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Subject: Australian wheeled SP
ambush    3/3/2006 8:50:16 PM
Australian Army gets approval for new artillery The Australian Army is likely to favour wheeled self-propelled howitzer systems * Competing wheeled SPH manufacturers are each teamed with Australian partners to ensure through-life support. [Jane's Defence Weekly- first posted to - 24 February 2006]
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ArtyEngineer    RE:Australian wheeled SP   3/6/2006 11:42:59 AM
How about this, posted over on the Oz board, but will stick here as well. The UK's LIMAWS (R) prototype." alt="Image hosting by Photobucket">

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ambush    RE:Australian wheeled SP   3/6/2006 1:30:04 PM
>>The UK's LIMAWS (R) prototype<< HIMARS light?
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flamingknives    RE:Australian wheeled SP   3/6/2006 1:48:38 PM
Very light - Chinook portable. Arty Engineer, where is that? Millbrook?
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doggtag    RE:Australian wheeled SP   3/6/2006 5:40:36 PM
...or HIMARS Jr? My biggest concern for the design: the wheels look too small for the vehicle, suggesting its suspension may not afford it a decent amount of offroad flexxing for uneven or soft & rutted terrain, nor have very much ground clearance. (anyone have any decent videos? the SUPACAT site is extremely lacking in clips of its larger vehicles) Would be interesting to see them adapt the MLRS pod and their howitzer of choice onto the stretched (6x6) Bushie, if they ever get it beyond paper project. I think it has a more favorable suspension (sets higher & larger tires) to allow for better offroad maneuverability.
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doggtag    RE:Australian wheeled SP, in the background   3/6/2006 5:55:36 PM
In the SUPACAT/HIMARS photo, in the background on a flat bed trailer, is a tracked SP gun. Is that an AS-90? For a second, (using a guesstimate of scale looking at the soldier behind the HIMARS and the cab pulling the flatbed trailer), I almost thought it looked like an Abbot, until I counted the roadwheels (can clearly see five, but a sixth is obscured by the elevating arms on the HIMARS. The gun does seem more like an L39-sized barrel, not appearing to have as much overhang like the longer L52 guns normally do (does anyone even operate tracked L45 guns?), although the recoil mechanism box structure at the base of the barrel looks like an AS90. Weren't AS-90s refitted with longer-barreled guns than the original L39? Anyone able to confirm this? Would be interesting to see if DENEL and/or GDLS pushed a tracked variant of their long range LEO gun, on a newer chassis than the Abbot's FV432-series hull. That might be one solution to a long range gun carrying a large ammo magazine capacity (should be able to get at least 5 or 6 dozen rounds and not exceed 25 metric tonnes), especially for nations who may be looking to upgrade from Soviet-type 122mm systems, as the LEO 105 would comfortably out-range them.
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flamingknives    RE:Australian wheeled SP   3/6/2006 5:58:09 PM
The Supacat's suspension is variable - you can have it very low to fit into aircraft or when parked or raised for ground clearance. The Supacat really doesn't have much trouble over very rutted roadways at fairly high speeds. It's not called an HMT (High Mobility Truck) for no reason.
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ArtyEngineer    RE:Australian wheeled SP, in the background   3/6/2006 6:03:34 PM
Yep, in the background is an AS90, with a 39 cal tube, the ERO (Extended Range Ordnance) Program which would have fitted a 52 cal tube died a while back. FK, Im not sure where the pic was taken.
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flamingknives    RE:Australian wheeled SP, in the background   3/6/2006 6:04:50 PM
Yep, that's an AS90. The turret boxes are pretty distinctive. I don't think the Extended Range Ordnance (ERO), the 52 calibre barrel, ever went ahead, or is at least at a standstill. The idea might be to use smart munitions to get the extra range. Basically this means that most, if not all, in-service AS90s have 39 calibre ordnance.
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ArtyEngineer    RE:Australian wheeled SP, in the background - FK   3/6/2006 6:13:11 PM
Just got there before you ;) The ERO wasnt just an upgunning from 39 to 52 cal, the major component was actually the development of the South African Modular Charge System, and it was the failure to achieve the consistency of this aspect while making it complient with UK munition requirements that eventually killed the program. Officially it is still on hold, but everybody knows its dead.
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neutralizer    RE:Australian wheeled SP, in the background - FK   3/7/2006 4:25:12 AM
LIMARS(R) owes little if anything to HIMARS, if UK wanted something HIMARS like then thet'd have bought HIMARS, they didn't instead they paid to develop their own. That tells you something. Incidentally LIMAWS(R) will only fire GMLRS (and presumably ATACMS), this is what enables it to be small and light, no need for a precision aimed traversing and elevating mass. It's interesting to note that UK trialled a rejected the Leo ammo, instead they purchased a new IM HE round (L50) from BAe. The reason is that Leo round is optimised for apers and is less good as an all-rounder. I think there may have been an issue with the IM design, basically Denel got them filled with German IM HE, however, BAe found they could extend the length of their 105mm because IM HE is less dense, this enabled significantly improved lethality being quoted as being on a par with 155mm HE M107 (grain of salt needed with this marketing, it probably depends on the target type to at least some extent). Interestingly UK is about to/has stated production of a new M107 type shell that is being claimed as more lethal but not up to L15. Having been using 155mm for decades (since about 1943) I think this is the first time they've ever produced the M107 type shell. The ammo part AS90 ERO/ERM program started by selecting a modular charge, they trialled the offerings from US, GE, Denel, and BAe (there may have been another). The Denel system, which is actually bi-modular, won hands down although bi-modular was less than ideal. The reason for this is a very clever design that puts cooler burning propellant gas against the barrel wall with hotter inside it, in consequence barrel life went thru the roof, for ever in arty terms, so they didn't need to buy so many barrels. Having made the selection the problems started. First they couldn't get a licence for local production (on acceptable terms?). Then the IM ammo directive arrived, all future ammo was to be IM compliant. There was no exemption for AS90, although rumour has it one was sought. To date it appears that Denel have been unable to make their propellant IM compliant. Hence 'abeyance', although UK seems to have gone totally cold on 52 cal, and is following the ER ammo path. There was also the issue of needing to rework L15, etc, shell stocks basically to change the driving band. The IM is interesting, in 2005 RN introduced a BB 4.5-inch shell, it's not obvious that its IM compliant!
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