It’s been a little while since we did a round-up of recent internet articles about tanks and AFVs. Frankly, there has not been as much news as usual the past couple weeks. As usual, click on the headline if you would like to read the full article.
Business Insider – US tanks are getting a small update that signals a big shift to defending Europe against Russia
Having settled into their nine-month deployment to Europe, members of the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team from the US Army’s 4th Infantry Division are making a slight update to their vehicles. Earlier this month, the first M1A2 Abrams tank with a woodland green paint scheme appeared in Europe, signaling the unit’s shift to a camouflage scheme more appropriate for its new surroundings than the desert tan colors previously used.
The Royal Thai Army (RTA) has cut the number of Chinese VT-4 battle tanks it wants to buy from 98 to 60 due to insufficient funds, army chief Chalermchai Sittisat said Thursday. Gen Chalermchai said the 60 new tanks will be divided equally between the 2nd and 3rd Cavalry Battalions in the northeastern provinces of Udon Thani and Khon Kaen. The new tanks will replace US-made M-41 models which will be decommissioned after having been in service for more than 40 years, he said.
Detroit Arsenal, Mich. — The Army is speeding up development work on its future . As the service works on expediting interim solutions for combat vehicle Active Protection Systems, officials are simultaneously ramping up some of the first MAPS tests using soft-kill countermeasures. There is also a plan to begin using the first prototypes of a common controller toward the end of the year. Once the common controller is available, the Army will begin “layered testing,” mixing both soft-kill and hard-kill countermeasures, Col. Glenn Dean told Defense News in a March 27 interview at the Detroit Arsenal in Michigan.
MADRID – Spain plans to acquire 348 “Piranha 5” 8×8 wheeled armored fighting vehicles from General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) in a first phase of purchase, Secretary of State of Defense Vicente Conde told the national Congress. He also added that in other phases of acquisition the total number of units for the Spanish Army could be around 1,000. The Spanish defense ministry’s No. 2 leader said that the total estimated budget of this program will be €3.8 billion (US $4 billion): €1.6 billion (US $1.7 billion) for the acquisition itself and €2.2 billion (US $2.4 billion) for the maintenance and modernization services during the 30 years of useful life of the program.
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The armored vehicles will help Latin Americans to fight some ‘illicit networks’ operating within state borders and threatening local governments, according to the US Southern Command. “The threat from ‘illicit networks’ in Latin America continues to grow,” US Southern Command Deputy Commander Lieutenant General Joseph DiSalvo stated in the release. “And armored vehicle modernization efforts by partner nations there will play a part in combating the threat.” Potential clients include Peru, which may soon finalize a sales deal with the United States to purchase Stryker vehicles, the release noted.
Russia in considering upgrading future T-14 main battle tnks to use the 2A83 152 mm gun instead of its current 2A82 125 mm gun. The 2A83 gun has a high-speed APFSDS shell with a 1,980 m/s muzzle velocity, only dropping to 1,900 m/s at 2 km. However, Russian engineers have so far kept the 125 mm-size gun, assessing that improvements in ammunition could be enough to increase effectiveness, while concluding that a larger bore weapon would offer few practical advantage. Russia is both miniaturizing the nuclear warheads and using sub-kiloton low-yield warheads. Battlefield nuclear weapons could be pared with the larger tank gun.