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Sturgeon's House

United States Military Vehicle General: Guns, G*vins, and Gas Turbines


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On 10/11/2022 at 9:18 PM, Ramlaen said:

Correct me if I am wrong but the ASCOD 2 uses torsion bar suspension. The MPF, which is not based on the ASCOD or AJAX, uses this


The use of in-arm units is a big step forward... but I'm kind of amazed that GLDS managed to make a design where they had overheating issues. While I'm sure it's not the first vehicle with in-arm suspension to have overheating issues, I've never heard of one.

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On 11/10/2022 at 9:09 PM, Cheburashka said:

What is this thing circled in red?
Our country has started using JLTVs and I haven't seen this add-on being used by any other operators.




Przezdzieblo on tank-net identified it as a DVE AN/VAS-5B(V) thermal driver vision system.

PatriotANVAS5BV_NVTS_2.10.pdf (nvtsglobal.com)


The JLTV used to have a different sensor at that spot, though:



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A rare picture: an overhead shot of the M1 Thumper, used to test the XM291 ATAC gun (sometimes referred to as LW120) in conjunction with the XM91 cassette autoloader.




The Thumper, which was built out of a M1A1 at Anniston Depot, used a 120mm XM291 in three different barrel lengths, one 265in/6.75m long (the standard, "long tube" XM291), a second one cut the same length as the M256 ("short tube", 5.3m) and a third, intermediary one ("medium tube") that stands somewhere between 6.75m and 5.3m.

On-the-move test fires done at speeds of 10, 15 and 20mph showed that the target impact dispersion (TID) was bigger (read: lower accuracy) with the "long tube" XM291 compared to the "short tube" or EVEN the M256, which was problematic. To support the increased barrel length, Benét Labs also had to create a 415lbs and 22in-long extension for the gun cradle...which was later reused in the proposed installation of a XM360E1 inside the notional M1A3...and, quite likely, inside the M1 AbramsX demonstrator showcased at AUSA 2022.




The 1988 M1 Thumper was only fitted with the 120mm ATAC gun, but the XM291 installed on the 1993 M1 CATTB, on the other hand, went on to trial a 120mm and a 140mm barrel. At one point, the ATAC prototype pool was noted to have successfully fired 1,300 rounds, 150 of which were of the 140mm variety. The latter (at least the KE part) was even judged capable of defeating the armor of what was tentatively described as the FST-3 (Future Soviet Tank 3, essentially a Obj.477/477A); there are no known numbers for the 140mm XM964's performance, but the 140mm ATAC itself was expected to produce a great maximum of 25MJ of muzzle energy. The ammunition for the ATAC was developed by Valentec International and Hercules.




While the Thumper was originally meant to trial the 120mm ATAC, some of the official literature indicates it may have also undergone the 120-to-140mm tube conversion and done static test firings at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, where it showed precision equal to a M1A1 but "with greater penetration".



Also, a common mistake (one I've also been guilty of, mea culpa) I often see around in forums and milblogs is that the Thumper is a derivative of the CATTB, which is false, as the Thumper (AKA the ATAC Demonstration System) predates the CATTB Phase I by at least five years.


M1 CATTB Phase I (using a M1 hull as basis), in 93/94, about to be shipped to Aberdeen Proving Grounds for testing:




Picture of the CATTB Phase II (ATTD?) hull under construction, completed in 1994. Note the closed back with no exhaust grille, the absence of apertures for torsion bars (replaced by a hydro-pneumatic suspension system) and the smaller engine compartment designed to receive a Cummins XAV-1000 AIPS instead of a Honeywell AGT-1500. The freed-up volume between the XAV and the turret basket was reclaimed to accept two vertically-stacked non-ready cassettes housing a total of 22 rounds (either single-piece 120mm or two-piece 140mm), which would have given the CATTB Phase II a maximum loadout of 39 rounds (either 120mm or 140mm), just five less than a M1A2. The huge tradeoff, of course, was that all this made the CATTB massively overweight.




Apparently, at least one of the two CATTB testbeds is currently sitting at the Sierra Army Depot in Hurlong, California, but one has to wonder if it's not a case of mistaken identity; the Thumper was, after all, spotted in 2010/09/30, in Ohio, as it was being relocated by train to parts unknown. Here's to hoping any of these big bois shall make their way to a museum one day, as did the TTB, the Crusader and many others before them.


XM291 ATAC with its 17-round Benét Labs XM91 bustle autoloader:



Edited by Renegade334
Corrected a mistake over the XM291's TID performance + added some hypertext references
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On 11/12/2022 at 10:08 PM, Renegade334 said:


Przezdzieblo on tank-net identified it as a DVE AN/VAS-5B(V) thermal driver vision system.

PatriotANVAS5BV_NVTS_2.10.pdf (nvtsglobal.com)


The JLTV used to have a different sensor at that spot, though:


Thanks for the info! 

On 11/12/2022 at 10:51 PM, Ramlaen said:

Yeah it's an individual country equipment thing, US JLTV use the Driver Vision Enhancer from Leonardo DRS.



Thank you!

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