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Damian90

History of US Tanks.

192 posts in this topic

I came across a curious document today, while dumpster-diving in the DTIC resources available at http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/

 

http://www.dtic.mil/get-tr-doc/pdf?AD=ADA267740

Title: Descriptive Summaries of the Research, Development, Test and Evaluation, Army Appropriation. Supporting Data FY 1994, Budget Estimates Submitted to Congress, April 1993

 

Note the date April 1993. Now let's talk about a controversial M1 variant called the CATTB or Component Advanced Technology Testbed, which is basically a testbed for new post-A1 technology and a possible springboard for a tank design (Abrams Block III) that would have gone up against the hypothetical FST-1 (Future Soviet Tank I), some sort of Soviet boogeyman believed by NATO to have a 152mm gun and ~1,000mm LOS of frontal armor (their suspicions were mostly correct, since the Objects 477 and 490 were under development at Kharkov). I know the time bracket for the M1 CATTB's lifespan is more or less centered around 1987-88, even 1989, which is where a prototype was built and preliminarily tested until the program ran out of funds. We all know the rest of the "official" story: the end of the Cold War, the proven supremacy of 120mm ammo over Soviet armor in the Gulf War and the failure of the FST-1 and FST-2 to show up eventually doomed the CATTB to oblivion.

 

There were two versions of the CATTB, and reportedly, neither survived the Cold War:

 

M1 CATTB (a M1A1 with 140mm ATACS gun, autoloader, tassel-type skirts and XAP-1000 Diesel):
 
0ESYoNT.jpg
 
M1 Thumper (a de-tuned CATTB and no frontal armor applique):
 
ooubqtK.jpg

 

 

However, the above document mentions CATTB testing in 1993 and projected testing in 1994.

 

Starts p.244 (AKA p.259 in PDF reader)

 
Quote
Program Element: #0603005A


PE Title: Combat Vehicle and Automotive Advanced Technology

 

 

P.246 (AKA p.261 in PDF reader)
 
Quote
(U) FY (Fiscal Year) 1992 Accomplishments


. (U) Demonstrated Advanced Integrated Propulsion System in CATTB
. (U) Conducted CATTB automotive and signature management demonstrations
. (U) Conducted CATTB Chassis system integration laboratory demonstration

 

(U) FY 1993 Planned Program:
. (U) Support AIPS diesel testing in the CATTB and provide/test propulsion upgrades

 
 
P.247 (AKA p.262)
 
Quote
(U) FY (Fiscal Year) 1992 Accomplishments

. (U) Demonstrated diesel Advanced Integrated Propulsion System (AIPS) in CATTB
. (U) Began additional modifications to the propulsion system to support 270 volt vehicle
 
I guess that's the reason why the CATTB Thumper is in remarkably good condition (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5lqW94Gmug8&t=96 --- Footage dated 2010)  compared to the TTB (http://i.imgur.com/Yn8Pchr.jpg) - it's being taken out every once in a while to test new stuff (just like they occasionally pull out the old XM291 for little side jaunts like the ETC ETIPPS I/II program). Which brings me to an observation: the Thumper (essentially a slightly dumbed-down CATTB), unlike the original CATTB, was still fitted with a AGT1500 as shown in the above YouTube link, whereas the CATTB had a XAP-1000 engine (Hunnicutt does mention the LV/100 by General Electric/Textron-Lycoming was another candidate for the AIPS). So if a diesel AIPS is mentioned in the document, either the Thumper was retrofitted with a diesel or the original CATTB is actually still around.
 
Unless CATTB is an "umbrella" term that can be applied to any kind of vehicle, even a Bradley or LAV chassis?
Edited by Renegade334

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I suspect both CATTB's are still kept somewhere, maybe APG, maybe somewhere else.

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I believe so, I found it rather curious that old husks like the TTB, the XM800T and the XM1 would still be around (and even sold to collectors!) while the CATTB would remain conspicuously absent. I merely believed the prototype had ultimately been re-converted back to baseline M1A1/A2 after its parent program "tanked" (pun...intended, I guess), but the Thumper's reappearance in 2010 (and in pristine condition, at that!) made me wonder whether the program really went into coma in 1988 as most reports state. But now we know the CATTB (either or both prototypes) was still active in at least 1993 (maybe even 2010) and is still around in some form.

 

I'm rather curious as to what technologies they were upgraded with over time. Maybe Megitt's compact autoloader or anything leading to the Block III/A3 standard?

 

BTW, are there any pictures/schematics of the XM91 autoloader, so that we can compare it to Meggitt's version? (assuming they aren't already one and the same, BTW)

 

 

EDIT: do you by any chance have high-res schematics of the M1A2? (preferably with TUSK v1/2) I recently started 3ds Max, so I thought I could use the Abrams as guinea pig (it has lots of angles, which make it ideal for the job) for the "virtual studio" chapter. This is what I'm looking for: http://i.imgur.com/JAygDNd.jpg (overhead, side and front view)

Edited by Renegade334

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On 2/21/2017 at 10:19 PM, Damian90 said:

There is only one drawing of the XM91.

 

Gq1woRQ.jpg

 

looks a lot like leclerc autoloader actually. 

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ANQ3Tg9.jpg

 

q7niBmN.jpg

 

Doesn't look like Saab Barracuda. Maybe ULCANS?

Edited by Renegade334

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Yeah, it seems that Barracuda kits are still seen only in US, in Europe what they use is most likely ULCANS, altough I heard that US Army was interested in Polish Berberys, that is said to be better suited for terrain here in the region.

 

 

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17759877_10155234767704324_3383655306114

 

M1A2SEPv3, it seems to be in final configuration for series production at the moment.

US Army is also making progress in case of active protection systems, either short term solution with off the shelf systems, as well as long term solution, the MAPS - Modular Active Protection System.

 

http://www.scout.com/military/warrior/story/1668691-army-buys-vehicle-active-protection-systems
http://www.defensenews.com/articles/army-speeds-up-future-modular-active-protection-system-for-combat-vehicles
http://www.upi.com/Defense-News/2017/03/28/Lockheed-Martin-Northrop-Grumman-complete-MAPS-test/4631490730740/
http://news.lockheedmartin.com/2017-03-28-Lockheed-Martin-and-Northrop-Grumman-Complete-Initial-Integration-for-U-S-Armys-Modular-Active-Protection-System#Closed

There is also work moving forward with new vehicle camouflage paints that also reduce their thermal signature.

 

http://www.armymantech.com/pdfs/GMPGVCSPPI.pdf

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...prepare for war?

What are they smoking?

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Posted (edited)

On 14.4.2017 at 0:54 AM, Ssnake said:

...prepare for war?

What are they smoking?

NATO blunts

Edited by lavictoireestlavie

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9wdqX8H.jpg

k2Kov9V.jpg

 

So Active Protection Systems development in US is moving forward. Here we can see how Iron Curtain will be installed on Strykers and Trophy HV on M1's. M2 will receive Iron Fist system.

Also we can see that future Modular Active Protection System will use both soft kill and hard kill countermeassures.

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On 24.4.2017 at 11:31 AM, Damian90 said:

9wdqX8H.jpg

k2Kov9V.jpg

 

So Active Protection Systems development in US is moving forward. Here we can see how Iron Curtain will be installed on Strykers and Trophy HV on M1's. M2 will receive Iron Fist system.

Also we can see that future Modular Active Protection System will use both soft kill and hard kill countermeassures.

So the image of the Abrams shows the Abrams without its composite armor packages but with the Trophy system ?

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1 hour ago, lavictoireestlavie said:

So the image of the Abrams shows the Abrams without its composite armor packages but with the Trophy system ?

 

Armor is only removed from this specific rended, normally the armor will be installed on real vehicle + Trophy HV installed of course.

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7 minutes ago, Damian90 said:

 

Armor is only removed from this specific rended, normally the armor will be installed on real vehicle + Trophy HV installed of course.

Ahh. Will Trophy HV be a standard feature for the more or less the entire US Abrams fleet ?

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12 hours ago, lavictoireestlavie said:

Ahh. Will Trophy HV be a standard feature for the more or less the entire US Abrams fleet ?

 For the active fleet, probably yes, at least untill more advanced MAPS or Modular Active Protection System will be ready. MAPS will use both soft kill and hard kill countermeassures.

 

Actually some times ago, MAPS prototype with soft kill countermeassures was tested in M1, hard kill countermeassures test is planned for near future.

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Posted (edited)

An article by Kris Osborn on April 29, 2017:

 

"The Army is now engineering a far-superior M1A2 SEP v4 Abrams tank variant for the 2020s and beyond -- designed to be more lethal, faster, lighter weight, better protected, equipped with new sensors and armed with upgraded, more effective weapons, service officials said. Advanced networking technology with next-generation sights, sensors, targeting systems and digital networking technology -- are all key elements of an ongoing upgrade to position the platform to successfully engage in combat against rapidly emerging threats, such as the prospect of confronting a Russian T-14 Armata or Chinese 3rd generation Type 99 tank. The SEP v4 variant, slated to being testing in 2021, will include new laser rangefinder technology, color cameras, integrated on-board networks, new slip-rings, advanced meteorological sensors, ammunition data links, laser warning receivers and a far more lethal, multi-purpose 120mm tank round, Maj. Gen. David Bassett, Program Executive Officer, Ground Combat Systems, told Scout Warrior in an interview last year. While Army officials explain that many of the details of the next-gen systems for the future tanks are not available for security reasons, Basset did explain that the lethality upgrade, referred to as an Engineering Change Proposal, or ECP, is centered around the integration of a higher-tech 3rd generation FLIR – Forward Looking Infrared imaging sensor. The advanced FLIR uses higher resolution and digital imaging along with an increased ability to detect enemy signatures at farther ranges through various obscurants such as rain, dust or fog, Bassett said. “A combination of mid-wave and long-wave sensors allow for better target identification at long ranges and better resolution at shorter ranges,” Bassett explained. Higher-definition sensors allow Army crews to, for instance, better distinguish an enemy fighter or militant carrying an AK 47. Improved FLIR technologies also help tank crews better recognize light and heat signatures emerging from targets such as enemy sensors, electronic signals or enemy vehicles. This enhancement provides an additional asset to a tank commander’s independent thermal viewer. Rear view sensors and laser detection systems are part of these upgrades as well. Also, newly configured meteorological sensors will better enable Abrams tanks to anticipate and adapt to changing weather or combat conditions more quickly, Bassett explained. “You do not have to manually put meteorological variables into the fire control system. It will detect the density of the air, relative humidity and wind speed and integrate it directly into the platform,” Basset explained. The emerging M1A2 SEP v4 will also be configured with a new slip-ring leading to the turret and on-board ethernet switch to reduce the number of needed “boxes” by networking sensors to one another in a single vehicle. Also, some of the current electronics, called Line Replaceable Units, will be replaced with new Line Replaceable Modules including a commander’s display unit, driver’s control panel, gunner’s control panel, turret control unit and a common high-resolution display, information from General Dynamics Land Systems states. Advanced Multi-Purpose Round The M1A2 SEP v4 will carry Advanced Multi-Purpose 120mm ammunition round able to combine a variety of different rounds into a single tank round. The AMP round will replace four tank rounds now in use. The first two are the M830, High Explosive Anti-Tank, or HEAT, round and the M830A1, Multi-Purpose Anti -Tank, or MPAT, round. The latter round was introduced in 1993 to engage and defeat enemy helicopters, specifically the Russian Hind helicopter, Army developers explained. The MPAT round has a two-position fuse, ground and air, that must be manually set, an Army statement said. The M1028 Canister round is the third tank round being replaced. The Canister round was first introduced in 2005 by the Army to engage and defeat dismounted Infantry, specifically to defeat close-in human-wave assaults. Canister rounds disperse a wide-range of scattering small projectiles to increase anti-personnel lethality and, for example, destroy groups of individual enemy fighters. The M908, Obstacle Reduction round, is the fourth that the AMP round will replace; it was designed to assist in destroying large obstacles positioned on roads by the enemy to block advancing mounted forces, Army statements report. AMP also provides two additional capabilities: defeat of enemy dismounts, especially enemy anti-tank guided missile, or ATMG, teams at a distance, and breaching walls in support of dismounted Infantry operations Bassett explained that a new ammunition data link will help tank crews determine which round is best suited for a particular given attack. “Rather than having to carry different rounds, you can communicate with the round before firing it,” Bassett explained. Engineering Change Proposal 1 Some of the upgrades woven into the lethality enhancement for the M1A2 SEP v4 have their origins in a prior upgrades now underway for the platform, Accordingly, the lethality upgrade is designed to follow on to a current mobility and power upgrade referred to as an earlier or initial ECP. Among other things, this upgrade adds a stronger auxiliary power unit for fuel efficiency and on-board electrical systems, improved armor materials, upgraded engines and transmission and a 28-volt upgraded drive system. This first ECP, slated to begin production by 2017, is called the M1A2 SEP v3 variant. This ECP 1 effort also initiates the integration of upgraded ammunition data links and electronic warfare devices such as the Counter Remote Controlled Improvised Explosive Device – Electronic Warfare – CREW. An increased AMPs alternator is also part of this upgrade, along with Ethernet cables designed to better network vehicle sensors together. The Abrams is also expected to get an advanced force-tracking system which uses GPS technology to rapidly update digital moving map displays with icons showing friendly and enemy force positions. The system, called Joint Battle Command Platform, uses an extremely fast Blue Force Tracker 2 Satcom network able to reduce latency and massively shorten refresh time. Having rapid force-position updates in a fast-moving combat circumstance, quite naturally, could bring decisive advantages in both mechanized and counterinsurgency warfare. Active Protection Systems The Army is fast-tracking an emerging technology for Abrams tanks designed to give combat vehicles an opportunity to identify, track and destroy approaching enemy rocket-propelled grenades in a matter of milliseconds, service officials said. Called Active Protection Systems, or APS, the technology uses sensors and radar, computer processing, fire control technology and interceptors to find, target and knock down or intercept incoming enemy fire such as RPGs and Anti-Tank Guided Missiles, or ATGMs. Systems of this kind have been in development for many years, however the rapid technological progress of enemy tank rounds, missiles and RPGs is leading the Army to more rapidly test and develop APS for its fleet of Abrams tanks. The Army is looking at a range of domestically produced and allied international solutions from companies participating in the Army's Modular Active Protection Systems (MAPS) program, an Army official told Scout Warrior. General Dynamics Land Systems, maker of Abrams tanks, is working with the Army to better integrate APS into the subsystems of the Abrams tank, as opposed to merely using an applique system, Mike Peck, Business Development Manager, General Dynamics Land Systems, told Scout Warrior in an interview. Peck said General Dynamics plans to test an APS system called Trophy on the Abrams tank next year. Using a 360-degree radar, processor and on-board computer, Trophy is designed to locate, track and destroy approaching fire coming from a range of weapons such as Anti-Tank-Guided-Missiles, or ATGMs, or Rocket Propelled Grenades, or RPGs. The interceptor consists of a series of small, shaped charges attached to a gimbal on top of the vehicle. The small explosives are sent to a precise point in space to intercept and destroy the approaching round, he added. Radar scans the entire perimeter of the platform out to a known range. When a threat penetrates that range, the system then detects and classifies that threat and tells the on-board computer which determines the optical kill point in space, a DRS official said. Along with Rafael's Trophy system, the Army is also looking at Artis Corporation's Iron Curtain, Israeli Military Industry's Iron Fist, and UBT/Rheinmetall's ADS system, among others. Overall, these lethality and mobility upgrades represent the best effort by the Army to maximize effectiveness and lethality of its current Abrams tank platform. The idea is to leverage the best possible modernization upgrades able to integrate into the existing vehicle. Early conceptual discussion and planning is already underway to build models for a new future tank platform to emerge by the 2030s – stay with Scout Warrior for an upcoming report on this effort."

Edited by Assassin 7

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FY2018 budget request
https://www.asafm.army.mil/documents/BudgetMaterial/fy2018/wtcv.pdf

56 M1A1 upgraded to M1A2 SEPv3
287 Low Profile CROWS and 90 Ammunition Data Links for field upgrades
87 APS systems for Abrams

60 M2A2ODS and M7A3 Bradleys upgraded to M2A4 and M7A4 Bradleys
345 Bradley ECP1 kits (track and suspension system upgrades) and 134 Bradley ECP2 kits (improves the power train and electrical system) for field upgrades
35 APS systems for Bradleys

107 AMPV in 5 variants

Stryker ECP1 (910 amp alternator, in-vehicle network, 450 HP engine, and upgraded suspension) starts in FY2019

71 M109A6/M992A2 Paladin sets upgraded to M109A7/M992A3

16 M88A1 upgraded to M88A2 Hercules

7 Assault Breacher Vehicles

27 Joint Assault Bridges

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Posted (edited)

No, M7 is a fire support vehicle, or how to call it, it's used for long range targets detection, identification, and to call on artillery or air strikes. 

 

us-apc-m3a3bfist-001.jpg

 

Instead of a TOW launcher, it have powerfull optics with laser range finder, thermals and so on. Completely different thing than M3.

 

M7 is sometimes called BFIST, and is a direct replacement for M113 based FIST-V.

Edited by Damian90

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Ok, thanks, never heard that under the name M7. One learns every day ;-)

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