The US Army has revealed plans to replace tanks with small, ‘off road’ vehicles covered in smart armour.
Military bosses says the current tanks are hindering soldier’s ability to get into battle.
They say the future is a small vehicle called the GXV-T.
‘For the past 100 years of mechanized warfare, protection for ground-based armored fighting vehicles and their occupants has boiled down almost exclusively to a simple equation: More armor equals more protection,’ Darpa said.
‘Weapons’ ability to penetrate armor, however, has advanced faster than armor’s ability to withstand penetration.
‘As a result, achieving even incremental improvements in crew survivability has required significant increases in vehicle mass and cost.
‘The trend of increasingly heavy, less mobile and more expensive combat platforms has limited Soldiers’ and Marines’ ability to rapidly deploy and maneuver in theater and accomplish their missions in varied and evolving threat environments.’
The Ground X-Vehicle Technology (GXV-T) program, dubbed ‘X-planes for tanks’, is designed to develop a range of new vehicles.
‘GXV-T’s goal is not just to improve or replace one particular vehicle – it’s about breaking the ‘more armor’ paradigm and revolutionizing protection for all armored fighting vehicles,’ said Kevin Massey, DARPA program manager.
‘Inspired by how X-plane programs have improved aircraft capabilities over the past 60 years, we plan to pursue groundbreaking fundamental research and development to help make future armored fighting vehicles significantly more mobile, effective, safe and affordable.’
Moreover, larger vehicles are limited to roads, require more logistical support and are more expensive to design, develop, field and replace, the agency says.
‘The U.S. military is now at a point where—considering tactical mobility, strategic mobility, survivability and cost—innovative and disruptive solutions are necessary to ensure the operational viability of the next generation of armored fighting vehicles.
‘The Ground X-Vehicle Technology (GXV-T) program to help overcome these challenges and disrupt the current trends in mechanized warfare.’
The firm is now planning to work with outside firms to incorporate their technology into the project.