Monday, August 21, 2017

The Next Tank

America's next tank is an updated version of the old tank:

In mid-2017 the U.S. Army ordered $270 million worth of components for upgrading M1A2 tanks to the new SEP3 standard as well as upgrading more M1A2SEPs to the SEP2 level. These upgrades keep the M1, or at least some of them, competitive with more recently designed and built tanks. The U.S. (mainly the army) has about a thousand of the SEP2 upgrade M1A2s and wants to up to half of that upgraded to SEP3 by 2020, the earliest date for the [M1A3] upgrade will show up. That one will have major upgrades to the tank software and whatever upgrades are available for the engine, armor and electronics. A major upgrade is adding the capability to use advanced (some guided missiles) from the 120mm smooth bore gun. There may also be an ADS (Active Defense System) added as well. The specifics of M1A3 are vague because much of the tech is still in development or getting its first combat experience. What isn’t ready in the early 2020s can be added with the M1A3SEP.

An ADS should be in the standard package given the top-attack missile threat.

At the beginning of the century I did say that the wonder tank (lethal, survivable, and only 19 tons) would not be built (see "Equipping the Objective Force").

The M1A3 will be the new main battle tank.