Time for another installment of AFV News from around the Net. Click on the article headline to go to the full piece.
WASHINGTON — Kuwait wants to upgrade and extend the life of its aging principal tank fleet for an estimated $1.7 billion, according to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency. The State Department notified Congress on Dec. 12 of the possible Foreign Military Sale (FMS) to Kuwait to recapitalize its 218 M1A2 Abrams tanks. The prime contractors are General Dynamics Land Systems and Joint Services Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio, as well as Kongsberg Defense Systems, Raytheon, Meggitt Defense Systems, Northrop Grumman, DRS Technologies, Lockheed Martin and Honeywell.
Russia may upgrade parts of its T-72 and T-90 main battle tank (MBT) fleets with the automatic target tracker (ATT) and fire control computer (FCC) installed in the Armata T-14 MBT, which is now entering production at UralVagonZavod’s Nizhny Tagil facility. The installation of the ATT and the FCC from the T-14 Armata will improve the first round hit capability of the older T-72 and T-90 MBTs under adverse battlefield conditions, as well as reducing the workload on the gunner. Once locked on, the ATT constantly tracks the target and lays on the 125 mm smoothbore gun as well as taking into account inputs from the sensors, such as the speed and direction of the platform, condition of the gun, and ambient weather. The gunner then decides when to engage the target.
Remember that shield that Captain America uses? The one that deflect bullets? Well, the U.S. Army wants the same kind of shield. But not for the infantry. It’s a shield for tanks The Army is asking industry to to develop moveable tank armor that, like Captain America’s shield, can stop an incoming missile. The specifications call for a mechanism that can move an armor panel, at least 1-foot-square in size, to a distance of 10 inches horizontally. And do so within less than five seconds. The armored panel would be an extra layer of protection attached to the outside of the vehicle, and remotely controlled by the crew.
WASHINGTON — BAE Systems delivered to the US Marine Corps the first of its Amphibious Combat Vehicles (ACV) 1.1 prototypes, catching up to a service-set schedule which had slipped due to a bid protest. One of the key program objectives was to get the vehicles out to the Marines as quickly as possible, Erwin Bieber, BAE’s president of platforms and services sector, said during a Tuesday ceremony at the company’s York, Pennsylvania, facility where BAE has spent a little more than a year building the first eight-wheel drive ACVs. “It’s amazing to think about the fact that the team is delivering three months early against the contract commitment,” he said.
Ukrainian state-owned defence industrial holding group Ukroboronprom has announced that its Kiev Armoured Plant subsidiary has completed the development of a new production centre to permit the construction of bodies for BTR-3 armoured personnel carriers (APCs). Ukroboronprom said on 15 December that the establishment of the assembly and welding plant will allow the group to increase production when required and to reduce costs. The BTR-3 was originally designed and produced by the Kharkiv Morozov Machine-Building Design Bureau, which also sits under Ukroboronprom.
Germany handed over an initial instalment of Marder 1 infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs) to Jordan on 11 December. The Jordan Armed Forces (JAF) released a statement saying that an initial batch of 16 Marders from a total of 25 had been donated by Germany. The German Ministry of Defence released a video of the handover ceremony in which Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen said the first instalment consisted of 16 Marders and that another 34 would follow. She said the IFVs would help Jordan fight the Islamic State militant group. Germany is also providing 70 trucks and 56 minibuses to the Jordanian military.