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New Abrams M1A3?

Discussion in 'Post-World War 2 Armour' started by sinissa, Aug 16, 2007.

  1. sinissa

    sinissa New Member

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    By Kris Osborn


    The Army is reversing earlier plans to retire M1A2 Abrams tanks and now plans to upgrade the 70-ton battlefield behemoths, making them more lethal, better protected, more networked — and able to serve through 2050.

    In 1998, the Army had all but written off the tank, which cannot go over most bridges and is too heavy to deploy quickly and expediently by air.

    “We were going to stop producing Abrams in 2005. The line was supposed to go cold,” an official with the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command said.

    But the Abrams’ thick skin proved valuable during the Iraq insurgency, fending off enemy rounds, rocket-propelled grenades and roadside bombs that crippled lighter vehicles. To prepare the tank for its next decades, the Army is planning improvements.

    “If you are going to keep it, the status quo won’t do,” said Rickey Smith, who directs the Capabilities Integration Center Forward at TraDoc.

    Early versions of an “M1A3” capabilities development document have traveled from the Armor Center at Fort Knox, Ky., to TraDoc at Fort Monroe, Va., and will soon go to the Pentagon. At this point, the ideas in the document are considered preliminary and not yet official.

    The Army intends its 60-tank Heavy Brigade Combat Teams to work with the Future Brigade Combat Teams that will come on line in 2015, as Future Combat Systems vehicles arrive.

    “We will have to be compatible with FCS. When FCS comes in, we are going to have a fleet of Abrams, Bradleys and FCS armored vehicles. The critical thing is to get a communications package so they can talk to each other,” said Pete McVey, vice president of Abrams and derivative programs, General Dynamics Land Systems.

    Preliminary work is underway on a more-networked Abrams.

    “We are working on an integrated computer system. Whatever you do, there is a requirement for integrated engineering,” the effort to build digitized and networked vehicles, Smith said.

    Workers in Warren, Mich., are equipping several tanks for tests, giving them B-kits containing FCS-compatible software, computers and communications gear.

    The capabilities description document calls for:

    • Lower logistical costs.

    • Potentially replacing the M256 smoothbore cannon with the lightweight 120mm cannon being tested for FCS. This could allow an autoloader to lift the burden of the tank’s four-man crew.

    • Improved propulsion system, road wheels and suspension.

    • A track that can go 5,000 miles between replacements. FCS officials are testing new track ideas at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., including band tracks composed entirely or partly of rubbery material.

    • Lighter armor and other components to reduce the tank’s weight, making it more mobile with an improved suspension.

    For example, a look at the cabling in the tank shows that if fiber-optic cable was used, 1 1/2 tons can be taken off the weight, McVey said.

    • Precision munitions that can hit targets 12 kilometers away. Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey, which aims to field its Mid-Range-Munition precision round by 2012, is testing two candidates: ATK’s millimeter-wave, kinetic energy round and Raytheon’s round with an infrared camera and laser detector.

    Found article on some ohr tank forum....Interesting think is mention of autoloader :)
     
  2. Revere

    Revere New Member

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    My friend yesterday said during cross country pratice that tanks were becomming obselete i brought up Iraq and how few have been destroyed.

    side note how many abrams have been destroyed?
     
  3. FNG phpbb3

    FNG phpbb3 New Member

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    probably none have been "destroyed" but I can imagine a lot have sustained significant damage rendering them unservicable and unrepairable in the field.

    FNG
     
  4. sinissa

    sinissa New Member

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    There is some completly destroyed Abrams in Iraq, (sow some PIC of completly burned out tanks) but i dont know the numbers.
     
  5. wozwasnt

    wozwasnt New Member

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    I've seen M1's that have been bombed.

    If a tank was disabled and it couldn't be recovered quickly, then they drop a bomb on it to stop any equipment falling into the hands of the insurgents.
     
  6. Commando

    Commando recruit

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    I'm trying to find some pics of a knocked out M1
     
  7. Commando

    Commando recruit

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    I've seen some pics of knocked out Abrams in Iraq, but I guess a lot of the real casualties were in Gulf War One.
     
  8. Siberian Black

    Siberian Black New Member

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    That second one looks like it hit a mine with the tracks missing and the scorch marks on the back. IED?

    As far as armoured vehicles they're probably needed more then ever. I could see a reversion to dedicated anti-armour vehicles and distinct classes instead of a lumped 'MBTs'.
     
  9. Hoosier phpbb3

    Hoosier phpbb3 New Member

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    Commando:
    I don't recall any M1 Abrams being destroyed by "enemy action" in the first Gulf War... '91.
    Tom Clancy had an intersting tale about the Abrams in a book he wrote (1994) about US Armor titled "Armored Cavalry--A Guided tour of an Armored Cavalry Regiment."
    In one instance during the Gulf War, an M1 Abrams was hopelessly stuck and could not be retrieved. The troopers decided to blow it in place and another M1 manuevered behind and fired a main-gun round directly into it's rear bustle. This detonated the main-gun ammo storage, but the blast-door system worked as designed and vented the blast straight-up out of the turret.
    The tank in question was later recovered and sent back to the 'States for analysis.

    Tim
     
  10. Ricky

    Ricky New Member

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    The eternal problem with having different classes of vehicle is that the correct one is never around when you need it. Plus of course the added logistical strain.
     
  11. Siberian Black

    Siberian Black New Member

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    True. Although one strain of logic figures that when you design something to do it all, it will never (or at least usually doesn't) do anything as good as something designed to to the task.

    Standard armaments would help some of the logistics wouldn't it?
     
  12. Commando

    Commando recruit

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    I thought some M1s were destroyed, but I must be wrong :oops:
     
  13. Ebar

    Ebar New Member

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    It's 2007, they should be at lease MkI Bolo's by now.







    (you either get that reference or you don't)
     
  14. Commando

    Commando recruit

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    I don't.
     
  15. sinissa

    sinissa New Member

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  16. machine shop tom

    machine shop tom Member

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    I read just the other day that 4 M-1s were destroyed by enemy fire during Gulf War one.

    Think I can find that link now??

    Rats.

    tom
     

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