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AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

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AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby The Armchair Soldier » 09 Sep 2015, 21:34

Image
The AS-90 (Artillery System for the 1990s; known officially as Gun Equipment 155 mm L131) is a lightly armoured self-propelled artillery piece used by the British Army.

The AS-90 was first deployed by the British Army in 1993.[1] 179 AS-90s were acquired to re-equip six of the eight self-propelled field artillery regiments (each 24 guns) in the 1 (BR) Corps, replacing the 105 mm FV433 Abbot SPG and older M109 155 mm Self Propelled Gun. It remains in UK service and will equip three field regiments supporting armoured infantry brigades for the foreseeable future. 134 in service in 2008, 117 in 2015.

AS-90 was designed and built by the Armaments division of Vickers Shipbuilding and Engineering (VSEL), whose parent company became BAE Systems in 1999. VSEL provided 179 vehicles between 1992 and 1995 at a cost of £300 million ($480 million USD).

The AS-90 underwent a capability enhancement program in 2008 and 2009, primarily relating to upgrades of the AS-90's electronic system.

In 1999, Marconi Electronic Systems was contracted to upgrade British Army AS-90s to include a 52 calibre gun in order to increase the range of the artillery. Critical to the program was a bi-modular charge system from Somchem of South Africa (selected after extensive trials of ammunition from many suppliers), which offered greatly reduced barrel wear. However, this ammunition failed to meet the requirement for insensitive munitions and the project was terminated.

Information from Wikipedia


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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby The Armchair Soldier » 09 Sep 2015, 21:35

Stumbled upon this interesting video today and thought I'd share it:


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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby SKB » 09 Sep 2015, 22:19

AS-90 Specifications

Type: Self-propelled artillery
Place of origin: United Kingdom
Weight: 45.0 tons (100,800 lb)
Length: 9.07 m (29 ft 9 in)
Width: 3.5 m (11 ft 6 in)
Height: 2.49 m (8 ft 2 in)
Armour: max. 17 mm (0.66 in) steel
Main armament: 155 mm L31 39 calibre gun (48 rounds)
Secondary armament: 7.62 mm NATO L7 GPMG
Engine: Cummins VTA903T V8 diesel, 660 hp (493 kW)
Power/weight: 14.66 hp/t
Suspension: hydropneumatic (Hydrogas)
Operational range: 420 km (261 mi)
On road Speed: 53 km/h (33 mph)

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 10 Sep 2015, 00:26

yes we need our ammo back in production as the US stuff has reduced performance

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 10 Sep 2015, 08:25

Nice vid, the one closest above. The outstanding mobility is first class (all the other superlatives have faded with time; e.g. the Americans are now upgrading from A6 Paladin to A7, and getting the same number of ammo carriers, which eliminate the need for the crew to dismount for the transfer between the two vehicles).

The Poles had the good sense to take the Braveheart turret (they put a Nexter gun into it, though!). Perhaps time to revisit the upgrade to 155/52? This is what I put on TD on the topic (who says American rounds degrease the performance - not so, if made by a British firm it would seem):

BAE is giving Excalibur a run for "its" money (more specifically improving the range from 40 to 70 km, for now) through spiral developments of the LRAP technologies... like this:
"On the other side, BAE is moving into Raytheon’s turf offering the land-based derivative of the saboted 5-Inch SGP, that can be fired from standard 155mm howitzers in service with the Army and Marine Corps. The company plans to fire the MS-SGP from an M777 towed howitzer in the summer of 2013. MS-SGP will expand the range and area covered by direct and general support artillery units, to provide long range joint fires in support of ground combat operations. Artillery units firing the 5-Inch Saboted SGP will deliver a volume of effects on desired area targets out to a range of 70 kilometers. By use of flight profiling, the 5-Inch Saboted SGP can execute Multiple Rounds Simultaneous Impact (MRSI) missions, magnifying lethal effects.
Both the 5-Inch SGP and Saboted SGP offer rapid time of flight and the capability of in-flight retargeting to address moving targets, changing target conditions, and surface threats. They both deliver all weather precision attack capability to fully defeat targets with high-explosive warheads, while operating within a jamming environment. Tested component designs are based on a spiral of the highly successful 155-mm Long Range Land Attack Projectile (LRLAP)."

There's more to it (incl. sources) there, keeping it short to pose some essential questions: What should be the balance of tube artillery vs rocketry within the RA?
- next question: What should be the balance between battle field protected pieces (SPGs; GLMRS also falls into this category) vs pieces with higher strategic (airportability, including the final leg to the spot for action) or intra-theatre mobility - the latter brings in the wheeled alternatives, in most of which the crew don't operate from under cover. There are exceptions like ATMOS and Archer. ATMOS deals have been reported at $1m a piece, I guess the AS-90s came at about 3 times that.

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 10 Sep 2015, 10:54

I would suggest going back to the old system of field regts with light gun or AS90 integrated into brigades and Heavy MLRS regts and a spare field regt and AS90 regt as a Div arty group with ISTAR and Expanded AD regts

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 10 Sep 2015, 11:32

There are folks here (like Gabby) who keep tabs on the formations and their kit, but my impression is that we have moved to a set-up that is not too far off:
- there is only enough arty to support 5 bdes
- there are (in theory) more bdes; therefore the crews now cross-train both on AS90 and the field gun (even formations not being "pure bred" as for their kit)
- rocketry and UAVs are stil a specialty (NLOS, or Exactor broadly speaking being part of this category)

So what is fielded, will get the kind of artillery suiting the formation tagging along.

The obvious weakness is the resupply vehicles (want of) matching the battle field resilience and mobility of the AS90s. The theory goes (my understanding) that the fire box within which the pieces would be shooting and scooting is something like 2 x 2 mls, and some edge of it would be reachable by the (mainly) softskinned Foden DROPS & alike vehicles
- at the same time half of the AS90s were unceremoniously scrapped, when they could have been turned into resupply vehicles with matching mobility and protection level (!?)

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 10 Sep 2015, 13:04

we also need to get Air defence sorted out to protect properly against drones

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 14 Sep 2015, 07:46

how do the TA units train on AS90 do they hold a training vehicle ?

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 14 Sep 2015, 09:51

Looks like the 3 reserve RA rgmnts are kit specific (1 GMLRS and 2 Light Gun). The text would indicate that they would be fed piecemeal to up the numbers in other formations, as the needs of ops dictate... so cross-training is not extending to them (available days per year type of explanation sounds logical).
http://www.digplanet.com/wiki/1st_Artil ... South_West

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 15 Sep 2015, 20:16

funny recent video of my old unit showed them using AS90

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby Dahedd » 16 Sep 2015, 15:34

Possibly a daft question from an uneducated civie.

If they have reduced the number of vehicles what has happened to the old ones? Would they not be a suitable chassis for an ammo carrier or an air defence vehicle or even conversion to a field ambulance ?

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby shark bait » 16 Sep 2015, 20:42

Dahedd wrote:Possibly a daft question from an uneducated civie.

If they have reduced the number of vehicles what has happened to the old ones? Would they not be a suitable chassis for an ammo carrier or an air defence vehicle or even conversion to a field ambulance ?


Only a small number of vehicles on a unique chassis, seems like more effort than its worth.
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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 16 Sep 2015, 21:15

The argument applies, regardless, for the first two (both RA), though not for the field ambulance
- not that we are short of Stormers for the AD role
- ... so it really only applies for the battlefield ammo carriers (ohh! we don' have any; never mind?)

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby arfah » 16 Sep 2015, 21:31

---------------
-<>-<>-<>-

Why this forum is pish!

1: Ineffective moderators
2: Too many fantasists ruining dedicated equipment threads with notions of what gun/mortar/artillery/missiles the equipment should have because it makes their panties moist.

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 16 Sep 2015, 21:39

battlefield... splinter protected... against the most common sizes of rounds (122/130/152 or 155)?
- normally the assessment is done assuming a hit 15m away from the vehicle

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 16 Sep 2015, 22:12

load of storrmers went through withams recently

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby arfah » 17 Sep 2015, 00:10

...................
-<>-<>-<>-

Why this forum is pish!

1: Ineffective moderators
2: Too many fantasists ruining dedicated equipment threads with notions of what gun/mortar/artillery/missiles the equipment should have because it makes their panties moist.

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 17 Sep 2015, 07:41

If we had kept (maybe we did?) the other half of the AS90 platforms, those that were decommissioned, they could take a little round trip to the BAE facilities in York and Elgin.

Then we would have something akin to what is in piccie 2 here
https://uk.search.yahoo.com/search?fr=m ... mo+carrier.

Have not seen a photo, yet, of the conveyor belt that means crews need not dismount when it would be disadvantageous (splinters flying, an active or anticipated NBC threat... or just moving through contaminated territory, e.g. ISIL and the Syrian gvmnt competing who can exhaust their stock piles the fastest "type of end game" over there, with a humanitarian intervention by the West to save the civilians; or maybe, the EU as a political structure).

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby arfah » 17 Sep 2015, 09:41

..................
-<>-<>-<>-

Why this forum is pish!

1: Ineffective moderators
2: Too many fantasists ruining dedicated equipment threads with notions of what gun/mortar/artillery/missiles the equipment should have because it makes their panties moist.

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 17 Sep 2015, 09:59

I've seen at least 1 AS90 Gate guard. I'm sure others are used for training and are in storage. None have appeared on the Military Vehicle scene :( an M109 or 2 would be nice as well

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 17 Sep 2015, 10:02

A good rationale... the US Army clearly got it wrong

There is a difference between supplying SPGs shooting and scooting within a 2 x 2 (mls) fire box, and them withdrawing from FEBA just to be resupplied?
- I am not an artilleryman; just layman's thinking on the topic

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 17 Sep 2015, 10:23

from what I remember the ammo flat racks are predumped on the gun platform and recovered later if they survive the counter battery mission. or are dumped in a hide area to allow replenishment of what is on the gun depending on the length of the planned mission. Gunners don't want to hang around after a mission refilling ammo bins they want to be well clear of the gun platform.

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby marktigger » 12 Oct 2015, 13:31

given the new generation of munitions and Sub munitions it would appear that the 155mm is the optimal sized round yes the electronics will get smaller over time but currently we need to be expanding the 155mm gun fleet.

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Re: AS-90 Self-Propelled Gun (Army)

Postby abc123 » 12 Oct 2015, 20:20

Considering that there's no separate thread about British MLRS, I have one question about them: How many MLRS launchers has/had British Army?
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