Skip to comments.Army Considers Trading Armor for Speed
Posted on 02/16/2014 11:52:44 AM PST by null and void
For the past decade, armor protection has dominated U.S. combat vehicle programs. Now, maneuver officials are breaking with that tradition, abandoning armor for highly transportable, all-terrain vehicles.
The Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning, Ga., recently reached out to the defense industry to see if it could build the new Ultra Light Combat Vehicle -- a new effort to equip infantry brigade combat teams with go-anywhere vehicles capable of carrying a nine-man squad.
Lawmakers recently cut most of the funding for the U.S. Army's Ground Combat Vehicle -- a move that has all but killed the high-profile acquisitions effort.
The ULCV instead would be designed to travel 75 percent of the time across country and on rough trails.
Army officials continue to work with the Marine Corps to deliver the Humvee replacement, the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle. Leaders from both services were forced to pare down expectations for this truck as costs spiraled out of control as officials wanted to increase armor while lightening the overall weight.
Maneuver officials maintain that the ULCV is not competing against the JLTV. The ULCV is designed to fill a capability gap of being large enough to carry a nine-man squad but light enough -- at 4,500 pounds -- to be sling-loaded by a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter.
The only way to achieve this weight and meet the capability is to trade armor protection for speed and mobility, Parker said.
"A lot of the stuff we have seen is more ATV-looking rather than enclosed with a cab," Parker said. "Then again, if someone brings something with a cab, we are not telling them not to."
(Excerpt) Read more at military.com ...
Can you name a historical instance when that has happened? Just curious.
World wars one and two?
Yep, That always works out well.
The U.S. Navy took one look at H.M.S Sheffield during the Falklands and said "We can build Aluminum ship that burn brighter and kill our soldiers faster than the British can!"
Dolts, all of them.
Ditto. Between every major conflict navies and armies trade armor for mobility. Once the SHTF, armor quickly becomes relevant.
But why do we have to learn this lesson again? They are selling off the MRAPS that replaced the under armored HUMVEES as we speak.
Rumsfield wanted to get rid of the M1, and Bradley heavy infantry and replace it with the Stryker family of vehicles. When SHTF we needed the armor. Yet here we go again.
Rinse and repeat.
UCAVs or large drones mounted with sniper and mini HeLLFire capabilities.. That’s the future in combat.
Until conditions shut’em down, that is.
And then , it’s back to boots on the ground..
Troops in exo-armored suits..
Look up “battle cruisers”.
WW2 saw the demise of the battleship. And WW1 was fought with heavily armed, lightly armored ships. (Not claiming to be an expert).
Evidently these nimbos never watch youtube FSA knocking out Syrian T55 T72 tanks and BMB`s [going at full speed] with rpg`s, ATM`s, RR`s and IED`s .
WELLL, DUHHHH goombahs
After World War II, the US Navy adopted the Royal Navy’s practice of armoring carrier flight decks due to their experience with the Japanese Kamikazes.
I asked an honest question. Telling me to use my web browser is worse than useless. Maybe a naval historian will come along, but thanks anyway.
I think the Volkswagen Van fits the requirements from Fort Benning. Let’s put the Commandant of the Infantry School in a Volkswagen Van and have him charge into ambushes in Afghanistan. Everybody wants light vehicles until they start receiving fire.
I read the heavily armed/lightly armored squib within the last month or so and though, 'that's interesting', but didn't note the source or fact check it.
This is FR, if it's wrong I'm pretty sure someone will be along shortly with actual facts...
One of the critical lessons learned in WWII was the armored flight deck on carriers. Yes, WWII saw carriers rise to supremacy over the BBs, but the carriers designed from lessons learned during the war were substantially more heavily armored than those taken into the war.
We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that weve set. Weve got to have a civilian national security force thats just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded. Barack Hussein Obama, 7/2/2008They dont call it a Civil Defense force, that would imply we need (or perhaps that we deserve) defense. The official name is National Civilian Community Corps.
I think of it as the NATCCC, or simply the NATCs...
Sadly, even the super lights can’t drive fast everywhere. And I haven’t seen anything readily available that goes 2500+fps that people/troops can ride in.
I was not being smart. If you do as I suggested you will find everything you need to know about how the battle cruisers stood up to combat. Battle cruisers were armed like battleships and armored like cruisers. They traded armor for speed, range and payload.
Until somehow they’re slowed down and then .....
Right on! Just look at what happened to the British battle cruisers during and after WWI. They all turned out to be death traps.
In reality it is the Praetorian Guard. It protects the Emperor
Perhaps also because Obama intended to wreck the economy, put people on food stamps. The huge domestic security force is needed as the aura of sainthood wears off of Obama’s saintly brow.
HMS Hood..very thin armor plate protected the decks..one shell from Bismarck penetrated the deck plate, exploded the magazine, blew up the ship..
no kidding........ Iran fears a resurgent armed Egypt
Iran never acts, she pays surrogates to maim enemies
When I was a baby Armor lieutenant studying where things were going back in the early ‘80’s, I realized that the idea of heavy armor was going to be obsolete unless it was a force field or something.
$100 man portable anti-armor vs $n million heavy platform is not a good tradeoff.
With modern equipment, if you can find it, you can see it, if you can see it, you can hit it, if you can hit it you WILL kill it.
There are times that heavy armor is the right weapon.
Stealth, speed, surprise.
Without those, with drones, missiles, new generations of explosives, computer control of systems which can be 10,000 x as fast as a human, you are liable to be the guest of honor at a bar-b-que.
Modern tanks are survivable.
That means you hose them out, replace the electronics and optics, and put in a new crew.
When there is heavy armor on the field, you have to have a counter. In the past that was your own armor.
The Russian stuff was no match for ours in Iraq. Ask H.R. McMaster.
But with the increasing availability of drones with missiles, I don’t want to be in a tank, a ship, an HQ area, etc.
Be a ghost or be a ghost.
And how is the Bismarck doing nowadays?
The first contracts go out for the ultralight combat vehicle, first order requirements: nine person capacity and sling loading on a blackhawk.
during acceptance testing, the marines will insist on an amphibious variant, the air force will add a requirement for aircrew transport, and the army will find out the things only fit inside c-130s sideways. The ULCV project becomes the ULCV family of vehicles and additional contracts are bid out.
some time after initial fielding a part common to all variants will be found defective and each branch of service bids out contracts for replacements, none of which are interchangable.
in its first deployment, the armor will be proven ineffective for any combat condition and the next set of contracts for up armoring will be signed, no bid of course, for expediency’s sake. The uclv will no longer seat nine or be sling load capable, but fulfillment of all the accumulated contracts will now span a majority of congressional districts.
meanwhile, the special forces guys are using old toyota pickups purchased on the economy.
Don’t forget. You have to line up all of the bureaucrats in the PRC so you can get them to make your strategically important parts.
And you forgot to mention, the “ultralight” will weigh 40,000 pounds.
His Majesty's Ship Invincible, at Jutland.
Here we go again. During the Iraq invasion, our troops in unarmored humvees were getting slaughtered. Soon the DOD starting bringing in up-armored humvees and started slapping ACAV gunshields on the roofs to protect the gunners. JUST LIKE IN VIETNAM! Then they brought in MRAPS with V-shaped mine resistant hulls WHICH THE SOUTH AFRICANS CAME UP WITH IN THE 1970’s!
And now JUST LIKE POST VIETNAM the lessons learned will be thrown away, common sense lost, and the Army will have to learn the same lessons with rivers of blood in the next conflict.
US Army, hundreds of years of tradition untouched by progress.
British S.A.S. Desert Rats vs Rommel's Afika Korps
All field tested.
what DOD really needs is to gather NASCAR and Baja Race mechanics, a bunch of SeaBees, a passel of light trucks, a steady supply of cold beer, and a huge hanger. Lock them in and let them party and voila!
As some body pointed out up thread, they ain't ever going faster than 2500 fps much less an IED.
If fly in shoot and scoot fly out is the name of the game then the HMVs and Strykers is a prime example of what not to do.
But the very first big damn thing to do is change the ROE and lock up all the JAGS in Guantanamo for the duration...or maybe until an asteroid strikes earth.
If one looks at comparable "missile sponges" like the Stark and Roberts you can see that damage control can play a huge factor in saving or losing a ship.
A biplane dropped a torpedo that irreparably damaged the rudder on the Bismarck, or she would have made it into the protective umbrella of the Luftwaffe. As it turns out, it likely would have been sunk later as its sister the Turpitz was. Until that point in the sea battle, the ship was doing quite well.
Germany, as a continental power didn't use carriers like its ally or its enemy. Its naval strength lay in its U-boats, which succumbed or lost effectiveness to airpower.
The bismark was sent out solo and killed by 20 or so British cruisers, destroyers, airpower. Bismark was killed by hubris and no tactical planning.
Our current 100 million dollar tin cans can be disabled by a swarm attack of speedboats with machine guns. No armor to mention.
Good point, and the guys recommending the move away from armor won’t be riding in the vehicles taking fire.
Now, you're talking about actually attaining victory over a named enemy. This is about the circle of life inside the DoD and defense industry church of procurement. These two things only incidentally match up on rare occasion, like a giant asteroid hitting the earth.
On the actual battlefield they will, like the HUMVs be uparmored with whatever shielding can be fastened on by the troops and will be found to be terribly underpowered..
Really? Please elaborate.
Once the lead starts flying, you don't want "light" separating you from the hot lead, and the "lethal lite" doesn't break the other guy's heavy so well. In the end, it will get you killed.
People want "light and lethal" because they don't want to deal with heavy air and sea lift required to the get the heavy stuff to where the bad guys are. But heavy lift ultimately wins wars.
An official from “The Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning, Ga.”
See paragraph 2...
“Maneuver Center of Excellence” once known as the Armor School and was at Ft. Knox. Now thanks to what I suspect was bureaucratic infighting among Army generals, we now have the Armor School renamed and moved to Ft. Benning, GA; home of the Infantry. Artillery is now called “Fires”.....I guess some genius figured for his Six Sigma project we would rename and move Combat schools and say we saved money. In 20 years the circle will be complete and that “1 D 10 T” will be the general authorizing the moving and renaming of the “MCE” back to Armor School and it’s movement back to Ft. Knox.
Waste of time and money, but he got his Black Belt and promotion.
( I D 10 T = idiot )