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Modifying ERA for offense against infantry ambushes

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posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 07:51 AM
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I've been tossing an idea around in my head ever since I learned of the use of Explosive Reactive Armor and M1A1 and A2 tank losses from infantry ambushes in the first and second gulf wars. It seems that at least a fair number were disabled by these ambush situations.
Then had the idea of including a detonation system controlled by the tank commander, they could detonate different amounts of the ERA panels i.e.

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posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 08:08 AM
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reply to post by BigDave-AR
 


Step 1. Loudly proclaim to everyone "Don't try this at home".
Step 2. Procure, or make your own ERA panels, modified and standard, (adhering to all state and federal regulations)
Step 3. Set up dummies with ballistic gel, pressure sensors, etc to test effectiveness.
Step 4. Blow stuff up.
Step 5. Check the results.
Step 6. Keep doing it until results are satisfactory.




edit on 23-1-2012 by nineix because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 08:16 AM
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Doesn't have to be ERA tiles. Why not strap some claymores to the sides? Or along the turret?



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 08:18 AM
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reply to post by BigDave-AR
 


it is a fundamental maxim of armoured warfare that tanks should be supported by infantry



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 08:23 AM
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reply to post by ignorant_ape
 


Please tell that to the guys in charge that are making M1 crews go out short handed, using a stand-in 11b as a loader.



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 08:52 AM
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Originally posted by ignorant_ape
reply to post by BigDave-AR
 


it is a fundamental maxim of armoured warfare that tanks should be supported by infantry


Of course but if you get a MBT in a tight urban environment and your infantry is pinned down a tank becomes very vulnerable to a ambush especially if they are very determined. In a tight urban environment your 120mm main gun and M240 7.62mm coaxial MG become useless immediately for all but what is dead ahead, they would know this and surge from everywhere but the direct front of the Abrams. This leaves you with either a remote fired CROWS remote weapons platform or Armored copula M2 .50 HMG or Mk19 Grenade Launcher and the M240 in front of the loader hatch position. That might not seem like much but when you have determined enemy of fanatics they could easily overwhelm these self protection measures coming from three sides of the tank.

There are documented cases of this happening, in my mind I think this relatively simple and cheap modification could have saved a fair amount of US tank crews, so why not?



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 08:54 AM
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Originally posted by nineix
reply to post by BigDave-AR
 


Step 1. Loudly proclaim to everyone "Don't try this at home".
Step 2. Procure, or make your own ERA panels, modified and standard, (adhering to all state and federal regulations)
Step 3. Set up dummies with ballistic gel, pressure sensors, etc to test effectiveness.
Step 4. Blow stuff up.
Step 5. Check the results.
Step 6. Keep doing it until results are satisfactory.




edit on 23-1-2012 by nineix because: (no reason given)


Trust me I would love to but at this point I do not have the resources to set off on trying to develop the system completely independently. I appreciate the feedback.



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 09:03 AM
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reply to post by BigDave-AR
 


Patent a design, then lease the patent to General Dynamics, or some other defense contractor?

Or, if you just want to save lives, blog it, and spread the word around to 19K guys that'll rig something together and field test?



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 11:27 AM
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Originally posted by nineix
reply to post by BigDave-AR
 


Patent a design, then lease the patent to General Dynamics, or some other defense contractor?

Or, if you just want to save lives, blog it, and spread the word around to 19K guys that'll rig something together and field test?





At the very least I will try to spread the idea, but making a little in the process never hurts. I think I'll start doing some hardcore research and try to develop the concept at least in theory and try to go from there.



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 02:53 PM
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As ignorant ape points out the problem lies not in the need for ever more technology but to simply fight wars where you have sufficient public backing at home to actually be able to afford taking the infantry casualties that will result from daily urban clearning/patrol operations. You simply can not fight a insurgency if you do not put feet on the ground and that you can not yet do without taking casualties.

Admittedly with current body armor technologies ( dragon skin, various other leg/arm protective equipment) i think it would be practical to radically increase the number of patrols in Iraq's urban areas without a significant increase in casualties. The technology to greatly reduce casualties does exist but apparently it makes more sense to waste the money buying tremendously expensive aircraft that might keep a few dozen or hundred pilots alive in world war III.... The pentagon just does not have much of an idea what it's doing, beside lining corporate pockets that is, and either way it's the generals on the ground who are responsible for the impossible task to both accomplish their missions and to avoid casualties, that might attract media attention, at all cost.

Go figure.

Stellar



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 02:53 PM
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Double damn post
edit on 23-1-2012 by StellarX because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 05:28 PM
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I believe your idea would work. Someone also mentioned strapping Claymore's to the side which would also work. My father once told me that they strapped Claymores to the side of Duece and a half with a roll bar in the middle and left it there for it to be ambushed. When they detonated the Claymore the sides collapsed in destroying the vehicle. I do not believe this would be a problem on the M1.

When I was in the military I did a lot of demolition work. It would be a simple enough task to strap Claymores on the hull of a M1 but you would need to know the stress points on the armor. I have no idea how much explosives is on the reactive armor.

I do think you are onto something. One thing I would like to see you M1s equipped with is a weapons platform above the turret that could be controlled from the safety inside the tank.

There are so many things the military has developed that would keep our soldiers safer but they have not approve them or issued them because some bureaucrat somewhere has his head up his butt. It really pisses me off sometimes like with Dragon Skin armor. Dragon skin was clearly superior but someone got paid off and soldiers died because of it.



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 05:37 PM
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Are you quite sure that you understand the function of Explosive Reactive Armor?
It seems as if you are entirely off base with your "solution,"



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 08:32 PM
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Originally posted by Grimpachi
I believe your idea would work. Someone also mentioned strapping Claymore's to the side which would also work. My father once told me that they strapped Claymores to the side of Duece and a half with a roll bar in the middle and left it there for it to be ambushed. When they detonated the Claymore the sides collapsed in destroying the vehicle. I do not believe this would be a problem on the M1.

When I was in the military I did a lot of demolition work. It would be a simple enough task to strap Claymores on the hull of a M1 but you would need to know the stress points on the armor. I have no idea how much explosives is on the reactive armor.



I had thought about the idea of just simply taking stocks of claymores which see a lot less use as actual trip detonated AP mines due to mining treaties and are mainly controlled demolition mines now and strapping them to the hull of the tank. The problem I see with that is it would stand out like a sore thumb, I think part of the beauty of using the ERA panels explosives is you could design the panels to look exactly the same as the plain Jane ERA panels. To me that would be a deterrence in itself, if the enemy cannot tell the difference between the normal ERA panels and the shrapnel laden panels then they would have to assume that any armored vehicle with ERA panels could very well be the AP variant. It's the same concept as planting a mine field, you use an assortment of mines some AT (possibly booby trapped), some AP, minimal metallic along standard with metallic mines with mercury switches that look like a standard mine that would be easily disarmed, it causes a fear of knowing that there is a good chance you're going to run into something unexpected.

Once they run into the AP variant of ERA that I'm purposing they would quickly start to be more cautious about it because they have no way of knowing if it's standard ERA or the AP variant.

I completely agree that the military brass hats have some messed up priorities at times and it is a disgrace to send our troops over to the sandbox without the absolute best equipment that can be provided, they need to cut the BS spending and get their priorities straight. Not to mention the way contracts are given is a major disgrace in it's own rights.



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 08:37 PM
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Originally posted by Aliensun
Are you quite sure that you understand the function of Explosive Reactive Armor?
It seems as if you are entirely off base with your "solution,"


Where in this thread did you contrive that from? I'm am perfectly aware of the conventional use and function of ERA I am merely suggesting a modification to the way the ERA panels are made and adding a fire control system to control the detonation. This should in no way effect the ERA's main conventional usage, it would still be set off by incoming HEAT warheads and help deflect the explosively formed penetrator. This is merely adding a secondary use to the ERA.



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 09:01 PM
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I've seen this idea suggested before several times over the years and I've yet to hear of anything ever coming from it... This makes me believe there is some reason why you can't alter ERA to be a dual purpose directional mine type application as well as it's primary function as ERA. While it's a nice thought I have a feeling there is mitigating factors that would make this difficult if not impossible.... hell. it might even just be that ERA costs too much to "waste" it clearing off infantry.

From what I've read though it wouldn't be all that hard to mount claymores at various places on a tank hull and just have the wires ran through to a master arm panel setup inside the tank. During Vietnam the gun truck operators used to wire directional mines to hard points on the bumpers of their two and a half ton and five ton trucks. but apparently these were smaller mines. see comment by ralph zumbro at bottom of page

Anyway ... I personally don't have anything to add about this idea's feasibility but I'm more than happy to research further if you like.



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 09:27 PM
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Originally posted by roguetechie
I've seen this idea suggested before several times over the years and I've yet to hear of anything ever coming from it... This makes me believe there is some reason why you can't alter ERA to be a dual purpose directional mine type application as well as it's primary function as ERA. While it's a nice thought I have a feeling there is mitigating factors that would make this difficult if not impossible.... hell. it might even just be that ERA costs too much to "waste" it clearing off infantry.

From what I've read though it wouldn't be all that hard to mount claymores at various places on a tank hull and just have the wires ran through to a master arm panel setup inside the tank. During Vietnam the gun truck operators used to wire directional mines to hard points on the bumpers of their two and a half ton and five ton trucks. but apparently these were smaller mines. see comment by ralph zumbro at bottom of page

Anyway ... I personally don't have anything to add about this idea's feasibility but I'm more than happy to research further if you like.


As far as I have been able to tell the main issue might very well be "sympathetic detonation" of adjacent ERA panels. I could be completely off base but in my mind that might be the factor that could really throw a wench in the scheme.

I would greatly appreciate any help in researching the feasibility of this idea, I'm digging into it myself but I'm not getting all that far thus far.



posted on Jan, 23 2012 @ 10:37 PM
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My brother pointed out a problem with my idea of claymores, and that is that they have an effective range of 50m, which means an inordinate probability of collateral damage in any kind of urban or built up environment. And I would imagine that out in the countryside and even in forests people conducting anti tank ambushes would have enough space to work with to make claymore just as useless



posted on Jan, 24 2012 @ 12:04 AM
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Granted you are right about claymore's being of limited use in some areas... BUT and it's a big but ambushes tend to work best when you grab the opponent by the belt buckle so to speak and hug in as close as you can get. Or at least that's one tactic I've read about being successful. And the RPG 7's minimum arm distance is a whopping 5 meters according to the site I just double checked so you might even get gunners in the killbox from a claymore if you detonated it.

Edit to add: I'm sending an Email out to someone more knowledgeable than myself about the how's and why's of this being a good or bad idea. Hopefully I'll get a response in teh next day or two for you.
edit on 24-1-2012 by roguetechie because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 24 2012 @ 02:48 AM
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Originally posted by roguetechie
Granted you are right about claymore's being of limited use in some areas... BUT and it's a big but ambushes tend to work best when you grab the opponent by the belt buckle so to speak and hug in as close as you can get. Or at least that's one tactic I've read about being successful. And the RPG 7's minimum arm distance is a whopping 5 meters according to the site I just double checked so you might even get gunners in the killbox from a claymore if you detonated it.

Edit to add: I'm sending an Email out to someone more knowledgeable than myself about the how's and why's of this being a good or bad idea. Hopefully I'll get a response in teh next day or two for you.
edit on 24-1-2012 by roguetechie because: (no reason given)


I still like the idea of causing fear of attempting any ambush armored vehicle with ERA panels quite possible are dual purpose anti personal defense weapon that could devastate the would be "ambushers". I mean that really cuts down to the extreme radicals that think there going to get 72 virgins for being cannon fodder types would be willing to risk that, at least an extra deterrence. Not to mention dropping leaflets in the local language(s) describing the new system as a Psy-Op.

I really appreciate any help in trying to give this idea our thumbs up or down and try to push for providing an extra layer of protection for our forces.



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