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The Publication of Distinction for the Maneuver Warfighter

Marine Facilitator Lt. Gen. John M. Paxton Jr. Commander U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command

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September 2012 Volume 3, Issue 5

Battlespace advantage Ball Aerospace technologies are ever-present in the battlespace. Our high-performance tactical video and antenna systems are capable, reliable and survivable. From advanced cameras to high-performance phased arrays, these products enable C4ISR and EW for the warfighter. X-Band Phased Array Comms-on-the-Move Antenna

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Ground Combat Technology

September 2012 Volume 3 • Issue 5


Cover / Q&A ACV and MPC


Prowl through the next system that will whisk Marines from ship to shore and onward to the objective on land. And examine the marine personnel carrier, a wheeled vehicle that will carry a crew of two plus eight or nine combatants to the fight at high speed. By Peter Buxbaum

Hybrid Vehicle Systems


In the 21st century, tight defense budgets demand more performance and lower costs. Hybrid vehicle propulsion systems deliver it all: great torque for hill-climbing, lower maintenance and increased miles per gallon. By Henry Canaday

16 Protection Advancements


Out of the fog of war and chaos of the battlefield, some good has come. Innovations during a decade of conflict are protecting warfighters, allowing many of them to come home alive and unharmed after devastating attacks. By Dave Ahearn

Departments JLTV Contracts Award


Lieutenant General John M. Paxton Jr. Commander U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command

In one of the few remaining major procurement programs during lean times, the military selected three rival companies to each produce its version of the future joint light tactical vehicle. We have details of their proposals from top people in each firm. By Dave Ahearn

2 Editor's Perspective 3 Intel 4 People 14 Innovations 27 Resource Center

Industry Interview

28 Emil Bjornsson CEO and President Master Pull LLC

Ground Combat Technology Volume 3, Issue 5 • September 2012

The Publication of Distinction for the Maneuver Warfighter Editorial Editor Dave Ahearn Managing Editor Harrison Donnelly Online Editorial Manager Laura Davis Correspondents Christian Bourge • Peter Buxbaum Henry Canaday • Jeff Goldman • William Murray Leslie Shaver

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EDITOR’S PERSPECTIVE Many warriors owe their very lives to the products that defense contractors routinely produce, and Marine Lance Corporal Jeffrey Cole—awarded the Silver Star for his valor in battle—offers a clear case in point. While serving in Afghanistan, Cole was hit by three enemy rounds, but thanks to ceramic plates in his vest, he suffered no wounds at that point in the battle. Still, the vicious power of those hits lifted the 200-pound warfighter and threw him and his 80-pound burden of gear some 5 feet through the air. That didn’t stop him from continuing to fight, as 20 enemy combatants came 30 meters away and closing. He laid down suppressive fire so wounded Marines could move into a canal Dave Ahearn Editor for cover. There were six Marines from Cole’s squad, another three Marines, and a Navy corpsman who set out on what they expected was to be just another recon mission. But when they radioed for fast extraction, they raised no one. It seemed that help would not be coming. So Cole decided something had to be done. He took a machine gun from a comrade in exchange for his rifle. Moving onto a road exposed to enemy fire, Cole sprayed out about 150 rounds in a broad arc. Suddenly, he was hit by three more rounds. Once again, one of the ceramic plates stopped an enemy round. But two other rounds ripped through his exposed arm, spinning him and throwing him into a ditch. “This time it felt like a sunburn,” Cole said, as he remembered the feeling of the rounds penetrating his arm. “My bone vibrated and severed my nerve and blew out the inside of my upper arm. I couldn’t feel anything.” While Marines applied a tourniquet to his bleeding arm, the warriors moved into a compound and renewed their radio calls for extraction. Cole—a veteran of 46 earlier missions—was losing blood rapidly. Incredibly, the indomitable Cole continued to lay down suppressive fire to help protect his comrades. Things were looking grim when suddenly the warriors heard choppers approaching. Like a guardian angel, a British CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter landed under heavy enemy fire. Then the warfighters were lifted away to safety at last. Cole was flown to Camp Bastion where he immediately went into surgery. Nearly 18 hours later he was stabilized. After a short stay at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., Cole joined the Wounded Warrior Battalion – East on Camp Lejeune and began the journey to recovery. Thanks to those plates in his vest, Cole lived to tell the tale—and receive the Silver Star, the third-highest award.

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10,000 FMTVs Delivered to Army in Two Years The Army and Oshkosh Defense commemorated production of the 10,000th Oshkosh-built Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV) truck. It was less than two years since Oshkosh began producing FMTVs under a contract awarded in October 2009. In another milestone, Oshkosh on September 30 will have manufactured more vehicles for the FMTV program than it has ever produced in a single fiscal year. That date marks the end of fiscal year 2012. The Army and National Guard rely on the FMTV at home and abroad in tactical and combat operations, relief efforts and unit resupply missions. Over the life of the contract, Oshkosh will deliver upwards of $2 billion in cost savings to the Department of Defense through relatively lower priced vehicles that still offer quality and reliability improvements. “Our number one priority is providing soldiers with very high quality vehicles that meet the Army’s needs,” said Mike Ivy, vice president and general manager of Army Programs for Oshkosh Defense. “Delivering the 10,000th vehicle within two years of starting production demonstrates Oshkosh Defense’s commitment to our nation’s defense. The FMTV program is one in a long history of programs that represent our unparalleled support to the men and women in uniform.”

Oshkosh has delivered vehicle quality and value through its flexible assembly lines that allow the company to build different vehicles for different programs at any given time. Oshkosh also operates an enterprisewide supplier network for multiple defense and commercial programs to provide economies of scale across its vehicle portfolio—from snow removal trucks and refuse haulers to fire apparatus and access equipment. The Oshkosh FMTV is a series of 17 models and 23 configurations ranging from 2.5-ton to 10-ton payloads. The vehicles feature crew-protecting armor and advanced technologies to provide the capability, versatility, mobility and protection to move troops and supplies, recover vehicles and weapon systems, or haul equipment wherever the mission requires. Commonality of parts of over 80 percent across chassis variants optimizes logistics efficiency and reduces operational costs. The Long-Term Armor Strategy-compliant cab and other advanced technologies give military personnel the enhanced protection they need to confidently complete their missions. Oshkosh Defense has received orders for more than 30,000 FMTV trucks and trailers from the Army TACOM Life Cycle Management Command. The fiveyear requirements contract for the production of trucks and trailers, as well as support services and training, runs through FY14.

Cavalry Team First to Obtain Bradley A3 Vehicles The 116th Cavalry Brigade Combat Team (CBCT) became the first unit in the Army National Guard to receive the Bradley A3 fighting vehicle, the most advanced Bradley fighting vehicle in service. The 116th CBCT has received a total of 99 Bradley A3s. The National Guard unveiled its newest equipment to the public, including the M2A3 Bradley fighting vehicle, the M3A3 Bradley cavalry fighting vehicle, and the M1A2 SEP Abrams main battle tank. The 116th CBCT is headquartered in Idaho and consists of battalions in Idaho, Montana, and Oregon. The new Bradley A3s will be used to equip and train the brigade. In addition to Bradleys, BAE Systems provides the 116th CBCT with M109A6 Paladin howitzers and M88 recovery vehicles and other combat systems. “As the most survivable infantry vehicle in theater, the Bradley A3 provides soldiers with the latest upgrades and the highest level of protection needed to operate in various combat environments,” said John

Tile, BAE Systems program director, Bradley. “We are thrilled to support the National Guard as they receive the latest and greatest in Bradley technology.” The Bradley A3, made at BAE Systems’ York, Pa., facility, is equipped with enhanced armor protection, automatic gun target adjustment, improved network connectivity, as well as a commander’s independent viewer that allows detection and rapid engagement of multiple targets, and second generation Forward Looking Infrared sighting capability. The combatproven platform provides outstanding survivability, mobility, and lethality to the Army. “BAE Systems has a long history of support to the Army National Guard,” said Don Prewitt, director of National Guard business development for BAE Systems. “Our vehicles and services have been and will continue to act as the backbone of the Guard’s heavy force, and the company is committed to providing the newest technology to this essential part of our Army.”

Army to Obtain 120 mm Training Ammo ATK has received a $36 million order from the Army to produce 120 mm training ammunition for tanks. The award is for a first base-year with four oneyear evaluated option years. The 120 mm training ammunition, used by the M1A1/ A2 Abrams main battle tank, includes the M865 kinetic energy and the M1002 multipurpose anti-tank training rounds. These training rounds closely replicate tactical ammunition in appearance and ballistic performance to provide the warfighter with an affordable yet realistic training experience. “High-quality training ammunition is essential to helping our warfighters prepare for mission success,” said Bruce DeWitt, vice president and general manager for ATK’s Armament Systems division. “We leverage our production expertise in tactical 120 mm tank ammunition to deliver training rounds that meet performance, reliability and safety requirements for use on U.S. and European ranges.” Since 1980, ATK has delivered more than 4 million rounds of 120 mm tactical and training tank ammunition to the U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps and allied militaries. Through its proven, system-level contracting approach that reduces the risk to the customer, ATK has delivered a constant supply of 120 mm ammunition that is consistently reliable and affordable. Production of the training ammunition will occur at the Allegany Ballistics Laboratory (ABL) facility in Rocket Center, W.Va. ABL is a U.S. Navy-owned, ATK-operated facility specializing in advanced manufacturing technologies for a variety of programs supporting current and future U.S. industrial base needs in conventional munitions assemblies, advanced electronic fuzing and integration, solid rocket motor propulsion, and advanced material structures. Program management and systems engineering support will occur at ATK’s Plymouth, Minn., facility, which is the headquarters for the company’s advanced weapons and armament systems. GCT  3.5 | 3


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Army to Obtain Soldier-Worn Battery System Arotech Corp. announced its Battery and Power Systems Division has received a new order for over 1,100 units of its award-winning SWIPES System soldier worn batteries. The $2.3 million order will service Program Executive Officer Soldier’s Project Manager (PM) Soldier Warrior, Product Director, Soldier Power, which encompasses expeditionary power solutions intended for the most austere (Tier 1) operating environments.

The Soldier Wearable Integrated Power Equipment System, or SWIPES, utilizes the MOLLE vest and integrates force protection electronics and communications equipment with an advanced battery. The system utilizes a modular power distribution system that is powered by BA-8180/U, BA-8140/U zincair batteries or the LI-145, BB2590 rechargeable batteries for direct power of equipment, allowing for extended mission times without the burden of power source swaps or charging due to their high energy density, and reducing battery weight soldiers carry by up to 30 percent. The batteries continuously charge the secondary batteries inside various devices, such as two-way radios, GPS units and shot detection systems. The SWIPES product allows for individual tailoring by the warfighter and is designed to accept new applications as they become available. SWIPES represents the Army’s first attempt at managing the increased number of soldier-

worn power consumers from a rechargeable central source of power. SWIPES is currently deployed in support of ongoing missions in Afghanistan and is scheduled to be fielded to over six brigades as part of Capability Set 13. During evaluations at the Network Integration Exercise 12.2, Fort Bliss, Texas, soldiers commented that a SWIPES-equipped soldier would require only one SWIPES conformal battery for a 24-hour mission versus five to six spare radio batteries. “This drastically reduces the soldier’s combat load,” said Steve Mapes, director, Soldier Power, PM Soldier Warrior. “Reducing the load on the warfighter and simplifying the supply logistics promoted SWIPES to be one of the Ten Best Army Inventions of 2011,” declared Arotech Chairman and CEO Robert Ehrlich. “The fielding of this key order confirms its effectiveness and can be anticipated to drive wide acceptance by ground forces,” he said.

PEOPLE Brigadier General John J. McGuiness, deputy commanding general, Army Research, Development and Engineering Command/ senior commander, Natick Soldier System Center, Natick, Mass., has been named program executive officer-ammunition/ commanding general, Picatinny Arsenal, Picatinny Arsenal, N.J. AM General named Jeffery Adams, previously a Lockheed Martin executive, as AM General executive director, communications and marketing. Harris Corp. Vice President Sherry Covell was

4 | GCT 3.5

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named one of the 100 Women Leaders in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) by STEMconnector, which advances the cause of attracting more girls and women to careers in STEM.

Christopher E. Kubasik

The Lockheed Martin board of directors unanimously voted to

establish the new position of vice chairman, electing President and Chief Operating Officer Christopher E. Kubasik as a board member and vice chairman. Science Applications International Corp. announced that Lee Carrick will lead the company’s intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance group program development efforts. Raytheon Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer David C. Wajsgras was named a top financial executive by The Wall Street Journal in the

publication’s inaugural list of the 25 “Best CFOs of 2012” among larger companies in the S&P 500. Geocent announced that Mike Ogles, vice president of space systems at Teledyne Brown Engineering, has been named senior vice president of Geocent’s new engineering services sector. Frank Fogle, PhD., NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center manager and engineer, has been named director of Geocent’s Hunstville operations. Salient Federal Solutions Inc. announced Robert

“Bob” Friedenberg, PhD., has joined the company as chief technology officer and senior vice president of commercial business. For the last 10 years he has been the president of Xeelee Group. G4S International Training Inc. (ITI) announced the retirement of Vice President of Operations Lamar Tooke. Rob Middaugh, current operations manager of G4S ITI-Virginia, has been promoted as the new vice president of operations for both the Virginia and Texas campuses.

Amphibious combat vehicle, Marine personnel carrier programs advance. By Peter Buxbaum GCT Correspondent

The U.S. Marine Corps is unique among the U.S. armed forces for its ability to project forces into an area of operations amphibiously. Amphibious capabilities are likely to play important roles in future conflicts thanks to the concentration of human populations around the world at or near coastlines. More than 80 percent of the world’s capital cities are located near coastlines, and roughly half the global populace resides within 120 miles of the sea. Amphibious operations are also important to the U.S. Navy’s seabasing war fighting concept. Seabasing seeks to preposition equipment and material at sea and transfer vehicles and equipment ashore when needed. Such a strategy supports the application of force—as well as the capabilities of government agencies and non-government organizations—in regions where access

John Swift

Dave Reeves

is restricted or denied due to political sensitivities, threats, or lack of infrastructure and contributes to U.S. forces having unimpeded battlefield access. “The Marine Corps is an amphibious expeditionary force in readiness,” said John Swift, the Marine Personnel Carrier program manager at BAE Systems. “In order to maintain this capability, the Marine Corps requires amphibious lift capacity to propel power ashore. In order to do that, it requires an amphibious vehicle that is armored for survivability and mobile both on sea and on land.” For 40 years, the Marine Corps has been relying upon its amphibious assault vehicle (AAV) as its primary ship-to-shore amphibious armored personnel carrier. The AAV was originally fielded in 1972, and later underwent a service life extension and product improvement program from 1983 to 1993. “The Marines have no other armored personnel carrier like the AAV that can go seamlessly from ship to shore and inland,” said retired USMC Colonel Dave Reeves, manager for expeditionary warfare systems at Alion Science & Technology. “It can handle Sea State 3 conditions” with 6-foot plunging surfs, “go through the surf zone and self-deploy on land. With the age of the AAV, there is a requirement gap for a surface-borne forcible entrance capability.” Reeves formerly served as director of the GCT  3.5 | 5

Marine Corps Amphibious Vehicle Test Branch. Alion employees are supporting the Marine Corps’ program office for the ACV and MPC. A Marine Corps document summarized the capability gaps inherent in the AAV for amphibious and subsequent ashore operations in a denied or contested environment as follows. The AAV “cannot close to the beach from extended launch distances prescribed in future Navy CONOPS. It cannot protect its occupants from IEDs. It cannot communicate critical information requirements to the sea base and it cannot achieve direct fire overmatch against threat peer vehicles,” it said. BAE Systems recently won two contracts to help the Marine Corps determine the future of the AAV and MPC. An AAV trade study will propose how best to improve the survivability and force protection of the vehicle while maintaining its current land and water mobility characteristics. Under a separate, $3.5-million contract, BAE will be supporting the Marine Corps’ evaluation of the MPC’s water performance, human factors, stowage capacity, and survivability. The contracts in question are for first steps in the programs. Several RFPs are expected as part of each vehicle’s path to full production awards. “Going forward with a 40-year-old vehicle of any kind is just not a wise thing to consider,” said Kevin McConnell, director of the Fire and Maneuver Integration Division at the Marine Corps Combat Development Command. “Obsolescence issues have also set in. In a 40-year-old vehicle some components are not made anymore,” making maintenance difficult. For more than 10 years, the Marine Corps has been working to replace the AAV. Until January 2011, that replacement was to be the expeditionary fighting vehicle (EFV). The Marine Corps EFV was being developed to transport troops from ships offshore to inland locales at higher speeds and from longer distances than the AAV, which it was supposed to replace. But the EFV, which had faced reliability, scheduling and costs issues for years, was canceled last year by then-Secretary of Defense Robert Gates after the Department of Defense already spent nearly $4 billion on the effort. A Government Accountability Office report prepared in 2010 found that “in 2006 and 2007, the EFV business case broke down.” In 2006, the first operational assessment demonstrated reliability problems and in February 2007, the program reported a critical unit cost breach. The program was restructured in June 2007 around a new business case that included significant cost increases, cuts in quantities and a schedule delayed by several years. The GAO predicted at that time that unit costs were likely to continue to increase. After the EFV was canceled, the quest began to develop amphibious capabilities to replace the AAV and EFV. Despite the EFV’s cancellation, the Marine Corps determined that it still needed an amphibious assault vehicle with greater capabilities than the legacy AAV. The answer the Marines came up with was three-pronged. It would develop two new vehicles, the amphibious combat vehicle (ACV), which is the replacement for the canceled EFV, and would continue to develop the Marine personnel carrier (MPC), which was originally envisioned as a companion capability to the EFV. The Marine Corps will also bridge the gap in capabilities until those vehicles can be deployed in the 2020s by upgrading some of the AAVs. 6 | GCT 3.5

The new vehicles, the ACV and MPC, are supposed to avoid some of the difficulties experienced with the EFV by relying on more mature technologies. Relying on two vehicles instead of one allows the Marine Corps to spread some of the risk across two programs and to continue to develop its vehicle fleet concept as a portfolio of capabilities. Significantly, all three efforts—development of the two new vehicles and the AAV upgrades—are all managed together out of a single program office within the Marine Corps’ Program Executive Office Land Systems. “The Marine Corps has grouped them together based on functionality and competency, which is a very smart and efficient move,” said Reeves. “This gives them the ability to manage like systems together with the same expertise and to maximize personnel and resources.” The Marine Corps hopes it can keep the ACV below $12 million per vehicle, far less than the $16.8 million it was slated to pay for each EFV. “The costs of the EFV got to the point where it exceeded the Marine Corps’ ability to buy it,” said McConnell. “Secondarily, there had been some highly technical components to the vehicle that were relatively risky. We had to over-engineer some of the components to make them work. After fielding, it was going to cost orders of magnitude more [than] what we’ve ever done in the past in order to maintain the vehicles.” McConnell said the Marines can reduce the costs of the ACV by taking lessons learned from the EFV and eliminating the highest risk aspects of that program. “We were using some exquisite metals such as titanium, which is very expensive, in parts of the vehicle to save weight. The engine powering the vehicle was one of a kind and very expensive. We now know that when we build a vehicle in the future we have to make use of available power sources much less expensively.” A GAO report released earlier this year suggested that the Marine Corps, or more precisely, the Navy, will compromise on the 25 nautical mile ship-to-shore range of the EFV. Whether that requirement will be relaxed is unclear at this point. The pairing of the two vehicles is also intended to reduce investment risk. “The intention was not [to] create one kind of vehicle to do one mission and another to do another,” explained McConnell, “but to balance investment across two platforms to reduce risk and improve capabilities across both of them.” The MPC is not a new vehicle but has now been grouped with the ACV to meet the portfolio requirements vacated by the canceled EFV. “The ACV program was initiated after the cancellation of the EFV program,” said McConnell. “The EFV and MPC originally comprised the portfolio and were intended to perform the same missions as will be performed by the ACV and MPC.” The ACV and MPC, then, are the two vehicle types that are intended to replace the AAV. The ACV and MPC comprise the infantry general support, armored lift capability for Marine Corps infantry. “The principal mission of both vehicles is to carry Marine infantry from a ship positioned over the visual horizon to inland objectives without stopping,” said McConnell. “Mission two is general support lift for Marine infantry in sustained operations ashore.” Like the AAV, the ACV/MPC combination will be operated and maintained by the assault amphibian battalions. “The mission of the AA battalion is to provide mechanized ground mobility to Marine infantry and other elements of the ground combat element in a MAGTF [Marine Air Ground Task Force],” said McConnell. “The vehicles will be used along with other ground vehicles such as the

HMMWV, the joint light tactical vehicle, when fielded, and other tactical trucks to provide mounted mobility for troops, weapons and cargo.” The Marine Corps is currently in requirements development for both vehicles so that detailed characteristics are not yet available. McConnell outlined the general requirements for the vehicles as follows. The ACV will be designed to carry 17 Marines plus a crew of three. The MPC will have a capacity of nine Marines plus crew. The ACV is to “deploy from amphibious ships over-the-horizon in a variety of sea states to objectives inland. The MPC will swim rivers and lakes without special preparation. Both vehicles will operate with M1A1 main battle tanks on prepared roadways and cross country. Both vehicles will support dismounted infantry with precision, stabilized machine guns. Both vehicles will provide inherent direct An amphibious assault vehicle assigned to the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit maneuvers towards the amphibious dock landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD 50). Carter Hall is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility with the Iwo Jima Strike Group to conduct maritime fire protection against heavy machine security. [Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy/by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Flordeliz Valerio] guns and provide under-vehicle protectransport ships at greater risk to shore-based threats.” Still, the tion against land mines and buried IEDs. Both vehicles will also be Marine Corps continues talking about an over-the-horizon launch capable of mounting additional protection. It is anticipated that the capability. This requirement will have to be clarified as the program MPC will be capable of substantially more protection than the ACV moves forward to address affordability issues. because it will not be constrained by its amphibious design.” Current plans call for fielding the ACV and MPC around 2022, The ACV is intended to address the lift capacity and capability to which means that the Marine Corps is going to have to rely on the conduct amphibious, ship-to-objective operations from the Marine AAV in the interim. Marine Corps plans call for the AAV to continue Expeditionary Unit up to Marine Expeditionary Brigade levels and to serve as its primary platform until at least 2015 and remain in to contribute to overall infantry lift capacity requirements for susservice until 2025. tained operations ashore. “It’s going to take a while to design the ACV,” said McConnell. “The ACV will be the primary means of tactical mobility for the “It could take a decade or more to fully field. That means the AAV is Marine rifle squad, both at sea and ashore,” added Marine Corps going to be around for quite a while. These vehicles are not sitting spokesperson Manny Pacheco. “The ACV will autonomously deliver at bases—they are being deployed to Marine expeditionary units the assault echelon from amphibious shipping at launch distances around the world every day and they are being used every day.” at or beyond the visual horizon, with speed to enable the rapid The fleet of 1,063 AAVs has already been rebuilt to improve relibuildup ashore, and provide combat-ready Marines at the objective. ability, availability and maintainability. New upgrade programs for The ACV will possess superior ground mobility and speed similar the AAVs are on the drawing boards. to the M1A1 during sustained operations ashore, will possess the “We are going to conduct a program that will start next year to capability to engage and destroy threat peer vehicles, and provide do some limited upgrades to some of the AAV fleet,” said McConnell. organic, direct fire support to dismounted infantry in the attack. “Those upgrades are designed to improve protection. Doing that The ACV will protect the force during offensive and defensive operawill make the vehicle a little heavier, so we will be addressing power tions, providing 360-degree protection against direct fire, indirect train and suspension replacement to support the added weight. This fire, mines and improvised explosive device threats.” works out to just under a third of the AAV fleet that we will be focusThe ACV is expected to accelerate to speeds considerably faster ing on. At the end of the day, that will not give us an ACV capability, than the seven knots capable by the AAV, according to Reeves. Howbut we will have an AAV that will be more relevant to countering the ever, the amphibious range of the vehicle remains ambiguous. “The threats we are likely to encounter.” AAV was launched from between 4,000 meters and 6,000 meters The AAV upgrades are expected to include the addition of underfrom the shore due to the lower speed of the vehicle going through body armor, sponson armor, blast mitigating seats, fuel tank protecthe littorals and the surf zone,” he said. “The EFV requirement of tion, and floor and blast mitigating liners. Those improvements, 25 nautical miles came from the Navy. That is the distance where together with the engine, transmission and suspension upgrades to the ship disappears off the visual horizon from the beach. With the support the added weight, are expected to cost approximately $1.5 proliferation of anti-ship missiles, the Navy wanted more standoff to million per vehicle. launch assault forces from farther out at sea.” It is difficult to compare the attributes of the ACV with the The 2012 GAO report noted that a shorter launch distance canceled EFV because the ACV requirements have yet to be fully would save money on the AAV but “would place Navy amphibious 8 | GCT 3.5

developed, but McConnell claimed that the ACV is being developed as a more capable infantry carrier than the EFV. “We are paying much closer attention to the ground mobility requirement because that is where the ACV will spend most of its life,” he said. “We are also taking a disciplined look at what it takes to make an amphibious vehicle amphibious. The requirements that are being developed [are] to have a vehicle capable of transiting the open ocean and then capable of operating well on land, with technologies that are by and large very mature.” Amphibiousness relates to the vehicle’s buoyancy, size and propulsion mechanisms. “The vehicle has to Monica Miller-Cavallaro be able to float, and not just in calm seas,” said McConnell. “We also have to pay attention to the size of the vehicle. It is easier to build a larger vehicle that is capable of floating, but we have to remember that this vehicle must be able to fit inside of a ship and it must be able to operate in combat on land. That adds weight to a fairly small platform, so we have to balance working with a finite box with the capabilities that we are expecting from it. We also have to place the propulsion elements at the right parts of the vehicle so that it can swim most efficiently.” Utilizing mature technologies is important to mitigating the risks involved in developing a new vehicle, according to McConnell. “We are also taking into account that the EFV had a long design life and a lot of its technology dated back to the beginning of that process. With the ACV, we are starting with a new generation of vehicles with design attributes, metallurgy and powering that have all come quite a long way in the last decade.” Thus far the Marine Corps program office has released a request for proposal that calls for contractors to build an ACV survivability demonstrator. “This would basically be a hull that would be used to verify crewmember impacts to blasts,” said Monica Miller-Cavallaro, the ACV program manager at BAE Systems. BAE has responded to the RFP. “We are concentrating on developing a Marine-centric survivable design,” said Miller-Cavallaro. “As you increase survivability, you are challenged by the additional weight and volume. The ACV will require a certain level of speed and buoyancy in the water, so it will require design innovations to be able to counteract the weight for survivability and provide the buoyancy required to be amphibious. We are relying on mature technologies to provide a low-risk solution to the customer.” The ACV will require similar land mobility characteristics to the EFV, according to Miller-Cavallaro. “ACV water speed and mobility requirements will be lower than the EFV to allow ships to be closer to shore and to approach at lower speeds,” she said. The ACV will represent a revolutionary rather than an evolutionary departure from its predecessor, the AAV, according to Reeves. “The advancement in survivability, command and control, and lethality will be noteworthy,” he said. “The requirements are being driven by the more complex, sophisticated and diverse missions the Marines are being asked to perform and on emerging threats. We are talking about not just combat operations, which are the main thrust of the ACV, but it will also be tremendous for humanitarian and disaster relief.”

Advances in armor recipes will enable the ACV to afford increased survivability to crewmembers without adding too much additional weight to the vehicle, according to Reeves. “These are derived from the lessons learned during the last decade of war, particularly in protecting against IED blasts. The new armor that has been developed can withstand blasts while being relatively light in weight. That is the crux of the vehicle of this nature, and that is what makes it such an engineering marvel. It resembles more an aircraft than a ground combat system because of the unique requirement that it be amphibious,” he said. “The MPC is the other vehicle intended to replace the AAV,” said McConnell. “The MPC and the ACV are absolutely related to each other. In general [they] have the same mission. They are not operated by infantrymen, but they will carry Marine infantry. The differences trace to the fact that the ACV is amphibious. It has to swim in some fairly challenging conditions. To be able to do that, we ended up making a lot of capability tradeoffs particularly when it comes to things [such as] land mobility and protectability.” The MPC will be designed to be effective across the range of military operations during sustained operations ashore and reinforce the assault echelon during forcible-entry operations. “Both MPC and the new amphibious combat vehicle will replace the legacy amphibious assault vehicles in the assault amphibian battalions of Marine divisions,” said Pacheco. “An MPC company is designed to lift an infantry battalion in conjunction with the infantry’s organic wheeled assets.” The MPC program will be fielding a base vehicle, the MPC-P, and two supporting mission role variants: the MPC-C, a command vehicle, and the MPC-R, a recovery vehicle. “Two MPC-Ps lift a reinforced rifle squad,” Pacheco explained. “The MPC-C supports mobile battalion command echelon and fire-support coordination center functions. The MPC-R fulfills mobile recovery and maintenance requirements.” “The MPC is intended to support infantry mobility requirements in operations ashore and will be particularly well-suited to ground maneuver in the world’s littoral regions,” said McConnell. “The vehicle combination recognizes performance and capability considerations and related costs of designing and building an ACV that has a robust sea mobility mission and seeks to provide adequate capacity to meet essential amphibious mission requirements and sufficient capacity to meet the majority of infantry ground mobility requirements.” The ACV/MPC combination will make up approximately twothirds of the Marine Corps’ infantry mobility requirements. The aviation combat element of the MAGTF will be providing lift capacity for the remaining one-third in Bell Boeing MV-22 Osprey tilt-rotor assets and Sikorsky CH-53 Super Stallion rotary wing aircraft. The MPC was originally designed to be fielded alongside the EFV. “Since it didn’t have a primary design requirement to be amphibious, it was designed to be much more capable by orders of magnitude on land than an amphibious vehicle,” said McConnell. “It is going to be more protectable and capable of carrying armor. It is going to be a wheeled vehicle, which means its body will sit higher off the ground. That is a key element for protection against underbelly mines and IEDs.” “A key discriminator for the MPC is that it is a wheeled vehicle,” added Swift. “Once it is ashore it could be assigned different missions in medium and high threat environments. The Marine Corps GCT  3.5 | 9

is now looking for a demonstration vehicle that has the capability to self-launch and self-recover much as the current AAV does.” BAE Systems, which responded to an RFP for the MPC in March 2012, intends to incorporate new technologies that will provide the wheeled MPC to perform as well on land as the tracked ACV under many conditions. “The MPC is intended to perform on the same level as an Abrams tank,” said Swift. “It will be able to attain a ground speed of 45 miles per hour on various terrains. These capabilities have to be balanced against the vehicle’s amphibious characteristics, its ability to swim to shore, and even more to balance with survivability, not only direct fire threats but also blast mitigating threats like IEDs.” The Marine Corps MPC RFP called for vehicle demonstrators for initial water performance tests, survivability with respect to two blast surrogates, as well as human factors. BAE’s proposal is based on an 8x8 amphibious vehicle being built by the Italian company Iveco with similar characteristics to what the Marines were looking for. BAE upgraded the Iveco vehicle to meet Marine Corps requirements and plans on unveiling the product in September. “At that point we will begin internal mobility evaluation,” said Swift. “Our intent is to turn the vehicle over to the government in January if we get a contract.” Developments over the last decade in drive and suspension technologies are what will allow BAE’s MPC to offer superior performance on land. “Blast mitigation and survivability are inherent to the structure of the vehicle,” said Swift. An H-drive is what allows the 8x8 to function similarly to a tracked vehicle for ground mobility. “There is a drive box at each wheel station and all are linked together on an H-frame,” Swift explained. “Each wheel has a hub hooked to it and each wheel is being driven.” MPCs are expected to cost up to $4.5 million each, with a buy decision in 2013 and initial operational capability in 2018. General Dynamics Land Systems, the contractor for the canceled EFV, is also expected to respond to both the ACV and MPC competitions. “General Dynamics Land Systems is closely following the ACV and the MPC programs and looks forward to working with the Marine Corps to successfully develop the next generation of vehicles,” said Karl Okosian, manager, marketing communications and public affairs. “The General Dynamics Land Systems ACV will provide the Marine Corps with a balanced solution addressing affordability, performance, risk and schedule. We are monitoring the Marines’ progress toward defining program specifications so that our future offerings will provide the capability for the full range of Marine Corps amphibious operations, in a low-risk solution with mature, affordable technology and capacity for future growth, that provides battlefieldproven mine blast survivability, offers a full range of scalable lethality solutions, and maximizes commonality across the amphibious family of vehicles. As we are in a competitive environment we are unable to share specific vehicle design information,” Okosian added. The ACV is currently in the material solution analysis phase of the joint capabilities integration and development system process. “A recently completed analysis of alternatives is being briefed to senior leadership,” said Pacheco. “The scope of the AoA included development of life cycle cost estimates for each alternative considering major cost drivers, acquisition and sustainment strategies, and fully burdened cost of energy.” The Marine Requirements Oversight Council validated the MPC requirement in the spring of 2008 and approved the solution to be integrated into the amphibious assault battalions. “The initiative 10 | GCT 3.5

envisions a materiel development decision in late fiscal year 2012 or early 2013, after which the program would enter the acquisition life cycle at Milestone B,” said Pacheco. FY12 ends September 30. “The MPC program, once launched, will rely on full and open competition throughout the developmental cycle.” The initial operational capability for both the ACV and the MPC is planned for 2022. “That doesn’t sit well with anybody and we are trying to accelerate the time line,” said McConnell, “but we also have to consider everything else that is going on in the Marine Corps.” The Marine Corps intends to procure the ACV and MPC “as rapidly as possible, but the first priority will be the ACV,” said McConnell. “This will be the only capability of its kind that the Marine Corps will possess. It is important for us to maintain our Marine expeditionary units. Should we find ourselves in a larger war, we have to make sure we have enough amphibious vehicles to support forces in that kind of scenario.” Affordability within a declining defense budget is probably the biggest challenge for either program. “We have sequenced other acquisition programs, either ahead of these or behind them, in order to create an affordability window,” said McConnell. Some $487 billion is set to be cut from defense programs over 10 years, with another $500 billion of potential automatic sequestration cuts over a decade that may commence in January. Accelerating the procurement of the ACV is also intended to obviate the technology obsolescence problem that plagued the EFV. “If we procure the ACV within a reasonable time, we can plan for technology integration,” said McConnell. “As we get ready to start the program we are doing technology forecasting to determine what will be available when we need it. That is always a challenge, especially if a program stretches out too long. Right now we are within five years of starting to build the vehicles.” It is also important to plan for changes that come to vehicles over their service lifetime, McConnell noted. “These vehicles are planned for 20 years and we already have vehicles that have been in service for 40,” he said. “They tend to get heavier over time and require more power, so we need to plan for that at the beginning. The design of the vehicle will have reserve left in it to account for growth and change to the vehicles after they are fielded.” The current defense budget atmosphere presents a big question mark for both programs. “Both programs are funded for necessary research and development,” said McConnell. “Both programs are conducting a variety of studies and tests to help refine requirements and to prepare for the engineering and manufacturing development phase for both programs, which is scheduled to begin in 2014.” The budget out years form the period where most of the uncertainty resides. “We’re not talking just about sequestration or going off the cliff,” said McConnell. “New vehicle procurements in a postwar budget environment are going to have their challenges.” But McConnell remains optimistic. “Absolutely, both vehicles will eventually be fielded,” he said. “They provide special capabilities for missions the Marine Corps is expected to be ready to fight, and we never know where the next fight is going to be.” O

For more information, contact GCT Editor Dave Ahearn at or search our online archives for related stories at

Electric drive sparks fuel economy, performance gains. Will hybrid drive vehicles provide an electrifying advance in military hardware? While they may someday make an appearance on the battlefield, hybrids thus far haven’t sparked enough interest to launch a major current procurement program for vehicles that run at least in part on electricity. The Army’s Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) at this point has no programs of record for hybrids, noted Dean McGrew, acting team leader for advanced propulsion. “We have been working on this for a long time, 20 years, and once had an all-electric tank,” McGrew said. “Recently we did demonstrations with hybrids to see how they did on performance and fuel economy.” Two years ago, TARDEC took hybrids to Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., and matched them against conventional vehicles in all kinds of driving conditions. The results showed hybrids save fuel some of the time, not all of the time. “It depends on road and driving conditions,” McGrew said. So TARDEC is currently working on integrating higher-power generators between engines and transmissions of vehicles to generate more power for soldiers. “We need more power, and we are running out of ability to generate it,” McGrew emphasized. “We max out at 15 kilowatts of power and we want to increase that to 120 or 160 kW, so they can operate weapons, defensive systems and radios.” More power from vehicles could also help generate power for forward operating bases (FOBs), micro-grids and improvised camps. “Then finally, after we have done that, maybe we will have hybrids for vehicle propulsion,” McGrew predicted. “It will be an evolution.” Evolution is advisable because it is relatively easy to add more power generation between engine and transmission, as this change adds little volume and no or minimal weight. The TARDEC package would fit Strykers, the Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles and a number of MRAPs. “If we can get a good system we can apply it broadly.” McGrew said. On the other hand, adding high-voltage energy storage for hybrid propulsion is a much bigger challenge, because this storage

By Henry Canaday GCT Correspondent must withstand very high temperatures, fit in tight spaces and handle rugged environments. One of the current concerns is how reliable hybrids are, so TARDEC will take a tactical vehicle to Aberdeen to put 20,000 durability miles on it. “We can see what we can do to make it more robust, so that when we do have a hybrid system we will know how to write specs for it,” McGrew explained. TARDEC will keep monitoring the “good, the bad and the ugly” of hybrid-electric vehicles, McGrew said. The good is having more power on vehicles for accessories and export, saving fuel in many driving cycles at first and saving even more fuel in the future as hybrid systems are optimized. The bad is that hybrids can take up room and be hard to fit into vehicles. The ugly is getting hybrids to operate in high temperatures. “They are okay in North America, but the desert is a lot tougher,” McGrew said. Others are more optimistic. BAE Systems, which has been working on military hybrids since the 1970s, is offering a hybrid-electric ground combat vehicle (GCV) to replace the Bradley and is looking at hybrid solutions for other military vehicles, explained Mark Signorelli, vice president and general manager of the ground combat vehicle program. Signorelli said a hybrid can satisfy GCV requirements for reliability, maintenance, weight and fuel efficiency. “When GCV requirements came out, we looked at serial turbine and other options for power and it became clear that hybrid-electric was the way to go.” He said hybrid satisfies GCV performance needs, especially mobility, acceleration and maneuverability. On weight, BAE’s hybrid is four tons lighter than conventional GCVs, chiefly because the propulsion system has smaller volume, which allows for less armor. “The electric drive is lighter, even with a battery,” Signorelli said. One reason: Conventional propulsion must size engines for peak needs, while hybrid can surge on battery power. Further, hybrid transmission has 50 percent fewer parts than conventional drives, and electric motors are highly reliable. And GCT  3.5 | 11


hybrid can integrate better with future technologies that need more power for communications and other uses. Lastly, hybrid is 10 to 20 percent more fuel efficient. “We did not design it for fuel efficiency— we designed it for requirements, and the side effect is fuel economy,” Signorelli said. BAE believes maintenance costs will be less, partly because drive-train units can be removed separately, rather than all together. Upfront costs should be only 5 to 10 percent higher than conventional propulsion. This is because even conventional propulsion on military vehicles must be a very high-performance system. BAE will have its complete hybrid system on a test stand in early fall for 2,000 miles of operation under stress. The company expects

11th Annual

Next Generation of Light Armored Vehicles Summit Emerging Priorities for New and Legacy Platforms Main Summit: November 13th & 14th, 2012 Engineering Solutions within Platform Reliability Focus Day: November 15th, 2012 Washington DC | Featuring presentations from leading experts such as: –

Colonel Brinkman, Director, LAV Program, US Marine Corp

CWO-4 Richard Weaver, Maintenance Officer, PM AAA, Logistics US Marine Corps

Mr. William Graveline, Army Acquisitions Program Defense Capabilities and Management Team, Government Accountability Office

Jeffrey Vieria, Director, Land Operations, Defense Logistics Agency

Mr. Douglas R. Bush, House Armed Services Committee, Professional Staff Member

Michael Gallagher, Program Manager, Expeditionary Power Systems, Marine Corps Systems Command 12 | GCT 3.5


to deliver three prototypes for competition against a non-hybrid GCV in January 2015, with a production decision in 2017. “We are excited,” Signorelli said. “There has been skepticism, but others do not know how robust this is, how mature it is and what we can do.” QinetiQ has been at the forefront of development of hybrid and electric drive for military vehicles for over a decade, said David Crane, program director power management. It is currently partnering with BAE Systems to develop the E-X-Drive transmission for the GCV. “E-X-Drive was successfully demonstrated as part of the now-terminated Future Combat Systems Manned Ground Vehicle program, where several running prototypes were built,” Crane noted. For GCV, QinetiQ built several prototype transmissions now under test in the U.S and U.K. under a GCV technology demonstration phase contract. Crane said military land vehicles are the last major class of surface vehicles that have not adopted electric drive. “The basic architecture of military land vehicles has remained unchanged for 50 years.” Until the mid-1990s, hybrid technology may have been inadequate, “but great strides have been made since.” Crane said the U.S. Future Combat Systems Manned Ground Vehicle proved the feasibility of electric drive for tracked vehicles using QinetiQ’s E-X-Drive transmission, and this knowledge has been exploited in BAE Systems’ GCV program. Fuel savings depend on duty cycles. “However, we are confident that fuel savings in the range of 10 to 20 percent are achievable, compared with mechanical propulsion systems, across the range of military duty cycles,” Crane said. Separating the power pack from the transmission allows diesel engines generating electrical power to run at optimum efficiency most of the time. E-X-Drive transmission also avoids slipping clutches or large high-pressure hydraulic pumps. Benefits of electric drive also include design flexibility, reliability, maintainability, electrical power capacity and some performance characteristics, according to Crane. And hybrid electric provides rapid propulsion responses to crew demand, which is important for survivability. Electric drive has simpler mechanical design with fewer wearing items and no high-pressure hydraulics, improving reliability. Series hybrid-electric designs are lighter and allow distributed propulsion, so vehicles can carry more equipment or protective armor. And electric propulsion can export power, reducing the need for towed generators. General Dynamics Land Systems has been working with hybrid-electric drive propulsion systems for 15 years, explained Michael Peck, director of business development for ground combat systems. “We went a different route than traditional hybrids;

1. A QinetiQ hybrid drive vehicle. [Photo courtesy of QinetiQ] 2. The General Dynamics Land Systems advanced ground mobility vehicle at Fort Bliss, Texas. [Photo courtesy of DoD]

GDLS currently has four prototype vehicles, and one is now being tested by TARDEC for reliability. “When you look at conventional systems, reliability issues are in drive trains due to off-road effects on brakes, axles and transmissions. We don’t have that problem.” GDLS also has an 8x8 vehicle similar to the Stryker and a 4x4 prototype. However, the GCV is a 60-ton vehicle and Peck is not sure his in-hub motor technology would be well suited for that weight. Peck said some earlier concerns with the GDLS approach arose from water and debris penetration of seals in very aggressive combat driving, but the company has refined the technology considerably since then. He urged military procurement officials to consider new propulsion systems holistically. “Look at how it affects the whole formation, performance, people and expenses. The fuel saving alone may not pay for the initial investment, but the cumulative impact of modern technologies on lifecycle costs, sustainment and operation is where the real cost advantages are seen.” O For more information, contact GCT Editor Dave Ahearn at or search our online archives for related stories at

DoD photo courtesy


we went with in-hub motors that can do different things than a traditional hybrid.” Traditional hybrids use conventional drive lines with axles and transmissions. “What we did to improve mobility, flexibility and free up interior space was to develop motors in the wheel hubs,” Peck said. “So if it has eight wheels, it has eight motors, for much better off-road mobility, each one operating independently. It does not have a drive shaft and axles. The motor generates electricity and wires carry the electricity to each wheel.” Peck said this enables GDLS to design the vehicle for better survivability, because there is none of the extra equipment in the undercarriage area. Absence of axles improves off-road mobility, and the ability for silent operation can help in special operations missions. Additionally, there is substantial exportable electric power. “It does not save that much fuel in ordinary road driving, but in combat, where you are often idling, that is where it saves,” Peck said. “And it is in combat, where you have limited access to fuel, that significant fuel saving counts.”

Secure Wired and Wireless Digital Communications Providing the Tactical Edge TruLink


NetCom-V™ and TruLink® Telephonics’ NetCom-V and TruLink Wireless Communication Systems offer a complete modular vehicle communications management and networking gateway system.

37768 Marine Corp Ad.indd 1

9/5/2012 GCT 7:43:58 3.5AM | 13


Oshkosh TerraMax UGV

Harris Corp.

Oshkosh Defense

Harris Corp. is demonstrating its new RedHawk system used for remotely disarming improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Designed using input from hundreds of unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) operators, RedHawk is tailored for the demanding missions of explosive ordnance disposal technicians. RedHawk’s intuitive haptic feedback enables operators to “feel” objects remotely as they manipulate and disarm IEDs. It provides users with the intuitive control and feedback that enables human-like robotic manipulation while keeping operators out of harm’s way. Haptic technology takes advantage of the sense of touch by applying forces, vibrations, or motions to the user. The RedHawk family of solutions consists of a modular, expandable system of wireless haptic controllers, precision manipulators, UGVs and accessories that can be adapted for specific missions. The RedHawk MP-R is a bolt-on retrofit solution that can be added to the more than 7,000 UGVs already operating in the field. RedHawk AGS is a highly-integrated UGV system based on an advanced mobility platform. “RedHawk’s haptic control technology reduces operator workload, preserves forensic evidence, and provides such realistic, intuitive feedback that operators can pick out an individual wire in an IED,” said Bill Gattle, vice president, aerospace systems, Harris Government Communications Systems. “Our goal is to push this technology forward so that one day no one will ever have to walk up to an explosive device in order to neutralize it.”

14 | GCT 3.5

The Marine Corps Warfighting Lab (MCWL) and Oshkosh Defense for the first time used an Oshkosh unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) technology to guide a convoy, the company announced. That technology could result in fewer Marines driving trucks, reducing their exposure to enemy attacks. It was the first-ever training of multiple UGVs in a single convoy using the Oshkosh TerraMax UGV technology. The Marines then evaluated the UGVs to determine how they can be utilized to support real-world dull, dirty and dangerous missions. These most recent developments are a continuation of the MCWL’s Cargo UGV initiative, which uses Oshkosh Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacements (MTVR) equipped with the TerraMax UGV technology. The exercise took place during the MCWL’s Enhanced MAGTF Operations (EMO) Limited Objective Experiment (LOE)

2.2, July 24 through August 5 at Fort Pickett, Va. The EMO LOE 2.2 sought to evaluate technologies and capabilities being developed for future missions. “Seven Marines were trained on our UGVs’ operations in only three days at the EMO LOE 2.2,” said John Beck, chief unmanned systems engineer for Oshkosh Corp. “That’s a testament to the TerraMax technology’s ease of control and userfriendly design. The capabilities of our highly sophisticated UGV systems require minimal user intervention to complete their missions, opening the door for future logistics operations to be conducted with fewer warfighters, reducing cost and saving lives.” Combat-veteran Marines were trained on the Oshkosh UGV technology for the first time in August 2011 and also assessed it in a series of tests in challenging terrain and environments.

MK2 Robotics Arm HDT Global HDT Global is showcasing its highly dexterous Adroit MK2 robotic arm, its energy-efficient expeditionary solutions and its GPS-guided cargo delivery parachute systems. The Adroit MK2 arm possesses unmatched dexterity, strength and speed. Configurations include single and dual arm manipulation capabilities with left- and right-handed options. Weighing only 16 pounds, the lightweight yet rugged system carries an advantage in theater, with the ability to be mounted onto any mobile robotic platform. The power density of an Adroit MK2 arm is several times better than any other available solution, with a load capacity of more than 50 pounds for an 11-degree of freedom configuration. “HDT Robotics division is excited to display the Adroit MK2 robotic arm, demonstrating our position as a leader in the industry with exceptional design, meticulous development and production

of robotics components and systems,” said Tom Van Doren, Ph.D., chief operating officer, HDT Robotics division. The HDT Global Protector robot also lightens loads carried by dismounted infantry by offering a dual capability to clear the trail of IEDs while carrying up to 1,000 pounds of payload. Belonging to the Guided Precision Aerial Delivery Systems (GPADS) family, the MicroFly parachute system employs GPS guidance to autonomously deliver payloads to specific locations. The MicroFly system improves military mission capabilities without compromising safety or increasing training requirements, according to the company. Airborne Systems, a division of HDT Global, provides the largest array of GPADS systems and is a world leader in the design, development and manufacture of best-of-class parachute systems for uses including recovery, deceleration and cargo delivery.

Compiled by KMI Media Group staff

JLENS Training

3-D Facial Recognition System


Animetrics-View Systems

Radar Range: Hundreds of miles Target Detection: Trucks, cars, cruise missiles, swarm boats Evaluation/Decision Time: Minutes Deployment: Aerostats

View: 3-D System: Facial recognition Weapons Detection: Walk through portal

Combatant commanders moved one step closer to being able to detect, track and engage threats such as swarming boats and incoming cruise missiles, around the clock, from hundreds of miles away. The first class of Army soldiers completed mission operator training on the Raytheon JLENS elevated, persistent over-the-horizon sensor system. It involves aerostats tethered to the ground that carry surveillance radar and ground control systems. JLENS is able to spot trucks, cars and maritime craft.

Animetrics announced a partnership with View Systems to produce a new 3-D facial recognition capability. Under terms of the agreement, View Systems will integrate Animetrics’ next-generation 3-D facial recognition technology into its concealed weapons detection systems used for security screening. Utilizing Animetrics’ 3-D facial recognition technology will provide a new layer of enhanced intelligent screening capabilities for View Systems’ ViewScan weapons detection systems, allowing security personnel to utilize nonintrusive facial biometrics screening, analysis and identity verification within the solution.

Soft Robot DARPA This robot is made of silicone. Produced in a DARPA program at Harvard University, it can walk, change color, light up in the dark, and change temperature. While it's currently produced for less than $100, in the future, robots like this might be made for just a few dollars.

Pyros Munition Raytheon Guidance Modes: Semi-Active Laser, GPS Sensor: Sets height of burst Safe and Arm Device: Electronic Platform: Small UAS Typical target: Enemy planting IED Pyros is an air-launched bomb designed for unmanned aircraft systems. It has a high degree of maneuverability. At only 13-pounds and 22-inches long, Pyros is ideally suited for applications where weight is a critical factor, such as unmanned aircraft, rotary-wing scout platforms and light attack aircraft. The advanced warhead uses a semi-active laser seeker to precisely engage targets, significantly reducing the risk of collateral damage.

GCT  3.5 | 15

Marine Facilitator

Q& A

As Combat Draws Down, Marines Still Poised for Swift Response

Lieutenant General John M. Paxton Jr. Commander United States Marine Corps Forces Command

Lieutenant General John M. Paxton Jr. is the commander, United States Marine Corps Forces Command, Commander United States Marine Corps Forces, Europe and Commanding General, Fleet Marine Force, Atlantic. Prior to his current assignment he served as the commanding general, II Marine Expeditionary Force; and commander, United States Marine Forces Africa. He has served as the director for Operations, J-3, the Joint Staff and as the chief of staff for Multi-National Force Iraq in Baghdad. Additional general officer assignments include commanding general, 1st Marine Division, commanding general, Marine Corps Recruit Depot/Western Recruiting Region, and assistant deputy commandant of the Marine Corps, Programs and Resources (Director Programs). He graduated from Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., with Bachelor of Science and Master of Civil Engineering degrees. He was commissioned into the Marine Corps in 1974 through Officer Candidate School. A career Marine infantryman, the general has commanded Marines at every level from platoon through division and has served and commanded in all three active Marine Divisions (1st Bn, 3d Mar; 2nd Bn, 4th Mar; 3rd Bn, 5th; 1st Bn, 8th Mar; 1st Mar; 1st Mar Div). Paxton has also served as an operations, plans and training (G3-S3) officer within Fleet Marine Force units at the battalion, regiment, division and Marine expeditionary force levels. In addition to service in Iraq, he executed operational tours supporting stability efforts in the Bosnian conflict with Landing Force Sixth Fleet (LF6F) and in Mogadishu, Somalia, as United Nations quick reaction force (QRF), both while commanding Battalion Landing Team (1/8). Other staff and joint assignments include the military assistant to the under secretary of the Navy, amphibious operations officer and executive officer crisis action team at UNC/CFC/USFK in Korea; and in Strategic Plans Branch, Deputy Commandant Plans, Policies and Operations, Headquarters U.S. Marine Corps. Supporting establishment commands include Company B, Marine Barracks 8th & I as a captain and Marine Corps Recruiting Station New York, N.Y., as a major. In addition to The Basic School, his professional education includes United States Marine Corps Amphibious Warfare School (non-resident), United States Army Infantry Officer Advanced Course, and the United States Marine Corps Command 16 | GCT 3.5

and Staff College. He was a federal executive fellow in foreign policy studies at the Brookings Institution as a lieutenant colonel, as well as a military fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations as a colonel. He has also been a Marine Corps fellow at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Seminar XXI. Q: From your perspective, what should the Marine Corps’ top priorities be for the immediate future? With the planned drawdown of forces in Afghanistan, do you see combatant commander requirements decreasing? A: Our mission requires that we remain a ready force, and our core competency lies in the ability to conduct expeditionary operations, anywhere in the world, with those ready forces. As such, readiness will and must continue to remain our priority, even as we begin to reduce the overall number of Marine Corps units in Afghanistan. The demand for amphibious forces has not slowed during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, with the regular deployment of Marine expeditionary units [MEU] embarked aboard a standard three-ship amphibious ready group [ARG] having continued in support of four of our six geographic combatant commanders over the last decade. In

fact, the combined demand for ARG/MEU presence continues to outstrip the Navy and Marine Corps’ capacity in terms of both amphibious shipping and available forces. The appetite for these forces is unlikely to decrease, whether it is in theaters where instability is present, or in areas of responsibility where the emphasis is on forward engagement and theater security cooperation. ARG/MEUs will continue to provide a scalable and adaptable solution to the combatant commanders’ mission requirements, be it presence and engagement or limited crisis response. So, while the Marine Corps faces challenges as we emerge from a decade of sustained combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan [conventional, counterinsurgency and security assistance], we will remain focused on our culture of conducting joint and combined operations from the sea and providing ready, forward-deployed amphibious forces in support of combatant commander requirements. Q: Where does the Marine Corps’ focus need to be in the coming decade? A: Since the close of World War II and the National Security Act provisions that created our Department of Defense and Joint Chiefs of Staff, through the 1980s and passage of the GoldwaterNichols Act, our nation’s leaders have charged the Marine Corps with being the most ready when our nation is least ready. At the low end of conflict we will continue to deploy the standing, forward-deployed, naval quick-reaction forces we have maintained afloat for decades. Yet, for all that the ARG/MEU brings to bear as a force capable of missions ranging from disaster response and foreign humanitarian assistance all the way up to port and airfield seizures, it is a force designed primarily for forward engagement and limited crisis response, not to decisively defeat an adversary. Consequently, the Navy and Marine Corps must continue to serve our nation and combatant commanders by being prepared to provide larger yet equally scalable and flexible ready forces capable of forcible entry from the sea at a level beyond the ARG/MEU. Amphibious operations remain relevant to joint operational access in today’s complex operating environment for the simple fact that operations from a sea base do not depend on basing rights, over-flight permission, or access to adjacent land-based infrastructure. What the Marine Corps and Navy amphibious forces therefore offer the nation and combatant commanders is the ability to rapidly project and then sustain combat power ashore in the face of armed opposition, while retaining the flexibility to maneuver or withdraw just as quickly. Our Marine expeditionary brigades [MEB] offer an appropriately-sized force [16,000 to 22,000] for these larger-scale contingency operations, and when properly paired with Navy forces can be considered the expeditionary force of choice for joint operational access from the sea. Given that 95 percent of the world’s commerce moves over the oceans, and that half of the world’s oil passes through six major sea-lane choke points, it is clear that the Marine Corps’ top priorities for the foreseeable future must remain focused on revitalizing our amphibious capabilities at the MEB-level and beyond. Maintaining amphibious skills and power projection capabilities is critical to our naval readiness. As such, we are exercising this capability—often annually—on the East coast with Expeditionary Strike Group Two and 2nd MEB in Bold

Alligator; on the West Coast with Commander U.S. 3rd Fleet and 1st MEB in Dawn Blitz; and overseas with Commander U.S. 7th Fleet, 3rd MEB, and allies around the Pacific Rim. Q: There are defense spending cuts included in current funding measures, as well as the possibility of further cuts beginning in January. What steps are the Marine Corps taking to institute efficiencies and cost-cutting? A: The Marine Corps is developing its fiscal year 2014 budget in order to meet the mission prescribed by the Defense Strategic Guidance, balanced against today’s fiscal realities. Simply put, we will provide the best Marine Corps the nation can afford, asking only for what we need, not what we want. The commandant of the Marine Corps’ Force Development Guidance for the Fiscal Year 2015 Program Objective Memorandum describes where the Marine Corps is prepared to accept risk in pursuit of future objectives, and how we will manage limited resources, all while acknowledging that the demand for forces will continue to outpace resources and support. In this construct, the guidance is clear: Eliminating inefficiencies alone will not yield sufficient savings. The Marine Corps must ultimately accept risk relative to legitimate demands on our force. In coordination with the other military services and departments we continue to assess where costs can be saved and risks can be accepted or mitigated. This includes how, when and where we retrograde equipment in Afghanistan, how we best

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capture lessons learned and keep a trained force, where we may be able to slow the pace of modernizing the force, and where efficiencies may be found through joint and/ or civilian enterprises. As for the defense spending cuts included in the FY13 budget, the new Defense Strategic Guidance provides a framework by which the Marine Corps can balance near and intermediate term demands with the realities of the current fiscal constraints. Though the choices of the last year have been difficult, we are confident that we have carefully managed risk and in so doing struck a proper balance between capacity and capability. We are prepared to work through a brief period of austerity, remaining mindful of decisions that can be adjusted or reversed, so that when future fiscal environments improve we are ready to capitalize on opportunity. To that end, the Marine Corps’ 2013 budget request ensures that we can, for the immediate future, still maintain the high level of Marines with the Marine Expeditionary Brigade-Afghanistan arrive in southern Afghanistan. The brigade will soon absorb Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force-Afghanistan, the current Marine unit operating in the region, and continue their readiness the nation has come to expect of Special counterinsurgency mission. [Photo courtesy of DoD] her Marines. On August 7, President Obama signed the Sequestration Transparency Act, the context of current and future operational demand. The result which details how sequestration, if implemented, will be executed. was a validation of our basic organizational structure, one that is If sequestration were to occur, it would force the Marine Corps to both balanced and responsive. We continue to rely upon the full undertake a fundamental reassessment of what the nation expects breadth of skills, knowledge and abilities of our Marines, sailors her Marine Corps to do. We will be prepared to conduct that and civilians as we assist all our Marine Forces components and assessment and implement follow-on actions if and when directed. Marine expeditionary forces in preparing to respond to worldwide requirements and contingencies. We are in an excellent position Q: Do you have any additional thoughts about the Marines, sailto enable all our operating forces in achieving the missions they ors and families; their mission and their accomplishments? are tasked to perform. Whether supporting U.S. Central Command priorities in Afghanistan, providing disaster relief efforts such as A: The U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command [MARFORCOM] misthose in Haiti, or deploying contingency response forces capable sion remains focused on supporting all our operating force and of joint forcible entry from the sea—the men and women of the constantly nurturing the Navy-Marine Corps relationship on the United States Marine Corps and MARFORCOM remain committed waterfront, all as we endeavor to meet daily combatant comto being America’s expeditionary force in readiness. mander requirements, particularly in Afghanistan. For the past Most importantly, we are all mindful of the sacrifices our fortwo years, Admiral John Harvey, commander of U.S. Fleet Forces ward-deployed Marines and sailors make every day. MARFORCOM Command, and my predecessor, Lieutenant General Denny Hejlik, is dedicated to providing them and their leaders with the best were keenly and personally engaged in this effort, and committed plans for organizing, training and equipping so that they are ready to maximizing readiness in a period of diminishing resources. for every mission and continue to remain relevant to our nation. MARFORCOM has recently conducted an extensive and inclusive As our Commandant General James F. Amos has directed, we are review of personnel and manning, in both our military and civil“Today’s force, for today’s crisis.” O ian workforce, in order to assess the headquarters’ composition in


18 | GCT 3.5

A long war produces benefits for combatants. By Dave Ahearn GCT Editor While war is hell, it also is true that the conflict raging for the past decade has produced immense strides in the art of saving lives in theater. Progress in protecting warfighters has been attained in myriad areas, as the armed services have countered moves by a cunning and crafty enemy, and industry has stepped up to the plate and responded repeatedly. Although the days of major combat in Iraq are over, and plans are set to draw down forces in Afghanistan, the advancements born

of this decade-long struggle will become permanent gains benefiting American and allied combatants. Bottom line: Fewer U.S. personnel will die in future wars, thanks to the lessons learned and technology developments in this conflict.

Personal Gear Body armor has become more effective against enemy threats, while at the same time becoming lighter and cooler to wear in

hot climates, thanks to ceramic and other innovations. That includes armor for the first time being shaped to curb discomfort for female personnel. And the gains in weight and comfort have also been accompanied by solutions to other problems, such as the need for warfighters to carry immense amounts of weighty batteries with them to power their increasingly ubiquitous electronic gear. Shot detectors, land navigation screens, comms of multiple types, radios, and other GCT  3.5 | 19

electronic systems have been provided for troops at the edge—but all of that gear can weigh up to a total 70 to 120 pounds. So industry has found ways to lighten the load. For example, BAE Systems provides a conformal battery that answers multiple combatant needs. It is shaped to the human form for comfort. It can take a hit from an enemy round while protecting the warfighter. And it can power multiple types of gear, such as radios, while cutting the total weight of items that a soldier must carry. Based on lessons learned on the battlefield, body armor advancements have included guarding areas of the body that were exposed, such as the sides. Blast Boxers by BCB were devised to protect the groin area after IEDs began causing serious injuries. Point Blank Body Armor and other providers have made signal advances in armor systems to improve combatants’ chances of survival, with better outer tactical vests, insert plates, helmets and more. Another factor helping to reduce deaths in theater has been in the medical area, where medics have better gear in their kits to provide first aid to wounded troops on the battlefield. And soldiers and Marines hit by enemy fire also saw their survival chances increased thanks to faster evacuations from remote areas: The V-22 Osprey can land where any helicopter can, but once in the air, the Osprey flies twice as fast and six times farther than a typical helicopter. And for wounded personnel, the sooner they reach a hospital, the greater their chances of living to fight another day. Other improvements for warfighters over the past decade have included night vision sights that can provide clear views in black and white, instead of the traditional green. Laser range finders, too, have been upgraded. With smart ammunition, no enemy can hide from U.S. forces by taking a position en defilade, because that ammo can be timed to explode over the heads of enemy forces. Breaching gear has advanced, ranging from ladders on vehicles to shotgun shells designed to smash open windows or doors without endangering warfighters with ricochets. One example is the Remington TB12, which can blast open a door in a second, providing U.S. military personnel the element of surprise in confronting an enemy hiding in a room. Improved sights and other rifle gear mean that personnel can take down an enemy at greater range, before the enemy is aware of their presence. In ammunition, ATK provides 20 | GCT 3.5

the 7.62 mm M80 ball ammo that can be used by snipers, striking with an average mean radius of just 7.5 inches at 600 yards.

Vehicles The decade-long war saw a ruthlessly resourceful enemy building improvised explosive devices and then upgrading IEDs (shaped charges and more) almost as fast as U.S. vehicle makers added armor and other protections. Because IEDs have been the leading cause of U.S. and allied casualties in Afghanistan and Iraq, perhaps the foremost innovation for protecting combatants was the V-shaped vehicle hull, which deflects the blast outward, away from vehicle occupants. This is offered now by an array of military vehicle makers. In addition to the V-hull, AM General (maker of the HMMWV) and Hardwire devised the blast chimney, which allows the IED blast to shoot up the metal chimney and disperse above the vehicle. Other innovations include a BAE Systems plan to rebuild the flat-bottomed, IED-vulnerable HMMWV, making it safer in several ways. The fuel tank and battery are moved away from the passenger compartment, so that the blast isn’t followed by a fire. BAE also made the vehicle self-sacrificing, so the front and rear thirds of the HMMWV will fly away, leaving the passenger compartment to survive an IED explosion. Lights that automatically illuminate show vehicle occupants the way out after an IED detonation, and windows can become escape hatches if doors are jammed. After some warfighters suffered burns in fires ignited by IED explosions, in-vehicle fire extinguishing systems were devised that will douse fires not only in the passenger cabin, but also at fuel tanks, rubber tires and in engine compartments. Lessons learned also showed the value of run-flat tires and metal tire shields, so that an enemy attack would not leave the vehicle with flat tires—a sitting duck for a continued enemy attack. Rather, with run flats and tire shields, the vehicle can continue rolling down the road, away from the enemy.

Fuel Convoys Another arrival on the battlefield has been more widespread use of solar power to provide electricity for troops, covering a range of needs. For example, sheets of solar panels can be used to recharge personal electronic

gear. Or solar panels can provide juice for tent lights, comms gear and more. A water purification unit by WorldWater & Solar Technologies is solar powered. The key point here is that solar power requires no fuel—or fuel convoys, and those convoys are a frequent target for enemy forces. Solar power saves lives.

Unmanned Systems One of the greatest advances in protection for personnel is the unmanned vehicle. Whether in the air, on the ground, or underwater, unmanned systems have come into their own during the past decade. In the air, there are multiple systems of every size and purpose, from craft such as the Predator by General Atomics that can not only locate the enemy but take him out, to the tiny Skate UAS by Aurora Flight Sciences that can fly indoors, moving from room to room and up stairs to check for any threat. Similarly, the Recon Scout throwbot by Recon Robotics can be tossed over a wall, through a window or onto a roof to check for threats. In all these systems, the significant point is that remotely piloted vehicles may be exposed to enemy fire, but not the personnel guiding them. Unmanned systems have been estimated to have saved thousands of lives, especially in explosive ordnance disposal work in theater. If an IED detonates as an unmanned system performs EOD work, no one is injured. And innumerable instances where American combatants would have walked into enemy ambushes have been averted because UAVs sent back full-color, full-motion video showing enemy locations and intentions. That includes some unmanned systems as small as a bird or insect: the minuscule Hummingbird UAV that flies by flapping its wings in a design by AeroVironment and DARPA, and the Ornithopter insect, also by DARPA. These and many other innovations not only have provided a critical edge for American forces in the current conflict—they will continue to safeguard combatants in future fights, a permanent advancement in the art of war. O

For more information, contact GCT Editor Dave Ahearn at or search our online archives for related stories at

Photo courtesy of Oshkosh Defense

Vehicles will provide better off-road rides, more protection, curb costs and save fuel. By Dave Ahearn, GCT Editor You can have it all, at least in a military vehicle: The Army and Marine Corps are advancing plans to give warfighters a gamechanging vehicle that will offer protection from IEDs, vastly better off-road rides, stellar fuel economy, cost containment and more. The joint light tactical vehicle (JLTV) acquisition effort moved into the engineering, manufacturing and development (EMD) phase with contract awards August 24 to three competing firms, each of them a powerhouse in military vehicles production. This is one of the few major new procurement programs in a time of defense austerity and program cancellations. The JLTV, after being canceled in Senate proceedings, rallied and survived even as other defense vehicle programs were cut or delayed. Some $487 billion of defense program cuts over 10 years already are being legislated, with the potential for another $500 billion over a decade beginning in January. AM General of South Bend, Ind., Lockheed Martin of Bethesda, Md., and Oshkosh Defense of Oshkosh, Wis., and Stafford, Va., now will vie in the JLTV EMD phase to win the ultimate prize, a multi-billion dollar program to produce 50,000 JLTVs for the Army and 5,000 for the Marine Corps. The JLTVs will provide a successor to the workhorse HMMWV and the iconic Jeep.

The three other competing companies that did not receive JLTV EMD contracts—BAE Systems, General Tactical Vehicles (General Dynamics and AM General) and Navistar—still may not be out of the running: The military stated that they may develop candidate JLTV vehicles at their own risk and expense, to compete for the initial production contract. The JLTV program was halted momentarily when Navistar filed a protest with the Government Accountability Office. “Following our debrief with the government, the company had concerns regarding the selection process and we had limited time to submit our filing,” said Elissa Koc, manager of external communications. However, Navistar subsequently decided to withdraw its protest. For AM General, Lockheed Martin and Oshkosh Defense, the EMD phase offers a challenge. Since each firm must design a JLTV that meets stringently difficult minimum requirements set by the military, each company must provide some additional cutting-edge features on its proposed vehicle that will set it apart from the others. And each of the rival firms has done just that. Here, the top leaders of the JLTV programs in each of the three companies lay out in detail just what that vehicle maker would provide in its JLTV. GCT  3.5 | 21

Views of the BRV-O JLTV candidate. [Photo courtesy of AM General]

AM General: The BRV-O For AM General, a key selling point for why the company should produce the next generation JLTV is that this is the firm that produced 300,000 HMMWVs, according to Chris Vanslager, AM General vice president of program management and business development. “We’re the highest volume manufacturer that the Department of Defense has,” having spent decades providing light tactical vehicles, Vanslager said. Further, he noted, AM General has years of experience in studying how to build vehicles protecting warriors against IED and RPG blasts, along with a veteran workforce already skilled in building light tactical vehicles, a depth of experience that informs the design of the AM General JLTV candidate, the blast resistant vehicle–off-road (BRV-O). For example, Vanslager continued, a strong hull on a vehicle is only part of the solution to the requirement for survivability. 22 | GCT 3.5

Protection “goes beyond just that armor or that hull. You have five-point restraint harnesses and you have shock absorbing seats. You have devices in there that mitigate any portion of the body that might come in contact with the hull when an event occurs.” But even more, he said, the AM General strategy is to design the BRV-O so it can go off road, avoiding the enemy’s roadside mines. “We bring an advanced suspension system, an advanced, high-powered fuel efficient power train-engine combination that, when you put this all together, will take the vehicle off the beaten path, take it away from those routes that are likely to be mined with IEDs,” he added. That is an example of the benefit of years of building light tactical vehicles used in theater, according to Vanslager. “We’ve been doing light tactical vehicles for over 50 years,” he said. “And over the last 30 years, we’ve been delivering the HMMWV, which is in ways considered the Lamborghini of off-road vehicles. In the last 10 years, we’ve invested a substantial amount to improve the technologies in the vehicle, and that includes the survivability aspects.” There is no doubt that AM General will meet its $63.9 million EMD contract deadlines to produce the BRV-O, because it already exists, Vanslager emphasized. “By the time we submitted our proposal, our survivability system had already been tested at a government test site and evaluated by the Army Research Lab, a government agency,” he said. “So we’ve met all of the requirements that our customer wanted.” Not only has the BRV-O been run through Army tests, it has been tested where it counts: on the road and in the field. “With the BRVO, we’ve already got over 300,000 miles accumulated on the components, on the chassis, up through the whole vehicle,” Vanslager reported. To further enhance survivability, the BRV-O meets requirements for both external fire suppression as well as internal fire suppression. Shifting to another BRV-O strong point, Vanslager noted that it helps to contain costs in an era of defense austerity. Because AM General is a high volume vehicle producer, it offers efficiencies of scale for savings, and the company also helps its suppliers reduce costs to realize further savings, he observed. And having a supplier base already established is yet another reason AM General can meet the aggressive military deadlines for getting the JLTV into production and onto the battlefield. “We’re ready now with our vehicle,” he noted, an asset that has “highly reliable, mature sub-systems components.” For future savings, he explained that the engine has more than sufficient power for today’s demands, so that it can meet

higher performance needs in coming years. And, key to saving the military money, the engine offers excellent fuel economy. Another point: If the BRV-O is selected as the JLTV, the military doesn’t have to finance AM General setting up a global supply chain for the vehicle, because that supply chain already exists.

Lockheed Martin JLTV

To give just one example, she noted that “we had things like titanium lower control arms when we delivered our TD vehicles. I mean, that’s really been the beauty of our opportunities. We had a design that performed in TD and met all of the requirements. And then we’ve had a number of years since we’ve delivered those vehicles to continue to refine the design, to really take what we knew were high cost materials out of it.” That helps on the purchase price that the military would pay for the Lockheed Martin JLTV. But what about the later costs of operating the vehicles? “We’re affordable in terms of the overall life cycle sustainment costs, having demonstrated very high fuel efficiency and other aspects of reduced life cycle sustainment,” she said. “The fuel efficiency—we demonstrated in TD, on a vehicle that was substantially heavier than our EMD vehicle, that we could achieve well over 10 mpg. As you are probably aware, that is a very, very significant increase over” the fuel economy of typical military vehicles.

The Lockheed Martin argument for its JLTV is that the vehicle is low risk, low cost, proven in tests and mature in design. In capturing a $66.3 million contract for the EMD phase of the JLTV program, Lockheed Martin stressed that it had a head start on the competition: The company earlier participated in the technology development (TD) phase of the JLTV effort. “After seeing what was possible in TD, this new design is about making it a reality for production and the warfighter,” said Scott Greene, Lockheed Martin vice president, ground vehicle programs. “Our design represents a low-risk solution. We have a proven design already tested by the customer that we’re going to serve in EMD.” That translates into a superior vehicle at a cut-rate sticker price, according to Greene. For example, “We have significantly cost-reduced our TD design by eliminating exotic materials and optimizing the design itself for production,” said Kathryn Hasse, Lockheed Martin director–Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program. “So we really do have very great confidence in our ability to not only deliver very high quality, reliable vehicles on the accelerated schedule that the customer has requested, but we also know that we have great confidence that we can meet their aggressive average unit production cost, in production.” A typical maximum price limit set by the military is around $260,000 for one variant of the JLTV. Greene observed that Lockheed Martin has eliminated potential harsh surprises in developing the JLTV by testing it exhaustively. “We’ve [designed] our vehicle using over 160,000 combined test miles [so as to] maximize the affordability and survivability for the U.S. Army and the Marine Corps,” he said. And the vehicle has passed formal tests. “Testing has shown that JLTV meets protection standards for IED-protected vehicles, while weighing approximately 40 percent less than some all-terrain models deployed in theater today,” he said. “Through government testing, we’ve already proven that our JLTV can meet the government’s performance [requirements], and that includes the enhanced blast performance,” Hasse emphasized. “And I might also mention that as a result of government testing, we know we enter EMD with a highly reliable vehicle.” She turned to another major issue, the cost of buying and operating JLTVs in a highly constrained budgetary environment. “You know, cost has been a big discussion point over the last year or so,” she recalled. “We have spent a tremendous amount of time optimizing our JLTV design for EMD and for Views of the Lockheed Martin JLTV candidate. [Photos courtesy of Lockheed Martin] production."

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The Lockheed Martin JLTV Suspension Story A key system for any vehicle that must travel off-road is the suspension, and Meritor promises to provide the Lockheed Martin JLTV with a first-rank ride. Meritor will supply its ProTec high mobility independent suspension (HMIS) for the JLTV. Meritor Defense has developed more than 20 variants of the ProTec HMIS system over the past seven to eight years, according to Dave Damian, director, sales and business development. “Over this time, we have also developed a vehicle dynamics team that delivers capabilities including full vehicle chassis system setup,” he noted. “By use of Meritor’s vehicle dynamics mobile laboratory trailer, we can provide real time data acquisition, precision spring and shock tuning, and optimization of ride and

handling characteristics so the ProTec system can provide the vehicle the best capability to fit real-world mission environments.” Combining this tuning process with high wheel travel (up to 20 inches), large impacts in full suspension jounce and rebound are minimized, reducing the impact loading, or the pounding and punishment, to the vehicle chassis, he added. Meritor Defense also offers options that included semi-active damping, further enhancing the ride and performance characteristics of the vehicle. Depending on the application, the ProTec HMIS can provide anywhere from 50 to 100 percent faster speeds over specified terrain, many times at an increased payload, Damian observed.

The firm fixed-price contract has a 27-month performance period with deliveries of 22 vehicles taking place within 12 to 14 months. Primary variants with companion trailers include the utility carrier and shelter, a two-seat prime mover with an open bed; and the general-purpose vehicle, which is a four-seater that will carry troops, ammunition and small supplies. Additionally, Greene noted, when it comes to creating the JLTV, the Lockheed Martin team has long since been assembled, including BAE Systems in Sealy, Texas, Allison Transmission, Cummins Engine, L-3 Combat Propulsion Systems, Meritor Defense, Robert Bosch LLC and Vehma International of America. And Lockheed Martin itself has ample experience in vehicle programs, Hasse noted, such as participating in the ground combat vehicle program, several wheeled vehicle programs and the Marine personnel carrier. The JLTV entrant to the contest must weigh 14,000 pounds or less to achieve transportability standards, yet it also must be able to achieve levels of MRAP blast protection, “which we’ve already proven in tests,” she continued. “We have to achieve a very significantly reduced price point, particularly as it compares to MRAP vehicles of all forms and flavors,” she said. “And we’ve demonstrated to the government’s satisfaction that we can achieve that as well. So from a Lockheed Martin perspective, we are very confident, in conjunction with our world class teammates such as BAE Sealy, who has produced tens of thousands of military vehicles out of their facility in Sealy, and other key suppliers such as Meritor Defense, and Vehma and Bosch and L-3.” Lockheed Martin—the largest defense contractor—also has a vaunted reputation as a systems integrator, Greene noted. Greene said having Lockheed Martin lead the team provides a critical plus for the company’s JLTV program. “One of the benefits you get with Lockheed Martin is the whole systems thinking approach, from an engineering perspective,” he added. That becomes crucial when the military demands a vehicle that can do it all, rather than being just a one-trick pony. “There are purpose-built vehicles out there in the inventory that are good for protection,” he observed. “And there are purpose-built vehicles out there today that are good for mobility. And there are purpose-built vehicles out there today that are affordable. 24 | GCT 3.5

“I wouldn’t say we have any unusual technologies in the ProTec HMIS, but over the years of development, we have established an expertise at combining low cost, lightweight materials with automotive style architectures in order to deliver to our customers the lightest weight product that delivers improved durability and reliability, while increasing vehicle payload and performance at the same time.” In addition to the suspension itself, Meritor also offers a full suite of electronic systems to enhance the ProTec HMIS performance, including air suspension height control, semi-active damping, central tire inflation systems, and electronic drivetrain controls for shifting and traction control management.

“What Lockheed Martin has done is, we’ve taken those requirements that at some time appear orthogonal to most people, and we’ve been able to combine those into one vehicle that is affordable, that is mobile, and that gives the survivability and protection that the warfighter needs. That’s the difference” that a systems integrator can bring to the table. Not only must each contractor design a vehicle with many simultaneous virtues, each firm must integrate government furnished equipment such as comms systems into the vehicles, Greene explained. A key point in the success of the Lockheed Martin JLTV is that the company didn’t attempt to take a heavy vehicle and rework it to make a light tactical asset. Rather, Lockheed Martin began with a blank sheet to design a vehicle precisely meeting requirements, he said, and then proved it with 160,000 miles of testing. That makes the Lockheed JLTV “very low risk,” he said. Each contract calls for the contractor to deliver 20 vehicles 12 months from receipt of contract, then the 21st vehicle in 13 months and the 22nd vehicle in 14 months. After each of the contractors delivers its vehicles, the military will run them through robust testing programs. That’s in addition to shakedown tests that contractors will put on the vehicles during the EMD phase.

Oshkosh Defense L-ATV With Oshkosh Defense, one key means of setting the company apart from the competition lies in a simple statement of facts: The leading killer of U.S. warfighters in theater is the IED, and the best protection against those roadside mines is to avoid coming anywhere near them in the first place. To that end, give a vehicle a nextgeneration suspension system, so it can go off road with ease. That was a message that was advanced repeatedly by John Bryant, Oshkosh vice president for joint and Marine Corps programs, Dave Diersen, director of defense programs, and Rob Messina, vice president for engineering. The three Oshkosh officials offered details of the Oshkosh light combat tactical all-terrain vehicle (L-ATV) that the company is proposing for the JLTV solution. Then they adjourned from their

offices in Stafford, Va., to the Stafford Airport, a civil aviation facility beside I-95, to offer rides on a rough off-road course in a vehicle with an older style suspension, and then in the L-ATV equipped with the advanced TAK-4i independent suspension. For this writer, the difference was remarkable. On the rough off-road test course, the older truck provided a pounding ride, and even on a straightaway strained to reach 15 to 17 mph. On the same stretch, the L-ATV was moving at 30 mph, with a far smoother ride, whether one was seated in a back seat or the passenger seat. That was roughly twice the speed. “Our JLTV offering, the L-ATV, allows offroad speeds significantly faster” than a 70 percent advance from a non-TAK-4i suspension. Bryant stated. “It is truly a leap ahead.” But the L-ATV is more than just a new-tech suspension system, offering as well improved The L-ATV maneuvers in sand. [Photo courtesy of Oshkosh Defense] fuel economy, blast protection, cost containment Messina reported that “an M-ATV on a given course can go and more, according to the officials. And paramount for the around 20 miles an hour. The JLTV can go more than 30 miles JLTV program, they stressed the vast experience that Oshkosh an hour.” Put another way, an M-ATV can outpace a HMMWV commands in providing the military with vehicles. in open terrain, and an L-ATV “is 70 percent better than the “We have been serving the military for more than 90 M-ATV,” Messina disclosed. years,” Bryant said. “We’ve actually sold over 100,000 tactical The lighter L-ATV weight means it can more easily get wheeled vehicles and trailers to our military customers.” to the fight in the first place. “At about half the weight of The company has supplied heavy and medium vehicles an M-ATV, L-ATV offers much greater transportability,” he for both the Army and Marine Corps, providing 8,700 of the observed. “In theater, the MRAP requirements were not really MRAP all terrain vehicles, or M-ATVs. “And now, with the JLTV built around transportability, were not really built around program, with the SOCOM ground mobility vehicle program, getting to the fight from the continental United States.” and with a number of HMMWV modernization options, A light vehicle weight not only means it is more easily Oshkosh is solidly in the light tactical vehicle market.” transported, the vehicle also offers better fuel economy. In moving to design a JLTV, Bryant stated, “The threat And the less fuel vehicles use, the fewer fuel convoys must from IEDs renders every mission dangerous, and kind of move through theater—a critical point, considering that fuel removes the front line.” convoys are a favorite target of the enemy. Oshkosh has experience in dealing with that danger, he “The L-ATV offers a tremendous increase in fuel economy,” added. “MRAPs were designed for those evolving threats in Bryant stated. “A vehicle that’s half the weight is going to be theater, and they do provide tremendous protection. Our much more fuel efficient. But our L-ATV also has a power M-ATV combined tremendous off-road capability with that train built around the Duramax 6.6 liter engine. And that’s a protection.” highly efficient power plant. So by combining the light weight What is new is that the Oshkosh L-ATV has provided a protection of the L-ATV with a highly efficient power train, you way to combine advanced protection with “the lightweight get a significant leap ahead in fuel economy. We designed this transportable package needed, so they can get the vehicle to vehicle for fuel efficiency.” the fight,” he noted. The engine alone provides the L-ATV with 30 percent Even though the Oshkosh M-ATV is the lightest MRAP in greater fuel efficiency, Messina estimated. Other factors such theater currently, and the Oshkosh L-ATV is about half the as lighter vehicle weight, drive line efficiencies, aerodynamics weight of that MRAP, the vehicles both have about the same and more provide even better savings at the pump. But no levels of protection, he stated. solid number on total fuel savings can be provided, because Depending on which protection packages are mounted on of differences in vehicle drivers, payload and other variables. the M-ATV and the L-ATV, they overlap in survivability, he said. Suffice it to say, Bryant and Diersen related, that the L-ATV Focusing on the TAK-4i suspension system, that smoother yields far greater fuel consumption efficiency compared to an ride can be more than an impression. It can be quantified, he up-armored HMMWV. continued. “What we measure is, we try to keep the forces felt Oshkosh received a $56.4 million JLTV EMD contract.O by the driver within a certain level. So the Army will describe certain courses with certain sizes of bumps. And then you have to be able to go over those bumps while keeping the For more information, contact GCT Editor Dave Ahearn at or search our online archives forces on the driver below a certain level. And then they for related stories at measure how fast you can go when you do that.”

GCT  3.5 | 25


October 2012 Volume 3, Issue 6

Cover and In-Depth Interview with:

General Lloyd J. Austin III Vice Chief of Staff, U.S. Army Features PEO Missiles & Space

Review with us the latest in missile weaponry, replete with features that permit taking out the enemy without the disaster of collateral damage or civilian casualties.

PEO Ground Combat Systems We provide updates for the key military vehicle programs, from the Abrams tank and future Ground Combat Vehicle to the Stryker, and much more.


Learn about major procurement efforts, including the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program, and the strategies behind those programs.

Bonus Distribution • AUSA Annual • Light Armored Vehicles and Stryker Summit


Special Report JLTV Overview

The military provided contracts to three competing companies, AM General, Lockheed Martin and Oshkosh. Each rival firm will offer its version of the future Joint Light Tactical Vehicle, successor to the iconic Jeep and HMMWV.

Insertion Order Deadline September 21, 2012 • Ad Materials Deadline September 28, 2012

The advertisers index is provided as a service to our readers. KMI cannot be held responsible for discrepancies due to last-minute changes or alterations.

GCT RESOURCE CENTER Advertisers Index American Innovations...................................................................... 27 Ball Aerospace.................................................................................. C2 IDGA................................................................................................. 12 Leupold............................................................................................ C4 Master Pull....................................................................................... C3 Meritor............................................................................................... 7 Plasan.............................................................................................. 18 Precision Remotes............................................................................ 17 Telephonics...................................................................................... 13

Calendar September 18-20, 2012 2012 Maneuver Conference Columbus, Ga.

September 25-27, 2012 Modern Day Marine Quantico Marine Base, Va.

GCT  3.5 | 27


Ground Combat Technology

Emil Bjornsson CEO and President Master Pull LLC Emil Bjornsson is the CEO and president of Master Pull LLC, a family-owned business in Washington state. A native of Iceland and an American citizen, Bjornsson was a Bering Sea fisherman for over two decades. He was instrumental in developing synthetic ropes for the fishing industry. As an avid off-roader, he recognized that recovery ropes were not capitalizing on the advances in safety and capability available through synthetic rope technology and started down a path that would change the industry. Q: What is Master Pull? What does your company do? A: Master Pull manufactures and sells vehicle recovery equipment for military, industrial and recreational use, and we sell the world’s strongest line for winching and hoisting: Superline XD. Q: How did you get started in this business? A: As a fisherman on the Bering Sea, I became intimately familiar with rope. In the old days we used wire rope, and I experienced firsthand the hazards associated with that material. There had to be a better way. I started searching for a safer, stronger product that would stand up to the fierce conditions in the Bering Sea. When Dyneema lines first came out, I put them to work on the boat. They were lighter, safer to use and stronger than steel. They were an improvement, but they could be much better. So I set about making them better. Q: You actually started Master Pull while on a fishing boat? A: That’s where the idea was born. Being at sea is tough on a family, so with my simple idea of making rope better, I decided to put roots down on land and started Master Pull. For the first few years we spliced and sold our product right out of our garage. 28 | GCT 3.5

Q: Master Pull is common equipment on many military vehicles. How did you make that leap from your garage to where you are now? A: I knew how to make rope better because I worked with rope every day at sea. But that was only one application of the product. To make better rope for other applications I needed to test it. Not laboratory testing—everyone does that. I needed to test it in the real world. If we were going to supply recovery equipment to the military, we needed to know where the old gear fails so we could make our products better. Q: How did you test your equipment for military applications? A: When I was still working out of my garage, I got a call from Tier 1 Off-Road. These guys train SOF how to drive their trucks in extreme desert terrain. They were searching for high quality recovery gear that they could use in training. They wanted to test some of our gear to see if it was as good as I claimed. Six months later they called back and we struck a deal: If we supplied recovery gear, they would provide our information to requesting customers. In return, Tier 1 Off-Road would provide us with long-term test results. Q: What were some of those results that helped improve your product?

A: One of the things we discovered during testing is how open weave synthetic line fails. Open weave rope acts like a sponge. Under load, the weave closes. When slack, it opens and creates pockets. In winching operations, slack rope lies on the ground. As it comes under load, the pockets capture material and compress contaminants into the weave. These contaminants severely shorten rope life. This is why we use a proprietary coating process in constructing Superline—to prevent contaminants from damaging the rope. And in SuperlineXD, we eliminated the problem altogether by sheathing the rope in Dyneema. Q: If there was one thing you could tell warfighters who will use your products, what would you tell them? A: I would tell them, “This isn’t your grandfather’s rope.” Like any product that undergoes an evolutionary leap, Master Pull recovery equipment requires training to use safely and effectively. When you get a more accurate rifle, you have to return to the range to master that capability. The same is true for our products. With a little training, you just don’t have better gear, you have more capability. Q: And does Master Pull provide training? A: Yes, we provide recovery clinics through our partners at Tier 1 Off-Road, and we are replicating their training in videos that will soon accompany all of our military product line. Q: Master Pull has come a long way since those early days. What’s next on the horizon for your company? A: We have a new product in testing that will change the way the world sees winch recovery operations. I can’t reveal too much, but the guys in the shop call it “HEMTT in a bag.” O

For our Freedom

over a century oF experience and a liFetime oF u.s. based liFe cycle support. leupold tactical optics: designed, machined and assembled in the u.s.a.


GCT 3-5 (Sept. 2012)  
GCT 3-5 (Sept. 2012)  

Ground Combat Technology, Volume 3 Issue 5, September 2012