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Future Armour

Zipper

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Lol.

Well I say we take examples from dear ol George (Lucas), and develop those really damn cool armed troop transports from the last couple of movies. Those could be do able in one fashion or another. We already have the larger copters, now we just need to add more weaponery.

Blah blah blah...

Science fiction is cool, but if you look real close, it is becomes science fact eventually. Look at cell phones, Palm's, and Blackberries and tell me they arn't right our of Star Trek?
 

TCBF

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"I think you've watched Mad Max a few to many times "

- Well, he does have a desk right beside mine.  ;D

"I can't envision a flying weapons platform with anything near the same level of protection as a tank for quite some time to come."

- Righto.  But, the APC came before the AIFV.  Perhaps a new 'battle taxi' with a 'hop capability' will be the first off the line.  Match it up with some of the 'active counter measures' being put on tanks by the Isrealis and the Rooshans, and who knows what will fly?


 

a_majoor

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Carrying over from the Infantry Attack thread, there is an article by an Australian officer which (to paraphrase) suggests that manoeuvre is what happens before contact, and the attack is won by fire (up to 3/4 of the company as the fire base). Marine units in OIF also used similar tactics, with 2/3 of the company supplying the fire power, and using tanks to move around the flanks to provide even more fire (essentially creating an "L" shaped killing zone on the move).

Given these observations. it seems fairly obvious that any DFS vehicle needs to carry a fairly large on board supply of ammunition; both for the main gun and any co-ax or secondary weapons. This may be worked around if the vehicle can fire "magic bullet" type rounds; LAV-TOW firing FOG-M at identified bunkers and strong points, for example, but there will be a lot of bunkers and fortified positions.

It may be that a high velocity cannon is not the ideal weapon in this case, perhaps a breach loading mortar gives the ability to go bunker busting and allows you to fire over offending buildings and terrain if needs be. Certainly there needs to be a bit of rethinking of the armour concept (refined thinking, that is).

 

GK .Dundas

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a_majoor said:
Carrying over from the Infantry Attack thread, there is an article by an Australian officer which (to paraphrase) suggests that manoeuvre is what happens before contact, and the attack is won by fire (up to 3/4 of the company as the fire base). Marine units in OIF also used similar tactics, with 2/3 of the company supplying the fire power, and using tanks to move around the flanks to provide even more fire (essentially creating an "L" shaped killing zone on the move).

Given these observations. it seems fairly obvious that any DFS vehicle needs to carry a fairly large on board supply of ammunition; both for the main gun and any co-ax or secondary weapons. This may be worked around if the vehicle can fire "magic bullet" type rounds; LAV-TOW firing FOG-M at identified bunkers and strong points, for example, but there will be a lot of bunkers and fortified positions.

It may be that a high velocity cannon is not the ideal weapon in this case, perhaps a breach loading mortar gives the ability to go bunker busting and allows you to fire over offending buildings and terrain if needs be. Certainly there needs to be a bit of rethinking of the armour concept (refined thinking, that is).

Sounds like we might want to take another look at self propelled ifantry assault guns.Something along the lines of the old german STG III .

 

TangoTwoBravo

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I was told by some US tanker types that General Abrams had some influence on the design of the M1 tank named after him.  He had served on Shermans in WW II and believed strongly in the value of machineguns on tanks.  Apparently, one of the reasons that the M1 has three machineguns (2 x 7.62 and 1 x .50) is Gen Abrams.  I'm afraid that I do not have a written source for this and it may just be urban legend among tankers.  Still, I believe strongly in the importance of machineguns on tanks.  Machineguns don't do much for the anti-tank battle, but they sure come in handy against anything else (ask the Elefant crews at Kursk).  With the right instrumentents and training even the crew commander's and loader's machineguns can be very accurate.

Reading through some Iraq AARs, the various MGs on the M1 have been very effective (both during the "conventional" portion and the insurgency).  One problem I see with MGS and other similar beasts that focus on the main gun is the lack of MGs other than the coax and the difficulties of clearing a stoppage for a coax in an LPT.

Any future "tank" must be able to fight against both AFVs and "soft" targets.  Past designs that focus on one at the exclusion of another do not have very happy histories.

Cheers,

2B
 

a_majoor

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I certainly agree that tanks or DFS vehicles need to be as versatile as possible. A Merkava Mk 4 is probably the best possible platform there is today, it has a large calibre main cannon, can fire through tube missiles (magic bullets), carries 3 X Mg in normal service plus many Israeli tankers mount another .50 on the main gun barrel as well, and even has a 60mm mortar for close in targets. The large space in the back allows it to carry much more ammunition than most contemporary tanks which is an asset in our supression battle.

Unless the CF is planning to import Merkavas (Merkava C-1?), we should look at these design principles when thinking about the next generation of AFV. The CV-90120 has most of the virtues of a Merkava in a smaller package, and the Centurio wheeled DFSV also mimics some of the Merkava's features as well (it is possible to take out the rear stowage rack and hold a "close support section" of four men in a Centurio, for example).

A 120mm breach loading mortar would have more utility against targets like bunkers and fortifications (perhaps an Infantry only assault weapon is the way to go), but if (big if here) the tube can also be used to launch a through tube missile, then you would have the ability to give enemy AFVs a very rude shock.
 

Reccesoldier

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a_majoor said:
The CV-90120 has most of the virtues of a Merkava in a smaller package,

The CV-90 family has had my vote for quite some time. The entire line could be used to replace all of our F Esch vehicles. As well they are smaller and designed with a northern climate in mind. But unfortunately, unless I'm declared Dictator of Canada it ain't going to happen.

 

Lance Wiebe

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Well, as most of us are aware, the CV90 package was designed from the outset to be the basis for a entire vehicle family, all based on one chassis.  They stuck to the original plan, and have produced arguably the best light armour package available today.

You know, that was the original premise behind our LAV's as well.  One platform, many variants.  We kind of lost our focus, I think.  Now we have many variants, many platforms.
 
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12alfa

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One problem I see with MGS and other similar beasts that focus on the main gun is the lack of MGs

Which adds to the next problem.


The point where the emeny is within mg range and not 105 range.


Next point would be armour protection from inf wpns, which I think is where it ends.

Sadly.
 

TangoTwoBravo

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Reading my last post I'm going to avoid writing MGS and MG in the same sentance from now on.  :blotto:

I'm certainly a big CV9030 fan, but I'm still not 100 percent sold on the CV90120T.  I worry about armour protection on these things if they try to play the tank game.  Aiming for one family of "vehicles" trying to do all is how we got rid of the Chinooks and Kiowas.

I'm not much of a futurologist.  I cannot predict how future designers will design their tanks.  I do, however, want the following capabilties:

  a.  all-terrain mobility

  b.  protection against hand-held anti-tank weapons at a minimum (RPGs)

  c.  weapon systems that can defeat AFVs at battle ranges and also suppress/defeat soft targets

  d.  good crew layout

  e.  mechanical reliability

  f.    able to be moved by rail, sea and lowbed

Until the next big leap I'd be real happy with an M1...

2B
 

a_majoor

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As an Infantryman, I can't argue too much with a tanker over the "best" features of a tank  ;). Looking at it from slightly outside, however, a "fourth generation" tank or whatever we will be calling it will have all of 2Bravo's characteristics, but with the following factors driving the technical evolution:

1. Need for strategic/operational mobility. No matter how you slice it, a 70 tonne tank is really the end of the line. Future fighting machines need to be transported across oceans and continents, and in theater, be able to do long road moves quickly and quietly (relatively speaking) to keep the enemy off balance. Smaller and lighter vehicles are a must. Improvements in fuel economy and suspension technology also reduce the size of the logistics train.

2. Tactical mobility in close/complex terrain. We can argue about the virtues of tracks, wheels, legs, rotors etc., but any future armoured vehicle will need to get around, and quickly. Given the urbanizing character of today's world, there should be at least some thought into how AFVs can operate in a 3D environment.

3. The supression battle. Given the identified need to defeat the enemy through fire, future armoured vehicles will need multiple weapons and lots of on board ammunition. There is also on board room for various natures of ammunition, ranging from through tube missiles to defeat targets at long range to "dumb" HE rounds for bunker busting, allowing the future AFV to attack a wide range of targets. This also ties into factor 1, since a generous ammo rack means fewer trips to the ech to "bomb up".

4. The network battle. Future AFVs will be able to operate as tanks, DFSVs, perhaps some limited AA or AAA and as SP artillery if they can tap into information from off board sensors. The tank essentially morphs into the MMEV in this scenario

IF any one vehicle can be said to incorporate most of these characteristics today it is the CV 90120. I understand 2Bravo's reservations about RPGs and other stand off weapons, but that is why Infantrymen accompany tanks, to deal with annoying problems like that. The future AFV will be part of a future combat team, and the team commander will (hopefully) have the ability to pick up targets at long range, shape the battle by fire and manoeuvre the team to create a KZ "on the fly". I would hope the idea of stand up tank battles is somewhat of an anachronism, but proper doctrine and TTPs should give us the edge.
 

TangoTwoBravo

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Looking back over my post I should have listed a couple of assumptions that I had as implict regarding the firepower bit:

    a.  fire on the move

    b.  ability to acquire and engage in all conditions of visibility

I'd like to stress the protection piece.  I'll go out on a limb and say that the M1 has been the centrepiece of the US' victories in both Gulf Wars on the "conventional" warfighting side.  It has also been a big part of the insurgency battles.  One of the big reasons for this has been the M1's ability to take a hit.

The manouevre warfare extremists will say that the best way to survive a hit is to avoid getting hit.  A boxer does not want to get punched, but he'd better be able to take one if he goes in the ring .  The enemy will be able to hit our AFVs no matter how cunning we are.  If we can make our AFVs at the pointy end be able to survive a hit (by this I mean that the crew survives at a minimum) then we can go in and win the close fight.  If our AFVs brew-up catastrophically with an RPG hit then our ability to win will only come at great cost.

As for mobility, I agree that over 70 tons is not looking feasible.  I'm more concerned about bridges and railcar capability, however, than getting on an airplane.  Perhaps the scientists can make a 30 ton tank that can take an RPG or ATGM hit.  I am very distrustfu, however,l of active armour.  Having little phalanx guns to shoot down missiles would be a fire control nightmare.  I'll put my trust in thick armour.  If this can be made lighter then great!

I'm not sure about the "Swiss Army Knife" approach of making a tank that can be both direct, indirect and anti-aircraft at the same time.  Coordination of these beasts is one major issue (airspace coord is not something I want the crew commander up front worrying about).  Another is that trying to do everything might mean that the veh cannot do anything well.  Still, the ability to fight in urban areas (including to upper floors) must certainly be incorporated.

Cheers,

2B
 

Zipper

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So if we want/have to keep it light, then what is wrong with having more then one chassis? Almost every military in the world worth spit has many different varieties of armoured vehicles with less population base and much less money. Why not us?

Right now with the Leopard still working (??) we have what? 5 different armoured vehicles (AVGP, LAV II, LAV III, M113, and Leo)? Except for the Leo and Lav III's, they have no focus of purpose and/or are so out dated as to be next to useless. And for some reason their looking at somehow keeping the M113 around in the form of the TLAV? Sheesh.

2 (preferably 3) chassis would be wonderful if they all had a focus of purpose and were complimentary/supportive to each other. There is nothing wrong with our LAV III and family. Great wheeled vehicle. Add on the CV90 family for that tracked all terrain/heavier firepower/transportable purpose and we fill in and support everything we need to do. And either keep the Leo (yeah right), or upgrade us to a more modern MBT that allows us the shock/big hit capability. Then get rid of the rest of them or better yet, send them to the reserves. My preferences would be either the Leo IIA4 or any form of the Merk. But then Israel would have to change its non-export of military equipment laws.

Or we could design our own? (Sorry, just thought I'd dream in a joking way. :p)
 

a_majoor

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There are lots of alternatives to "passive" armour, various stand off shields have been used since WWII, so the Stryker "birdcage" is just a reiteration of an old idea. Non Explosive Reactive Armour (NERA) uses tightly compressed material sealed inside a steel box. Once the box is punctured, the material attempts to "squirt" out of the hole, countering the effort of the penetrator or jet to continue on (realisticly causing the penetrator to start tumbling and disrupting the formation of the HEAT jet rather than stopping them outright.) T.S. Rea has written a bit about using much more advanced materials as armour (metal-carbide matrix and other exotic stuff), and I believe there is a thread on this site about "electromagnetic" armour as well. Some of the active defenses do not fire projectiles or metal bars at incoming rounds, but attempt to use lasers or microwave devices to blind the sensor units of "Fire and Forget" smart rounds.

I favor the manoeuvrist principle of avoidance as well, and would expect that a crew commander who can use a TUAV or another C/S to help him "look around" the corner or into the next bound will have a much better chance to avoid being shot in the first place.
 

ArmyRick

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I have seen the memos on the LFC Commanders web site regarding  M113/TLAV/whatever it can be called and the AVGP and all its regurgatations. The M113 and the AVGP family are ALL being phased out by 2007-2008.

Now the only people who I want to hear a single disagreement about the validity of this statement are people with DIN access and I will ask you read the memo yourself before coming on here all half cocked and saying I am right out of 'er.

So Zips, thats a couple of different AFV fleets the CF will not have to worry about.

Cheers.
 

Zipper

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ArmyRick said:
So Zips, thats a couple of different AFV fleets the CF will not have to worry about.

Thanks Rick.

So that leaves us with LAV II (Bison and Coyote), LAV III, and of course the Leo that probably won't last very long either.

Are we still keeping the Husky(AVGP)? We're supposedly getting the MGS (if it ever works, which I hope it doesn't), TUA, and of course that other thing (ADATS). So I wonder if those chassis will all be compatible and thus easier to support?

And I still do not see a focusing of purpose?

If you call focusing on wheels only with two different chassis, then I would say it is a focus towards a diminishing of capability alone (or as a politician would say, saving money).

So lets all continue to dream that the powers that be will see the light and want to follow our suggestions on ordering CV90's.
l
 

a_majoor

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Zipper said:
So lets all continue to dream that the powers that be will see the light and want to follow our suggestions on ordering CV90's.l

You know, there are some things you can do to help make it happen. I preferentially write for the ADTB/CAJ, you can submit an article for consideration. The Amour Bulletin still comes out, doesn't it? Maybe you can write a letter to the editor of Maple Leaf or your local garrison/brigade newsletter. Get your ideas out there, Mr Zipper. You write well enough on this forum, get some of that Armoured "Speed and Shock action" into print, and maybe you will be sitting in the seat of a CV 90120 before you retire.
 

Zipper

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a_majoor said:
Get your ideas out there, Mr Zipper. You write well enough on this forum, get some of that Armoured "Speed and Shock action" into print.

Thanks Majoor.

I'll certainly look at doing that. I just do not have a clue as to how to do that. Although one thing I should look at doing (after far to many years) is joining the Armoured Association. My bad. That alone would probably give me the contacts in order to do so.

Do you know how to go about this? And I should also talk to 2Bravo and George Wallace as well, as I think they have sudmitted a few times.

And on that note. I wonder how that article is coming that someone (forgot who) was writing on the idea of turning our wheeled forces into Armoured Cav?
 

a_majoor

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Zipper said:
Thanks Majoor.

I'll certainly look at doing that. I just do not have a clue as to how to do that. Although one thing I should look at doing (after far to many years) is joining the Armoured Association. My bad. That alone would probably give me the contacts in order to do so.

Do you know how to go about this? And I should also talk to 2Bravo and George Wallace as well, as I think they have sudmitted a few times.

And on that note. I wonder how that article is coming that someone (forgot who) was writing on the idea of turning our wheeled forces into Armoured Cav?

For heaven's sake:

1. Write what you want to say. If you want to look semi organized borrow the "SMESC" five paragraph orders format, with an introduction as the situation, a thesis paragraph as the mission, arguments for your thesis as the execution, bibliography as the service support, and your short bio as command and sigs. (analogies only go so far).

2. Decide which publication "fits" your piece. Writing for the CAJ is different from writing for the Maple Leaf

3. Look up the address (usually on the inside front cover) and send. Most publications offer an email, FAX and snailmail address.

If you want, PM the piece you want to submit and I will give it the "blue pencil" treatment. You may accept or reject my attempts to edit your MS as you please. If you ask nicely, maybe some of the other members will be willing to take a look as well.
 

Aus-Tac

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What about vehicles like the Saber - very lightweight, could be armed with a 105 or other interesting armaments if the political motivation was there.

The Australians are playing with a 155mm LAV for SP artillery, a 120mm mortar and a 105 main gun version - kinda interesting, but Mog demonstrated that tyres don't always stand up that well to the undergrowth (the USMC had serious problems here) and East Timor has proven the need to retain tracked armour because of environmental issues.
 
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