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Challenger 2's are currently receiving new thermal imagers and displays. This is not related to LEP.
There were plans for an interim TI until LEP was completed but that appeared to have been shelved.

From the remark "similar to the one in Ajax"  this suggests the TI is Catherine MP based. They were previously used in the Thales Battlegroup Thermal Imager (BGTI) upgrade for Warriors and Scimitars.

I'm guessing that these TI and display's aren't new-new but taken from Scimitars being replaced by Ajax.

Also a 2015 slide of changes planned in LEP:


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10 minutes ago, alanch90 said:

Hi guys, just a quick question. I read on another forum that the Cr2 upgraded with the Rehinmetall turret and gun is now being renamed "Challenger 3".

I couldnt find anything confirming that, could anybody clarify the issue?


It appears to be an unofficial name Nicolas Drummond pulled out of his nether regions, which makes it a Gavin.

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24 minutes ago, Ramlaen said:


It appears to be an unofficial name Nicolas Drummond pulled out of his nether regions, which makes it a Gavin.


There's no evidence of the "Challenger 3" moniker being real. All documents from the MoD list the official upgrade name as Challenger 2 Mk 2.


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12 hours ago, N-L-M said:

Could be both, foamed metal is a more weight-efficient backing material relative to RHA for ceramic armor systems. 


The patent's text clearly says that the add-on modules consists of foamed metal armor (preferably foamed aluminium), while the main structure is made from conventional armor grade steel. The main purpose of this armor is to reduce costs compared to ceramic armor systems.

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16 minutes ago, SH_MM said:


The patent's text clearly says that the add-on modules consists of foamed metal armor (preferably foamed aluminium), while the main structure is made from conventional armor grade steel. The main purpose of this armor is to reduce costs compared to ceramic armor systems.

Oh ok, I should have been paying more attention. Thanks for the correction.

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Who knows... maybe only the inner citadel is made of steel, while the external layer (to which further armor modules can be mounted) is made of foamed aluminium? The text isn't going that much into detail, it only says that the inner part around the crew is made from steel to which foamed metal armor is added as an applique armor package.

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12 hours ago, SH_MM said:

The main purpose of this armor is to reduce costs compared to ceramic armor systems.


It depends which technology of production has been used. Aluminium foam is often created by injecting hydrogen to the cast which is very hazardous.

And the whole efectiveness of the foam is based on placing ceramic layer as an outer one while the foam is the inner layer. Then RHA can be the next layer.


That's aluminium foam plate created by IFAM from Bremen.




They use metal powder metallurgy where aluminium powder is mixed with titanium hydride. This mix is densified, then hot pressed and heated up to melt TH which creates the foam.

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4 hours ago, Xlucine said:

I wonder if you could SLM metal into similar shapes as the foam? It'd still be expensive, but at least it would be consistent


SLM has been invented to creating metal foams with regular cavity :)


The other option I think could be creating difficult molds via 3D printing and filling them with a metal to create cast armor with a foam-like shape. But no... :huh: you will create then advanced ceramic-metal composite armor which includes sand cavities. :lol: 


Or maybe... first you create polymer foam via 3D printing which you use to cast high porous ceramic mold. This mold you use then to cast ceramic-metal composite armor with a metal being as a foam.

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