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Does America need a new main battle tank?

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posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 12:55 AM
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the 1 thing the abram could use is a bigger gun i mean the 120mm isn't going to cut it that much longer look at russia with a 125mm on their tanks don't get me wrong the 120 is a good gun but is kinda getting obsolete.




posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 01:00 AM
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Originally posted by Jehosephat
I really dont think a new tank needs to be developed, especialyl with the end of the cold war and anti-terroisum being the norm The Bradly is the "light" version the US uses.


the bradley is not a tank it is a scout vehical and unless they have changed in the last year or so the only armour they have is a soda can shell with roughly 1 inch of kevlar on the inside. yeah not much fun in a fire fight. they are used more for recon than fighting. it doesnt make much sence to me standing at 14ft tall it can me spotted from a few thousand meters. the main gun is a 20mm and it carries 6 tow missles this poor excuse for a combat vehical was out dated before it was ever used. i know i was a driver and a gunner in one..

[edit on 15amu12007 by DaleGribble]



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 09:09 AM
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Actually, with a tank gun bigger isn't always better. It's better to increase the speed of the projectile you're shooting rather than the size, since kinetic energy increases linearly with size and is increased as the square of the velocity. Also, with the KE penetrators we use, it's better to make them longer and thinner so you have more force at the point of impact.



posted on Oct, 8 2007 @ 09:22 AM
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The M-1 wasn't designed to do patrol duty in urban environments. Just like the Humvee wasn't really designed to be an APC, we are asking those vehicles to perform roles they weren't designed for.

It works fine in it's real role, and should continue to be useful for another decade or two with upgrades. We do need to have weapon platforms that can perform the missions required in a an urban environment however.

I think we need a really armored up APC/fire base that a squad can use as artillery, mortar, anti-vechile, command and transport system. The Bradley sacrifices armor for speed, we need a mobile pillbox for the urban enviorment.



posted on Oct, 10 2007 @ 01:55 PM
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When a weapon system is envisioned, there are design requirements based on its mission. A main battle tank's main focus isn't urban warfare, so that's not going to be the impetus for a new MBT. If anything, you upgrade a proven system, and perhaps augment it with complimentary systems- Bradley, Stryker, MRAP, etc... In urban combat, any armored vehicle is going to have to operate closely with dismounted infantry to provide overwatch from anti-tank teams, while the tank protects them with its firepower, and psychological effects. You can't have heavy armor protection for 360 degrees. The vehicle would be too heavy, and lack mobility, which also contributes to survivability, and nothing lighter than a MBT is going to offer any more protection to its occupants. That's why you try to always fight to your strengths while exploiting your opponent's weaknesses.



posted on Oct, 10 2007 @ 02:01 PM
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reply to post by black eagle
 


The Abram's 120mm gun has more range and power, than the 125mm Russian guns. A 9mm is bigger in diameter than a .357magnum, but doesn't have near the power.



posted on Oct, 19 2007 @ 11:12 AM
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The Abram's 120mm gun has more range and power, than the 125mm Russian guns. A 9mm is bigger in diameter than a .357magnum, but doesn't have near the power.


Well there is no proof that is actually weaker. The only time the M1 fought tanks with 125mm was in the 1st gw and they had rather crappy ammunition.

The thing is with modern tank guns its all about the ammunition and not so much about size.

I think that there will be a need for a heavily armoured ground combat vehicle forever. Just what it looks like will change.

MBT's are ment to handle every combat situation and not excel at a specifc one. That is why they are called main battle tanks.
The M1 does not need a full blown successor yet as currently all tanks are all sort of equal. However this will change so im quite sure they are researching a full blown successor. You dont really want to start research when say russia releases a full blown next gen tank and so far i havent heard much about any full blown next gen tank. The T95 might be one but it has been rather silent around it.



posted on Oct, 19 2007 @ 12:51 PM
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reply to post by tomcat ha
 


The thing with going with larger guns, is that your number of rounds on board goes down considerably(meaning you need a greater supply chain to reload, which results in down time from being on the offense). Thusfar, there hasn't been any threat vehicle that the M1's 120mm gun has come up lacking against. If an M1 can see a target, they can kill it. When you factor in it's superior and independent gunner/tank commander thermal imagers/optics, and situational awareness from the datalinks/GPS, etc... it really doesn't look that bad when compared to its foes.
All MBTs have vulnerabilities when they have to operate in urban conditions, that they wouldn't have in open terrain. The M1s are being upgraded with the TUSK system-

en.wikipedia.org...
Tank Urban Survival Kit for M1A2

M1A2 with TUSKThe Tank Urban Survival Kit, or TUSK, is a series of improvements to the M1 Abrams intended to improve fighting ability in urban environments. Historically, urban and other close battlefields have been the worst place for tanks to fight—a tank's front armor is much stronger than that on the sides, top, or rear, and in an urban environment, attacks can come from any direction, and attackers can get close enough to reliably hit weak points in the tank's armor, or get sufficient elevation to hit the top armor square on.

Armor upgrades include reactive armor on the sides of the tank and slat armor (similar to that on the Stryker) on the rear to protect against rocket-propelled grenades and other shaped charge warheads.

A gun shield and a thermal sight system are added to the loader's top-mounted M240B 7.62 mm machine gun, and a Kongsberg Gruppen Remote Weapon Turret carrying a .50 caliber machine gun (again similar to that used on the Stryker) is in place of the tank commander's original .50 caliber machine gun mount, wherein the commander had to expose himself to fire the weapon manually. An exterior telephone allows supporting infantry to communicate with the tank commander.

The TUSK system is a field-installable kit that allows tanks to be upgraded without needing to be recalled to a maintenance depot.

While the reactive armor may not be needed in most situations in maneuver warfare, items like the rear slat armor, loader's gun shield, infantry phone (which has already seen use on Marine Corps M1A1s as early as 2003), and Kongsberg Remote Weapons Station for the .50 caliber machine gun will be added to the entire M1A2 fleet over time.

In addition to this, a Transparent Armor Gun Shield may also be implemented as part of this kit, as it is already seeing use on some Abrams serving in Iraq.

I don't see any new threat tanks as being so remarkable that a current or upgraded M1A2 can't deal with them(especially considering that they'll be part of a combined arms force with fixed/rotary wing assets, etc..)



posted on Oct, 19 2007 @ 05:35 PM
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I have not seen proof that any part of the M1A2 is actually superior to any other tank. As far as i know the challenger 2 is better amoured and has a higher accuracy. The newer T80's is not as heavily amoured but it is quite a bit lighter, can shoot missles and has fancy era and arena. Each mbt out there currently has its own advantages and disadvantages. None is like the panther was or the T34 was back in the day.



posted on Oct, 19 2007 @ 05:56 PM
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No, the M1A1 is fine. There isn't a huge need for tanks anymore these days, but every now and then they are needed and the Abrams has always performed satisfactorily when they are. The development tracks that need working on at the present are fighting vehicles and APCs.



posted on Oct, 22 2007 @ 07:02 AM
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Originally posted by tomcat ha


The Abram's 120mm gun has more range and power, than the 125mm Russian guns. A 9mm is bigger in diameter than a .357magnum, but doesn't have near the power.


Well there is no proof that is actually weaker. The only time the M1 fought tanks with 125mm was in the 1st gw and they had rather crappy ammunition.


Of course there is proof. Ex-GDR T-72s were extensively tested and analyzed after the german reunification. Test results and even full T-72 tanks were also sent to the USA, Israel and the UK. They got shot at from the western weapon, and they used them AGAINST western tanks in trials. Mind you, unlike most of the export customers of Russia East Germany always received material that was nearly as advanced as the "Russia-only" equipment for domestic use.

The original Soviet/Russian 125mm guns are less accurate, have less working pressure (Thats why they have 52 calibers to cope with it) and a dramatically shorter work life, which means that after less than a dozen shots the accuracy is notably deteriorating.



posted on Oct, 23 2007 @ 06:47 AM
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reply to post by Lonestar24
 


Soviets gave their allies monkey models while superior versions were only fielded in soviet forces....



Monkey-model tanks were equipped with lower grade fire control systems, lower grade armor, lacking NBC protection, and provided with substandard ammunition
en.wikipedia.org...



posted on Oct, 23 2007 @ 09:12 AM
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reply to post by manson_322
 


Well real Russian equipment has gone up against Afghans and Chechens, and hasn't proved invincible. I'm pretty sure that the metallurgy in Russian army vehicles isn't significantly different than export models. The export models might not have the latest bolt on reactive armor suite, etc.., but all Russian tanks have the same vulnerability- the ammo is stored in the chassis, so a solid hit is always catastrophic.



posted on Oct, 24 2007 @ 04:22 AM
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Originally posted by BlueRaja
reply to post by manson_322
 


Well real Russian equipment has gone up against Afghans and Chechens, and hasn't proved invincible. I'm pretty sure that the metallurgy in Russian army vehicles isn't significantly different than export models. The export models might not have the latest bolt on reactive armor suite, etc.., but all Russian tanks have the same vulnerability- the ammo is stored in the chassis, so a solid hit is always catastrophic.


against the afghans mostly T-62/t-55 tanks were used and by late 1980's afghans had milan ATGM
www.militaryphotos.net...
also soviets only lost 147 tanks to afghans in 10 year war
in the 1994-1996 russian chechen 50 T-72/T-80 though hundreds of BMP's were lost becuae the fact that Rpg-26 and konkurs ATGM was being used by chechen forces and to destroy T-80 chechens use to attack T-80 from the rear also some reports suggesting use of Milan ATGM have been there as well by


,compare that to 50 Merkava tanks that were destroyed by hezobollah using Kornet missile and Rpg-29 in three weeks, Merkava was reputed to be best tank before Lebonan war



I'm pretty sure that the metallurgy in Russian army vehicles isn't significantly different than export models.


again incorrect ...


9. "Monkey model" sold to WarPac/Third World clients with stereoscopic coincidence rangefinder and lower grade steel armour. Used by Iraq in 1991 Gulf War firing poor quality steel 125mm rounds.

10. "Monkey model" sold to WarPac/Third World clients with laser rangefinder and lower grade steel armour. Used by Iraq in 1991 Gulf War firing poor quality steel 125mm rounds.

11. "Monkey model" sold to WarPac/Third World clients with laser rangefinder and glacis applique plate (after tests showed M-111 could penetrate old glacis) plus "sandbar" armour in turret front.
members.tripod.com...





but all Russian tanks have the same vulnerability- the ammo is stored in the chassis, so a solid hit is always catastrophic


to be precise when the hit penetrates the autoloader and the autoloader has ammo loaded into it, it will be always catastrophic in the case of t-80/72/90...




[edit on 24-10-2007 by manson_322]



posted on Oct, 24 2007 @ 04:54 AM
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reply to post by The Vagabond
 


Fear is amazing weapon for use against tankers.

fear of burning alive in the steel cofin

as you said , you might have all the gizmo`s in the world - but there are 3 humans insdie of the machine - and when the outside is burning they will be very very scared.



posted on Oct, 24 2007 @ 02:49 PM
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reply to post by manson_322
 


One question about the Merkava losses though. Were the kills due to penetration of the frontal armor, side armor, roof, or the rear of the tank?
It's all moot in that obviously, at the end of day a kill is a kill, but it does add some insight. There are some obvious trade offs in the Merkava design(i.e. troop hatch in rear is vulnerable to ATGMs). If the tank commander of a Merkava fights to his strengths(extremely thick frontal armor, and small frontal silhoutte), it's a very capable platform. If it's rear profile is exposed to enemy fire, then it is a different story. Russian tanks have low verticle profiles, but the tradeoff they have is that the ammo proximity to the crew results in catastrophic kills, if their foe gets a solid hit, often resulting in the turret being blown clean off. An M1 has the blast door and vents, so if a round penetrates into the magazine, the blast is focused away from the crew, and the tank can be repaired.



posted on Oct, 26 2007 @ 07:49 PM
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reply to post by BlueRaja
 


Like i said every tank these days has its own specific advantages.
Also i think the losses in the chechen war are very low considering it was a much more intense conflict than the recent israel deal.



posted on Nov, 12 2007 @ 12:27 AM
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I personally "own" five Abrams MBTs so I'll throw in what I can without risking losing the security clearance.

I would be confident taking my Abrams up against any other tank on the battlefield. It has it weaknesses, but thats why we have doctrine. We fight to the equipment's stregnths, and its pretty easy. As long as you're not turning tail and running, you stand a pretty good chance of surviving.

It would be impossible to build an ideal tank. Armor weighs a lot. Tanks have to move. Its a pie and there are only so many pieces. Especially in today's wars, a gigantic hulking fortress is a target. Its better to be able to move and avoid getting shot than to rumble along at 3 mph and soak up bullets (look at WWI tanks).

No matter how big you are, someone will always come up with a way to kill you.

There is a new medium tank in the works, the Mounted Combat System of the Army's Future Combat System. It will retain the 120mm smoothbore because we have some effective rounds for it and even nastier ones on the way. The MCS will be airtrans capable (a huge plus). An autoloader for the cannon will reduce crew size. All crew stations will be redundant. Anyone in the tank can drive and fire simultaneously. It will be wired in to the Army ground war network, and should be able to recieve live feeds from UAVs and other autonomous and manned survellance systems. In the simulations they are currently running, a platoon consists of three manned vehicles and a fourth slaved unmanned tank. Not sure how that will work, if it can aquire targets on its own, if it uses a remote operator, or if the other tanks wired to it can take control of it.

It won't replace the Abrams, just fill in a gap that we've had in the armored force since WWII. Look for it to hit the shelves sometime around 2012, in the unlikely event the current fielding schedule remains intact.



posted on Nov, 20 2007 @ 03:12 AM
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I'd like to see a MBT with a modified version of the Navy 40Mk3 gun, and just for grins, a VLS version of the Spike ER (8 missiles). The guns weigh the same, but the 40mm has an 8 mile range, as do the ATGM's. An added bonus being the ability to carry 100 rounds vs 40 at the same weight with serious AAA/ indirect fire support capability. Packaging would clearly be a problem, but not an insurmountable one in my opinion. Add a pair of CROWS turrets (XM-312/307, and an M2)

Piston diesel for range, and a crew of 3 repositioned for IED/mine protection if possible. I see this vehicle not as a replacement for Abrams, but a companion.
A striker with 40 Hellfire or Spike ER missiles (VLS) would also compliment the armored cav... it would be expensive but you wouldn't need many.

This is fun to dream about and all... but far more important is to get the F'ing Humvee's off the battlefield. Slap all the armor on it you like, it wasn't made for firefights and IED protection.



posted on Nov, 22 2007 @ 11:31 PM
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Originally posted by Wodan
It shouldnt be called Main Battle Tank, I dont think traditional weapons would be ideal for urban warfare, I think we need a kind of

"urban warfare vehicle"

In my opinion it should be able to withstand hand-rocket launchers and other small stuff (no need for protection against heavy stuff on vehicles, as those are all already destroyed in the big battles or by the airforce/cruise missiles, it should be able to carry several infantrists, should be wheeled, as this is faster tracks arent needed on town-streets, it should be able to fight any unarmoured vehicle (cars, trucks..), command posts, and other things you can think of in an urban environment, so it needs a 30mm machine cannon (with at best Air Burst Ammonation) (which should be remote controlled, so no soldier from the interor is at higher risk by using it)

so:

--- Protection against ap-mines, at-mines, rifles up to 12mm, hand carried anti-tank weapons
--- capable of carrying infantrymen
--- Wheeled
--- armed with a remote controlled 30mm ABM Machine Cannon

this is more like a mixure of APC and IFV, than a MBT, I dont se why there is a need for MBTs in urban environments...


and when when you put that all together you get an uparmored lav 25




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