvement over the baseline M-ATV" by the fiscal year 2013 (FY 2013) report from the Office of the Director for Operational Test & Evaluation (DOT&E).

M-ATVs, built by Oshkosh Defense, were fielded in earnest in 2009 as a more mobile off-road MRAP designed for Afghanistan's difficult landscape, but officials soon ordered greater protection against roadside bombs, manifested in the UIK.

Military services are now, however, working to shift towards lighter-weight vehicles and to offload their MRAP fleets, retaining only 12,092 trucks from a vehicle family totalling about 27,700.

While testers praised the UIK, the DOT&E's report, published on 29 January, noted unresolved deficiencies in the M-ATV's Special Operations Forces (SOF) variant.

SOF M-ATV crews "continued to possess poor situational awareness due to the small rear windows and the limited field-of-view of the Common Remotely Operated Weapon Station II (CROWS II)".

In addition, the report said crews operating CROWS "experience the same weapon-firing and ammunition-jamming failures", which the SOF M-ATV's initial operational test and evaluation identified and found to degrade the platform's reliability.

M-ATVs for special operators are modified to add protection to the cargo area and rear area access, and to fit five passenger positions including a gunner. The special operations community also commissioned an M-ATV variant that mounts tube-launched, optically tracked, wire-guided (TOW) missiles.

(276 words)

05-02-14, 12:22 PM
GD Awarded $26 M for Cougar Survivability Upgrade Program

The U.S. Marine Corps Systems Command in Quantico, Va., has competitively awarded General Dynamics Land Systems – Force Protection a contract valued at $26 million for survivability upgrades for Cougar combat vehicles previously delivered under the Mine Resistant, Ambush Protected (MRAP) program.

The company will develop, design and produce 468 Seat Survivability Upgrade (SSU) kits for the MRAP vehicles. The kits will include energy absorbing seats, five-point seatbelts and blast mats to enhance the survivability and operation of the Cougar. Additional improvements include a reconfiguration of the internal crew Automatic Fire Extinguisher System, upgrades to the driver and co-driver compartments, and other improvements to the interior layout and stowage.

General Dynamics will complete delivery of the kits by July 2015.

Source : General Dynamics Corporation (NYSE: GD)

Published on ASDNews: Feb 4, 2014

Read more: http://www.asdnews.com/news-53343/GD_Awarded_$26_M_for_Cougar_Survivability_Upgrade_ Program.htm#ixzz2sRw7zrRJ

10-02-14, 03:31 PM
The Division of General Armaments (DGA) of the French Ministry of Defence Orders 250 Military Logistic Vehicles

(Source: Iveco Defence; dated Feb 06, issued Feb 10, 2014)

On 24th January 2014, the Division of General Armaments (DGA) of the French Ministry of Defence placed an order for 250 logistic military trucks with the Iveco (CNH industrial Group) and Soframe (Lohr group) consortium. This batch forms part of the “Porteurs Polyvalents Terrestres” (PPT) programme, launched in 2010 to provide the French land forces with a fleet of modern logistic vehicles. Delivery of the batch will start in 2016.

Included in the “Loi de programmation militaire 2014-2019,” this order demonstrated the French Army’s drive to modernise its logistic capabilities.

The PPT range includes two variants: a logistic vehicle (Porteur polyvalent logistique - PPLOG) and a recovery vehicle (Porteur polyvalent lourd de dépannage - PPLD). Both vehicles share the same chassis with 4 axle 8 wheel drive (8x8), ensuring on and off road mobility in all climatic conditions (for example on snow covered mountain roads). The logistic vehicle will feature an independent hook-lift body for load-handling operations, with a payload up to 19 tonnes, whilst the recovery vehicle will be supplied with a crane for recovering military vehicles.

The PPT cabs offer a high level of crew comfort and are designed to accommodate a variety of modern military communication and command systems. All of the 200 vehicles ordered in 2010 (150 PPLOG and 50 PPLD) feature a protected cab with ballistic and mine blast protection.

This further batch of 250 PPT will be configured as unprotected PPLOG. Protected and unprotected cabs can be interchanged and can be mounted on all chassis according to the assessed level of threat.

The first PPT units were handed over to the customer in July 2013 and immediately saw service in Mali for the Serval operation. Users appreciated the vehicle’s payload, the high mobility provided through the use of all wheel drive, and the crew comfort in demanding conditions.


12-02-14, 12:41 PM
The Pickup Truck Era of Warfare

Jack Mulcaire

February 11, 2014

Readers, let’s take a moment to salute a true workhorse. In the world of war machines, the expensive and high-tech items get all the attention and budget—drones, anti-ship ballistic missiles, cyber warfare, and the like. But, on the battlefields of the twenty-first century, a humble and under-rated weapon has quietly showed up these expensive attention-hogs: the pickup truck.

Today, primarily irregular, infantry-centric forces fight almost every conflict in the world. Pickup trucks are their mainstays. In Afghanistan, Sudan, Somalia, Iraq, Mexico, Syria, Libya, Mali and the Central African Republic, irregulars reach the battlefield more often than not in the cabs and beds of Toyota Hi-Luxes and Land Cruisers, Ford Rangers, and Mitsubishi L200s. When they arrive, the same pickups are often carrying the crew-served weapons that offer that allow a light force to pack a punch on the cheap. Pickup trucks are ideal for the wars of the twenty-first century: they’re readily available, cheap, fuel efficient, easy to operate and repair. And, they are more modular than the Littoral Combat Ship. They can operate off-road in the bush or in the downtown of a major metropolis. All of these characteristics make the pickup truck a war-winner for non-state or weak-state forces that can’t get their hands on purpose-built military vehicles, can’t afford extensive logistic chains, and need to quickly move through and between rough terrain and urban environments.

The “technical” (light truck mounted with weapons) was born in the Sahara and won its greatest glory there. The history of the technical goes back to the exploits of the Long Range Desert Group in the Second World War. But, the pickup-truck era of warfare really began on March 22, 1987, when 2,000 Chadian soldiers riding in technicals armed with heavy machine guns, AA guns, MILAN anti-tank missiles and recoilless rifles emerged from desert wadis in the depths of the Sahara and overran the massive Libyan air base at Wadi Doum, Chad in a surprise attack that killed thousands of Libyans, destroyed dozens of tanks and aircraft, and shattered Libyan air power. The Chadians would go on to repeat their success several months later with an attack against the Libyan airbase at Maaten al-Sara, in Libya itself. Again, thousands of fighters in armed pickups crossed the desert to hit with speed and surprise. Libya agreed to a cease-fire six days after Maaten al-Sara fell, bringing the “Toyota War” (so named because Chadian forces were mainly composed of Toyota trucks) to an end. The Chadians had defeated a larger and far better armed Libyan force, holding a well-fortified position, and they couldn’t have done it without their trucks.

The speedy all-terrain mobility of the Chadian technicals allowed them to cross the Sahara into Libya undetected, masking their approach by following wadis and dunes. The trucks could carry the heavy weapons necessary to destroy Libyan armor and suppress Libyan positions at long range, unlike infantry or camels. Chadian drivers even discovered that their trucks could drive over anti-tank mines without detonating them, as long as they drove faster than 100 km/h. The Chadians are still masters of technical warfare; convoys of Toyota Land Cruisers carrying Chadian mercenaries led the Seleka alliance’s charge into Bangui, pushed back a South African infantry company and overthrew President Francois Boizize last March in the Central African Republic.

No history of the pickup-truck era of warfare would be complete without mentioning the Somalis. The term “technical” originated in Somalia: international NGOs would use “technical assistance grants” to hire and equip local guards, and “technical” quickly became the shorthand term for their armed trucks. Somali politics are clan-dominated, and the strength of a Somali clan is measured in how much livestock they own and how many technicals they can field. Muhammad Farah Adid, perhaps the most powerful single warlord to rise and fall since the collapse of Somalia, and victor of the 1993 Battle of Mogadishu against American Rangers, was carried to his grave in the back of one of his Toyota Land Cruiser pickups.

The wars of the Arab Spring have brought us into the golden age of the battle truck. Colonel Moammar Qaddafi probably thought that his truck problems had ended after his forces withdrew from Chad, but he would live to be tormented by Toyotas one final time. The Mad Max ingenuity of Libya’s rebel mechanics, born of desperation during the country’s 2011 civil war, surpassed anything that other pickup-warriors in Chad, Somalia, Lebanon and other hotspots had ever come up with. They quickly became the stuff of legend: the Chinese auto company that produced most of the rebellion’s trucks used Libyan technicals to advertise that their trucks were “stronger then war.” The Libyans weren’t the best soldiers, or the best tacticians, but they were the most innovative engineers. They attached armor plate-mated office chairs with ZPU AA guns, sawed off the roof to increase the arc of fire for the recoilless rifle in the bed. They produced hundreds of trucks armed with huge S-5 Soviet rocket pods, intended for aircraft. They even cut the turret off of a BMP-1 Soviet Armored Personnel Carrier and mounted it on the back of a Toyota.


Throughout the conflict, the revolutionary militias captured hundreds of tanks and APCs, but even in the war’s last battles, technical trucks provided the majority of rebel firepower and transport. The superior speed, mobility and fuel economy of the trucks more than compensated for their lack of armor and firepower compared to captured T-72 tanks and BMPs. The description of the rebellion’s final push from Zawiya into Tripoli in Irish-Libyan rebel Hussam Najjair’s memoir of the campaign highlights the unique assets of the pickups. The speed and fuel efficiency of the pickups let the rebel Tripoli Brigade cover ground so fast that disparate pro-Qaddafi units weren’t able to link up and support each other, and when the superior firepower of the government troops became too heavy, the pickups could quickly scatter off-road, duck down alleys, or make a speedy u-turn. At the moment, Libya’s militias are engaged in mopping up the last remnants of a simultaneous uprising and incursion over the border from Chad by former pro-Qaddafi fighters. Militiamen assembled in central Tripoli to make a show of strength before going south to put down the threat. What sort of vehicles were they parading in? You guessed it, Toyota Land Cruiser pickups.

The battle pickup continues to evolve. In Syria, rebel mechanics built this homemade tank with a remote-controlled machine gun operated by a PlayStation controller onto the frame of a truck. As long as great-power rivalries stay suppressed and large-scale conventional warfare is rare, the pickup-truck era of warfare will continue. The pickup-truck era is an era of small wars, often fought in marginal places by weak states or forces with no state to back them. Winning strategies and forces in the pickup-truck era of warfare should share the characteristics that have made the light truck a successful weapon. A winning strategy should involve a light resource footprint and it should be easy to implement with irregular, semi-professional light troops. It should be applicable to urban and rural areas because the forces of the pickup truck era freely cross the border between both. It’s easy to forget the strategic lessons that the pickup truck can teach us because they’re not very glamorous. But, for me, a convoy of swaggering militiamen speeding down the road in the bed of their modded Toyota Hi-Luxes is the modern version of a line of medieval knights charging at full gallop.

Jack Mulcaire is a contributor to War on the Rocks. During the 2011 Libyan Civil War, he helped lead a group of international volunteers that aided and consulted with local rebel councils and units. He has written for Small Wars Journal on the Syrian conflict and has aided New York Times writer Damien Spleeters in tracking arms shipments to Syria.

Photo credit: Magharebia

19-02-14, 12:54 PM
AM General rolls out new RHD patrol HMMWV

Kelvin Wong, Singapore - IHS Jane's International Defence Review

16 February 2014

AM General M-1165 DRGN-V demonstrator displayed at the Singapore Airshow 2014. In this configuration, it is equipped with a roof-mounted .50 calibre machine gun, and a total of four light machine guns on the sides and rear of the vehicle. (IHS/Kelvin Wong)

US-based AM General debuted its new M-1165 Deployable Reconnaissance Ground Network-Vehicle (DRGN-V) platform at the Singapore Airshow 2014, with the controls shifted over to the right hand side of the vehicle as befits the local traffic regulations.

The full-scale M-1165 DRGN-V demonstrator at the 2014 Airshow was equipped with a Browning M2 .50 calibre machine gun on a roof mount, a sponson-mounted light machine gun (LMG) on each side of the vehicle, and two LMGs on the rear deck.

The M-1165 DRGN-V is based on the M-1165 version of the company's popular High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV), which was displayed at the 2012 Singapore Airshow.

Gerritt Peck, AM General's Regional Director for Far East International Sales, said that the M-1165 DRGN-V features a 3,000 kg payload capacity, which offers operators greater flexibility in selecting armaments, armour and electronic equipment. He added that the company is interested to push the DRGN-V in the region for border patrol, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR), and reconnaissance missions.

The M-1165 DRGN-V is offered in two basic variants with either a 205 hp engine or 270 hp engine. The vehicle is capable of fording water up to 0.75 m in its standard configuration, but can traverse twice that depth with a fording kit. The vehicle is air-transportable inside the cargo bay of the CH/MH-47 Chinook helicopters or as an underslung-load. Peck said the vehicle is also capable of parachute-deployment from a transport aircraft.

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20-02-14, 12:47 PM
AUSA Winter 2014: Army to seek new medium truck family in mid-2020s

Daniel Wasserbly, Huntsville, Alabama - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

19 February 2014

In 2009 Oshkosh Defense was awarded the FMTV programme over incumbent BAE Systems in a competitive 'rebuy' programme. Source: BAE Systems

The US Army is considering buying a new group of medium tactical vehicles in about 10 years and would seek additional commonality in the fleet.

The Legacy Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV) trucks are still being purchased and this year a limited numbers of Family of Heavy Tactical Vehicles (FHTV) trucks are to be ordered as well, but "around 2025" the army hopes to buy a new medium truck, according to Kevin Fahey, Program Executive Officer for Combat Support and Combat Service Support (CS CSS).

Buying a new medium truck is "probably the next priority" for his vehicle fleet, Fahey told reporters during an Association of the United States Army (AUSA) symposium in Huntsville, Alabama.

He said the CS CSS office was working with army sustainment centres and others to formulate a programme strategy, but noted that it would likely be similar to the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) project in keeping requirements rather unspecific in order to see what industry can provide. Then in the mid-2020s, when the army would know what can be done technologically and how much it would cost, the service would build, test, and buy new medium trucks.

Fahey said he believes some of the tactical vehicle roles - including those filled by the Palletized Load System (PLS), Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck (HEMTT), and Heavy Equipment Transporter (HET) - could be done from a common chassis.

The trucks will also have mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) levels of survivability and likely be lighter than current systems, he added.

Science and technology planning efforts for a new medium truck family have begun in collaboration with the US Marine Corps and US Navy, and Fahey said the services would co-ordinate on requirements, technologies, and programme management.

The FMTV comprises a series of vehicles different variants and models, with payloads from 2.5-5 tons that are deployable in C-5, C-17, and C-130 transport aircraft. The platforms are based on a common chassis, engine, tyres, and cab to claim 80% commonality across the models and weight classes.

The trucks perform functions ranging from cargo, line haul, wrecker and dump truck, and serve as platforms for the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) and support vehicles for Patriot missile systems.

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06-03-14, 09:40 PM
Turkey's Otokar Wins Armored Vehicle Contract From UN

Mar. 6, 2014 - 12:51PM | By BURAK EGE BEKDIL

The UN is buying Cobra armored vehicles from Turkish company Otokar for use on peacekeeping missions. (Otokar)

ANKARA — Turkey’s leading armored vehicles manufacturer, Otokar, has said that it won a $24.6 million contract from the United Nations.

In a news release March 6, Otokar said the contract was for an unspecified number of the company’s Cobra vehicles. The UN will use the Cobras in peacekeeping operations, the company said.

Cobra, used by the armies of 15 different countries, is Otokar’s best known vehicle. Turkish security forces use the four-wheel-drive Cobra for reconnaissance and area control.

Otokar reported 40 percent growth in 2013, with exports of $117 million.

The company also is the developer of the Altay, Turkey’s first indigenous, new-generation main battle tank. In 2008, Otokar signed a $500 million contract with the Turkish procurement office, the Undersecretariat for Defense Industries, to produce four prototypes under the Altay program.

12-03-14, 01:10 PM
Germany orders 76 more Eagle Vs

Nicholas de Larrinaga, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

09 March 2014

Germany has ordered 76 more Eagle V 4x4 armoured vehicles from GDELS. Source: General Dynamics European Land Systems

Germany has ordered 76 more General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) Eagle V 4x4 protected command vehicles, the company announced on 10 March.

The vehicles are being ordered as part of the Geschützten Führungs- und Funktionsfahrzeugs (Armoured Command and Multi-functional Vehicle) der Klasse 2 (GFF Class 2) programme for the German Army.

Germany first ordered the Eagle V in June 2013, with the possibility of an additional order of 76 vehicles - now taken up - being included as an option in the earlier contract. The German procurement agency the Bundesamt für Ausrüstung, Informationstechnik und Nutzung der Bundeswehr (BAAINBw) is understood to have taken up the option on 20 February.

According to GDELS all of the additional vehicles will be delivered to the German Army (Bundeswehr) by the close of 2015.

The Eagle V is an evolution of the earlier GDELS Eagle IV 4x4 - procured in large numbers already by the Bundeswehr - providing a higher level of internal volume, payload, and protection as the Eagle IV; while retaining the same mobility and external size as the earlier model.

Germany has now ordered a total of 505 Eagle IVs and 176 Eagle V 4x4 vehicles under the GFF Class 2 programme. The GFF programme comprises four different vehicle classes: 5 tonne (GFF 1); 7.5 tonne (GFF 2); 12.5 tonne (GFF 3); and 25 tonne (GFF 4). In addition to Eagle IV/V for GFF 2, Germany has purchased the Mercedes-Benz Enok Light Armoured Patrol Vehicle for GFF 1; the Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) Dingo 2 for GFF 3; while the KMW Grizzly 6x6 and the Rheinmetall Landsysteme Wisent 8x8 are being offered for GFF 4.

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27-03-14, 05:20 AM
French Buy of Special Forces Vehicles Seen as Safe Despite Budget Cutting

Mar. 26, 2014 - 05:04PM | By PIERRE TRAN

The French intend to replace special forces vehicles, including the Panhard VPS. (Panhard)

PARIS — A French order for a fresh batch of light special forces vehicles would cost some €40 million (US $55.3 million), seen as a relatively small amount and vital for equipping the elite units, an industry executive said March 26.

“In budget terms, that is ‘zero,’ ” the executive said. The special operations forces hold a “privileged” position as France increasingly relies on the units for overseas interventions.

The special operations forces allow Paris to project power on the ground, a capability seen as “very political,” the executive said.

A €40 million amount was based on ordering 100 vehicles at a unit price of €400,000. That is seen as an affordable figure despite the government’s commitment to cutting €50 billion from the national budget.

A contract this year is important, as no new defense orders are expected in 2015, the executive said.

Last year at a trade show and conference, named Special Operations Forces Innovation Network Seminar, or SOFINS, Renault Trucks Defense displayed its Sherpa light special forces vehicle fitted with a pintle-mounted Nexter 20mm gun.

RTD, a unit of the Volvo group, pitched the Sherpa for the tender, aiming to replace an aging fleet of P4 SAS vehicles and 51 Panhard VPS (véhicule protégé SAS) for the special forces.

Heavy use has worn out the VPS, the executive said. The vehicles were bought in 2008.

A replacement order could come from the Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA) procurement office or the Army’s maintenance department.

Know-how of a systems approach will be key as the deal is expected to include armaments, communications and jamming systems for the vehicle.

The government is also expected to launch tenders this year for a troop carrier and a light tank.

Those two vehicles would launch the Army’s long awaited Scorpion program, seen as needed to modernize the land forces.

In the Mali campaign, dubbed Serval, French troops battled guerrilla fighters who were using pickup trucks armed with the Russian 14.5mm gun, which has a range of 1.2 kilometers, greater than that of the 12.7mm, or 0.50-inch, NATO standard weapon.

The lessons learned from Serval fed into the requirements for the light special forces vehicle. Other Army acquisition plans include a light tactical vehicle, véhicule léger tactique polyvalent, replacing the P4 jeep and other vehicles. ■

Email: ptran@defensenews.com.

27-03-14, 12:57 PM
FIDAE 2014: Textron seeks additional Commando vehicle sales in Colombia

Daniel Wasserbly, Santiago, Chile - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

25 March 2014

The export version of the Commando for Colombia in the APC configuration has a longer wheelbase for greater internal volume and is shown here fitted with a protected weapon station. Source: Textron

Textron Marine & Land Systems officials are hoping to expand their Commando Advanced 4x4 armoured vehicle programme in Colombia by, among other things, branching beyond cavalry units.

The Colombian military has purchased a total of 67 Commando vehicles - 39 were bought in an original order without turrets and another 28 were more recently ordered with 40 mm/.50 calibre remote turrets - and Textron expects to finish building platforms from the second order sometime in March, Mike Gelpi, vice-president land systems and life cycle support at Textron Marine & Land Systems, told IHS Jane's .

Turrets are to be retrofitted on the original Commandos as well, he added.

Gelpi said that Colombian cavalry units are the main customer within Colombian army, and the company hopes to expand to other missions and units in the country, as well as expand elsewhere in the region.

Other Latin American countries have expressed interest in the Commando, he said, but none of the discussions are "mature enough to talk about at this point".

The Colombians, meanwhile, are exploring means of logistics support for the fleet by ordering spares and requesting two field service representatives for two years.

According to Gelpi, the army there has been pleased with the Commandos and has been employing the vehicles in day and night operations that range from jungle to highway terrain.

The 4x4 vehicles have a unique balance in survivability and off-road mobility, and weigh around 36,000 lbs (16,200 kg). The platforms have a V-shaped hull bottom and 360-degree direct fire. According to Textron, the Commando Advanced can be upgraded to higher crew protection levels through an Enhanced Survivability package.

The Colombian Army ordered its first tranche of Commandos in 2009 and that order was filled by July 2010, equipping three armoured support squadrons with troop transport variants and command-post units. A second order for 28 came in August 2013.

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04-04-14, 01:50 PM
Rheinmetall to Supply Norway with New Fleet of Military Trucks

(Source: Rheinmetall AG; issued April 4, 2014)

Rheinmetall AG of Düsseldorf has just won another major order for military wheeled vehicles. The Norwegian armed forces will soon be taking delivery of a large number of logistical vehicles made by Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles (RMMV). RMMV is a joint venture with Rheinmetall AG holding 51% and MAN Truck&Bus AG holding 49%.

Signed at RMMV’s Vienna plant, the framework contract for military logistical vehicles runs through 2025. It is linked to an additional agreement under which RMMV will provide the Norwegian armed forces with long-term service support.

Simultaneously, a first firm order was placed for new trucks. Worth over €100 million, this contract also includes integrated logistical support such as the supply of spare parts and maintenance services. Delivery of the first batch of vehicles – a mix of different models – is set to begin in mid-2015 and finish in mid-2017.

First and foremost, the new vehicles are intended to enhance the transport capacity of the Norwegian military’s logistical arm as well as expanding its operational capabilities. The new high-tech vehicles, which include many different variants, will be meticulously configured to meet the exacting specifications of the Norwegian armed forces. Some of the trucks will feature an integrated armoured cab, providing vehicle crews with effective protection from ballistic threats and shrapnel.

Fostering added force protection and maximum operational effectiveness, the trucks will also feature state-of-the-art communications and command technology as well as a remotely operated weapon station mounted to the roof of the cab for an integral self-defence capability.


04-04-14, 02:02 PM
Norway signs RMMV contract

Nicholas de Larrinaga, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

01 April 2014

Norway has placed an order with RMMV for new logistics vehicles for its armed forces. Source: FMV

Norway has signed a NOK1 billion (USD167.2 million) deal with Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles (RMMV) for military trucks, a Norwegian Ministry of Defence (MoD) spokesperson confirmed to IHS Jane's on 2 April.

Two contracts were signed by the Norwegian Defence Logistics Organisation (NDLO) and RMMV on 31 March: an initial purchase contract and a through-life logistics support contract. Deliveries of the vehicles are expected to run from 2015 to 2017.

Norway will purchase an entire range of new logistics vehicles from RMMV under the arrangement, with nine variants to be purchased in this initial order, the spokesperson stated. However, the total number of vehicles included in the contract is currently unknown. This is because the final number will depend on how many of each different variant Norway opts to purchase - a decision the MoD and NDLO have yet to make.

"This is the first order and will give us everything from heavy goods vehicles and hook lifters to various cargo trailers and some easier transportation for airport operations," the NDLO stated. The vehicles will principally be used by the Royal Norwegian Army's Brigade North, according to the NDLO.

Norway's purchase of new logistics vehicles forms part of a Nordic defence co-operation programme with Sweden, in which a simultaneous purchase of the same vehicles was intended. RMMV was selected in November 2013 for this programme.

However, Sweden has delayed the signing of its part of the contract while its competition authority investigates the conduct of the procurement processes. At issue is the fact that with Norway acting as project lead, the programme was conducted under the Norwegian Acquisition Regulations for the Defence Sector (ARF) procurement laws. As such, the competition authority is investigating whether the conduct of the programme under Norway's ARF laws complied with Sweden's Law for the Procurement of Defence and Security (LUFS).

One of the biggest differences between ARF and LUFS is the ability under the former to change the absolute requirements on bidders during the procurement process, IHS Jane's understands. Also at issue is that as a non-EU member, Norway's procurement laws may not align with EU procurement regulations embedded in LUFS (Sweden being an EU member). In parallel, Norway is a member of NATO, while Sweden is not. The Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) is hopeful that the Swedish competition authority's investigation will be positively concluded by May. As part of Norway's signing of the contract with RMMV, an NDLO statement said that "Sweden may sign the contract later".

When questioned by IHS Jane's on the competition authorities investigation and the compatibility of the ARF and LUFS laws, a spokesperson for the FMV stated that "there are obstacles related to most defence materiel collaborations but there are still lots of benefits, such as cost-sharing".

This is the second time that the Swedish side of the joint logistics vehicle procurement programme has been held up - a contract was initially expected by the end of 2013. One of the unsuccessful bidders, Scania, had lodged an appeal against RMMV's selection in December with the Administrative Court in Stockholm. IHS Jane's understands that this appeal was withdrawn after Scania majority shareholder the Volkswagen Group (which has a 60% stake in Scania) weighed in - the group also owns a large stake of RMMV.

Meanwhile, compensation negotiations are understood to still be continuing between Norway and Sweden over Norway's decision in December 2013 to pull out of the joint Swedish-Norwegian Archer self-propelled artillery (SPA) programme.

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07-04-14, 01:56 PM
Japan Buys Thales Bushmasters

(Source: Thales Australia, issued April 7, 2014)

Formal notice from Thales.............four vehicles means a trial number to see if they mean to buy/build more.............perhaps they can sell us some decent subs? <----kidding, I think.............

The Japanese Ministry of Defence has ordered four Bushmaster vehicles for deployment with the Japan Ground Self-Defence Force (JGSDF).

The vehicles, all troop carrier variants, will be manufactured at the company’s facility in Bendigo, Victoria in Australia, for delivery in late 2014.

Thales Australia CEO Chris Jenkins said: “This new export order demonstrates the ongoing significance and versatility of the Bushmaster vehicle.

“With effective operational deployment across Afghanistan and Iraq, the Bushmaster has proven its effectiveness across urban landscapes as well as mountainous regions, making it uniquely suited to Japan’s geographic and urban environments.

“This is the first time that Thales is providing platforms to Japan. Our aim is to be customer focused and to offer Thales Group’s seamless and convenient services and technologies to our customers in Japan. We look forward to working closely with the Japanese Ground Self-Defence Force as these vehicles enter service.”

The Thales Bushmaster is a true success story with over 1,000 vehicles already sold in Australia, the Netherlands and Jamaica.

Thales Australia is a trusted partner of the Australian Defence Force and is also present in commercial sectors ranging from air traffic management to security systems and services. Employing around 3,200 people in over 35 sites across the country, Thales Australia recorded revenues of AUD 1 billion in 2012.


09-04-14, 12:36 PM
Boeing's Phantom Badger vehicle cleared for V-22 carriage

Gareth Jennings, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

08 April 2014

The Phantom Badger vehicle has now been cleared for internal carriage aboard the V-22 Osprey. Source: Boeing

Boeing's Phantom Badger tactical ground vehicle has been certified for internal carriage aboard the Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey tiltrotor, the company announced on 8 April.

The US Navy (USN) certified the vehicle in March, having conducted a series of form-fit checks and pressure tests. Structural evaluations were also conducted to beyond 4 g s.

Since being unveiled in May 2013, the Phantom Badger has completed more than 5,000 miles of rugged terrain durability testing and successful airdrop tests from a Boeing C-17 Globemaster III airlifter. According to Boeing, the C-17 can carry 10 such vehicles, while the CH-47 Chinook helicopter can carry two. As well as being transported internally, the Phantom Badger can be underslung from the V-22 and helicopters.

Boeing and its Motorsport Innovations (MSI) partner have designed the Phantom Badger to leverage commercial off-the-shelf technology into a simple yet capable all-terrain vehicle. The vehicle features four-wheel drive for enhanced manoeuvrability, a removable and interchangeable storage or mission module for tactical flexibility, fully adjustable ride height for comprehensive off-road performance, and parts commonality with existing vehicles for increased sustainability in the field.

Weapon loads include a .50 calibre (12.7 mm) machine gun or 40 mm automatic grenade launcher mounted to the roll cage, and rear facing seats that can also be equipped with 7.62 mm general purpose machine guns and other squad weapons. Alternatively, this rear crew area can be outfitted with a modular mission bay, for roles such as casualty evacuation, which can be installed in under 30 minutes.

In October 2014 the US Special Operations Command (SOCOM) disclosed that it had chosen the General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems (GD OTS) Flyer Advanced Light Strike Vehicle (ALSV) over the Phantom Badger for its V-22 Internally Transportable Vehicle (ITV) contract. However, at that time Boeing officials told IHS Jane's that the company was continuing with development, saying; "We have the best, most affordable solution for the warfighter, and the Boeing-MSI team is prepared to deliver a superb combat support vehicle that exceeds every customer expectation .... Boeing continues to see considerable domestic and international interest in Phantom Badger".

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09-04-14, 12:51 PM
Indonesia, Japan buy Bushmasters

Jon Grevatt, Bangkok and James Hardy, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

06 April 2014

Thales Australia has secured its first Asian orders for the Bushmaster. Source: Thales

Thales Australia has secured sales of its Bushmaster protected mobility vehicle to Indonesia and Japan, marking the first Asian orders of the 4x4 wheeled armoured vehicle.

The sale to Indonesia was concluded, but not announced, in late 2013 and features three Bushmaster troop variants that were delivered to the Indonesian Special Forces (Kopassus) in February 2014, a spokesman from the Australian Department of Defence (DoD) confirmed to IHS Jane's on 4 April.

The sale to the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) was announced on 7 April and covers four units of the same design, with deliveries scheduled before the end of 2014, Thales Australia said in a statement.

A Japanese Ministry of Defence (MoD) official told IHS Jane's that the four Bushmasters had been purchased to provide "land transportation for Japanese evacuees" in the event of an overseas contingencies, such as the January 2013 In Amenas hostage crisis in Algeria. Ten Japanese citizens were killed in the siege, which the official said had exposed a gap in the Self-Defence Forces Law in how the JGSDF was allowed to operate overseas.

Chris Jenkins, chief executive officer of Thales Australia, said: "This is the first time that Thales is providing platforms to Japan. Our aim is to be customer-focused and to offer Thales group's ... services and technologies to our customers in Japan. We look forward to working closely with the JGSDF as these vehicles enter service."

The Japanese MoD official said that the four Bushmasters would cost about JPY200 million (USD1.9 million) per vehicle and "will be focused on overseas transport operations in case of an emergency - either natural or man-made". He added that there would be no further purchases.

The acquisition of "protected carrier vehicles" was outlined in the MoD's supplementary budget for fiscal year 2013/14, which was released in December 2013. It was included in a section detailing "measures that facilitate the JGSDF to maintain and operate various equipment and defence facilities in a stable manner" and also included the acquisition of fire-control radar parts for F-15 fighter aircraft and soundproofing of homes and private facilities close to Japanese air bases.

The Indonesian contract is valued at AUD2.7 million (USD2.5 million) and the Japanese deal is expected to be worth around AUD3.6 million, with both including the provision of training covering vehicle operations, maintenance, and repairs.

The Indonesian deal progressed as a government-to-government deal overseen by the Australian Military Sales Office, which was established in 2012 to facilitate the export of platforms and components on behalf of Australia's defence industrial base. The sale to Japan is understood to be a commercial contract.

Other potential export orders for the Bushmaster include the Royal Thai Army, which has maintained its interest in acquiring the vehicle for use in the country's turbulent south, and Libya, which is reported to have expressed a requirement to acquire between 100 and 400 Bushmasters. A Thales Australia spokesman said: "I can't confirm anything about other potential exports for commercial reasons, but we continue to explore opportunities."

To date, the Australian Defence Force has ordered and taken delivery of a total of 1,052 Bushmasters, and exports include 86 vehicles supplied to the Dutch Army, 24 to the British Army, and 12 ordered by the Jamaica Defence Force in December 2013.

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09-04-14, 11:46 PM
AM General Lawsuit Against SOCOM Rejected; GD Starts Work on Special Ops Vehicle

Apr. 9, 2014 - 05:36PM | By PAUL McLEARY

The prototype of the winning vehicle for the Ground Mobility Vehicle program. (General Dynamics)

WASHINGTON — On April 7, the US Federal Claims Court rejected military vehicle maker AM General’s lawsuit against the US Special Operations Command over its decision to award a $562 contract to General Dynamics for the Ground Mobility Vehicle 1.1 (GMV) program, Defense News has learned.

After losing out to General Dynamics in August 2013 on the coveted contract to build 1,297 new light troop carriers for the command, both AM General and fellow losing bidder Navistar submitted formal protests with the Government Accountability Office.

The protests were denied on Dec. 19.

AM General then went a step further and sued on Jan. 6, after which General Dynamics also stepped in to file a Motion to Intervene, but a judge ruled on Monday that the AM General suit was to be dismissed.

AM General spokesman Jeff Adams said in a statement that the company “is disappointed” with the ruling, and “while we appreciate certain portions of the court’s evaluation which resulted in recognition of several of the points we contested, AM General continues to believe in the overall merits of its protest. Nonetheless, we have decided to accept the court’s ruling and will not pursue further action for review of our protest.”

General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems spokeswoman Laurie VanBrocklin told Defense News in a statement that “we are very pleased that the award has been upheld and look forward to working closely with our USSOCOM customer. Our team’s combined knowledge and expertise in manufacturing lightweight high-mobility vehicles will help ensure we deliver a highly capable lightweight vehicle that meets the needs of the US Special Forces.”

The special ops command has said that it wants to buy 1,297 GMVs to replace the current 1,072 Humvee-based GMVs it has in its inventory. Budget documents show that SOCOM had previously planned to spend about $24 million on the program in fiscal 2014 for the first 101 vehicles, at a price tag of at $245,000 per vehicle.

With a marked decrease in ground vehicle production and repair that is coming along with the winding down of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the loss is a tough one for current GMV-maker AM General, whose Humvee is largely being phased out of the US Army and Marine Corps fleets with the coming introduction of the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle.

Oshkosh Defense had also been eliminated from the competition in January 2013, after which it filed a protest which was then withdrawn that April.

Requirements documents state that the GMV 1.1 will have to weigh less than 7,000 pounds, have the ability to carry up to seven passengers and be transportable in an M/CH-47 Chinook helicopter.

Final deliveries of all GMVs are expected to be complete by September 2020.

The ruling comes just days after the April 4 rejection by Army Materiel Command of a General Dynamics Land Systems protest disputing the fairness of the Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV) competition. The company still has the option of lodging a more formal protest with the Government Accountability Office, however. ■

Email: pmcleary@defensenews.com.

10-04-14, 11:33 AM
Croatia receives donated Maxxpro MRAPs

Nicholas de Larrinaga, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

08 April 2014

Croatia received 30 Navistar Maxxpro 4x4 mine resistant ambush protected (MRAP) vehicles from the United States on 7 April, the Croatian Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced.

The vehicles were delivered free of charge under the US Excess Defense Articles (EDA) programme, and form the first batch of a total of 212 military vehicles Croatia will receive under the EDA system.

In addition to the 30 Maxxpros, the Croatian Army will receive 162 4x4 Oshkosh MRAP All-Terrain Vehicles (M-ATVs), and 20 6x6 BAE Systems RG-33 Heavy Armoured Ground Ambulance (HAGA) vehicles.

Speaking to IHS Jane's on 9 April, a spokesperson for the MoD said that Croatia first requested MRAPs under the EDA programme in January 2013, with the US Congress granting approval for the transfer of 170 vehicles in August 2013 and for a further 42 vehicles in March 2014.

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11-04-14, 01:40 AM
Navy’s New 80-MPH Mini Combat Vehicle Can Drop From the Sky

By Allen McDuffee

04.10.14 6:30 am

Image: Sally Aristei/Boeing

Master Chief, your new combat vehicle is ready.

The U.S. Navy has certified the Phantom Badger, a 240-horsepower combat support vehicle that’s about the size of a Mini and tough enough to traverse damn near anything. It’s designed to fit inside several different aircraft, including the V-22 Osprey, and airdropped to provide ground troops with superior mobility.

“This certification validates Phantom Badger’s versatile design while offering the warfighter increased battlefield access and deployment options,” John Chicoli, who leads Boeing’s internally transportable vehicle program, said in a statement.

The vehicle, which looks a lot like a squished HumVee, was developed by Boeing Phantom Works with an assist from Motorsport Innovations. Those guys are known more for their work on the racetrack than the battlefield, and helped Boeing develop an adjustable suspension system tough enough for the rigors of battle. Together they engineered a four-wheel steering system that gives the Badger a 24-foot turning radius.

“The agility, the speed of this vehicle is unmatched right now,” Chicoli said.

The Badger will hit 80 mph running flat out, and unleash hell doing it. Weapon loads include a .50-caliber machine gun or a 40mm automatic grenade launcher bolted to the roll cage. The rear-facing seats can be equipped with general-purpose machine guns or ditched for hardware supporting resupply or medevac duties.

The vehicle is just 60-inches wide, and it was designed to fit in the cargo hold of a V-22 Osprey—a tilt-rotor aircraft so narrow the Pentagon doesn’t have a ground support vehicle that fits inside it. The CH-47 Chinook helicopter and the C-130 cargo plane can carry two Badgers apiece, while the C-17 transport plane can carry 10.

The Badger had completed 5,000 miles of testing over a wide variety of terrain and has been successfully dropped from a C-17. Boeing says it’s tough as nails and ready for duty.

“This is a vehicle that will last the customer a long time, and we truly think this weight class of vehicle closes a big capability gap,” said Chicoli.

11-04-14, 02:15 PM
Volvo Defense Signs Contract with the Estonian Ministry of Defense

(Source: Volvo Defense; issued Avril 11, 2014)

Volvo Defense and the Estonian Ministry of Defense have signed a contract for Volvo FMX trucks with hook lift system, trailers and special purpose mobile containers.

Volvo FMX is developed to make driving in rough conditions easier and safer – from the robust bumper and advanced steering to the new comfortable rear and ground clearance capabilities.

Volvo Defense supplies Volvo branded vehicles to defense authorities, organizations, and companies. The Volvo Defense portfolio consists of specially adapted trucks, construction and engineering equipment. Being part of the Volvo Group, thus utilizing the driveline and chassis components used for civilian vehicles, Volvo Defense can put greater focus on the special equipment such as ballistic and mine protection.

In its strive to become a leader when it comes to supplying vehicles to governments, Volvo Defense does not only provide vehicles; the Volvo ILS back-up and support provide military users with ultimate comfort based on a well-functioning service network throughout the world.


14-04-14, 10:04 PM
Meet Greece's Futuristic & Deadly Hummer With A Mutt-Like Pedigree

Tyler Rogoway

The HMMWV comes in countless guises, from up-armored urban war wagons, to Stinger missile packing air defense models, to stripped down no-frills pickup trucks. Considering the fact that the "Hummer" serves around the world with dozens of nations, form Uganda to China, it is of no surprise that many operators put their own tactical touch on this adaptable combat vehicle. Yet of all the configurations out there, possibly the coolest looking, and one of the most deadly, is Greece's M1114GR.

Greece's M1114GR Hummers have a very mottled "international" pedigree. They are based on an American design, assembled locally by military vehicle maker ELVO, up-armored via Israel's armored vehicle masters Plasan Sasa Ltd, and pack a Russian anti-tank missile. The results of this strange but deadly globe-spanning collaboration of sorts is a specialized Hummer with a futuristic appearance and a deadly punch.

The M1114GR designers, or should I say arrangers, took a "balanced approach" to survivability and mobility. Its armor can protect its occupants from small arms fire, air blasts and certain mines and buried improvised explosive devices. It also features an enhanced clamshell rear bed cover and Plasan's updated "low profile" turret hatch, but what makes the M1114GR so deadly is that is packs the proven and powerful "Kornet" anti-tank missile.

The M9113 Kornet-E is a laser guided anti-tank missile that was designed by Russian engineers to take on main battle tanks and even low flying helicopters. The missile can pack a tandem high-explosive-anti-tank (T-HEAT) or a thermobaric (concussive hot air blast) warhead. The Kornet's tandem high-explosive warhead is extremely deadly against tanks and armored personnel carriers that primarily pack reactive armor to defend themselves against attack. When the T-HEAT Kornet detonates, it first blasts through reactive armor using a secondary charge, and then sends a jet-like primary charge spewing forward into the hull of the target.

The Kornet-E has a capable and reliable guidance system. Once the target is being actively "painted" by an operator using an accompanying laser designator, witch can feature thermal optics, the Kornet is fired and can reach out almost 5 miles. The slightly lighter, but extremely deadly when used against soft targets, thermobaric warhead equipped version can fly out to over six miles before turning its targets into burnt mush.

The Kornet has been known for its rugged simplicity and effectiveness even against some of the most heavily armored vehicles ever constructed. The M114GR can pack up to ten, but usually five, Kornets in a custom armored box installation in the truck's rear bed with ample space remaining for other supplies and small arms ammunition.

Although, the M1114GR is the most deadly of Greece's Hummer contingent, other models that also feature Plasan's futuristic armor kits exist, including models that have Heckler and Koch grenade launchers or machine guns attached to the upper turret, as well as non-armed versions with raised rooflines. Still, for a wheeled vehicle that consists of intellectual and real property from a multitude of nations spanning the globe, the M1114GR is one seriously mean Hummer that even the world's best tanks should fear, and not just for its deadly handsome looks.

Pictures via public domain, ELVO, Plasan

16-04-14, 10:40 AM
Black Knight Transformer Completes First Flights

Advanced Tactics Inc. announced that it has successfully completed the first flight test of the Black Knight Transformer, a modular and roadable vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft.

The AT Black Knight Transformer completed driving tests in December 2013 and completed its first flight tests in March 2014. The Black Knight Transformer is the world’s largest multicopter that is controlled and stabilized with propeller speed.

The aircraft has a maximum takeoff weight of 4,400 lb. The flight test was performed at a private location in Southern California and the aircraft was remotely piloted for safety. The stability and attitude of the aircraft was controlled entirely by the autopilot. The only commands from the remote (human) pilot were to increase or decrease power. Outrigger landing gear was attached to the aircraft to prevent it from rolling over in case of any mishaps.

The aircraft completed multiple short hover flights. Although the aircraft is capable of hovering at thousands of feet above the ground, the altitude was limited to less than 10 feet above the ground for safety. The aircraft was stable, controllable, and performed as expected. An electric quadcopter drone was used to capture aerial footage of the flights

Source: Press Release - See more at: http://www.uasvision.com/2014/04/16/black-knight-transformer-completes-first-flights/#more-30970

17-04-14, 10:46 AM
TenCate awarded important US defense contract of US$30 M

TenCate Advanced Armor in Newark (Ohio), USA, has been selected by General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems, the prime contractor for the U.S. Army Special Operations Command (SOCOM) Ground Mobility Vehicle, to provide the GMV 1.1 armor solution. This order has a value of about US Dollar 30 million. Revenues will be generated in the next three to four years. Initial production will start during the second half of 2014.

The Pentagon awarded General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems a US Dollar 562 million contract for the Ground Mobility Vehicle (GMV 1.1). SOCOM plans to purchase up to 1,300 GMVs over the next 6 years to replace SOCOM’s current fleet of specialized High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWVs).

Complete vehicle survivability solution

TenCate Advanced Armor offers complete vehicle armor and occupant survivability solutions for tactical and combat vehicles. Utilizing a wide range of armor materials and technologies, survivability products of TenCate include lightweight passive armor as well as advanced active underbody IED protection. “We are extremely excited to be a part of the GD-OTS team. The GMV platform is a perfect platform for our lightweight armor solutions”, says Mark Edwards, President of TenCate Advanced Armor USA. “The GMV program is certainly an important part of the future enabling technologies for the United States Army Special Forces and we are proud to be able to participate on such an important program.” The TenCate GMV armor solution consists of the primary vehicle armoring solution including transparent armor. TenCate will design and manufacture the armor and provide it to GD-OTS as a complete kit ready for installation.

Order book of projects

This order of General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems forms part of a total order book of projects in excess of US Dollar 100 million, which TenCate Advanced Armor is expecting to receive during 2014. Revenues out of this order book will be generated during the next four years.

Source : TenCate

Published on ASDNews: Apr 16, 2014

Read more: http://www.asdnews.com/news-54559/TenCate_awarded_important_US_defense_contract_of_U S$30_M.htm#ixzz2z8RtrQ3w