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Everything posted by eddo36

  1. eddo36

    Ace Combat 7

    Meh, PS4 exclusive.
  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhm3_t77fcs Russia's Defense Ministry reports that for the first time Russia is using a submarine to launch sea-based cruise missiles in the fight against ISIS.
  3. (CNN) - For the first time in 40 years, the U.S. Army is making changes to a century-old piece of hardware, dog tags, the identification implements that hang around each soldier's neck. For a low-tech thing like the aluminum dog tag, the reason for the change is decidedly high-tech, the threat of identity theft. On the new dog tags, the service member's Social Security number will be replaced with a randomly-generated, 10-digit Department of Defense identification number. "If you find a pair of lost ID tags you can pretty much do anything with that person's identity because you now have their blood type, their religion, you have their social, and you have their name. The only thing missing is their birth date and you can usually get that by Googling a person," Michael Klemowski, Soldiers Programs Branch chief, U.S. Army Human Resources Command, said in an Army press release. The change was mandated in 2007, but it has taken the military this long to replace the Social Security number with the 10-digit idea number through a number of systems, Klemowski said. While identity theft may be among the most impersonal of crimes, the dog tags are anything but that. "Dog tags are highly personal items to warriors of every service and to their families as well," says a Library of Congress tribute to the dog tag produced in 2012. "The tag itself individualizes the human being who wears it, despite his or her role as a small part of a huge and faceless organization. While the armed forces demand obedience and duty to a higher cause, dog tags, hanging under service members' shirts and close to their chests, remind them of their individuality." The tags became part of the Army field kit shortly before World War I. By July 1916, the Army was issuing two of the tags to each soldier, one that would stay with the remains of those lost in battle and one that would go to the burial unit, according to the Armed Forces History Museum. The tags "bring comfort and help calm the fears of soldiers facing death," the Library of Congress tribute says, allowing them to know they would not be forgotten or become an unknown casualty. Klemowski said the change would not be immediate for all soldiers. "We are focusing first on the personnel who are going to deploy. If a soldier is going to deploy, they are the first ones that need to have the new ID tags," he said in the Army release.
  4. (CNN) - The Johns Hopkins University medical team that performed arm and hand transplants hopes to perform the first penile transplant in the United States in the coming months. The team led by Dr. W.P. Andrew Lee hopes to help returning servicemen with an often-hidden wound of war. Modern warfare in Afghanistan and Iraq has put more troops on the streets with dismounted patrols and increased exposure to improvised explosive devices. That has led to a new kind of trauma: genitourinary, known as GU trauma, which includes the genitals, bladder, urinary tract and kidney systems. Hidden wounds About 5% of the 16,323 trauma admissions between 2001 and 2008 involved GU injuries, according to data from the Department of Defense Trauma Registry. More than 60% of those injuries resulted from explosions. The Defense Department found the average age of injury was 24. Carisa Cooney, assistant professor of plastic and reconstructive surgery at Johns Hopkins, said the university began investigating the possibility of penile transplants after getting requests back in 2012. "You put into context that these are usually young men who perhaps haven't had a chance to start a family. A lot of time masculinity has a lot to do with the perception of themselves. And to have injury to the genitalia can be devastating to their identity and to their relationships back home," Cooney said. According to the Bob Woodruff Foundation, an organization devoted to helping returning service members, one of the questions doctors hear immediately after a serviceman is injured is "How's my junk?" Under the scalpel Lee said John Hopkins has a potential patient lined up but is awaiting a donor. Lee and his team have performed 11 hand and arm transplants in seven patients, and said the process of transplanting a penis is not much different from transplanting a hand. "Other than the fact that this is a different anatomic part, there are a great deal of similarities," he said. To attach the donor penis to the patient, Lee and his colleagues will connect a four small arteries and two veins under the microscope. In addition, he said, a minimum of two nerves will also be connected to provide sensation. Recovery Immediate recovery of the wounds to heal will take about four to six weeks, but function might not be regained for some months afterward. "Normally, in the hand or anywhere else, we need to reconnect the nerves. The nerves need to grow until the end of the organs, and that's a process that can take months," Lee said. In arms, he said, it can take more than a year. Success will be determined both by patient satisfaction as well as clinical measures, including the ability to urinate and participate in sexual activity. Impact on fertility South African doctors performed the first successful penis transplant in December 2014, and in June, doctors reported that the transplant recipient's girlfriend had become pregnant. Lee emphasized the Johns Hopkins team is working on transplanting the penis, not the testicles, where the sperm line is generated. So, as long as a patient's testicles are functional, he would be able to father his biological children. But the penis transplant would not have any bearing on fertility. According to Cooney, the procedure is estimated to cost $200,000 to $400,000 in addition to donated surgical time. Johns Hopkins has volunteered to pay for the first transplant.
  5. IFLS - The future of warfare seems like it’ll be an unrecognizable place, more akin to something from science fiction. Jazz-playing robots are being used as precursors to empathetic machines that will aid soldiers on the battlefield. “Vampire†drones will fly into warzones and sublimate into a gas in sunlight. And both the U.S. and China have developed laser weapons that can shoot down small, fast-moving targets. But a report by the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) details how the race to become the world leader in electromagnetic warfare (EW) is being lost by the U.S. For some time now, humans have been able to both detect and generate all frequencies along the electromagnetic spectrum (EMS), and different types of EMS radiation can be used in different ways. Radio waves, for example, can be used to communicate. Microwaves, if focused, can be used to dramatically heat up targets. The various communicative, navigational, defensive and offensive capabilities of harnessed and directed EMS radiation has been fully embraced by the world’s militaries for much of the last century, and the recent report by the CSBA details the current state of its use in the U.S. military – and its rivals. It’s not good news for the U.S.: the report cites a Department of Defense (DoD) assessment that, since the closure of the Cold War, the U.S. has “failed to keep pace†with China and Russia due to a lack of a motivating, equally capable rival, which of course used to be the Soviet Union. Electromagnetic warfare can be divided into two types: active, wherein directed energy is used to either locate, disable or destroy hostile targets, and passive, wherein the EMS is used to provide cloaking or shielding to allied units operating in hostile territory. An example of these two capabilities combining involves a decoy group and an attack group of military units approaching hostile territory. A decoy unit of autonomous targets sends low energy signals towards the hostiles, causing them to be diverted away from the actual attack group. These low-energy pulses can also be directed at incoming salvos of cruise missiles, causing them to veer off target and splashdown harmlessly into the sea. An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) equipped with an EM disruption system flies over enemy territory and knocks out their communications. Then, shielded by a “cover pulse†of EM radiation – which the enemy only sees as “noise†on their sensors – moves in for the attack. Technologies that may be useful for possible future adoption are also described, including a new jamming system called Digital Radio Frequency Memory (DRFM). This system, attached to planes and ships, is able to record an incoming signal, alter it, and send false returns to an enemy sensor. This device represents a shift in the types of EW used by the U.S. military: one that does not overload hostile sensors, but instead deceives them. The report highlights the concern of the increasing range of ballistic missiles acquired by potentially hostile nations. To detect threats further away, more powerful EMS sensors will be required, which inevitably will make them more detectable. The DoD laments that the cloaking technologies, such as the “cover pulse†method, aren’t advanced enough yet to deal with this. The authors recommend that the newly created EW executive committee (EXCOM) should oversee the development and implementation of a new vision for how U.S. forces will once again dominate EW.
  6. (CNN) - All U.S. military combat positions are being opened up to women, Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced Thursday. The decision allows women to fill about 220,000 jobs that are now limited to men -- including infantry, armor, reconnaissance and some special operations units. "This means that as long as they qualify and meet the standards, women will now be able to contribute to our mission in ways they could not before. They'll be able to drive tanks, give orders, lead infantry soldiers into combat," Carter said at a news conference Thursday. His move comes despite the objections of Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who had advocated keeping some roles limited to men. "There will be no exceptions," Carter said. Carter's historic announcement comes after years-long reviews, and after public push-back from the Marine Corps, which had sought exceptions to keep positions such as infantry, machine gunner, fire support and reconnaissance to men. A Marine Corps study suggests all-male squads are more effective in combat and less likely to be injured than integrated groups. Carter acknowledged the Marines' resistance, but said he'd decided to set a policy that covers the full department. "We are a joint force, and I've decided to make a decision that applies to the entire force," Carter said. Thursday had originally been selected for Carter's announcement of the policy change so that Dunford, the Marine general and Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, could join the Defense secretary. But Dunford "was not comfortable" sharing the stage to explain his disagreement or serve as a "potted plant," so he opted out -- without Carter's objection, a senior Obama administration official told CNN. "In the end, the chairman didn't feel comfortable having to say he disagreed with his boss," the official said. Instead, Dunford released a tepid statement -- clearly avoiding saying he agreed with Carter's decision. He said that "in the wake of the secretary's decision, my responsibility is to ensure his decision is properly implemented." "Moving forward," Dunford said, "my focus is to lead the full integration of women in a manner that maintains our joint warfighting capability, ensures the health and welfare of our people, and optimizes how we leverage talent across the Joint Force." The policy move will take effect after 30 days, Carter said. He said the decision doesn't mean there will quickly become an even gender split in most combat positions. He said there are "physical differences on average" between men and women and that "thus far, we've only seen small numbers of women qualify to meet our high physical standards" for some units. "Going forward, we shouldn't be surprised if these small numbers are also reflected in areas like recruitment, voluntary assignment, retention," he said. He acknowledged that "some service members, men and women, have a perception that integration would be pursued at a cost of combat effectiveness." However, Carter said: "The military has long prided itself on being a meritocracy." Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton, who hopes to become the first woman to win the race to the White House, praised the move. "We've seen women in our armed forces prove their heroism and abilities, now our official policy is catching up and women who are qualified for these positions should be able to compete and win them," Clinton said at a New Hampshire event after the announcement. Two women made history in August by becoming the first female soldiers to complete the Army's Ranger School, but they couldn't apply to join the 75th Ranger Regiment, an elite special operations force -- until now.
  7. Low Altitude Guard II IFLS - If you’re thinking of giant lasers, chances are the new "Star Wars" film has just popped into your head – but laser weapons don’t just belong in the realm of fiction. The U.S. Navy has been developing a series of Laser Weapon Systems (LaWS) for several years now, and they are startlingly accurate – they can shoot tin cans off a dingy while leaving the boat intact. Now, China has entered one of its own laser weapons into the fray, first showing it to the world on state television, as reported by Popular Science. On November 7, the Chinese government broadcast a demonstration of the new LAG (Low Altitude Guard) II laser weapons system. It was shown to accurately and rapidly superheat and obliterate airborne targets and drones over a military testing site. It’s mounted on a wheeled carriage towed by a separate vehicle; when moved into position, it scans for targets underneath its protective dome using an electro-optical sensor. After tracking and locking on to multiple targets automatically, the human operator chooses which one to destroy manually; the laser almost instantaneously superheats a small area on the already small target, causing it to break apart in moments. The reel explains that, if wirelessly linked to off-vehicle radar detection systems, the LAG II could potentially shoot down targets moving at a far higher speed, including incoming artillery shells. This prototype is an upgrade from the LAG I, which was unveiled in 2014 and is available for export. Although the power of the LAG II has not been confirmed, its predecessor possessed a 10 kilowatt beam – 100 times more powerful than the average incandescent light bulb, and at least 10 times more powerful than a high-end microwave. It could take down targets two kilometers (1.2 miles) away within seconds. These offensive, mounted monsters are known as “directed-energy†weapons, primarily designed to shoot down drones or target specific parts of an encroaching hostile vehicle – such as its engine compartment – in order to disable them without necessarily completely destroying them. Although powerful and certainly effective, the cost of firing each beam is relatively low, meaning that militaries across the world are likely to be using more of them in the near future.
  8. (CNN) - The U.S. Marine Corps is spending $225 million as it takes another stab at replacing its aging fleet of amphibious assault vehicles. The Marine Corps on Tuesday awarded two contractors -- BAE Systems and SAIC -- contracts to develop 13 prototypes of the new vehicle. The Marines announced that they hope to have infantry paired up with the new amphibious combat vehicles (or ACVs) by 2020. "ACV 1.1 is the first phase of eventually replacing the (assault amphibious vehicle) with a truly amphibious, armor-protected personnel carrier to support the infantry ashore," Col. John B. Atkinson, director of the Marines' Fires and Maneuver Integration Division, said in a statement. The amphibious assault vehicles (AAVs) in use now have become too costly to repair and upgrade, in part because many of their components are no longer manufactured, according to the announcement. The replacement will be an eight-wheeled vehicle similar to mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles used on land. Whichever prototype is selected will include an onboard weapons systems. But the corps is also looking at a larger update of the program with options for variations on the new ACV vehicle. The movement on a new amphibious vehicle program comes after the Marines spent $3 billion on a previous failed project to replace the vehicles. A Congressional Research Service report earlier this year found that the planned amphibious expeditionary fighting vehicle (EFV) program was canceled "due to poor reliability demonstrated during operational testing and excessive cost growth." While the new ACV is being tested, the Marines will update their existing 392 amphibious vehicles to better protect against mine blasts, upgrade their engines and improve land and water mobility, according to the announcement. A call and email to the Marines communications department were not immediately returned Wednesday.
  9. eddo36

    See the USAF's newest gunship

    The AC-130J Ghostrider is the latest iteration of the Air Force's premiere gunship, and is being hailed as the ultimate battle plane.
  10. IFSL - Have you ever wanted to own a lightsaber? Well, now you can (sort of): The U.S. Air Force has developed a welding torch that apparently cuts through metal like a lightsaber would through a Sith Lord. It’s compact, versatile, and burns through whatever you put in its way with a 2,760 degree celsius (5,000 degree fahrenheit) jet of vaporized metal. This device – described as a handheld thermal breaching torch – might not produce a solid beam of colorful light, but it does physically resemble the famous Jedi weapon. Furthermore, it is designed to fit into the utility belt of anyone who really needs to break through a wall at a moment’s notice. Invented by Energetic Materials & Products, Inc., its ammunition cartridges contain a solution of metal powder fuel and a metal oxide, a combination commonly referred to as thermite. This mixture – often using iron oxide and aluminum powder – is perfectly stable until strongly heated, whereupon a violent reduction-oxidation (redox) reaction occurs and a vast amount of thermal energy is rapidly released. As the metal powder is more reactive than the metal oxide, the oxygen is stolen by the powder, with the resulting mixture being aluminum oxide and iron; the typical reaction is so hot that it can burn underwater. With no sort of containment, the heat will escape in multiple directions. This torch, on the other hand, focuses the intense thermal energy release into a miniature “jet,†allowing it to burn through specific, targeted spots. Unlike a lightsaber, however, this torch definitely isn’t an elegant weapon for a more civilized age: It’ll mostly be used by emergency responders, law enforcement officers, and the military to quickly breach through doors, windows, barricades and even hostile vehicles. Lock picking often takes too long, and high explosives are a shade too unsubtle, so this tool fits somewhere in the middle: It’s quick, portable, and exceedingly efficient.
  11. Kinda pricey but people who has it seem to like it.
  12. The next generation of coastal patrol boats.
  13. Take a look at the Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC), the US Navy's unstoppable amphibious hovercraft.
  14. eddo36

    See the Navy's amphibious hovercraft

    Did you see the part where LCAC can access 70% of the world's coastline, unlike only 15% by conventional landing crafts?
  15. Those tech come from the 3 billion a year US gives to Israel.
  16. Defense News — Israel’s Tank Production Authority is producing its first prototype of Eitan, an eight-wheel-drive armored fighting vehicle designed to weigh nearly half as much as the new Namer heavy carriers. The locally developed Eitan — Hebrew for steadfast — will be deployed alongside new Namers and will replace old M113s that still support the bulk of Israeli infantry. Sources here said it will weigh no more than 35 tons and will incorporate a new generation of active protection, an advanced turret and a full complement of munitions and sensors. Field demonstrations are slated by the end of next year, with initial serial production expected to begin by 2020. “It will be a lot lighter [than Namer] and will be designed to cost,†said Maj. Gen. Guy Zur, commander of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Ground Forces Command. “It may be less good [than the Namer], but it will be affordable and allow us to equip a large part of our force.†Defense and industry sources said the MoD-owned Tank Production Authority south of Tel Aviv has one prototype in production and another in its advanced planning phase. In parallel, MoD’s MAFAT Research and Development Bureau is working on a demonstrator program called Carmel aimed at driving the design of Israel’s future tank, a follow-on to the 65-ton Merkava Mk4. Sources say Carmel — a Hebrew acronym for Advanced Ground Combat Vehicle — will not be a Merkava Mk5, nor will it replace the Mk4, which is expected to remain in production through 2020. Rather, it is a research-and-development program aimed at a state-of-the-art, medium-weight combat vehicle. It will most likely be treaded, rather than wheeled, and designed to weigh around 32 tons. “It won’t be Merkava Mk5. The operational requirement will be something entirely different,†one source said of the envisioned future tank. Defense and industry sources anticipate development and demonstration testing will extend over the coming decade or more, depending on the maturation of lightweight materials, advanced technologies and a spectrum of planned subsystems. “Carmel is much longer-range. It will not compete with the ongoing production program [of Eitan] or with the Merkava Mk4,†a defense source told Defense News. Sources noted that just as Eitan will be deployed alongside the heavier Namer in future ground maneuvering scenarios, the fruits of the Carmel demonstrator program will eventually be deployed alongside Merkava Mk4s. Both new vehicles are intended to be integrated with existing heavy armor into the same digitized command-and-control network, providing war planners with more scenario-tailored options for maneuvering war, they added. Zur said both vehicles are part of his Ground Horizon plan, a strategic blueprint for designing Israel’s future ground force up to 20 years from now. In a recent interview, he said Plan Horizon anticipates initial fielding of the wheeled Eitan “in much less than 10 years, perhaps even five.†In contrast, the Carmel future tank demonstrator is not expected to enter service until 2025 or 2027, Zur said.
  17. RT's Murad Gazdiev takes a look at a survival kit every Russian jet has at Latakia air base in case there's an emergency with a warplane – and finds that standard issue items include water, salt, flares, a radio beacon and a machete.
  18. Defense News — The HDT Micro-Utility Vehicle Robot is a remote-controlled, multipurpose tool designed for dismounted troops to clear terrain in nearly any ground environment, and it can do more than that. The robot, on display in the AUSA exhibit hall, can act as a standoff weapon, a communications hot spot and a pack mule. Parked a few hundred meters away from troops, its sensors can detect enemy activity, and mounted with a 50-caliber weapon, it can fend off aggressors at a distance from the soldier operating it, said Francis LeGasse, vice president of business development - west for HDT Global. It is designed for versatility: An NCO on the ground can decide how he wants to use it, or a commander can count on it to carry 500 pounds of gear on the vehicle and another 500 pounds on its trailer. The robot has a backhoe/loader attachment and can configure based on the unit's needs. Shorter than an average man, the robot can be broken down into man-portable components and quickly reassembled. The robot is undergoing testing at the Network Integration Evaluation near Fort Bliss, Texas, to get feedback from soldiers on how it can fit their units' needs, said LeGasse, a former Army officer. Soon it will undergo jungle testing in Hawaii for further assessment by the Army.
  19. Defense News — Amid fears that Stryker-equipped US Army units in Europe are outgunned by their Russian counterparts, General Dynamics Land Systems is pressing ahead with fast-track efforts to mount a medium-caliber cannon on a portion of the fleet, company officials said. Though the Army has announced the upgrade for 81 vehicles in response to requests from the Germany-based 2nd Cavalry Regiment, company officials anticipate the Army will eventually replace the .50-caliber machine guns with a 30mm gun and turret for the entire active fleet, about 1,000 of the eight-by-eight wheeled vehicles. “What the Army wants is a weapon with a longer range, greater accuracy and more punch than the .50-caliber machine gun, and a 30mm will give you a lot more in all three of those areas,†General Dynamics Land Systems business development manager, Timothy Reese, said. The Army plans to field the larger gun in Europe by 2018. Because the GDLS-led procurement is evaluating existing cannons and involves replacing the vehicle’s suspension with suspensions already in the Army’s inventory, the process is expected to move quickly, Reese said. “We’re looking for complete systems right away, and the Army is looking for that from us,†Reese said. The defense policy legislation passed by both houses of Congress funds the Stryker “lethality upgrade,†and lawmakers have asked that the program be managed “with dispatch and efficiency.†The defense policy bill’s conference report also cautions the Army to “reduce the unit cost of the Stryker lethality upgrade program and evaluate ways to more efficiently pursue upgrades to the Stryker vehicle fleet.†Brig. Gen. David Bassett, the Army's program executive officer for Ground Combat Systems, said the effort would be hit particularly hard if Congress adopts a continuing resolution that extends beyond December. Such stopgap funding measures allocate funding at the previous year’s level, and there was no dedicated funding for the upgrade in 2015. Budget issues aside, Bassett said he was proud of how fast the Army has sped approvals for the program. “At this point, we’re waiting on money, but we’re continuing to do things on program to move it forward with the recent release this week from General Dynamics,†Bassett said. The fast-paced plan accounts for long-lead items such as the cannon barrels and includes tests in Germany, where the 2nd Cavalry is based. “So, 2018 is the time we’re looking at, but like all the rest of our programs, we’re looking for opportunities to move a little quicker,†Bassett said. GDLS, which is running the competition, issued a competitive request for proposals on Sept. 30 and plans to complete a source selection process, guided by the Army, by year’s end. The fast-tracked schedule calls for a production-ready capability, ready for tests. “Just like the Army would, we’re evaluating the vendors based on the criteria, schedule, performance,†Reese said. “We’ll go immediately into test, its going to be a very quick transition.†The 30mm cannon will be able to fire an air-burst round that will explode above a target, a technique used to hit people hiding behind walls. The 25mm round — fired by a Bradley — is not large enough to allow for such a fuse, Reese said. “That will be a game-changer for the crew [of a Stryker],†Reese said. Among other requirements for the gun and turret procurement, the interior of adapted Strykers would still have to be able to carry a nine-soldier squad, so — unlike a Bradley — the turret cannot take up space inside the vehicle. Instead, the gunner would operate the cannon from right-front of the vehicle, as he does for its .50-caliber machine gun. The upgrade process will involve cutting the top off of a Stryker, a process familiar to the company from its battle-damage repair work, Reese said. The Stryker will gain a new top with a ring to accommodate the turret, and an upgraded suspension to carry the additional weight. “We don’t think there’s a lot of technical risk at all,†Reese said. Although GDLS is upgrading Strykers to a double-V hull, designed to deflect underbelly bomb blasts, the Army’s announced upgrade plans only mention flat-bottomed models already in the inventory in Europe. “My understanding is that eventually the Army is going to apply this to all its brigades, so some of the brigades that have the double-V Stryker can get the upgrade,†Reese said. “The DVHs already have the new suspension on them, so in some sense it will be easier and less expensive to upgrade those brigades.†The suspension, meant to accommodate 5,000 to 8,000 pounds of additional weight on V-hulled variants versus flat-bottomed variants, would easily accommodate 2,000 to 4,000 more pounds for the gun and turret, Reese said. The original flat-bottomed Stryker weighs about 38,000 pounds.
  20. Defense News — Under Russia’s sweeping 2020 rearmament program, the Defence Ministry hopes to modernize about 70 percent of its military. While most of the attention is paid to flashy procurements such as nuclear submarines and stealth fighters, rejuvenation of the land forces is a significant priority. A total of 20 trillion rubles was allocated in 2011 (at that time, the value of the program was around $700 billion), with about 16 percent of that money, or 3 trillion rubles, dedicated to land forces acquisitions. “The central problem is that all of the land forces need attention,†said Henry Boyd, a military expert at the International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS) in London. However, Russia has not been able to make much procurement headway. According to Ruslan Pukhov, director of the Center for the Analysis of Strategies and Technologies, a Moscow-based defense think tank, the Defence Ministry was not satisfied with the Soviet-designed tanks and assorted vehicles industry had on offer. Instead, the industry for the past several years has been working on designing a new offering of land platforms, known as the Armata Universal Combat Platform, which includes a new battle tank, the T-14, and a variety of armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles. “Current wars on Russia’s borders and other places show that the current platforms are very vulnerable to all types of munitions — anti-tank and air-to-surface — and we need to protect people,†Pukhov said. The new platforms ditch Soviet-style design philosophies, which prioritized cheap and easy-to-produce tanks that could be made in massive quantities to overwhelm enemy platforms. Instead, the Armata platform places a clear premium on crew survivability by separating the crew compartment from the munitions compartment and main gun, which is controlled remotely from the forward compartment. The Armata platform also reportedly sports advanced composite armor not seen on current designs. “For the first time in our history we don’t have a huge reservoir of people,†Pukhov said, explaining the shift in approach to platform design. Although new platforms have been a key focus of Russian land forces modernization, they are extremely expensive and Russia’s economic crisis is forcing the Defense Ministry to adjust procurement forecasts. In March, Deputy Defence Ministry Yury Borisov said Armata turned out to be much more expensive than anticipated — a claim manufacturer UralVagonZavod has since attempted to refute — and would force the military to buy fewer of them. President Vladimir Putin has said on numerous occasions, including at the May 9 Victory Day Parade, when Armata was officially unveiled, that Russia would buy 2,300 of the new tanks. However, according to Vadim Kozyulin, a military expert at the Moscow-based PIR Center think tank, most of the armored vehicle procurements by 2020 will be modernized Soviet and early post-Soviet designs. “This means the land forces will get modernized T-72B3 tanks, BMP-3 and BTR-82 armored vehicles … the Russian industry is familiar with them and capable of doing this work effectively,†Kozyulin said. Beyond the need to modernize its weapon platforms, one of the major problems facing the Russian land forces is the quality of personnel. The Russian military is focusing on creating a hybrid land force — not completely reliant on conscripts, but not fully volunteer — which has been partially successful, Pukhov said. But these efforts have been stifled by a lack of quality non-commissioned officers, he continued. “We still have a huge problem with NCO corps. In all professional armies, it's NCOs that run the army, but we have this gap; we have soldiers and senior officers, but not NCOs. That is why there is hazing, and abuse, and you name it,†he said. But overall, Kozyulin argued, the land forces are not a priority for the Russian military, which is devoting most of its resources into nuclear, air and sea modernization. “Still, they will benefit from the overall modernization effort, as they’ll get new communications, electronic warfare, and air defense systems … not to mention the new samples of tanks, artillery, missiles, anti-tank and other systems,†he concluded.
  21. eddo36

    Firepower Upgrade Planned for GDLS Strykers

    It only has to be deployed once, right?
  22. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_budget_of_the_United_States As you can clearly see, most of US military budget goes to air power (planes, drones), ships, and missile defense. Only a very small percentage of the budget goes to ground forces's R&D.
  23. (CNN) - After an American commando died kicking in a door during a raid in Afghanistan, the top commander of U.S. Special Operations vowed to prevent similar tragedies. Two years later, the U.S. military is closer than ever to putting Iron Man on the front lines -- or at least something that closely mirrors the superhero's tech-forward suit of armor. Unlike Hollywood's, the suit won't give its operator the ability to fly, but the real-life body armor may have one leg up on the fictional version: The military's suit will be made of liquid armor that can solidify on command. Fitted with the protective gear -- the Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit, or TALOS -- troops would be more lethal and better protected, particularly the vulnerable first soldier to breach a compound. An amalgam of academics, defense industry types and Pentagon personnel are trying to fine-tune the battery-powered exoskeleton, which would reduce strain on the body, provide superior ballistic protection and in-helmet technologies to boost communications and visibility. "This is a program that we started after we lost an operator on a mission. The first guy coming into a particular building was engaged and unfortunately was mortally wounded. And in the wake of that, we asked ourselves, 'Couldn't we do better in terms of protecting him, of giving him a better advantage when he's at the most vulnerable point that we put our operators?'" said Gen. Joseph Votel, head of U.S. Special Operations Command. Votel took over the TALOS program launched by his predecessor, Adm. William McRaven. Pentagon spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Matt Allen said the Defense Department does "not know how much TALOS will cost," saying only that the Special Operations Command "has resourced an adequate amount of funds" to develop the suit. A Defense Tech report cited by former Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn in his 2014 "Wastebook" cited an estimated $80 million price. While many of the suit's technologies already exist, the TALOS researchers are tasked with adapting those technologies into a product that's both advanced and maneuverable. The goal: "To give that operator the advantage when he is most vulnerable," Votel said. The TALOS program has churned out several prototypes and is on track to deliver a first-generation suit by August 2018. Votel said research on the TALOS suit has also been a boon in other areas, helping the military develop improved technologies related to lightweight armor and communications systems. "It's serving as a spin-off for us," he said.
  24. What about for the police in your country? Would you make them safer to save you or let them drop a bomb in the building you happen to be in?
  25. Defense News — Post-Afghanistan missions will likely be dispersed and unpredictable, creating unique challenges for leaders who develop the gear Marines need to defeat the enemy. Framing those efforts is Expeditionary Force 21, the Corps' 10-year road map that predicts Marines will be conducting crisis response missions that could leave small teams of Marines deployed independently for weeks at a time, said Lt. Gen. Robert Walsh, who recently took the helm of Marine Corps Combat Development Command here. Technology is what allows squads to operate independently over large swaths of land, he said, giving radio communications in Afghanistan as an example. "If those small units had not had the ability to call for fires, support and [medical evacuations], we would not have put them out there," he said. But for squads to operate that way over even greater distances, they will need better command and control and a host of new gear that officials with MCCDC, Combat Development and Integration and the Futures Directorate are working to develop. Further complicating that mission are looming "hybrid" threats, which Walsh described as nation states employing conventional and non-conventional tactics on a single battlefield. That would mean Marines could face an Iraq-style insurgency and a well-funded conventional military at the same time, he said. It's the sort of emerging threats seen in the Asia-Pacific region, where China is jockeying for influence, or in Europe where Russia is meddling. Similar threats exist in places like Iraq, Libya and Syria, along with other cities around the globe. Gear for all those contingencies must be purchased and fielded carefully in this constrained budget environment. "There is not enough money going around," Walsh said. "It is a pretty austere time. Making sure we get it right and spend the money the right way so we can get the most combat capability is a real critical part of this." Here is a look at some top priorities for Walsh's command. Near-term threats The service is about to field about 1,000 recently purchased PRC-117G Tactical Radios, with one going out to every infantry squad. The radio, which can transmit and receive ultra and very high frequencies, or link to a tactical satellite, was previously reserved for platoon commanders, said Brig. Gen. (sel.) Roger Turner, the director of the Capabilities Development Directorate. Giving one to each squad means they can remain connected while spread out. The radios will begin hitting the fleet in about four months. The radios could also be synchronized with tablets and other smart devices to provide intelligence to Marines on long MV-22 Osprey flights. The service is also trying to buy portable communications networks that fit on Humvees, called "networks on the move," Turner said. The system has been used by I Marine Expeditionary Force with great success, he said, so enough have been purchased to field across II and III MEFs by the end of 2017. KC-130J Super Hercules and MV-22 Osprey aircraft could eventually receive the same system to provide command and control capabilities in transit. The Marine Corps' vehicle portfolio is also getting a face-lift. The anti-tank variant of the Light Armored Vehicle will receive a significant upgrade by 2017. The vehicle will have an advanced anti-tank missile and targeting suite that allows on-the-move target identification. The upgrade also fixes reliability issues with the weapon system, which sometimes jams when it's raised. The service is in the process of upgrading its Amphibious Assault Vehicle with better, lighter armor that doesn't affect how well it operates in water; blast mitigating seats; and other safety changes set for completion in 2019. The Corps also plans to soon field the Block 2 Ground/Task Oriented Radar, a towed system that can determine the origin of hostile fire for counter-strikes. Officials are also continuing work on non-lethal weapons, including a mortar that can spray an area with a cluster of flash-bang-like devices to disperse crowds in an urban setting. Future contingencies Brig. Gen. Julian Alford is leading the charge to meet tomorrow's threats at the Futures Directorate. He envisions a future in which Marines could be called on to fight in chaotic, urban settings along coastlines with formidable defenses, including missiles. That could force ships to remain far out at sea and Marines to punch inland as shock troops. "The Third World is moving to cities," Alford said. "The cities are on the coast line. People are going to run out of food, water and energy and then they are going to fight over it." Marines will need the gear and doctrine to meet those threats, said Alford, who is working to update EF-21, which was rolled out as a working document. In the urban littorals, Marines will be fighting on "four floors" he said, citing Marine Corps studies predicting the future security environment 15 to 30 years out. That means Marines could be required to carry out complex missions — like evacuating friendly forces off rooftops — at the same time they're detaining targets a floor below, engaging in unbridled combat on a floor lower, all while pursuing insurgents through urban streets and tunnels. Also vital on future battlefields will be tools that help Marines meet the "golden-hour" medical challenge. Marine Corps Special Operations Command has successfully deployed small vertical takeoff and landing unmanned aerial systems that can be used in congested urban settings that could deliver medical supplies to Marines. What keeps Alford up at night is ensuring young Marines who deploy have what they need for the mission at hand. Marines don't say "no" when they're called to respond to a crisis, he said, and it's his job to make deploying troops have what they need. "What we do is we figure it out on the backs of unbelievable young Americans," Alford said. "...That is our job as senior leaders — to reduce that kid's risk of dying."