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Issue N° 36 – November / Décember 2017

Eu r o p e a n D ef en ce R e v i e w Armoured vehicles: from the battlefield to paramilitary and police duties South American Military Aircraft Requirements Improving soldiers’ effectiveness with new equipment


© Natcom - - 01 47 30 31 32 - Photos : Sirpa Terre, Mer et Air – DCI


Eu r o p e a n D ef en ce R e v i e w 

Issue n o. 36



Armoured vehicles: from the battlefield to paramilitary and police duties By Paolo Valpolini



Meet the CZ P-10 – Editorial


South American Military Aircraft Requirements – By David Oliver



Improving soldiers’ effectiveness with new equipment – By Paolo Valpolini


Special Weapons for Special Purposes By Nikolaï Novichkov

Publisher: Joseph Roukoz Editor-in-chief: David Oliver European Defence Review (EDR) is published by European Defence Publishing SAS

EDR – November / December 2017


29 3

Armoured vehicles: from the battlefield to paramilitary and police duties

© GIGN Mika

By Paolo Valpolini

M Renault Trucks Defense Sherpa Light is in service with

the French Gendarmerie GIGN special unit, fitted with an assault ladder.

While for military forces the use of heavily armoured vehicle is the rule, for security and police forces this is the exception. Or was it? With the advent of terrorism the role of police units in Europe is shifting and more and more sub-units are being equipped with military-type weapons to counter assaults with AK-type firearms, heavier body armour and, in some cases, armoured vehicles, often derived from military production, but also purposely produced, the latter often featuring protection levels according to protection standards different from military STANAGs. Today the most widely recognised is the VPAM BRV 2009, which compared to the older BRV 1999 takes into consideration projectiles fired from any angle against anywhere on the vehicle and features nine different levels, while the old system had only seven. 4

November / December 2017 – EDR



esides special police units, also border police formations, which operate in open areas and with potentially aggressive neighbouring countries, are also equipped with military-style vehicles. As the difference between homeland security and military security is reduced, the number of armoured vehicles proposed by the industry is increasing, thus it is worth having a look at what the market is currently proposing. Hit by numerous terrorist events, France is among the European nations which police elite units have been equipped since some time with armoured vehicles. After having acquired derivatives of cash transport armoured vehicles the RAID (Recherche, Assistance, Intervention, Dissuasion), the point unit of the Police Nationale, acquired some PVP (Petit Véhicule Protégé) from Panhard Defense, part of Volvo Group Governmental Sales (VGGS), this vehicle being also widely used by the French Army. Also known as Dagger, this vehicle has a 5.5 t gross vehicle weight (GVW) and can carry three-four police officers that are protected up to STANAG Level 2 from ballistic threats. Powered by a 160 hp engine, it can reach 105 km/h on road, and is easily transportable in a C-130 class aircraft. The PVP/Dagger should also be deployed by some of the 10 GIPN (Groupes d’Intervention de la Police Nationale), the territorial special units of the Police Nationale present in the major French EDR – November / December 2017

M The PVP Patrol vehicle developed and manufactured

by Panhard Defense can host up to four police officers and is in service with the French Police. towns and in the overseas territories. The BRI/BAC (Brigade de Recherche et d’Intervention/Brigade Anti Commando) also deploys such vehicles. Due to its dimensions the PVP/Dagger is for reconnaissance and for transporting small teams. To carry out deliberate assaults the RAID received in leasing from Renault Trucks Defense (RTD), also part of VGGS, a Sherpa Light APC, this armoured 4 x 4 being able to transport up to eight police officers plus a crew of two under higher protection, its modular armour allowing to reach up to STANAG Level 3. At 11 t GVW, the Sherpa Light is proposed with different propulsion options, has an internal volume of over 10 m3, ad can reach 110 km/h. The same vehicle is in service with the GIGN (Groupe d’Intervention de la Gendarmerie Nationale), the French Gendarmerie special unit, which acquired two of them in the assault ladder configuration, the GIGN being specialised also in interventions on airplanes. The modular platform 5

© P. Valpolini

M A PVP, also known as Dagger, belonging to the RAID, the special antiterrorism/hostage rescue unit of the French Police Nationale; it is distributed also to the territorial special elements spread over the French territory.

N ACMAT, specialised in high mobility trucks,


developed a series of armoured vehicles, the Bastion being proposed also to police units.


November / December 2017 – EDR

© Nexter

installed over the Sherpa is fitted with a hydraulic ramp and allows access at a maximum height of 8.65 metres, sufficient to reach the upper deck of airplanes such as the B-747 and the A380. RTD is proposing its Sherpa Light also in the APX XL version, which features a higher internal volume and five doors instead of three, allowing a quicker egress of the officers on board. RTD also proposes in its security portfolio its 6x6 Higuard, that obtained contracts in the Middle and Far East; based on the Sherpa medium chassis, this 21 t armoured truck can host a crew of two and ten dismounts, and features a STANG Level 3 ballistic protection, while if a higher protection is required the company can provide its VAB Mk III 6x6 in the internal security, the vehicle carrying the same number of personnel hosted by the Higuard. The third pillar of VGGS, ACMAT, offers its Bastion 4 x 4 with a 12 t GVW and 2 + 8 seats protected at NATO Level 3. Back to French units, Nexter leased a Titus 6x6 to the Police RAID unit during the COP21 event held in Paris in December 2015, less than one month after the terrorist events in and around Paris. Based on a Tatra 6x6 chassis with swinging semi-axles, this 2 t vehicle can carry a three-man crew and 12 dismounts that egress via a power operated rear ramp. Its considerable payload allows increasing the protection from all round Level 2 to all round Level 4. Nexter proposes a SWAT version fitted with an assault ladder, as well as a water cannon truck version, with mast-mounted optronic observation system. EDR – November / December 2017

M N  exter leased a Titus 6x6 to the RAID Police

unit during some major events in Paris, to increase the unit capabilities adding a heavy armoured vehicle to their portfolio. Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles of Germany recently bagged the first police order for its Survivor R 4 x 4, based on a militarised MAN TGM truck chassis, fitted with a monocoque cabin. Jointly developed with Achleitner, it hosts a crew of two and up to 10 police officers in the rear cabin. Available in different configurations, with one or two doors per side and a double door at the back, it is powered by a 330 hp diesel engine and has a 10.9 t curb weight with a 4.1 t payload. Ballistic protection is at Level 3 according to STANAG 4569, while protection against mines is at Level 4a, add on kits being available to further improve protection. The original vehicle height is of 2.7 meters, however the first police customer, the Saxony SEK special unit, asked for a higher roof, height having thus been increased by 250mm. The other main German vehicles producer, KMW, developed the Dingo for the military market, eyeing also at the paramilitary. Based on a Unimog chassis, the first model had a GVW 0f 8.8 t, a payload of 1.4 t and was powered by a 240 hp engine. The Dingo 2 succeded the Dingo 1; it is based on Unimog U 5000 upgraded chassis and its payload is increased 7

© P. Valpolini © Rheinmetall

M A model of the Titus in assault ladder version proposed by Nexter to French and foreign police forces.

M Although the German Police is apparently not very keen in acquiring armoured vehicles,

Rheinmetall proposed its Survivor R, two vehicles having been acquired by one Land. 8

November / December 2017 – EDR

at 3.0 t, GVW being 12.5 t. It is this version that has been acquired by the Police, hereto only two vehicles having been ordered for the time being. KMW is also proposing its Dingo 2 HD as well as the GFF4 in the 4 x 4 configuration, developed in cooperation with Iveco DV of Italy that provides the chassis. The Dingo HD has a14.5 t GVW and a 3 t payload, with increased protection, while the GFF4 is an 18 t vehicle powered by a 400 hp engine that can host up to 10 officers. To date none of these vehicles seems to have been acquired by the Police. While the German Police seems reluctant to adopt military derivatives, this is certainly not the case for another NATO nation, Turkey. With its strong security system based on two forces, Gendarmerie and Police, engaged not only in public order but also in security duties in rural areas, it is not surprising to see Turkish vehicles manufacturers consideromg the paramilitary market a key output for their production. Otokar, one of the vehicles industry champions in Turkey, provided national security services with

various types of vehicles, and is currently proposing numerous wheeled armoured vehicles that can have a dual use, for military and paramilitary purposes. Leveraging the success of its Cobra, adopted by the Turkish security forces and by numerous other military and paramilitary forces, Otokar developed the Cobra II, which has also been adopted by Turkish security formations. The latter has a GVW which is over the double of the original Cobra, 13 t versus 6.3 t, the engine output shifting from 190 to 360 hp to maintain a sufficient power-to-weight ratio. The new vehicle carries the same number of persons, a three-man crew, driver, commander and gunner, plus seven dismounts in the rear, and features different independent suspensions. A longer vehicle, it allows more internal space to the troops while also providing a higher protection level, although this remains classified. The payload allows to add protection thanks to the modular armour concept adopted. In 2013 Otokar designed the Ural 4 x 4 light tactical armoured vehicle to meet the present needs and future expectations of the internal security

100% Ready For Your Missions



M The Dingo 2, here in the Heavy Duty version, is the KMW main

proposal to Police units, two Dingo 2 having been acquired by the German Police. 10


November / December 2017 – EDR

© Rheinmetall

M This pictures shows well the efficiency of the Survivor R suspensions, that provide the vehicle with considerable cross-country capabilities.


M Based on an Iveco Trakker chassis and fitted with

a heavily protected armoured cabin, the GFF4 is definitely a high-end vehicle when considered from a Police standpoint. forces. Based on a 4 × 4 chassis with independent front suspensions and rigid rear axle is fitted with a welded steel hull that provides a high level of protection against small arms fire, splinters as well as some type of mines and IEDs. This 6.4 t GVW vehicle is powered by a 168 hp diesel engine coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission, the three door configuration can carry up to 10 personnel including the driver while the five-door vehicle can carry up to nine personnel including the driver. The Ural is serving in the Turkish inventory and abroad both for military and paramilitary duties. Nurol Makina, originally an industrial company specialised in the delivery of turnkey industrial plants and large scale contracting regarding steel construction and machinery production, then started getting involved in armoured vehicles production. Part of the Nurol group, which owns 51% of FNSS, EDR – November / December 2017

one of the key players in the heavy armoured vehicles production in Turkey, Nurol Makina deals with lighter wheeled vehicles, many of them aimed at the security market. Recently unveiled, the Ilgaz II succeeds the Ilgaz, featuring a higher payload and protection while maintaining the two plus seven capacity and the five doors configuration, side doors featuring one firing port each. The latest version has a curb weight of 7.5 t with a 1.3t payload, and is powered by a 300 hp engine coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission. On road it is used in 4 x 2 mode, 4 x 4 being used in cross country operations, suspensions being made of coil springs and shock absorbers. Considering operations in rural areas, such as border surveillance missions, Nurol Makina is also proposing its Ejder Yalçın 4 x 4, a vehicle developed for military use thus with much higher protection especially against mines and IEDs (up to Level 4a/3b), thanks to its monocoque V-shaped hull. With an 11 t gross weight and a 4 t payload, it can carry up to 11 police officers. Powered by a 375 hp engine, it travels permanently in four-wheel drive mode, and is fitted with double wishbone fully independent suspension on all wheels. 11


M At 18 t GVW the GFF4 is proposed for heavy

duty missions, especially against potential actions carried out by terrorist groups. Derived from an Israeli design, the Navigator by Hatehof (now Carmor), the Kirpi is built in Turkey by BMC and has been adopted as the MRAP for the armed forces. An 18 t curb weight vehicle with a 1.6 t payload, it can host up to 13 seats. Powered by a 375 hp diesel engine with a 6-speed automatic gearbox, it provides a high protection from ballistic and mines/IED threats to its occupants. Sold to numerous countries, some 200 Kirpis are also in service with Turkish security forces. With 20 armoured vehicles in its portfolio, the Streit Group is definitely one of the major producers of vehicles aimed at the paramilitary market. In the below 6.5 t range we find two vehicles, the Cobra and the Cougar. The former is available in 3- and 5-door configurations, capable of carrying a crew of two plus respectively eight or seven officers in the back seats. With a curb weight of 4,760kg and a GVW of 5,760kg, the Cobra features front independent suspensions and is offered with two alternative powerpacks providing respectively 268 or 305hp. Ballistic protection is at level FB6 according to European EN 1522/1523 ballistic standards, that is 7.62 x 51 NATO M80 rounds, with mine protection against two DM51 antipersonnel mines, however as option protection can be increased to FB7 and against a DM-31 antitank mine. Slightly smaller 12

and marginally lighter, the Cougar has the same protection, can host up to eight people including crew, selectable 4-wheel drive, front and rear rigid axles, and can be powered by 228 or 268 hp engines. Looking at the 6.5-10 t range, three other vehicles are proposed to the paramilitary market, the Spartan, the Warrior, and the recently unveiled Gepard. Starting from the newest vehicle of the Streit portfolio, the Gepard has a curb weight of 7,300kg and a 1,500kg payload, and can carry up to eight crew, seating configuration being flexible allowing to answer customers requirements. A rear cargo area is available, the Cougar being suitable for installing a vehicle borne assault system. With 300 or 381 hp powerpack available, it maintains the same protection level of the aforementioned vehicles. The Spartan features the same powerpack and weights, same number of seats, but its architecture is quite different as it has a more linear troop compartment, no cargo area and a rear door. Also the Warrior has similar features, but the longer wheelbase allows for a greater number of seats with a two-man crew and 12 dismounts seated on benches being carried on board. Shifting to heavier vehicles, protection becomes higher and military standards are applied. The Gladiator and the Scorpion have the same weights, curb being 11 t while payload is 2 t, but are quite different. Streit defines the former as an AHV (Armoured Heavy Vehicle), mostly devoted to troop transport with a basic Level 2 protection, 2a/b against mines, ballistic options for Level 3 and 4 being available as well November / December 2017 – EDR

N Otokar’s Cobra II is the successor of the Cobra, which is in service in numbers

N The Ural was designed by Otokar keeping in mind

the needs of security forces, and has now evolved in a logistic support vehicle for armed forces.

EDR – November / December 2017


© Otokar

© Otokar

with Turkish security forces and with many other military and paramilitary customers.

© Nurol Makina

M The Ilgaz II is the successor of the Ilgaz

The Gepard is the latest addition to the Streit Group portfolio, its GVW being short of 9 t and its rear cargo area allowing to install an assault ladder system. P

© P. Valpolini

and is proposed by Nurol Makina for police units operating in difficult terrain.

N In service with Turkish security services,

© Nurol Makina

the Ejder Yalçin is a heavily protected vehicle, especially when the mine and IED threat is taken into consideration.


November / December 2017 – EDR

P The Gladiator is a heavily protected vehicle proposed

N Based on the ISV Otokar developed a water

cannon version, here in the 4x4 configuration; a 6x6 version is also available, fitted with two water cannons and a bigger tank.

EDR – November / December 2017


© Otokar

© P. Valpolini

by the Streit Group for troop transport on not too complex terrain, being fitted with rigid axles, other vehicles from the group answering heavier cross-country needs.



ferent chassis, which can considerably impact the size of the water tank and the number of While most of the vehicles described water cannons available, all controlled by a in this article are dual-purpose, as they can central unit within the crew compartment, be used for military or police/paramilitary protected at B6 level, the body being designed duties, eventually in different configurations, with anti-climbing features. The vehicle is some armoured vehicles are definitely been also equipped with a 360° tear gas duct sysdesigned for police-use only. tem and with a front dozer blade. Also Nurol Makina proposes a water cannon vehicle, the Ejder Toma, based on a 4 x 4 chassis powered by a 286 hp engine. As all those vehicles it can spray different combinations of water, dye, tear gas and foam mixtures, the water tank hosting 5,000 litres. On the same chassis the company built its Ejder Kunter, which is available in a 4 x 4 configuration with dedicated protected cabins developed according to customer’s needs. Otokar ISV is an 18 t GVW vehicle with ladder frame chassis designed for M With its 18m3 of protected volume heavy duty and off-road use powered by a 430 Renault Trucks Defense MIDS can be fitted in hp engine with automatic 12-speed gearbox, different configurations, from troop transport, two-speed transfer box and 4 x 4 permanent to command post and other. drive. It can be provided in a variety of configurations, personnel carrier, command post, n France RTD proposes the MIDS (MIDlum Sécurité, being based on a Midlum prisoner carrier, ambulance, and can be fitted with a number of options including turrets, truck chassis); at 14 t it can host a twoman crew and 10 dismounts with their public grenade launchers, sound cannon, dozer order equipment thanks to its 18m3 protected blade or crowd pusher. The lean and flat outer body panels prevent rioters from climbing volume; this allows to use it also as a comon the vehicle, and the inclined rooftop does mand post, hosting a crew of two and five not allow flammable and flaring materials, officers running the CP. Protected against like Molotov cocktail stick on the roof. ISV ballistic threats as well as against stones and typically has a crew of 16 people including petrol bombs, it can be fitted with a dozer the commander and driver. It is also available blade. Available in 4 x 2 or 4 x 4 configurain water cannon configuration, that comes tions, the MIDS has been sold to numerous wit ha 100 hp auxiliary engine, 6,000 litres European, Middle East and Latin American tank, and gas, dye, foam injection capability. countries. The Streit Group Armored Riot Control vehicle proposed on a Mercedes-Benz A 6 x 4 or 6x6 version is also available, fitted with a 10,000 litres tank and two water cantruck chassis with a 320 hp engine is fitted with two water cannons that can shoot at over nons. Otokar’s ISV is currently fielded in its numerous variants by various international 60 meters with a water tank of 6,000 litres; customers. the company is ready to produce it on dif-



November / December 2017 – EDR

© Otokar

N Otokar’s Internal Security Vehicle, here in the troop transport version; the ISV structure has been designed to limit potential aggressions during riots.

P The Ejder Toma is a watercannon

vehicle developed and produced by Nurol Makina of Turkey; it’s water tank contains 5,000 litres of water.

© Nurol Makina

as an increase for the underbelly protection against DM-31 mines. Powered by a 276 hp engine it has front and rear rigid axles and carries up to 12 police officers. The Scorpion is much more oriented towards cross-country due to its front and rear independent suspensions; it is powered by a 300 hp engine. Five doors allow rapid egress of the 10 officers on board, baseline protection being Level 3 ballistic and 2a/b against mines, which can be increased to Level 4 and against DM-31 antitank mines. The heavier of the lot, the Typhoon, is a fully fledged MRAP with a curb weight of 13 t and a 2 t payload, independent suspensions and two propulsion options, 300 and 400 hp. With a Level 2 all round protection, this can be increased up to Level 4 ballistic and against the DM-31 underbelly. It can carry a crew of two and eight police officers in the rear. The Streit Group does not communicate much on its customers, but according to the company all the aforementioned vehicles are in service in black EDR – November / December 2017

or blue painting with police and paramilitary units around the world. Another major player in the military/security vehicles field is definitely the International Armored Group, specialised in armoured commercial and tactical vehicle, with locations in the United States of America, Canada, United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Bulgaria, United Kingdom, Iraq and Pakistan. The latest addition to its portfolio is the Rila MRAP vehicle, unveiled at DSEI 2017 and based on Iveco’s Trakker chassis and automotive components. The welded steel monocoque ensures STANAG Level 3 protection to the 12 officers that access the Rila via two front doors and one rear door. The “V” shape and the under-belly armour package provide a 3a/b 4a protection against blast, making the Rila 17

O The International

© P. Valpolini

Armored Group Jaws is based on a Toyota Land Cruiser 200 chassis, can be fitted with an assault ladder, and is in service with the Malaysian Police.

© Nurol Makina

a high-end vehicle for border patrol duties in highly dangerous areas. At IDEX 2015 the company unveiled its Sentry, a personnel carrier based on the Toyota Land Cruiser 70 chassis, with a CEN B6 protection against ballistic and some underbelly blast protection. Capable to seat up to eight officers, it is available with diesel and petrol engines. Also based on a Toyota chassis, that of the Land Cruiser 200, the Jaws has the same transport capacity and a slightly higher protection, CEN B7; in 2017 Malaysia announced that it had acquired eight such vehicles for the Polis Diraja Malaysia, the Royal Malaysian Police. The Jaws can be fitted with a tactical elevated system to allow special teams to access buildings, aircrafts, trains, buses and various other elevated targets. To diversify its offer, IAG built its Sentinel on the Ford F550 chassis, than can be powered both by diesel or petrol engines. The ten police officers on board are protected at level B7, with some floor blast protection. J 18

M Nurol Makina’s Ejder Kunter

features the same chassis of the Toma watercannon and its protected cabin can be fitted for different roles.

November / December 2017 – EDR



he STATUS Company ( has published a book titled “Russian Weapons in Syrian Conflict”. The book’s editor, Prof. Valery Polovinkin, PhD, Honored Scientist of the Russian Federation, told EDR that it has been the first analysis of the employment of Russian arms in Syria. The book offers information about the latest and upgraded Russian-made materiel proven in combat in the Syrian theater of operations since September 30, 2015. “The book is the first comprehensive assessment of the effectiveness of up-to-date Russian-made weapons in a real war under the harsh climatic conditions and the first analysis of possible changes to the global arms market, caused by the performance of Russian armament in Syria,” the scientist said. According to him, the latest Russian materiel the military is transitioning to should be fit for use in various climes around the world. “We realize full well that combat-proven weapons enjoy a higher demand on the international arms market than the ones lacking a combat record do. Everybody wants reliable hardware tested in battle, because they usually pay a lot of money for it,” Valery Polovinkin stressed. “Previously, Russian arms usually lagged behind US ones in this respect. As is known, the United

States fights on all continents and its weapons are always tested in battle. Now, Russia has the same opportunity owing to the friendly policies of Syria’s leadership,” the scientist noted. “We have tested all of our advanced weapons and demonstrated their capabilities to the whole of the world. This is especially important because many of the current and potential customers for our military gear are situated the same climatic zone or in the ones similar enough”, he emphasized. The book comprising six chapters provides detailed analysis of the Syrian operation of the Russian Aerospace Force, Navy and Army. Of special interest is the chapter covering Western military experts’ analysis of Russian weapons. The global arms market situation preceding Russia’s joining the Syrian conflict has been analyzed and a market assessment has been made based on the combat record of Russian arms in Syria. All information in the book is complemented with tables, graphs, charts and 200 color photographs courtesy of the Russian Defense Ministry and TASS Russian News Agency. STATUS Director General Andrei Shansherov told EDR that Russian Weapons in Syrian Conflict has been published both in Russian and in English.


Meet the CZ P-10 For decades, the CZ brand has been synonymous with high quality yet affordable self-loading pistols with an external hammer. Now, Česká zbrojovka a.s. has decided to answer the pleas of their numerous supporters and offer them a pistol in the increasingly more popular configuration – a striker fired model. The result is an entirely new line, the CZ P-10.


he resulting CZ P-10 pistols represent a modern version of its class, pleasing to the eye of the shooter with their sleek design and at the same time aggressive shape – unlike many rival models, the CZ P-10 is so original that you will recognize it at first sight. Regarding the construction, you will find everything you require from a modern striker fired pistol. The CZ P-10’s modified Browning system slide locks into an enlarged ejection port, it has a partially pre-cocked linear striker, it is very safe despite an absence of a manual safety, it has a durable polymer body with interchangeable backstraps, a high capacity magazine... But that is not all. It is no coincidence that three design features of the new CZ pistol have obtained patent protection.

A nice 25 N

M At Milipol CZ unveils its new P-10 striker fired

pistol; we can note the large trigger guard adopted in this new design. 20

Two patents concern the trigger and striking mechanism, and sets the mind right of anyone who may have thought that it was impossible to come up with anything new in this field. The trigger mechanism brings an original way of applying principles so typical for CZ pistols, that is, using the trigger as a single-arm lever. This system allows the forces to be transmitted “one-way”, creating an ideal situation. The result is a relatively short and completely smooth trigger travel with a linearly increasing pull weight reaching its peak point just before firing. The factory set maximum trigger pull weight is a standard 25 N. For pistols of a primarily defence and service nature, it is a nice and still completely safe value our rivals can only dream of. The 4mm beautifully readable reset allowing shooters to repeat shots rapidly is also excellent, An automatic striker block guaranteeing drop safety is a standard. This is another original element which, thanks to its simplicity and effectiveness, has rightly been granted a patent protection. Then there is the, today, obligatory safety in the trigger blade. Together with the trigger and striking mechanism, November / December 2017 – EDR

M More and more police and military units are

considering striker fired handguns and CZ decided to answer those requirements with its brand new P-10, currenty available in 9x19 mm calibre. the CZ P-10 is an extremely safe weapon whereby successive disabling of security features comes easy with correct handling. The CZ P-10 is characterized by having the slide guides on the outside. Because of this, the width of the frame is reduced and there are two pairs of cocking grip surfaces on the distinctive protruding sides of the slide. Nothing was spared on their design. The upper edges of the slide at the front are slanted for easier drawing and holstering, a “trademark” of CZ polymer frame pistols ever since the appearance of the CZ P-07 DUTY.

Digital Firearm Ergonomic Design The frame of the CZ P-10, made from carefully selected material reinforced with glass fibre, is a result of the practical application of the latest scientific methods in industrial design. Česká zbrojovka has established cooperation with a specialized university facility, resulting in a unique methodology called DiFEND (Digital Firearm Ergonomic Design). With this method, a biomechanically accurate human model is used to enable designing the best ergonomics for the anticipated target market. In the case of the P-10, this method was combined with an analysis of the ideal checkering, a crucial feature especially during prolonged shooting or shooting with sweaty hands. EDR – November / December 2017

The grip of the CZ P-10 looks simple but as soon as you grip it, you will know that you are holding something exceptional. The pistol will stay in the ideal position at all times, it will not move about even in a very sweaty hand, targeting is natural, the muzzle climb is minimal and all hits will be in alignment. The size of the grip can be partly altered with the easily interchangeable backstraps which come in an S, M and L size, and the comfort of the grip is significantly transformed by using an extended magazine baseplate. The characteristic shape of the CZ P-10 is further enhanced by a large trigger guard with a roughened front edge, above which there are the tried and tested roughened surfaces on the sides of the frame for the safe “resting” of the index finger of the shooting hand and for a firmer grip with the thumb of the other hand. On the front of the frame, there is the standardized mounting rail with one transversal groove in the compact design models.

Bonuses that count The CZ P-10 pistols are one of the few on the market that offer a fully ambidextrous control of the slide stop and the magazine catch. Together with the ambidextrous magazine catch, CZ polymer pistols will now also have universal magazines with an additional opening in the front of the case. Apart from the striker fired P-10, they can also be used for the CZ P-07 and CZ P-09 hammer models. As part of the changes, the new magazines have a distinctive red follower which is clearly visible through the ejection port when the slide is caught in 21

M CZ designers did their best to think innovative,

O Fully ambidextrous, the

the result being that three design features of the P-10 have obtained patent protection. the rear position and is easily spotted for example when dropped on the ground. The big advantage of the new CZ P-10 series is its superior durability, the life time of barrels is at least 50,000 rounds and of smaller parts it is 30,000 rounds. A significant contribution to this is also the highly durable finish. Another step forward in the P-10 is the use of stainless steel for all other internal metal parts which makes the weapon completely resistant to corrosion. Users will also undoubtedly appreciate the excellent sights. The basic CZ P-10 model has an original rear sight with an added edge for one-handed cocking, for example, against a belt. The rear sight is made from high quality aluminium alloy (therefore it is also anticorrosive) and is anodized in black. Both the rear sight and the front sight are accentuated with three luminescent dots.

Compact with an impressive capacity The CZ P-10 was created as a comprehensive model series ranging from a full size pistol to a subcompact. The first to enter the market is the CZ P-10 C, ranking amongst the currently most sought after category, the compacts. In fact, it is a full service 22

P-10 ergonomy was developed in cooperation with a university institute the work resulting in a unique methodology called DiFEND (Digital Firearm Ergonomic Design). and defence striker fired pistol in 9mm Luger (9x19) with an impressive firepower capacity of 15+1 cartridges (17+1 with a baseplate). In the first phase, the CZ P-10 C is destined for the insatiable US market. Other regions can look forward to seeing this remarkable weapon at the turn of 2017/2018. J


CZ P-10 C calibre 9x19

overall length 187mm

height 132mm

width 32.2mm

barrel length 102mm

sight radius 163mm

magazine capacity 15, or 17

weight of weapon unloaded 0.760kg November / December 2017 – EDR

N The Argentine Air Force is taking delivery of Tecnam P2002JF basic trainers assembled by Aerotec Argentina S.A.

© Tecnam

South American Military Aircraft Requirements By David Oliver South America is potentially one of the largest markets for modern combat aircraft to replace air force fleets of ageing fighters dominated by the Northrop Grumman F-5 Tiger IIs and the Israel Aircraft Industries Kfir. However the region is undergoing a severe economic down turn which will delay any large-scale acquisitions in the near future. Argentina The Argentinian Air Force is investing heavily into flight training capability with several new types being introduced at the same time. Following a rigorous and completive selection process the Italian Tecnam P2002JF basic trainer was selected in September 2016. A contract for eight aircraft followed with the aircraft being assembled by Aerotec Argentina S.A at its Mendoza facility. Delivery of ten Grob G120TP-A turboprop trainers to the Argentinian Air Force has been completed although one was written off in October 2017. The US State Department has approved a Foreign Military Sale (FMS) of up to 24 Beechcraft T-6C+ Texan II turboprop trainers to Argentina. The estimated $300 million sale aims to replace the Argentine Air Force’s Embraer EMB-312 advanced trainers. The first four 12 T-6C+ Texan IIs of a confirmed order for twelve have been delivered. EDR – November / December 2017

A total of 18 Aerotec Argentina S.A IA-58 Pampa III jet trainer/light attack are to be built for the Argentinian Air Force that has a requirement for an additional 22 improved GT aircraft. Meanwhile the air force is looking to boost its combat capability and its dwindling fleet of A-4AR/OA-4AR Fighting Hawks. The options are to refurbish 12 stored A-4s to flying status, or acquiring 12-14 
Kfir Block 60 upgraded fighters from Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) with J-79 engines and the Elta 2032 active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar. The decision will depend on available funding. Argentina is also a partner in the Embraer KC390 programme with a requirement of six tactical transport aircraft and an UNASUR member with Ecuador and Venezuela for the joint development of a basic/primary trainer aircraft to be built in Argentina as the IA-73 UNASUR 1. Meanwhile, the Argentinian Navy’s plan to acquire five recently retired French Navy Super 23

© David Oliver

P The IA-58 Pampa II jet trainer/light attack

is operated by the Argentine Air Force and are to be supplemented by the upgraded Pampa III. Etendard Modernisé aircraft for €12 million to boost its fleet of 11 Super Etendards is on hold, although it is to procure two new Airbus C-295Ws, one MPA variant and one transport aircraft.

Bolivia The Bolivian Air Force is taking delivery of nine Zlin Z242L aerobatic trainers to replace its Cessna T-41 Mescaleros at the Military Aviation School at Santa Cruz de la Sierra. The government has confirmed that the Bolivian Armed Forces are seeking military modernisation with Russian cooperation. A recently signed agreement includes technical co-operation in training, equipment maintenance, and technology transfers, and seek s to i ncrease equ ipment acqu isit ion co-operation.

The Bolivian Air Force commander has recommended buying Yakovlev Yak-130 “Mitten” advanced jet trainer/ light-attack aircraft to replace its retired 3rd Air Brigade Lockheed/Canadair T-33s and the country is considering the purchase of some Argentinian IA-63 Pampa III training/light attack jet aircraft. The Bolivian Air Force’s Special Operations Air Group based at Cochabamba received its sixth and last Airbus Helicopters AS332 C1e Super Pumas earlier this year.

Brazil While the Brazilian Air force awaits delivery of the first Gripen NG fighters, it is undergoing a large-scale reorganization programme while several ambitious upgrade programmes are suffering from budget constraints. Brazil signed a $5.4 billion contract for 28 single-seat Gripen E and eight two-seat Gripen F aircraft with deliveries set to commence in 2019 and run through to 2024. At the same time 43 AMX A-1A/Bs are being upgraded by Embraer to A-1M configuration, although this number may be reduced, as forty-six F-5E Tiger IIs have been upgraded to F-5EM standard. The Brazilian Air Force has announced a commitment to order 28 Embraer KC-390 twinjet tanker/transport now under development while Argentina, Chile and Colombia intend to join the KC390 programme. Another programme being affected O The Brazilian Air Force has ordered

© Embraer

28 single-seat Gripen E multi-role fighters and eight two-seat Gripen Fs that will be designed and built in Brazil. 24

November / December 2017 – EDR

© David Oliver

by the economic slow down is H225M helicopter production by Helibras, the Brazilian subsidiary of Airbus Helicopters, for the three armed forces. Helibras is also modernising Brazilian Army AS550 A2 Fennec and AS350 L1 Esquilo helicopters. Twelve Brazilian Navy AF-1/1A Skyhawks are being upgraded by Embraer but with the decommissioning of the country’s only carrier, NAé São Paulo, the navy is likely to lose its fixed-wing aircraft in the end. Leonardo is modernising eight of the Brazilian Navy’s AH-1B Super Lynx helicopters as part of a $132 million contract to be completed by 2019.

Chile The Chilean Air Force has taken delivery of a total of nine Block 50 F-16C/D Fighting Falcons to supplement 33 second-hand F-16A/B MLU aircraft that Chile purchased from the Netherlands, many of which are now grounded. Chile has also signed an agreement with Italy for the joint development of the M-345 Highly Efficient Trainer (HET) for basic and advanced training to replace Chilean Air Force’s CASA C-101s and will be jointly manufactured by ENAER and Leonardo. Chile is another member of the KC-390 development programme with a requirement for six aircraft, while a surplus USMC KC-130R tanker/transport has been acquired. Six additional S-70i Blackhawk helicopters are on order to be assembled in Poland for delivery in EDR – November / December 2017

M Twenty-eight Embraer KC-390 twin-jet tanker/transport

aircraft are to be ordered by the Brazilian Air Force.

2018 while the Chilean Army’s Air Cavalry Brigade has taken delivery of 10 Airbus Helicopters AS532AL Cougars of a requirement for 24. Seven Vulcanair P68 Observer 2 SAR aircraft have been delivered to the Chilean Navy which is upgrading its fleet of eight SA 365F/HH-65 Dauphin helicopters at Helibras in Brazil but is likely to perform this upgrade programme in stages, the last being as near as possible to the Brazilian Army’s AS365MBe Pantera.

Colombia The Colombian Air Force has purchased from Israel two IAI Kfir TC-12 two-seat combat trainers from Israel to replace lost aircraft and reinforce its Kfir trainer fleet, and in August 2017 a Kfir Tactical Training Center was inaugurated. In October, the Colombian Air Force announced that it had acquired nine ELM-2052 AESA radar systems from IAI Elta Systems to upgrade the Kfir fleet including the two Kfir TC-12s. Two years ago Vice-Minister of Defence, Javier Perez, announced that within four years the government 25

would acquire new combat aircraft to replace the C-10/12 models Kfirs and the ageing A/OA-37Bs with the objective of improving the capacity against the future challenges, and the new threats that the postFARC conflict represents. Colombian Air Force teams have travelled to Moron Air Base in Spain, to evaluate the Eurofighter, and to the United States to fly the F-16. In its efforts to export the Gripen to Colombia, Saab has sent pilots to hold seminars for the Air Force and hopes that the Swedish Inspectorate of Strategic Product, a State agency, will allow it to export its aircraft. In 2013 Colombia announced that it intended to order twelve Embraer KC-390 tanker/transport to replace its C-130 fleet.

Dominican Republic


The main role of the small Dominican Republic Air Force, which includes a Special Forces battalion, is to intercept aircraft suspected of carrying illegal drugs through its air space. Its “Dragones” squadron equipped with eight A-29 Super Tucanos takes part in regular exercises as part of the Sovereign Skies Programme, an initiative between the United States, Colombian, and Dominican Republic air forces to share best-practices on procedures to detect, track and intercept illegal drugs moving north from South America. Since the programme’s inception, the number of aircraft suspected to traffic drugs through the Dominican Republic dropped from more than 100 annually to almost zero.

The air force has recently taken delivery of a single Tecnam P2000T aircraft equipped for counternarcotics/ISR roles with systems supplied by the United States. It also is taking delivery of two new Bell 412 utility helicopters.

Ecuador The once powerful Ecuadorian Air Force has currently only a few Kfir C-2/CT-2s and former South African Air Force Cheetah-C/Ds that will soon need replacing. Although Ecuador is an UNASUR member involved in the development of the I-73 basic trainer, it is also looking to acquire fifteen new trainers, with an order expected during 2016. The Grob G120TP is a leading contender subject to available funding. The Ecuadorian Army Aviation unit has a large fleet of helicopters and has recently taken delivery of the last of seven Airbus Helicopters AS550C3 Fennecs.

Honduras Honduras is a member of the F-5 Technical Coordination Group but US permission is needed for third parties to undertake anything more than the most basic maintenance of the aircraft. However, it signed an agreement with Israel in November 2016, covering the repair, refurbishment N Colombia is committed to replacing its fleet

of IAI Kfir fighter aircraft but two additional Kfirs are being acquired and all will be upgraded.


M The Dominican Air Force operates

and upgrade of ten F-5E/Fs, ten A/OA-37s, and six Bell UH-1, six Bell-412EP and two Hughes 500D helicopters. Five additional F-5E/F airframes, currently stored in non-f lyable conditions, are also expected to be returned to operational status. However, the contract is still subject to United States approval. Meanwhile two new A-29 Super Tucanos are to be acquired by the Honduran Air Force and six of its surviving EMB-312A trainers are scheduled to be refurbished by Embraer. Only three are currently airworthy and the Brazilian contract will see these aircraft being upgraded along with three more that are currently in storage.

Mexico The Mexican Air Force has been investing heavily in expanding its training and rotarywing capabilities. A total of 25 Grob G120TP basic trainers and 48 Beechcraft T-6C+ Texan II turboprop advanced trainers have been delivered this year, and there is a requirement for additional G120TPs. A total of 18 S-70/UH-60M Blackhawk helicopters are being delivered and Sikorsky Aircraft has accepted a US Army Contracting Command contract to retrofit nine UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters up to their full operational capability for the Mexican Air Force. Delivery of additional six Airbus Helicopters H225Ms is being completed in 2017 and the air force is considering acquiring more Mil Mi-17 helicopters. Two Boeing B737-800 transports are on order to replace the Reconnaissance and Transport Wing’s recently retired Boeing 727s. These contracts have left limited funding allocated for the acquisition of new interceptor EDR – November / December 2017

Embraer A-29 Super Tucano aircraft that also serve with the air forces of Brazil, Colombia and Honduras. aircraft to replace the eight F-5E/Fs currently in service. They are due to be refurbished by RUAG Aviation which maintains the Swiss Air Force’s F-5Es. Deliveries of ten additional Airbus Helicopters AS565MBe Panther helicopters to the Mexican Navy is underway while Rostvertol is upgrading ten Mexican Army Mil Mi-35M attack helicopters.

Paraguay The Paraguayan Government is seeking to buy at least four Grob G115Es or G120TP basic trainers to replace the ENAER Pillans in Paraguayan Air Force service. The Paraguay Air Force also plans to order six KIA KT-1P advanced trainers from the Peruvian production line to replace its EMB312 Tucanos.

Peru The Peruvian Air Force has requested information on the Eurofighter Typhoon, Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, Dassault Rafale, RAC MiG35, Saab Gripen NG and Sukhoi Su-30/35, to replace its fleets of Soviet-era MiG-29s and Su-25s. However, no decision on their replacement is expected in the near future although the air force is considering upgrading its MiG-29s. Sixteen of the 20 KAI T-1P turboprop trainers for Peruvian Air Force are being assembled by the its Servicio de Mantenimiento (SEMAN) at Base 27


Aérea Las Palmas, Lima. The first four aircraft were built in Korea by KAI and they will replace EMB-312 Tucanos in the basic training role at the Academia del Aire at BA Pisco-San Andrés. Apart from the combat aircraft, the Peruvian Air Force has a requirement for two ISR aircraft and replacements for its AB212 and Bo.105LS utility helicopters.


the Honduran Air Force while others serve with Colombian, Guatemalan, Peru Uruguayan air forces. Air Force F-5E/Fs offered by RUAG Aviation. The only new aircraft delivered to the Uruguayan Air Force are two Chinese Y-12 light transport aircraft

Venezuela In the recent past, the Venezuelan Air Force had one of the most up to date inventories in Latin America. However, negotiations for the possible purchase of a second batch of Sukhoi Su-30MK3 fighter aircraft have been abandoned due to the countries economic difficulties, as has a contract for HAIC L-15 advanced jet trainer/ light attack aircraft. Deliveries of 10 Dornier Do 228NG transport aircraft have also been suspended. Many of the Venezuelan Air Force’s aircraft are no longer operational or are currently grounded due to lack of spares. Eight Harbin Z-9 helicopters were ordered to equip Venezuelan Navy’s new Offshore Patrol Vessels but not yet delivered. J © Airbus Helicopters

A competition has been launched for advanced trainer/light attack aircraft to replace the Uruguayan Air Force’s nine A-37B and the recently withdrawn IA-58 Pucaras. Options include new Yak-130 advanced jet trainer/light attack aircraft or ex-Swiss

M Veteran A-37D Dragonfly soldiers on with

O The Mexican Navy has taken

delivery of ten additional Airbus Helicopters AS565MBe Panther SAR helicopters. 28

November / December 2017 – EDR

Improving soldiers’ effectiveness with new equipment By Paolo Valpolini Soldier equipment is a broad title that can include a very wide number of systems. “Shopping” in a major defence exhibition to fill the information bag to compile such an article may bring to writing a whole encyclopaedia. We will thus avoid weapons and sights, that might be the subject of specific further reports, concentrating on the most recent evolutions of “future soldier” systems, navigation, protection and specific equipment that has been unveiled in the latest shows and events.


EDR – November / December 2017

© P. Valpolini

P Rheinmetall received a new order from the Bundeswehr for its IdZ-ES that will bring the total of platoons equipped with the system to 158.

© P. Valpolini

f most “future soldiers” are not anymore “future”, as they are today well in service with many armies, the military and thus the industry have changed quite extensively their approach to the soldiers equipment, systems proposed nowadays being less and less proprietary and more prone to accept other elements, following the open architecture concept. R heinmetall is providing the German Bundeswehr with its IdZ-ES, German acronym for Future Soldier – Expanded System, for which the company bagged a further order in late June 2017. The 310 million Euro contract will allow the German Army to equip 68 infantry platoons in addition to those already ordered that are sufficient for 90 platoons. Beside the German order, Rheinmetall Canada is providing its Argus system to the Canadian Armed Forces as part of the Integrated Soldier System Project, while an undisclosed international customer is using the Gladius, the export variant of the IdZ-ES. Leveraging on this experience Rheinmetall unveiled at DSEI its Gladius 2.0, which is available in three configurations, Light,

© P. Valpolini

Basic and Advanced; aimed at the export market, flexibility is the key issue, thus the new system is radio agnostic (the IdZ-ES was compatible only with Thales Solar 400), and until now four radios have been qualified, Elbit PNR 1000, Harris 7850 Mobile, Rohde & Schwarz MR3000 and Thales Solar 400. The Basic version includes a small PDA with a 5” screen, usually requirements asking for a COTS system, the radio, the headset and the NVG, with augmented reality for Blue Force Tracking. A choice of headset is proposed, either from 3M Peltor, Nacre or Invisio, but other can also be used. The Gladius 2.0 doe not have an electronic backpack as the IdZ-ES or the original Gladius, Rheinmetall Tacnet Soldier battle management system being loaded on the PDA, and being an open architecture software it can integrate information coming from all available sensors providing a common operational 30

M Following the trend, Safran launched the NeoFelis, the export version derived from the Felin V1.3, which increases flexibility and reduces weight.

picture. The Tacnet Soldier can be interfaces with the other two variants of the software, Tacnet Vehice and Tacnet Command Post, the system being used up to company level. Should the vehicle used by a potential customer be already equipped with a BMS there are two choices, either change the BMS and adopt Tacnet Vehicle, or develop an interface, as the Bundeswehr did with the IdZ-ES. The Advanced November / December 2017 – EDR

version features a tablet with a bigger display and has a communications suite that includes a second radio set to exchange data and voice with higher echelons. The Light configuration includes only the radio and the headset; provided i.e. to the machine gunner, the GPS embedded in the radio would provide his commander with his location while he would have his hands free to use the weapon. Power supply can be provided by different sources, including energy harvesting systems, while among sensors Rheinmetall exhibited a prototype of its Gladius 2.0 that include nano-UAVs in the form of the PD100 PRS Black Hornet 2 by FLIR/Prox Dynamics. In France Safran is working on the future version of the FÉLIN, while in the mean time it developed the export version that is known as NeoFelis a further evolution of the Felin V1.3, the aim being reducing weight and increasing endurance. The first move was to have a single combat jacket used to host body armour plates, to be a load carrier using the N Among the new items proposed by Safran

Gladius 2.0, based on an open architecture capable of accepting different radios and GFE systems, in order to be as flexible and modular as possible.

for its NeoFelis we find the wristwatch HMI that allows the soldier to navigate and check his mates positions without needing to look at the PDA.

© P. Valpolini

M For the export market Rheinmetall developed the

EDR – November / December 2017


© P. Valpolini

MOLLE system, and to integrate cabling, although for the future a wireless version is being considered. The hub computer is lighter and smaller, and is carried on the side, while new Li-Ion batteries with increased energy density and capacity ensure a 72 hours mission endurance. The radio proposed is the RIF NG, however the NeoFelis is open to other solutions. As for HMI, a smartphone can be used, such systems being part of the way of life on soldiers born in the digital-generation era. A proprietary app was developed to provide a C2 system to the soldier

M ST Kinetics of Singapore is now proposing its

Ariele soldier suite, which includes numerous subsystems in the protection, clothing, and power generation systems, among others. 32

that includes blue force tracking, this app being easily modified according to customers needs. A second HMI is the wristwatch, which can lead the soldier through the patrol-scheduled path without the need to look at its PDA or smartphone, other information being also displayed at request. Another army that is already equipped with a soldier system is that of Singapore, which ACMS (Advanced Combat Man System) was developed in the previous decade by ST Kinetics. The company is now proposing on the export market an advanced version of its soldier suite, dubbed ARIELE (Army Individual Eco-Lightweight Equipment), that includes a number of different and upgraded systems, some already seen but further refined. Starting from the sensors and individual equipment, a new seetrough HUD was developed, the SHADES (Shielded Advanced Eyewear System) that beside messages can prove augmented reality to the soldier, such as BFT, as well as command and control over wireless weapon stations. The SHADES is fitted with an automatic brightness system that ensures optimal visibility of the overlays. The second system in this category is the ARCTIC (Adaptive Real-Time Core Temperature Intelligent Cooler), which adjusts the body temperature through active cooling. The cooling effect is enhanced by subsystems belonging to the clothing and protection equipment field, such as the Load Bearing Vest and the specially coated uniform with which the ARCTIC works in synergy, the latter systems using passive cooling technologies. In this field we find the GEAR (Garment Engineered by Advanced Research), a clothing system developed using state-of-the-art materials and the PACK (Pouches And Carriage Kit), the carriage kit based on a high pressure injection moulded frame that ensures maximum stability to the loads carried by the soldier, with active ventilation, a new body armour known as PROTEC (Personal Reinforced Outer Tactical Equipment Carrier) with new ballistic inserts known as PLATE (Personal Lightweight Armour Technology) providing better ergonomy and reduced weight while increasing the protected area. In the medtech and human augmentation system the SENSE (Soldier Enhanced Sensing Equipment) allows to monitor vital data such as heart rate, skin temperature, heart rate variability, respiration rate and galvanic skin response, allowing detection of onset exhaustion as well as post mission data analytics, data being shown onto wearable interfaces and transferred to a Cloud system via a mobile gateway. Most of the November / December 2017 – EDR


© P. Valpolini

M Some of the command and control, power

generation and sensors that are proposed by ST Kinetics within its Ariele soldier system. aforementioned items would not work without an adequate power supply. To this end ST Kinetics developed the PoEMS (Power & Energy Management System) that optimises power consumption, while the POWER (POrtable Watt-hr for Extended Range) fuel cell provides an energy density that is 160% of that of the best LiIon batteries. To further increase power availability the ARIELE includes the BRACES (Bionic Regenerative Active Energy System) that transforms the soldiers motion into electric energy. An hour of movement can yield up an average 6 watthours of energy that can be used to charge batteries wirelessly via a charging pad. Body armour plates are a key element of any soldiers’ equipment suite. While we can see an evolution in this field, with some weight reduction P To allow easy checking of body

armour ceramic plates Rheinmetall developed the Sensing Armour system, which allows instant verification using a handheld device.


while maintaining the same protection level, no revolution appears to be awaited soon. One problem with ceramic plates is integrity; as all very rigid materiel ceramics tend to crack due to blows or when they are dropped, something that happens often in day-to-day operations. These cracks can affect the effectiveness of the plate when hit by a bullet. It is thus of paramount importance to regularly check the plates. One way to do it is to use X-rays; this however requires to collect the plates form the unit, replace them with other plates, bring those to be checked to the appropriate facility, and conduct the check, a lengthy and expensive process. To avoid this Rheinmetall Defence developed a technology, k now n a s S en si ng Armour, that can be inserted in the plate itself, adding only 60 grams of weight, and that allows to check plates at unit le vel . Phy sic a l ly speaking the system adds only a 25 mm high “bump” at the top of the plate, where the measuring device is plugged in; this receives all information from the plate, that is ID serial number and state of the plate, lighting a green light if everything is OK or a yellow one if the plate needs a November / December 2017 – EDR

© 3M Peltor

further check. The device can store up to 3,000 measurements, which can be unloaded into a PC and provide the full story of the plate, allowing computing logistic statistics useful in operational and acquisition processes. Adding the Sensing Armour to a plate will inevitably increase costs, however this would come back in terms of savings over conventional plate testing and in increased safety, as checks will be conducted even daily at unit level. Currently Sensing Armour is at prototypal stage, the system availability being forecasted for late 2017, early 2018. In the mid term this technology might be applied also to vehicles and other systems armouring. Head protection is another key issue, and at AUSA last October Ceradyne Inc., a 3M company, unveiled its new Combat II Ballistic Helmet L110. Produced using ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene composites and proprietary, seamless, ballistic-moulding technology, it maintains the well-proven geometry of Ceradyne helmets that allows uninhibited movement when the helmet is worn with most ballistic vests with collars. While maintaining the same weight, the complete helmet that is shell, retention, suspension and pads, in the Large size being at 1,500 grams, it ensures higher

M The latest proposal in the head protection field

comes from 3M Ceradyne, in the form of the Combat II Ballistic Helmet L110 that provides higher protection at 1.5kg weight.

P Ear protection is

being increasingly considerer, and 3M Peltor proposes its new 3M TEP-200 EU ear plugs with active noise protection and wireless connection to communication systems.


EDR – November / December 2017





protection: its V50 against 17 grain fragments is of over 1,000 m/s, while that against the 7.62x51 mm ball round being 731 m/s, V0 being 640 m/s). Against a 9 x19 mm round at 427 m/s BFD (back-face deformation) is of 25.4mm. The L110 is available in small, medium, large and extra-large sizes and in black, green and brown colours. Remaining in the protection field, this time related to hearing protection, we will not enter the in-ear versus out-ear discussion, that might become a never ending story, but we will limit ourselves to describe a few new systems of both categories unveiled recently. 35

© Raytheon UK

Among in-ear solutions the newest is the TEP-200 EU, TEP standing for Tactical EarPlug, by 3M Peltor. The kit is made of a sealed plastic case that also works as a charger thanks to the compartment containing three AA alkaline batteries that ensure up to 16 recharging cycles; when stored in the case the earplugs are plugged into the charger, charging time being approximately one and a half hour. The case features a Micro B USB port allowing linking the charger into a computer or to a wall socket, using appropriate cables. The case contains the charger, two earplugs and four pair of eartips, the

N The neckloop

© 3M Pe lto


microphone provided by 3M Peltor in conjunction with its 3M TEP-200 EU earplug protections is also connected wirelessly to communication equipments.


O Still at developmental stage, Raytheon UK’s Dismounted Position and Navigation Sensor (DPNS) not only provides position but also allows communications via haptic feedback.

whole kit weighing 272 grams. However each earpiece weighs only 4 grams; powered by a Li-Ion battery with a life of around 16 hours, it contains an omnidirectional microphone and a small antenna that allows receiving signals wirelessly from the TEP-LOOP-200 neckloop microphone. Laboratory data on attenuation show that this depends on the type of eartip adopted and the frequency considered, average attenuation ranging from 34.9 dB for 3M Ultrafit, to 40.4 dB for 3M Torque, assumed protection value being respectively of 30 dB and 36 dB. Earpieces are IP67 water and dust resistant, windscreen being available to further reduce wind noise when needed. A button on each earplug allows to turn it on and off and to select among three volume settings. 3M Ultrafit eartips are available in large, medium and small sizes, Triple-C and Torque tips being usable. The TEP-200 EU is now fully in production. At Eurosatory 2016 Elno of France exhibited a demonstrator that allowed listening 3 dimensional listening through a headset. This has now become a product dubbed Hoplite, which includes different step forward. First of all the sound is transmitted via cartilaginous conduction with two conductors on the inner side of the shells, thus allowing to use also ear plugs to counter heavy noise, the Hoplite being obviously equipped with an active noise reduction system capable of reducing noise level especially at low frequencies. Each shell is fitted with two microphones, these allowing capturing the sound from different directions, a 360° sound being thus reconstituted by the Hoplite software allowing providing the spatial perception to the user. Comfort was a key issue, gel pads having been adopted, while the flexible microphone with noise attenuation can be installed either to the right or left to make the system fully November / December 2017 – EDR

© P. Valpolini

M Out-ear protection systems usually impede

acoustic orientation; it is not the case of Elno’s Hoplite, which ensures full 360 3-D feeling, sound being transmitted via cartilaginous conduction. ambidextrous. The Hoplite can be connected directly to most military radios or intercoms, as well as to a push-to-talk. Power supply is provided by the radio or intercom, or by internal batteries. The Hoplite is available in standard headset configuration, the weight being of 500 grams, but shells can also be fitted to a helmet, i.e. attached to external rails. The delivery of the first sets is scheduled for late 2017, full industrialisation being planned for spring 2018. EDR – November / December 2017

Providing a soldier with sufficient accuracy in GPS denied areas, such as built up areas, tunnels or caves remains a challenge. As part of its Dominator soldier suite Elbit Systems of Israel recently unveiled the SmarTrack, a 150 grammes item allowing the commander to precisely track the position of its subordinates even when satellite links are lost. The system includes an RF transceiver allowing radiofequency ranging thanks to the use of a patented technology, a GPS/Glonass receiver, and local data connectivity; the IMU-MEMS inertial sensors on nine degrees of freedom allow to obtain an accuracy better than 3 meters when no satellite signal is received, such as inside buildings, height being dealt with by an accurate barometric altimeter 37

thus providing 3D positioning. SmarTrack can handle from four to 100 members in its network, the multi-hop system adopted extending the range up to several kilometres, its network being also available to transfer C2 information and physiological data. To answer this requirement Raytheon UK developed the DNPS (Dismounted Position and Navigation Sensor). Not many details are provided, the DPNS being based on a suite of sensors that are embedded in a low profile sensor currently mounted on the footwear. According to Raytheon UK, these sensors are not affected by drift over time, drift remaining negligible over distance travelled, thus allowing achieving an accurate 3D positioning and navigation in GPS-denied environment. Not many details were unveiled but it is safe to assume that MEMS accelerators are being used for X/Y navigation while a MEMS barometer provides height differences on the Z-axis. Accuracy is due to proprietary algorithms developed by Raytheon that utilise characteristics of the human gait and walk. The DPNS is fitted with Bluetooth connectivity used to link it with an HMI device, i.e. a PDA; not only, the Raytheon system can detect if the wearer has remained motionless for a certain period of time, which can be set by the user, and send an automatic alarm through the radio network. The sensor also features a vibrational

(haptic) feedback capability, that can be used to exchange basic messages based on an agreed code without the need to use other HMI systems, i.e. a PDA, signals being send over the personal radio. Wearing two DPNS, one on each foot, allows two-way communications, and can also further increase accuracy using sensor fusion techniques. The system features an open architecture and can thus be integrated on various GIS systems, including Android Tactical Assault Kits. Currently the DPNS sensor is fitted to the boot using a harness, but other solutions are being developed. The DNPS being still a developmental programme, no detailed information on batteries, autonomy, dimensions and weight were provided. J

© Elbit Systems

O T  o allow reliable


navigation in GPS-denied areas Elbit Systems of Israel developed the SmarTrack, that provided 3 metres accuracy and weighs only 150 grams.

November / December 2017 – EDR

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Special Weapons for Special Purposes he Russian military equipment is well known all over the World. It is reliable, effective, easy to use and survivable in extreme conditions. As far as the “effectiveness-price” criterion is concerned, many systems have no match. The systems offered by Russia were created based on a solid experience of the country’s fight against terrorism and drugs trafficking, and now they are effectively used by Ministry of Defence, Ministry of the Interior, National Guard and the Federal Security Service of Russia. This explains the constantly growing interest to the Russian weapons and materiel, which we have been witnessing everywhere over the past several years. For instance, in the line of close combat weapons there are just a few systems which have been acknowledged worldwide. The Kalashnikov assault rifle is one o those. Even soldiers equipped with systems, which are produced by their own countries, dream of obtaining Kalashnikov. In general, the Kalashnikovs have rightly deserved a huge respect of soldiers and officers from countries all the world having become a symbol of reliability, friendly

© Nikolai Novichkov

N AK-12 assault rifle.


© Nikolai Novichkov


By Nikolaï Novichkov

M 30 mm automated grenade launcher

system AGS-30. interface and effectiveness. This reputation was earned in the combat conditions of high mountains, deserts and tropical jungle. The newest version of the Kalashnikov family - АK-12, developed in 2011, has a number of new implemented design and technological decisions, which allowed it to increase the combat power and the fire efficiency in all modes of fire. This assault rifle has an improved ergonomics. The design integrates Picatinny rails – special mounting platforms for extra devices like optical, collimating and night vision sights, range finders, target designators and other modules, which help to use the weapon in day and night conditions. The butt is unfolding, telescopic and height-adjustable. AK-12’s operating rod handle can be setup both on the right and left side, which makes its operation equally convenient for right and left-handed persons. At the same time, the automatic rifle has a legendary reliability, solidity and simplicity of operation. In addition to the Picatinny rails, located on top of the receiver’s cover, on the hand guard and underneath the forearm, the AK-12 assault rifle has two short rails on the sides of the forearm and one on November / December 2017 – EDR

© Nikolai Novichkov

top of the gas chamber. The lower Picatinny rail does not impede the installation of organic underbarrel grenade launchers GP-25, GP-30 or GP-34. There is now a possibility to alternate a short and a long barrel in field conditions. The new assault rifle can use the same magazines as AK74/RPK74 (including four-rowed ones for 60 rounds and test drum-type magazines for 95 rounds). There is one more competitive advantage of AK12: a soldier can perform all the basic operations with the assault rifle just by one hand, i.e. to change the magazine, to operate the safety switch and the bolt. If a fighter is injured or his other hand is occupied, still he will be able to do all the operations with the weapon. Of course, there is a huge interest to other Russian weapons systems – the newest submachine guns, assault rifles, machine guns, sniper rifles and their appropriate fire training technical assets. As an example, the Russia machine guns “Cord” and “Pecheneg” are very popular among the customers. They are as highly reliable and combat effective as the Kalashnikovs, produced in Russia. Russian grenade launchers are as much popular among the special operations forces (SOF) as the failsafe small arms. For instance, the 30 mm automated grenade launcher system AGS-30 has become a legend. It is designed for the fire support of infantry, airborne and SOF units. It provides elimination of enemy’s manpower in open terrain, trenches, dugout and reverse slope positions by fragmentation ammunition as well as destruction of unarmored military equipment by flat and curved fire.

EDR – November / December 2017

Russian grenade launchers are well known in the World. Magazine grenade launcher GM-94 is a multi-purpose weapon, which uses lethal and non-lethal ammunition. Its hand reloading, done by moving the forearm together with the barrel in a pump shotgun principle, guarantees its reliable operation with different type of ammunitions. This grenade launcher may be used for the elimination of enemy’s manpower, unarmored and lightly armored materiel, and be used for the police operations in urban conditions. This capability exists due to the application of special ammunition providing irritating, psycho-physical and sound-and-light impact on a person. A successful warfare against practically all modern tanks equipped with dynamic or spaced protection, any armored vehicles and personnel sheltered in buildings and fortifications made of bricks, reinforced concrete or earth and timber is possible with a rocket-propelled grenade RPG-27. The rocket-propelled grenade is equipped with a tandem warhead payload. Upon hitting a barrier, first the front cumulative warhead activates and initiates the bursting charge of the dynamic protection, then, with a certain time delay, the main cumulative warhead activates. The trigger mechanism of the grenade is a fiberglass pipe, which is almost the same as in earlier versions. Besides, Rosoboronexport offers to its partners a wide range of special means for the fight against terrorism and organized crime. Vapor detectors of explosive substances and fuzes, jammers of radio bombs and mobile networks, “Prizrak-M”, “Leader”, “Luch-1M”, “Taran”, “Sova” and LPR-2 terrorists’ positions detection systems as well as optical and electro-optical reconnaissance assets like night vision and thermal imaging devices or television cameras of long-distance surveillance are in special demand. Russian special technical devices used to counter illegal turnover of drugs and explosives are also quite popular, especially in the most problematic regions from this point of view. In general, the experience shows that the military equipment offered by Rosoboronexport can considerably improve operational capabilities of the police and special operations forces, which is vital for any state caring about its national security.  J O Magazine grenade launcher GM-94. 41

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