Armor: September 4, 2003

Archives

Before the Iraq campaign, the U.S. Marines were planning a new generation of armored vehicles to replace the 400 M-1 tanks and 800 LAVs (wheeled armored vehicles) they currently have. The idea was to use lighter vehicles (ten ton LAVs and 30 ton tanks) and depend on speed, superior communications and sensors to provide the same degree of protection the current heavier vehicles (15 ton LAVs and 645 ton M-1s). But after seeing all the dents and dings on their M-1 tanks, attention has shifted to developing lighter weight armor that will provide the same kind of protection the M-1 currently has. A major problem with the M-1 is that it burns over 30 pounds of fuel for each kilometer traveled. And the 120mm gun means only 40 rounds of ammo are carried, so a smaller caliber weapon would be nice, or maybe just missiles. It has long been thought that more agile, and better networked, armored vehicles could do things the current generation could not. Iraq provided a large scale experiment in what really happens. The networking does help, but it doesn't eliminate all the ambush situations. You still need as much armor as you can get for those worst case situations. And these happen more than you would like, and despite strenuous efforts to avoid them. So, after a reality check, it's back to the drawing board. Keep in mind, however, that most armored vehicles developed in peacetime do not benefit from much reality check. That explains a lot.

 


Article Archive

Armor: Current 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 


X

ad
0
20

Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close