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Active Protection System (APS) for tanks

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Army to perform limited test of UBT/Rheinmetall vehicle APS

November 14, 2019 at 3:36 PM
The Army recently awarded Unified Business Technologies an other transaction agreement to further test its “StrikeShield” vehicle active protection system, which will inform the service’s APS effort for the Stryker vehicle. UBT and Rheinmetall partnered on the StrikeShield APS as part of the competition for the APS that will eventually go on the Stryker, which has yet to be determined. Lt. Gen. Paul Ostrowski, military deputy to the Army acquisition executive, told Congress in April the service needed to conduct...

 

https://insidedefense.com/daily-news/army-perform-limited-test-ubtrheinmetall-vehicle-aps

 

And on Boxer:

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   Drozd APS on T-55AD, scans of manual. Source.

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   Drozd system detection zone (D0), tracking zone (Ds) and interception zone(Dp). D0 - 130 m, Ds - 40m and D- 6.6m. Each 20 degress sector is covered by 2 APS rockets, so 2 projectiles can be intercepted in that zone. Whole sector that APS is covering is 80 degrees in front of the turret.

 

Spoiler

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   Some stats. Covered sector in horizont - +-40degr., horizontal sector - +20/-6 degr. 8 shots, 2 per 20 degr. sector. Speed of projectiles - 70-700 m/s, 6.6 meters - range of interception. Probability of protection of a tank from ATGM or RPG - 0.7.

   Drozd can be reloaded in ~8 minutes, will be ready for action after turning on in 5 minutes, can work 8 hours non-stop. System can be ready to intercept next projectile 0.35s after first one, eats 0.8kWt.

   Weight of the system with armor against 12.7mm bullets - 950kg, V of external components - 145 dm3, internal - 2dm3

 

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   Launcher module with armor protection is placed on a mount that is wielded to a turret. Driver can get out in any position of the turret. Launchers are armed with 2 107 mm 3UOF14 shots with 3OF53 HE shells.

 

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   3UOF14 shot in a launcher. 1 - protective cap, 2 - sealing ring, 3 - mortar/launcher unit body, 4 - HE-frag projectile, 5 - fuze, 6 - propellant charge, 7 - connector

 

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   3 OF53 HE-frag shell. MV is 190 m/s. Text in the picture describes safety system of launcher unit.

 

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   3VT22 fuze

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     3VT22 fuze

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   Propelland charge.

 

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   Phase distance determination method using radars. If target gets in 50-60 meters, radars swtiches to target tracking mode where system uses higher modulation frequency to more accuretly track targer distance. When switching to tracking mode, APS radars calibrate to a target and measure location of incoming projectile.

 

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   2 radars are used to locate exact position of incoming projectile relative to radar antennas in order to choose launcher unit that will launch interceptor.

 

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   Functional diagram of Drozd.

 

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   Control panel.

 

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Any info how many tanks were actually equipped with Drozd and what was their service record? Was it used in actual combat for example in Afghanistan? 

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14 hours ago, Beer said:

Any info how many tanks were actually equipped with Drozd and what was their service record? Was it used in actual combat for example in Afghanistan? 

   250 T-55As were equipped with Drozd APS (making them T-55AD)

   Taking into account that T-55ADs were moved to Ukraine from North Caucasus/Southern Caucasus region during perestroyka, (in the moment of USSR collapse T-55ADs were in Ukraine), i doubt that they participated in any action in A-stan.

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Spoiler

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   In Patriot park

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1 - launchers

2 - radars

3 - electronics block for APS

 

   Drozd APS on the Object 478BEM1 tank before delivery to the USA (photo done in Malyshev plant). Tanks were transferred to Aberdeen Training Center, Maryland.

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Spoiler

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   Proposal of Drozd-2 APS on trucks

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   Drozd-2 on T-80. Layout similar to T-14's Afghanit

Spoiler

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   From 20:00 shows different APS systems. From 21:00 - Drozd. 22:45 - Arena.

 

   APS system from 1960s, placed on T-55.

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Spoiler

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   Arena was designed for T-80U. Arena's munitions were fired upwards in order to hit incoming projectile with fragments and then ground will "catch" all of them in specific area around the tank, to decrease danger for other troops in formation. Design work were completed shortly before 2000s.

 

   Modernized Arena APS (from 24:00). Amount of  intercepting munitions were decreased to 8-12, but each of them is now capable of changing trajectory/rotate in flight. Each munition is equipped with impulse engines. In video Head of department of KBM claims that it gives 360 degrees protection and capable to intercept Javelins, Spikes and other top-attack ATGMs.

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Spoiler

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   Launch

 

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   Not sure about that one - probably "correction" phase - munition have impulse engines to change trajectory/angle.

 

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   Detonation.

 

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   Projectile intercepted.

 

 

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   So i was thinking about how modified Arena can intercept top-attack ATGMs and looks like few things can be noted about that picture:

XQI4b5N.jpg

 

   In "Armor of Russia" documentary posted above there were claims that modified Arena have "from 8 to 12" munitions to intercept incoming projectiles. I was thinking "why 12 was mentioned?". Previous models shown had 8 charges in whole system, 4 munitions per each side module (2 per launcher).

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Spoiler

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   Each module on turret side have 2 cuts in "roof" plates for launchers. On this picture people on otvaga noted that there are 3 holes in each module.

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   I suspect that that 3rd "thinner" cut is for munitions that are launched vertically up (or something near it) to intercept top attack and fly-over ATGMs, that Arena designers claimed to be added capability to modified Arena thanks to munitions with impulse engines that can steer/rotate. So on the picture this modified Arena probably have 10 or 12 munitions. 

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On 12/1/2019 at 8:32 AM, LoooSeR said:

    I suspect that that 3rd "thinner" cut is for munitions that are launched vertically up (or something near it) to intercept top attack and fly-over ATGMs, that Arena designers claimed to be added capability to modified Arena thanks to munitions with impulse engines that can steer/rotate. So on the picture this modified Arena probably have 10 or 12 munitions. 

Simple, cheap and elegant solution. If this works as i imagine, then it would not have a blind zone above the tank, like many systems such as Trophy have. I have a couple of doubts: does Arena work on the move or its only effective when the tank is stationary? What is the price of this modernized version, is it low enough to be adopted widely across the russian tank fleet (if so, it would be a game changer)?

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Rheinmetall StrikeShield active close-in protection system selected for substantial testing by U.S. Army

The U.S. Army has awarded a contract valued at 11MioUSD (roughly 10 MioEUR) to the team of Rheinmetall Protection Systems and Unified Business Technologies (UBT) for significant testing of the StrikeShield Active Protection System to begin in October 2020 at Redstone Test Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

The Army’s recently formed Vehicle Protective Systems (VPS) program office will evaluate StrikeShield as part of a larger effort to characterize APS performance against a wide variety of anti-armor threats. This significant contract award represents the first funded APS testing the Army will undertake of the StrikeShield system. It provides a pathway to potential utilization of the system on vehicles in the current Army vehicle fleet as well as vehicles fielded in the future.

The StrikeShield APS is a distributed, real time system which was developed to protect the carrying platform against anti-tank rockets and missiles. It therefore can operate in the immediate vicinity of the vehicle to be protected. Additionally in StrikeShield the technical requirements of large calibre Kinetic Energy (KE) defeat are addressed, which is a unique combination of threats to protect against and reason for the promising overall outlook.

The Army will carry out extensive live fire testing of the StrikeShield system that will take place over a period of several months. The objective of the Army tests will be to gather performance data that can inform future selection of APS technologies best suited for any particular platform. The Army expects the test results will inform APS pursuits for both its fielded vehicle fleets and new vehicle programs like Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV), Mobile Protected Firepower (MPF) and the Optionally-Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV).

Rheinmetall and UBT have teamed for U.S. active protection programs since 2015. The companies are optimistic that this new Army testing program will lead to further vehicle integration opportunities on U.S. military vehicles and both firms are extremely pleased that the Army has selected StrikeShield for this important program.

“We are excited to enter into a new phase of partnership with the Army that will enable the Army to carry out extensive tests of the StrikeShield APS system,” said Stefan Haase, Rheinmetall’s head of the product unit Active Protection. “We are confident the system will perform very well in the testing and that possibilities for fielding the technology on Army vehicle systems will arise.”

“The StrikeShield system is a world class, mature APS system that will deliver tremendous capability for the U.S. Army,” said UBT CEO Michelle D’Souza. “UBT and Rheinmetall are proud to be teamed together as a partner to the Army in addressing the high priority requirement for APS technology.”

Hybrid Protection Module

Rheinmetall has also developed a modular hybrid configuration of its StrikeShield APS that combines the company’s active and passive protection technologies in a single integrated design. This new configuration was on display at AUSA 2019. The hybrid approach draws on Rheinmetall’s unique expertise as a provider of both APS and armor protection, and the company’s proven track record as a leading vehicle supplier and system integrator. The system’s hybrid and modular design is well suited for integration on both tracked and wheeled vehicles.

The hybrid protection module allows for an integrated approach: passive protection components simultaneously serve as interface and shield for the components of the active protection system. Conversely, the StrikeShield APS components comprise ballistic functions and characteristics. The external protection layer protects these components against shell fragments, small arms fire and other sources of mechanical stress. The StrikeShield countermeasures are embedded in the first protection plate from the outside and serve simultaneously as part of the first layer of passive protection. The sensors of the system are contained in the space in between.

The Rheinmetall and UBT team will engage the U.S. Army VPS team regarding the potential of the future hybrid module approach on U.S. vehicles as part of its funded testing.

About UBT

Unified Business Technologies, Inc. (UBT) located in Troy, Michigan is an award-winning, Woman-owned company specializing in Information Technology, Software and Hardware Engineering, Product Engineering and Manufacturing Development, and Component Manufacturing for Federal and Commercial customers.

About Rheinmetall

Headquartered in Düsseldorf, the publicly traded Rheinmetall AG is a high-tech enterprise dedicated to the twin modern imperatives of mobility and security. Founded in 1889, the group today consists of two operational components: Rheinmetall Defence and Rheinmetall Automotive. One of the world's leading suppliers of military systems and equipment, Rheinmetall's Defence arm comprises three divisions: Vehicle Systems, Electronic Solutions and Weapon and Ammunition. The group's 23,000-strong global workforce generated sales last year of $6.9 billion.

 

https://www.rheinmetall.com/en/rheinmetall_ag/press/news/latest_news/index_19072.php

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18 hours ago, alanch90 said:

Simple, cheap and elegant solution. If this works as i imagine, then it would not have a blind zone above the tank, like many systems such as Trophy have. I have a couple of doubts: does Arena work on the move or its only effective when the tank is stationary? What is the price of this modernized version, is it low enough to be adopted widely across the russian tank fleet (if so, it would be a game changer)?

   Yes, it does. Don't know price for mass production version (if it exist).

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19 hours ago, alanch90 said:

Simple, cheap and elegant solution. If this works as i imagine, then it would not have a blind zone above the tank, like many systems such as Trophy have. I have a couple of doubts: does Arena work on the move or its only effective when the tank is stationary? What is the price of this modernized version, is it low enough to be adopted widely across the russian tank fleet (if so, it would be a game changer)?

Trophy does not have blind spots on the top. Its blast shields are placed in a way that even allows both launchers to overlap at some points.

 

Any APS can fire on the move. If you have the processing power, software, and software optimization, then adding an on-the-move capability is a piece of cake.

 

Even simpler systems that are widespread across western armies, have yet to find their way into Russian tanks (modernized, not T-14). So it would not make sense to suddenly fund APS for T-72 tanks.

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31 minutes ago, Long_Rodney said:

Even simpler systems that are widespread across western armies, have yet to find their way into Russian tanks (modernized, not T-14).

   Such as?

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On 12/4/2019 at 1:10 AM, LoooSeR said:

   Such as?

 

Such as modern commander's sight, which all serial Russian tanks lack. Or hydromechanical transmission.

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3 hours ago, VPZ said:

 

Such as modern commander's sight, which all serial Russian tanks lack. Or hydromechanical transmission.

   Lack of good commander's sight is not because of lack of tech or avaliable commander's sights, it is lack of desire on MoD part to pay for them. After Ukraine and Syria some things changed in minds of MoD and vehicles started to get new Relikt ERA, side protection modules, BTR-82as started to get thermal imagers and addon protection, same with BMP-3s. And now look at T-90M - commander's panoramic sight, RCWS, Relikt all around, new turret, soft-kill APS, etc.

Spoiler

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   Hydromechanical transmission doesn't give much of a difference in the end of the day. 

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15 minutes ago, LoooSeR said:

Hydromechanical transmission doesn't give much of a difference in the end of the day. 

 

A hydromechanical trasmission increases by 1.5-2.0 times, the reliability and durability/service life of powerpacks and that's for the '60.

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3 minutes ago, Pascal said:

 

A hydromechanical trasmission increases by 1.5-2.0 times, the reliability and durability/service life of powerpacks and that's for the '60.

   Enemy wan't see much of a difference. In local conflicts - because of higher avaliable maintance personal and more avaliable time, in big wars - tanks will have realistic chances to be knocked out/damaged before reaching service life limitations. Making engine and transimission easily replaceable powerpack unit will make a bigger difference for T-72/90.

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6 minutes ago, LoooSeR said:

in big wars - tanks will have realistic chances to be knocked out/damaged before reaching service life limitations.

 

Tanks(planes too) do have the tendencies to be near the end or reaching half of it service life when a big war starts, you kind need that long service life not interrupting activities before the big war starts.

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3 minutes ago, Pascal said:

 

Tanks(planes too) do have the tendencies to be near the end or reaching half of it service life when a big war starts, you kind need that long service life not interrupting activities before the big war starts.

   This is becoming way too offtopic, move to General AFV thread.

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2 hours ago, LoooSeR said:

   Lack of good commander's sight is not because of lack of tech or avaliable commander's sights, it is lack of desire on MoD part to pay for them. After Ukraine and Syria some things changed in minds of MoD and vehicles started to get new Relikt ERA, side protection modules, BTR-82as started to get thermal imagers and addon protection, same with BMP-3s. And now look at T-90M - commander's panoramic sight, RCWS, Relikt all around, new turret, soft-kill APS, etc.

  Reveal hidden contents

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   Hydromechanical transmission doesn't give much of a difference in the end of the day. 

 

I know about T-90M, but it's not in service yet, and there are thousands of tanks that still have outdated sights.

 

 

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Round two(three?), StrikeShield vs Trophy

 

https://www.defensenews.com/land/2019/12/09/us-army-picks-two-vehicle-protection-systems-to-evaluate-realm-of-the-possible/

Quote

The U.S. Army has picked two active protection systems to evaluate next fall for possible applications on a variety of ground combat vehicles.

A Rheinmetall and Unified Business Technologies team received an $11 million contract from the Army to provide its StrikeShield APS system for the evaluation. And a DRS and Rafael team received a similar contract to participate, the Army confirmed to Defense News.

 

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