Military Review

New M2 Bradley modifications entered military trials

17

The upgraded M2A4 infantry fighting vehicle and the updated M7A4 reconnaissance aircraft on the Bradley platform passed the first stages of checks and made it to military trials. At the Fort Hood base in Texas, tests started in real-life conditions in the combat unit. In the near future, the testers and the military will have to determine all the technical, combat and operational characteristics of the updated armored vehicle, as well as correct the identified shortcomings.


Technique on trial


According to the Pentagon, in mid-October, two types of armored vehicles were delivered to the Fort Hood base. The conduct of military tests was entrusted to the soldiers and officers of the 1st battalion of the 12th cavalry regiment from the 3rd brigade of the "new look" of the 1st cavalry division. The activities are carried out with the participation and oversight of the Operational Test Command (OTC).

OTC representatives brought the battalion personnel up to date and trained in the operation of the updated equipment. Then the tests began in the conditions of the landfill. The servicemen drove M2A4 and M7A4 vehicles, used optics and weapon controls, etc. The landing was also carried out. Some of these tests simulated real combat operations, which made it possible to fully assess the work of equipment.


According to Pentagon reports, the personnel are satisfied with the upgraded equipment and highly appreciate the proposed innovations. At the same time, project developers and the military department rely not only on the responses of the military. During the tests on the prototype machines, control and recording equipment was present. At the end of the military tests, the OTC will collect all the feedback from the operators and analyze the data from the recording equipment. Based on this information, the ways of further refinement of the technique will be determined.

Solutions to problems


Back in the 2s, the MXNUMX Bradley BMP and vehicles based on it encountered typical problems. The nature of modern warfare required an increase in defense, which led to an increase in the mass of combat. The consequence of this was an increase in the load on the power plant and chassis - with a corresponding loss of mobility and an increase in certain risks. In addition, it was required to develop a complex of weapons, communications, etc.

In the early tenths, the ECP1 (Engineering Change Proposals) project was prepared, which made it possible to solve some of the problems. It provided for the use of reinforced torsion bars and other elements of the chassis; lightweight tracks were also used. These measures made it possible to improve the characteristics of the suspension and partially compensate for the existing increase in combat weight.


The ECP project of the second stage included the modernization of the power plant and transmission. New automated control systems for these units were proposed. In addition, new means of protection with increased characteristics, modern means of communication and command and control, new observation devices, etc. were introduced into the final project of ECP2.

The modernization of the existing equipment of the M2 family under the ECP1 project started by the middle of the last decade; in 2015, the first updated armored vehicles returned to service. In June 2018 BAE Systems was awarded a contract for the modernization of ECP2. The first vehicles of this order are now used as part of military trials. After revision according to ECP, the vehicle index is supplemented with the letters "A4", regardless of the basic model.

List of changes


ECP projects include increased protection, replacement of the power unit, modernization of the chassis and the introduction of modern communications. They do not affect weapons or other targeted equipment. Thanks to this, according to one project, it is possible to update the M2 Bradley linear infantry fighting vehicles and the M7 B-FiST reconnaissance armored vehicles unified with them.


In the ECP / A4 projects, the vehicle's own armor is nominally supplemented with mounted reactive armor units of the BRAT II type (Bradley Reactive Armor Tiles). With their help, the frontal and side projections of the hull, as well as the front sections of the tower, are closed. It is planned to install an Israeli-developed Iron Fist active protection complex. It is assumed that such measures will protect against all typical threats.

Diesel engine Cummins VTA-903T 600 hp replaced by a new product with a capacity of 675 hp. While maintaining the power density at the M2 level of the first modification, such an engine allows to raise the combat weight by 4-5 tons. The engine is complemented by an automatic transmission L3 Harris HMPT-800-3ECB, corresponding to the new loads. Reinforced torsion bars and shock absorbers compensate for the increase in combat weight, and also increase the ground clearance to 510 mm. This is expected to improve mine protection to some extent.

New electronic means provide voice communication and data transmission between infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers and other equipment. Communication systems are fully integrated with reconnaissance and fire control equipment. M2A4 and M7A4 are fully integrated into the current command and control systems with all the necessary capabilities.


After modernization, the M2A4 BMP retains its previous armament in the form of a 25-mm automatic cannon, a coaxial machine gun and a launcher for TOW missiles. The troop compartment accommodates seven fighters. BRM M7A4 still carries a turret with machine gun and cannon armament and an optical reconnaissance complex. The modernization of the latter has not yet been reported.

The upgraded BMP and BRM differ from the previous modifications by a certain increase in size due to the presence of hinged protection modules. The combat weight reaches the level of 36,2-36,3 tons. At the same time, the running, speed and dynamic characteristics remain the same.

Plans for the future


According to the 2018 contract, BAE Systems must supply 164 M2A4 and M7A4 armored vehicles, rebuilt from existing equipment of old modifications. The first samples under this contract have already been handed over to the customer and are used in tests. The order will take several more years and will allow re-equipping several formations of ground forces.

Even at the stage of factory testing and development of experimental equipment, the following contract was signed. In October 2019, BAE Systems received a second order for 168 units. technology. According to various sources, this time we are talking only about infantry fighting vehicles, and it will take some time to complete this contract.

New M2 Bradley modifications entered military trials

It should be noted that the existing two orders will allow the modernization of only 332 armored vehicles - only a small part of the available fleet. According to open data, in the combat units of the United States there are now more than 2500 M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles of all modifications and approx. 330 BRM M7 B-FiST, not counting a significant amount of equipment in storage. Thus, in the coming years, the army will be able to carry out only a limited modernization of motorized infantry units, and the bulk of the fleet will continue to be BMP and BRM of previous modifications.

Apparently, as the serial modernization continues, new orders for tens and hundreds of armored vehicles will appear. The equipment of the Bradley family will remain in service at least until the early thirties, and by that time it will be possible to upgrade most of the BMP and BRM, if not the entire available fleet.

However, before the launch of a full-scale modernization, it is necessary to carry out all stages of testing and fine-tuning of structures. Right now, at the Fort Hood base, equipment is being tested in real-life conditions, and in the near future OTC will have to prepare the final version of the project, which will go on to full-scale work on armored vehicles. Apparently, no cardinal innovations are foreseen, and the serial M2A4 and M7A4 will not differ significantly from those tested now.
Author:
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U.S. Army
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  1. Izotovp
    Izotovp 3 November 2020 05: 49
    0
    I think that soon the Army or the Corps will order a new upgrade, including a larger caliber gun, possibly replacing the ATGM with a more modern one and optimizing communications and reconnaissance equipment for linking with UAVs.
    1. Hagen
      Hagen 3 November 2020 06: 06
      +3
      Quote: Izotovp
      I think that soon the Army or Corps will order a new upgrade that includes a larger caliber gun

      Since the 2000s, the US Army has been trying to hold competitions for the design of a new machine with a cannon up to 50mm. But so far no real samples can be seen. There were attempts to replace 25mm bushmaster with 30mm, but for some reason they refused. Obviously, the balance of price and quality did not satisfy. However, as long as our infantry rejoices at equipping with vehicles of the BTR-82A type and modernized BMP-1/2, the 25 mm cannon will remain relevant. It should be noted that the past modernization of Bradley head-on from 100 meters began to resist our 2A42 / 2A72. Hope it meant old ammunition laughing
      1. Thomas N.
        Thomas N. 3 November 2020 07: 29
        0
        Quote: Hagen
        It should be noted that the past modernization of Bradley head-on from 100 meters began to resist our 2A42 / 2A72. Hope it meant old ammunition laughing
        What does old ammunition mean? Are there any new ones after 3UBR6 / 3UBR8?
        1. Hagen
          Hagen 3 November 2020 07: 54
          +2
          Quote: Thomas N.
          Are there any new ones after 3UBR6 / 3UBR8?

          The new 30X165 APCR shell, BOPS ZUBR 11. The exact characteristics of the shell are unknown, but the modern design suggests an increase in armor penetration by 1.5-2 times compared to the Kerner BPS and 3-4 times compared to the 30 mm BT shell. Something like this...
          1. Thomas N.
            Thomas N. 3 November 2020 09: 22
            +2
            Quote: Hagen
            The new 30X165 APCR shell, BOPS ZUBR 11. The exact characteristics of the shell are unknown, but the modern design suggests an increase in armor penetration by 1.5-2 times compared to the Kerner BPS and 3-4 times compared to the 30 mm BT shell. Something like this...

            Yes, photos and posters from 3UBR11 have been walking around the network for a long time, but for some reason everything is in English. Maybe because - https://andrei-bt.livejournal.com/504936.html?
            1. Hagen
              Hagen 3 November 2020 10: 58
              +1
              Quote: Thomas N.
              Maybe because - https://andrei-bt.livejournal.com/504936.html?

              2017 article. Maybe what has changed? And if not, then it doesn't make it any easier for us. It seems that the need to switch to 57mm is ripe for a long time.
        2. Graz
          Graz 3 November 2020 08: 18
          -2
          Well, so long ago, the bison 11 Bops was developed for 2a42 guns, I think there should be armor penetration
    2. Thomas N.
      Thomas N. 3 November 2020 06: 55
      +7
      Quote: Izotovp
      I think that soon the Army or the Corps will order a new upgrade that includes a larger caliber gun ...

      There is no reason for the US Army to put a larger caliber cannon on the Bradley, despite its full technical readiness to do so (30mm Mk44 / XM813).
      "In the report of the American army on the results of Operation Iraqi Freedom, it was concluded about the effectiveness of the existing 25-mm Bradley cannon, especially with regard to its reaction speed, stabilized accuracy and effectiveness of ammunition, high-explosive fragmentation for infantry and armor-piercing for light armored vehicles. it is likely to remain in service for the foreseeable future. " It was published in 2014 in the article "The Bradley family of combat vehicles keeps pace with the times" (https://topwar.ru/60422-semeystvo-boevyh-mashin-bradley-idet-v-nogu-so-vremenem.html) ... Since then, nothing has changed. The effectiveness of 25mm ammunition is still considered sufficient to meet the challenges facing the American army. Until the probable adversaries of the United States have a large number of lightly armored vehicles, the 25-mm BOPS will not be hit by an increase in caliber. To suppress manpower, they also consider a large 25-mm OFS ammunition load to be the best option.
      And in service with the US ILC BMP Bradley is not.
      1. Crimean partisan 1974
        Crimean partisan 1974 3 November 2020 07: 59
        -7
        Until the likely adversaries of the United States have a large number of lightly armored vehicles that cannot be hit by 25 mm ....... but this is not necessary. A probable enemy, due to the high amphibious airmobility and the specific load on the ground, almost half a unit, may appear like a devil from a snuffbox. and the pretty heavy Brad only on asphalt and only on bridges and pontoons ... what does it have to do with it at the moment (and in the future it will be even cooler) in combat, the KUV and ATGMs are in high gear ... and there are more and more of them ... and RPGs add fuel to the fire. which with each five-year plan increase in power and quantity ... and it's time for Brad to be thrown into the landfill,
        1. Thomas N.
          Thomas N. 3 November 2020 10: 18
          +3
          Quote: Crimean partisan 1974
          Due to the high airmobility of amphibiousness and the specific load on the ground, almost half a unit may appear like a devil from a snuffbox ... and RPGs add fuel to the fire, which, with each five-year plan, increase their power and quantity.

          Exactly this:
          - airmobility, amphibiousness of lightly armored vehicles, which means their low weight and appropriate armor protection;
          - a large number of RPGs that must be suppressed by automatic cannon fire;
          and means that the 25-mm cannon will stay on Bradley for a long time, because it solves the assigned tasks.
          And they won't throw Brad in the dump. They are not up to this now, and there is no suitable size for a landfill. laughing done too many of them. So, for a long time Bradley will be our most "terrible scarecrow" in the field of BMP wassat , i.e. a likely enemy.
      2. Izotovp
        Izotovp 3 November 2020 08: 55
        0
        Thank. Very interesting.
  2. Tsoy
    Tsoy 3 November 2020 07: 45
    +2
    The article is missing the most important thing. The new modification will allow you to aim on the go. Although he may have missed it.
    1. Crimean partisan 1974
      Crimean partisan 1974 3 November 2020 08: 20
      -7
      The new modification will allow you to aim on the move ....... yes, this is really important .... what is important is that Brad has forgotten how to swim and the specific load on the ground is already one unit .... and most importantly. how many Hercules do you need to transfer the Brad company to the point ...... for example. BMP 2-3, armored personnel carriers, BMD can be transferred by helicopters and landed on a bare spot, and thus, in turn, bridges and a pontoon park are not needed, ... in short, it would be better if Brad had already been left alone ... the old man has outlived
    2. Thomas N.
      Thomas N. 3 November 2020 09: 12
      +4
      Quote: Choi
      The article is missing the most important thing. The new modification will allow you to aim on the go. Although he may have missed it.

      The gunner's sight with independent line-of-sight stabilization is installed on Bradley with the M2A3 modification, so it has been possible to "aim on the move" for a very long time :-)
      1. Tsoy
        Tsoy 3 November 2020 14: 18
        +2
        Bradley with the M2A3 modification, so it has been possible to "aim on the move" for a very long time :-)


        Took it from here.
        https://www.armyrecognition.com/defense_news_october_2020_global_security_army_industry/us_army_conducts_field_tests_with_new_bradley_m2a4_tracked_armored_ifv.amp.html

        It was about the M7 which is being rebuilt from the M2A2 ODS. Antique from the first Gulf War that didn't have sights with stabilizers.
  3. madrobot
    madrobot 4 November 2020 09: 47
    0
    It seems that the US GBT is sharpened for operations exclusively in the Middle East. In Europe, she has nothing to do at all. From the word "absolutely".
    And our equipment ... Well, I believe that if an APC is armed with a 30mm cannon and holds a 7.62X54 from 100m, then this is quite enough. Not every tank will withstand a tandem grenade for an RPG-7, so what's the point of turning a "taxi for motorized riflemen" into an overweight shed with zero traffic?
  4. uncle Vlad
    uncle Vlad 11 November 2020 22: 21
    -1
    Surely the budget was finalized. Give something 9 mm machine gun and 20 seconds before
    you will be a blind armored box