RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Lord Jim wrote: 01 Jun 2022, 17:57 an APS and a fire direction sensor and any ATGW team could be in a world of hurt.
err, a fire direction sensor would not help much once the missile (F&F) has been launched. Assuming there are several missile teams (of 1 or two).

In the war like we are seeing in Ukraine some Russian commentators (well, not many, as they will be taken down) have said that in the war of attrition (not counting the artillery effect, which is what we are seeing now) the max. Russian number of 400k (some expended by now, not so much in men but in NCOs and officers) may need to face an army of 1 mln .... one in eight (where did I get that number from?) toting Javelin or something for a closer range. But equally deadly
Ever-lasting truths: Multi-year budgets/ planning by necessity have to address the painful questions; more often than not the Either-Or prevails over Both-And.
If everyone is thinking the same, then someone is not thinking (attributed to Patton)

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Ian Hall
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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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The prequel to CR3

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Perhaps we should repoen the production line!

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Short video from Rafael showing the early testing of Trophy for CR3.

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Post by wargame_insomniac »

Poiuytrewq wrote: 05 Sep 2023, 14:29 Lots of good news here

https://www.shephardmedia.com/news/land ... llenger-3/
What is the off-road mobility of the Challenger 3 tank?
Under the 'Heavy Armour Automotive Improvement Programme' (HAAIP), RBSL will upgrade the Challenger platform to a 26.1l Perkins CV12-8A V12 diesel engine and install an improved engine cooling system. Offering 1,500hp, Challenger 3 has an increased top speed of 60kmh on-road and 40kmh off-road. When fitted with these upgrades, Challenger 3 will have a fuel capacity of 1,592l and a maximum range of 500km.

Alongside engine upgrades, Challenger 3 features a third-generation hydro-gas suspension system, increasing moving firing accuracy.
I have heard engine improvements mentioned before in previous press releases, but without specifying the exact improvements. This is the first specific detail so I am happy that is being addressed after all.

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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wargame_insomniac wrote: 05 Sep 2023, 19:24 I have heard engine improvements mentioned before in previous press releases, but without specifying the exact improvements. This is the first specific detail so I am happy that is being addressed after all.
This is the pace of change that is needed. It’s not lightning quick but it is rapid.

Given the relatively modest costs involved a bump up to more than 200x CH3 must be a clear priority now.
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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Poiuytrewq wrote: 05 Sep 2023, 20:06 Given the relatively modest costs involved a bump up to more than 200x CH3 must be a clear priority now.
Yea .... that won't happen. Even after review of the FS, number of tanks to be upgraded will not be increased and will stay just 148 tanks. There is very little chance, if not at all, that this would be changed.

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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sol wrote: 05 Sep 2023, 20:36 Yea .... that won't happen. Even after review of the FS, number of tanks to be upgraded will not be increased and will stay just 148 tanks. There is very little chance, if not at all, that this would be changed.
Why not? Logically it makes complete sense.

How can the Army continue to ask for an increase in funding when a straightforward and cost effective option for the remaining CH2 to be upgraded to CH3 is not taken?

Meanwhile billions£ is spent on a handful of SF Chinooks?

Why not bin the SF Chinooks and use the funding to supercharge the NMH programme to around 100 and transfer Army AH1 Wildcats to RN, upgrade the remaining CH2 to CH3 and restart the Warrior upgrade program. It’s not perfect but it buys time to sort out a proper industrial strategy to rebuild UK sovereign tracked vehicle manufacturing.

The UK needs as many CH3 as can be upgraded. Warrior and AS90 needs to be upgraded or replaced. M270 numbers need to be maximised and an all tracked 3rd Div should be the ambition even if it takes another decade to get there.

Why just accept the decline? More can be achieved if better decision making and ruthless prioritisation is implemented.

When funding is limited luxuries are unaffordable. Pragmatism must prevail.
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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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wargame_insomniac wrote: 05 Sep 2023, 19:24 I have heard engine improvements mentioned before in previous press releases, but without specifying the exact improvements. This is the first specific detail so I am happy that is being addressed after all.
Its fantastic news. With the new turret etc it is essentially a new tank now. And at £5.4m each a bit of a bargain.
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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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CR3 is progressing. First steel structure for CR3 turret prototype arrived in Telford



Also first two 120mm smoothbore guns for CR3 passed firing test.

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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sol wrote: 11 Oct 2023, 10:04 CR3 new driver digital periscope

https://www.forces.net/technology/windo ... -periscope
That appears to be a cracking piece of kit.

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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Testing of CR3 transmission upgrade

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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A lot of clarification from Jon Hawkes on CR2/3 power upgrades.

Looks like it will be 1200hp for the foreseeable...

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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I think I read somewhere that the current transmission meant they where getting nowhere near the full 1,200 hp from the current power train so hopefully we will still be a substantial improvement.

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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(Forces News) 10th October 2023
Could Challenger 3's weight be preventing it from being as effective as it could potentially be?

Doctor Jack Watling, a Senior Research Fellow for Land Warfare at the defence and security think tank Royal United Services Institute, has suggested that the new 66-tonne Challenger 3 main battle tank (MBT) currently being developed, might be too heavy.


(Forces News) 16th October 2023
The new Challenger 3 will be kitted out with an embedded image periscope, a cutting-edge combination of a classic glass periscope and a digital display electronic periscope.

The electronic periscope is connected to a camera system called Spectre which consists of a thermal imaging camera, a day camera, and an overlay of the two.

The new periscope will also have a 'reversionary mode' – in the event that the main battle tank loses power and the situational awareness cameras stop working, the driver will be able to flip a switch to look out of the non-electronic glass periscope.

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Post by leonard »

Somebody has open up a good argument for a debate on the totality of the entire program ????
Everyone opinions are welcomed !!!!
https://x.com/nicholadrummond/status/17 ... 10002?s=20

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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leonard wrote: 16 Nov 2023, 22:39 Somebody has open up a good argument for a debate on the totality of the entire program ????
Everyone opinions are welcomed !!!!
https://x.com/nicholadrummond/status/17 ... 10002?s=20
I guess KNDS know what is the best for the British Army and UK. And they are only saying that from the goodness of their heart not because they have horse in the race, right?

And where do Nicholas and KNDS are expecting money for 148 new tanks to come from? And for some 100 other support vehicles to replace Titan, Trojan and CRARRV? Previously Nicholas himself was saying that buying Leopard 2 as a replacement for CR2 was considered to expensive and there was no money for it, so is KNDS giving a hefty discount now? And who will pay for costs of training Ukrainians to operate CR2, plus maintenance all tanks sent to Ukraine, because UK is doing that now for 14 tanks sent to Ukraine, for more tanks those cost will rise up. And what about all money spent so far and all contracts signed for development of CR3? Just forget about it I guess.

And what the Army and the current tank craws are supposed to do till new tank arrive? There is no country that could leave enough Leopard 2 tanks to keep crews of all regular and TA tank units trained and at the same time provide enough tanks for NATO commitments in the Estonia. Even German Army is struggling to provide enough operational tanks for a single unit but I guess somehow they will be able to lease enough tanks to UK if they just buy lot of German tanks. Marvellous.

This discussion is completely pointless now, especially as first CR3 prototypes are expected to be delivered to the Army soon(-ish), in early 2024. Unless there is significant uplift in the budget for defence all this talk is complete nonsense.
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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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sol wrote: 17 Nov 2023, 09:18
leonard wrote: 16 Nov 2023, 22:39 Somebody has open up a good argument for a debate on the totality of the entire program ????
Everyone opinions are welcomed !!!!
https://x.com/nicholadrummond/status/17 ... 10002?s=20
I guess KNDS know what is the best for the British Army and UK. And they are only saying that from the goodness of their heart not because they have horse in the race, right?

And where do Nicholas and KNDS are expecting money for 148 new tanks to come from? And for some 100 other support vehicles to replace Titan, Trojan and CRARRV? Previously Nicholas himself was saying that buying Leopard 2 as a replacement for CR2 was considered to expensive and there was no money for it, so is KNDS giving a hefty discount now? And who will pay for costs of training Ukrainians to operate CR2, plus maintenance all tanks sent to Ukraine, because UK is doing that now for 14 tanks sent to Ukraine, for more tanks those cost will rise up. And what about all money spent so far and all contracts signed for development of CR3? Just forget about it I guess.

And what the Army and the current tank craws are supposed to do till new tank arrive? There is no country that could leave enough Leopard 2 tanks to keep crews of all regular and TA tank units trained and at the same time provide enough tanks for NATO commitments in the Estonia. Even German Army is struggling to provide enough operational tanks for a single unit but I guess somehow they will be able to lease enough tanks to UK if they just buy lot of German tanks. Marvellous.

This discussion is completely pointless now, especially as first CR3 prototypes are expected to be delivered to the Army soon(-ish), in early 2024. Unless there is significant uplift in the budget for defence all this talk is complete nonsense.
I would tend to agree, there is no money for replacing the CH2, other than the slow moving CH3 rebuild, so it's nothing more than an interesting hypothetical conversation.

Re funding against current capabilities, it's all just treading water now as we wait for the next Government and the outcome of their inevitable SDSR.

They will no doubt have there own priorities, where our now neich MBT capability fits into that list is debatable.

I personally think that now it's been reduced to an almost redundant 2 Regiment basis, ( below minimum critical mass), it only has two directions to go, restored to 3 Regiments and returned to a minimum level of mass, or phased out completely by 2040.

Neich capabilities are always tempting low hanging fruit for government defence cuts...
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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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mrclark303 wrote: 17 Nov 2023, 09:50 Neich capabilities are always tempting low hanging fruit for government defence cuts...
I guess you mean niche capabilities? They may be niche in terms of current capabilities, but invaluable I'd argue to maintain memory and experience of how to use that particular type of capability, ie to retain some sound seedcorn knowledge. Hasn't experience of recent years taught us that it's very difficult to predict when there might be a future need for growing a capability again.

So best to retain seedcorn knowledge of as many specialties as possible. Of course, the niche needs to be large enough still to be a true and meaningful capability even if we have to use it in conjunction with others.
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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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albedo wrote: 17 Nov 2023, 13:36
mrclark303 wrote: 17 Nov 2023, 09:50 Neich capabilities are always tempting low hanging fruit for government defence cuts...
I guess you mean niche capabilities? They may be niche in terms of current capabilities, but invaluable I'd argue to maintain memory and experience of how to use that particular type of capability, ie to retain some sound seedcorn knowledge. Hasn't experience of recent years taught us that it's very difficult to predict when there might be a future need for growing a capability again.

So best to retain seedcorn knowledge of any many specialties as possible. Of course, the niche needs to be large enough still to be a true and meaningful capability even if we have to use it in conjunction with others.

I guess you mean niche capabilities? ....

Well apparently Neich is old Irish for ' something/ everything, so yep, I meant niche.

That will teach me to type whist jostling for a seat on a bloody train 🤣

How the hell does my auto correct know old Irish, is Dublin spying on me?

I know I've mentioned 'leaving the lights on' once or twice (they did by the way, my dear old Nan in Tiverton Street, Liverpool never forgave the Irish for having her windows blown in and the death of her Canary in 1941), perhaps I'm on their radar....🫣🤔😉

What were we talking about again??

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

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mrclark303 wrote: 17 Nov 2023, 14:08
albedo wrote: 17 Nov 2023, 13:36
mrclark303 wrote: 17 Nov 2023, 09:50 Neich capabilities are always tempting low hanging fruit for government defence cuts...
I guess you mean niche capabilities? They may be niche in terms of current capabilities, but invaluable I'd argue to maintain memory and experience of how to use that particular type of capability, ie to retain some sound seedcorn knowledge. Hasn't experience of recent years taught us that it's very difficult to predict when there might be a future need for growing a capability again.

So best to retain seedcorn knowledge of any many specialties as possible. Of course, the niche needs to be large enough still to be a true and meaningful capability even if we have to use it in conjunction with others.

I guess you mean niche capabilities? ....

Well apparently Neich is old Irish for ' something/ everything, so yep, I meant niche.

That will teach me to type whist jostling for a seat on a bloody train 🤣

How the hell does my auto correct know old Irish, is Dublin spying on me?

I know I've mentioned 'leaving the lights on' once or twice (they did by the way, my dear old Nan in Tiverton Street, Liverpool never forgave the Irish for having her windows blown in and the death of her Canary in 1941), perhaps I'm on their radar....🫣🤔😉

What were we talking about again??
Ah yes Challenger 3,
148 tanks,
2 Armoured Regiments, = a minimally effective force
= low hanging fruit...

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Re: RBSL Challenger 3 (Future) Main Battle Tank (British Army)

Post by SD67 »

Personally I think Challenger 3 is worth doing at this level to retain a core of expertise in heavy armoured vehicles that could be scaled up in the future if threats and circumstances change. It's way too late to invest in a new platform of the same generation, and doing nothing means effectively gapping the capability for 20 years.

As ong as it does not grow arms and legs and turn into Nimrod...

just my .02 EUR
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