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Revolutionary new textile armour unveiled by MOD

Ridgback-armoured-british-armyA ground-breaking new armour system and a fleet of new armoured vehicles that will provide better protection on the frontline in Afghanistan were unveiled by the Ministry of Defence at the defence equipment event called DVD today.

The revolutionary, textile-based TARIAN vehicle armour system will give lightweight protection against RPGs, in place of the current bar armour that is fitted to vehicles such as Mastiff and Ridgback (pictured left).

More than 20 sets of TARIAN have been ordered and are in use on operations in Afghanistan, with half of them fitted to the Heavy Equipment Transporters. The armour has been developed with Dorset-based AMSAFE in Bridport and will mean the weight saved on armour can be applied elsewhere on the vehicle.

CCoyoteDVD also sees the unveiling of the Wolfhound, Husky and Coyote (right) Tactical Support Vehicles (TSV), the first time these newly-purchased trucks have been seen in public. More than 400 of these brand new vehicles are currently being manufactured across the UK, with delivery to training units expected later this year. The new TSV fleet will be used to accompany frontline patrols and carry essential combat supplies such as water and ammunition.

The equipment show also saw a taste of frontline action as members of the 1st Battalion The Rifles and 29 Commando Regiment RA simulated a battle group in action on the frontline. They were fully equipped with personal body armour, rifles and the new Husky and Ridgback vehicles and even called in air support from Apache and Merlin helicopters.

Both units have recently returned from frontline operations, with 1st Battalion the Rifles helping to mentor the Afghan National Army and 29 Cdo Regiment RA based at Musa Qala.

DVD is an equipment showcase which highlights the importance of diverse areas such as fuel delivery, clothing, food and vehicles that have been bought or upgraded under the Urgent Operational Requirement programme.

The TARIAN armour system is the result of a significant amount of research and development between DSTL and industry to AMSAFE in Bridport, Dorset. The system defeats the same threats as the existing Bar Armour, but at a much reduced weight which allows improvements to the vehicle’s protection elsewhere. Testing has shown that TARIAN is very robust and more than capable of withstanding battlefield wear and tear whilst allowing considerable weight savings and functioning as intended. If it does get damaged it is very easy to replace.

husky-410pxHusky (left), a medium armoured support vehicle, is manufactured by Navistar Defence, with Malvern based company Dytechna carrying out the integration work will form the main bulk of the TSVs and will carry out roles where heavy vehicles, like Mastiff, cannot be used. 

The other 2 TSV categories are: Heavy – Wolfhound, based on a Cougar 6×6 flatbed, manufactured and integrated through the Integrated Survivability Technologies Joint Venture between US company Force Protection Industries Inc and Coventry based NP Aerospace,  will support and re-supply our Mastiffs in the highest threat areas; Light – Coyote, based on a 6×6 derivative of the Jackal designed by Supacat Ltd and manufactured by Plymouth based Babcock Marine, will support our go-anywhere, high-mobility Jackals across the harsh terrain in Afghanistan.

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June 24, 2009 - Posted by | Defence

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