Neil Baumgardner (nbaumgardner@phillips.com)
Thu, 15 Jun 2000 21:43:14 -0400


Richie Ramos wrote:

> >> >3. 200% increase in ability to move over any terrain. (sounds like legs to
> >> me)
> >> That's gotta be legs or instead of two tracks, you have four smaller
> >> ones...or something like that. Sounds like a Fuchikoma thing to me.
> >Sorry, right now, all I've heard of is tracks or wheels.
>
> interesting. good question: how many wheels? don't they have to take so
> much stress?

Not determined yet. The concept designs have just now been started by industry.

> >Mind you, this is a 'networked warfare' concept, where one 20-ton C&C vehicle
> >would control other robotic firing, sensor, etc 20-ton robotic vehicles.
> >Without so much sensors or weaponry on the manned vehicle, you can put a
> bigger
> >engine, and be more mobile. Likewise the same is true for the robotic
> vehicles
> >which dont have crew compartments and all the associated stuff.
>
> so you get rid of the human factor in most vehicles, but have a central
> command vehicle?

Exactly. Otherwise you basically end up with the same formula that results in a
near 70-ton tank.

> >> >7. crew of 3, or even better--2
> >> Gunner and driver only? that's kinda hard....
> >Again, see above. More like a driver and unit commander. Right now they think
> >two C&C vehicles with associated robotic vehicles would replace a platoon or
> >company's worth of tanks, etc. There will also likely be at least one troop
> >carrier vehicle, making this a combined arms team.
>
> hmmm...that's intersting...how small would the remote units be?

20 tons, just like the C&C vehicle AFAIK.

> >> >9. incorporate multiple protection layers. (e.g. systems to disrupt
> >> >the optics of enemy gun sights, or missiles. And an Active defense
> >> >system to knock down incoming projectiles)
> >> hmm...sounds very anime-ish. Active defense could be likethe anti-missile
> >> defenses of ships...but optical disruption?
> >The most unsophisticated active defense system throws up a wall of bullets
> >(sorta like a Claymore) to destroy or divert the incoming round. More
> >suphisticated ones would shoot one bullet or missile at the wound. The big
> >problem right now is that so-far, no active defense system can deal with
> >high-velocity long-rod rounds. Too fast, too much residual momentum even
> after
> >it is hit.
>
> so what can theoretically deal with such a weapon?

Nothing currently. In many ways it appears we're headed to a period reminiscent of
the advent of the archer over the knight, where firepower rules supreme over
armor. The problem is that even the armor of a 70-ton tank cant deal with such a
high-velocity long-rod penatrator. The simple impact is too much, even if
penetration was somehow avoided. As such, there's little need to design such a
heavy tank, with all its mobility and deployability problems, anymore. Maybe,
maybe a 100-ton tank could somehow deal with it, but then what can you do with it?
Maybe active protection systems will be designed that can deal with it somehow,
but most experts I've heard from dont think so. This may well signal the end of
the tank as we know it.

Thankfully, such weapons are still 10-15 years in the future, with our own one,
the Line-Of-Sight Anti-Tank (LOSAT) missile still under development. Much of the
current debate is how much residual protection should an armored vehicle have,
enough for medium caliber rounds or regular tank rounds, but that seems to be more
driven by if you want a C-130 to carry it.

    Neil Baumgardner

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