Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Contains threads on British Army equipment of the past, present and future.
Boertjie
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Boertjie »

With Denel going down the drain slowly, maybe BAE can buy a fair stake, with IP, and get that G6-52 for you guys. Then you'll be able to get that over 70km range you all so eagerly want??


For the lighter forces, mounting the T7-105 turret on the Boxer will do just fine and give you that close to 35-40km for the lighter forces.

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

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Boertjie wrote:For the lighter forces, mounting the T7-105 turret on the Boxer will do just fine and give you that close to 35-40km for the lighter forces.
Music to my heart :thumbup:

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by mr.fred »

Boxer? Light forces?
Interesting definitions going on there.

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ArmChairCivvy
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Boertjie wrote:For the lighter forces, mounting the T7-105 turret on the Boxer will do just fine and give you that close to 35-40km for the lighter forces.
Back to the future! https://ndiastorage.blob.core.usgovclou ... t_Fire.pdf
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Ron5 »

mr.fred wrote:Boxer? Light forces?
Interesting definitions going on there.
He said "lighter" not "light" :D :D

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ArmChairCivvy
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Ron5 wrote:He said "lighter" not "light" :D
... as 'medium' has been abolished :) from the nomenclature
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Lord Jim
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Lord Jim »

ArmChairCivvy wrote:Back to the future!
I would still prefer turreted 120mm Mortars such as NEMO within Infantry Battalions and heavier platforms like the MAN/Archer 155mm and HIMARS providing the long range fire for both Light and Heavy BCTs not to mention the Deep Fires BCT. A CEP of 120m is simply no longer good enough. Cheap Precision Guidance Kits can already bring this down to less than 10m and rounds like Excalibur can reduce it even further for unitary rounds. For cargo rounds carrying smart payloads 155mm is the smallest calibre that is effective. AS said the Denel 105mm is back to the future, would have been useful for the Stryker brigades, maybe instead of the Stryker MGS to provide direct fire support.

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by SW1 »

An aircraft carrier for a howitzer

https://newsarticleinsiders.com/in-dept ... tary-techs

The Royal Navy’s Carrier Striker Group has set sail earlier this month on a months’ long voyage through the Pacific. The group is expected to make a port call at the southeastern city of Busan, South Korea, in the second half of this year.

Seoul’s Ministry of National Defence indicated the opportunity of discussions over the light carrier development when the HMS Queen Elizabeth-led British naval striker group is visiting Busan.

“There is a possibility of cooperation, including exchanging knowledge, such as Britain’s experience of operating aircraft carriers, on the occasion of the HMS Queen Elizabeth’s visit,” Boo Seung-chan, spokesman for the defence ministry, told reporters on April 27.

Self-Propelled Howitzer

The United Kingdom and South Korea have successfully established industrial partnerships on naval assets, as seen in the case of Seoul’s export of fleet auxiliary tankers to the Royal Navy and British support for the South Korean Navy’s ongoing 3,000-ton attack submarine programme codenamed the KSS-III.

Based on these efforts of naval defence cooperation, Moon and Choi echoed, both sides could explore more opportunities to expand their industrial strategic partnerships to the area of land systems.

“It’s going to be a win-win situation for both governments if they would be able to widen their defence industrial ties to other sectors,” Choi said, citing the K9 Self-Propelled Howitzer, or SPH, as an optimum solution for the British Army, which is looking to acquire up-to-date SPHs to replace its aging fleet of AS90s under the Mobile Fires Platform, or MFP, program. A request for proposal is for MFP is expected to be issued in 2022.

“It is no doubt the K9 is one of the most effective SPHs in the world in terms of firepower, mobility, and protection,” he said. “I’m sure the UK military will show strong interest in acquiring this Korean-made artillery.”

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ArmChairCivvy
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

What that article does not spell out is that Babcock has been already contracted for some key systems for the prospective ROK (light) aircraft carrier
- therefore it is no wonder :?: that the English editions of the regions business dailies every now and then feature the company

So may be 'they' are not planning to hijack ours, while it is alongside in Busan :)
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Lord Jim »

A purchase of the K9 Thunder as an interim replacement for the AS-90, for either the Heavy BCTs or most likely the Deep Fires BCT would be a good step forward. I still think we need at least two Regiments of more mobile wheeled 155mm SPGs to support the Heavy BCTs and also the Light BCTs. So a total of four Regiments of new tubed artillery Working with a mix of upgraded M270 GMLRS and hopefully HIMARS, two regiments of the former and one of the latter, and our Artillery should finally be in a position to provide effective fire support.

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Ron5 »

The whole article reads like a Korean marketing ploy to persuade the UK to buy Korean guns based on a bogus claim that would be good for UK industry. Absurd.

Lord Jim
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Lord Jim »

Well we could buy them from Australia instead, built to their specifications. However an interim buy to replace two AS-90 Regiments on a fast track rather than the planned AS-90 replacement programme IOC or 2028/9 would be a worthwhile option.

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by ~UNiOnJaCk~ »

Not personally convinced that tracked guns are the way to go. If we are to ever look again at a tracked system then any competition would almost certainly be K-9's to lose, no doubt. It's a quality system. That said, I think the Army would be much better served going down the all wheeled route which fortunately seems to be the direction of travel currently.

The 116 guns target has to be given every chance of bing met and a GOAT lends itself to that pursuit, as well as bringing many other desirable traits/features/advantages, to my mind.

My preference lies squarely with Archer.

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ArmChairCivvy
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

~UNiOnJaCk~ wrote:My preference lies squarely with Archer.
Mine too.
Lord Jim wrote: an interim buy to replace two AS-90 Regiments on a fast track rather than the planned AS-90 replacement programme IOC or 2028/9 would be a worthwhile option.
Go halves (though we have too many interim prgrms!) as the Poles did: get the K-9 hulls and... put Braveheart turrets :silent: on them :)
- they have the AS90 suspension solution (licensed, not a 'copy'), too
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Lord Jim »

That maybe the way to do it and set up a joint management team with the Poles to co-ordinate future growth etc. WE could even build the turrets here but have the Poles assemble the whole vehicle which may save a few pennies, considering they are already set up for such work.

So two Regiments of these to be in service by 2025 followed by two Regiments of Archer/Man 8x8 between then and 2030, with parallel programmes for new munition such as Excalibur, Precision guidance kits, smart munition dispensers and so on. Everything ties together around 2030 but we gain increased capabilities along the way.

The "Krabs", can be partially based in Poland along with the rest of the Deep Fires BCT, with sufficient remaining in the UK for training of the Reserves, say two batteries worth. The same set would also do for the M270 GMLRS Regiment, with one battery retained in the UK and the remainder with the Regiment in Poland. That would leave the second unmodified (at present) MLRS Regiment to be re-equipped with HIMARs to either supplement the units in the BCT in Poland or support units operating out of theatre together with the Archers.

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ArmChairCivvy
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Shoot-off now, get the 'thing' in place in 2032... and that's no typo!

"The UK Ministry of Defence will observe the US Army’s Mobile Howitzer trials and shoot-off to inform the procurement of a mobile fires platform (MFP) that will refresh the British Army’s artillery capabilities.
MFP is one of the British Army’s key projects as it looks to modernise following the publication of the Defence Command Paper, and the government has earmarked £800m to be spent on the programme over the next decade.

Participating in the trials are Elbit’s ATMOS 2000, BAE Systems’ Archer, Nexter’s Caesar and Yugoimport’s Nora. The trials are set to include a complete analysis of platforms and ordnance.

The UK is currently working towards approval of an outline business case for the programme in the first quarter of 2022, with an eye towards a full operating capability of 116 guns in 2032. Initial operating capability for MFP is aimed at 18 guns in early 2029."

Read the full story on Army Technology.
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

@TD had also picked up on the above trials. So from our POV we can't 'observe' Boxer RCH because it is not there, but as for the Serbian alternative, some of the detail given:

Range with ERFB projectile 32.5 km
Range with ERFB BB projectile 41.5 km
Range with VLAP projectile 52 km

It has been fitted to both a Kamaz 6560 and MAN TGS chassis so one would imagine a MAN HX/SX should not present any significant challenge.

Kamaz has been the 'king' of the Paris-Dakar; we might :) still prefer MAN.
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

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https://www.defensenews.com/industry/20 ... s-program/

SEOUL — Hanwha Defense is teaming up with U.K. suppliers to compete for the Mobile Fires Platform program, a British effort to acquire new self-propelled howitzers to replace the AS90, the South Korean company announced Wednesday.

“Hanwha Defense has begun formal discussions with UK partners to arrange for a ‘Made in the UK’ variant of its K9 Self-Propelled Howitzer,” the company said in a news release. “The K9 is operationally proven and will be put forward by Hanwha Defense for the UK’s Mobile Fires Platform programme to equip the British Army with a world-leading artillery capability.”

...

But the K9 is one of several contenders to replace the British Army’s aging AS90 howitzer, which has been around for about 30 years. Rheinmetall, with a howitzer variant of the eight-wheel drive Boxer armored personnel carrier, and BAE Systems, with the Archer truck-mounted system, are among the companies that have expressed interest in meeting the requirement for a wheeled or tracked weapon.

Some have considered an updated version of the AS90, but that appears to be an unpopular option.

...

Talks are already underway with U.K. industry partners, including Lockheed Martin UK, Pearson Engineering and Horstman, the spokesman said, adding that Canada’s Soucy Defense, which manufactures composite rubber track systems, is one of the global suppliers involved in Hanwha’s MFP campaign.

Securing a place on Hanwha’s lineup would be a key target for Lockheed Martin UK as it looks to recover from the recent loss of the Warrior infantry fighting vehicle update program. The British Army canceled a deal with the company as part of its integrated defense and security review released in March, leading tot he loss of 158 jobs at its turret design and manufacture center of excellence in Ampthill, southern England.

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

Defiance wrote:as part of its integrated defense and security review released in March, leading tot he loss of 158 jobs at its turret design and manufacture center of excellence in Ampthill
That is v specific;how many jobs there in total?
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Lord Jim »

The K9 is by all accounts a very good piece of lit but do the Army want a new Artillery system that really can only operate with the Heavy BCTs. The support Train for these is going to be larger than that for the Challenger 3, especially regarding ammunition. Hardly what you need for easily deployable Combat Teams. Even a split but would reduce the number of Artillery Regiments really available for deployment in half to as two, and of course only a very few GMLRS could be sent also.

We are not re equipping BOAR, but what is supposed to be a high flexible and deployable Army. The Mod needs to ask itself "Can this be quickly moved anywhere in the world and easily supported?", with all future procurement programmes. The Heavy BCTs can meet this by limited how many CH3s are taken if any at all. Of course this depends on the threat level expected as well, and just as importantly how well equipped the Mechanised Infantry are equipped, especially their Boxers.

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

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Lord Jim wrote:not re equipping BOAR, but what is supposed to be a high flexible and deployable Army. The Mod needs to ask itself "Can this be quickly moved anywhere in the world and easily supported?", with all future procurement programmes. The Heavy BCTs can meet this by limited how many CH3s are taken if any at all. Of course this depends on the threat level expected as well, and just as importantly how well equipped the Mechanised Infantry are equipped, especially their Boxers.
Here we can look, not at the kit per se, but how the French army is organised:
bn-sized components that are not, per se, all-arms but trained to become so at a snap of fingers. Not the same thing as our BGs, which are ad hoc (though the end result, once accomplished will look much the same).
- the case in point is that many of the units that first went to Mali came ... from their heavy, high-readiness brigade. They just left the MBTs behind
- the same with artillery: same gun, but 6x6 for 'colonial' sorry expeditionary warfare and on an 8x8 platform for higher intensity warfare

A lot of the argumentation heard starts from the premise that we will need to maintain two armies (+ the reserves): the ex-BAOR, and then the other half
- not doable (within the budget premise)
- AND leads to a hopeless higgledy-piggledy mix of AFVs/ protected mobility vehicles
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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Lord Jim »

So we need platforms that can easily be deployed, both tube and rocket, to support the Wheeled platforms from the Heavy and Light BCTs as well as the Ranger Regiment and so on. Well that sort of pushes any tracked option way to the back with a wheeled platform at the front and towed, airmobile systems next in line. The latter might be more appropriate for the Royal Marines, as long as any system chosen can be lifted by a Merlin HC4/4A, as well as getting a soft recoil 120mm Mortar that can fire from the rear section of a Viking.

But is the Army suffering from a phobia of unfamiliar kit when it comes to updating its deep fires capability, first by updating the GMLRS rather than looking at HIMARS and secondly considering heavy tracked Self Propelled Guns to replace AS-90 in addition to platforms like the Archer/MAN 8x8 and the Boxer 155mm.

Also why on earth is it going to take almost ten years to select such a system. I understand they might want to see how the new ideas on extending the range of tube artillery pan out, so why not go for a split buy? Buy at least one Regiment's worth of wheeled 155mm SPGs sooner rather than later. This would give us a Regiment able to deploy as batteries or as a whole to support deployments. If some uber new 155mm platform emerges in the next ten years then sure lets get some, especially for Europe to equip the Deep Fires BCT.

The same applies to the GMLRS and HIMARS though on a smaller scale. Whilst it would be possible to ship out a few GMLRS, like in Afghanistan, this is a far from ideal solution. Instead why not buy one or two Batteries worth of HIMARS, plus a couple for training and attach them to the Regular GMLRS Regiment. Like when the AS-90 Regiments ere also allocated 105mm Light Guns, to enable them to deploy on lower intensity operations with the latter. If needed a Battery could be shipped off with HIMARS to compliment the wheeled tube Regiment.

Yes is means two platforms in each category, but they are complimentary and the wheeled platforms are still relevant in a Peer level conflict. If we go only for heavy platforms we are going to deprive our deployable forces of adequate artillery support, with the unit probably having to rely on any 120mm Mortars purchased or even just their 81mm Mortars.

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

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ArmChairCivvy wrote:Here we can look, not at the kit per se, but how the French army is organised:
bn-sized components that are not, per se, all-arms but trained to become so at a snap of fingers. Not the same thing as our BGs, which are ad hoc (though the end result, once accomplished will look much the same).
You have mentioned this before, but I'm still none the wiser. How is the way the French create all arms groupings different from the way the British Army does so?

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Lord Jim »

And don't forget the French have 120mm Mortars as Divisional Artillery :D Oh and their Divisions are historically much smaller than a standard NATO one. They are made up of Regiments/Battalions rather than Brigades, but this allows they to form Battlegroups to deploy from units that regularly train together. Their Foreign Legion is a good example and under French organisation could be called a Division, but includes everything from Special Forces to Airborne, to Light Infantry and light Armour. They train together and so when France decides to dens a Force overseas they are the first stop, and they can tailor the type of force from there units with varying skill specialisations to suit the Mission.

I think the above makes sense but I am overdosed on caffeine at present so bear with me please.

But the way have the French Army adopted the 8x8 155mm Caesar, I thought only the Danes had taken it and the French still had some GCTs to support the heavy units, allocated to Europe and NATO.

We could do the Same but the the K9A1 with the Deep Fires BCT together with the M270 GMLRS and say the Archer/MAN and HIMARS with the Heavy and Light BCTs. That would entail around 60 each of the K9A1 and Archer and 20 each of the upgraded M270 and HIMARS. Then we just have to make sure we have enough of the new ammunition to actually train with and use them, plus the relevant simulators with are essential nowadays. I do seem to be repeating this argument, a bit like my fandom for the rifled, towed 120mm Brandt Mortar last year. :D

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Re: Royal Artillery/Royal Horse Artillery future developments

Post by Lord Jim »

Reading a recent issue of Military Technology, there is a interesting article titled "Is towed artillery dead?". It start by explaining that the dramatic shortening of the sensor to shooter cycle through ISTAR assets and high speed datalink has made towed artillery too vulnerable to counter battery fire by enemy precision fire and/or massed fore. Even the two and a half minutes for the M777 to pack up and get moving is considered too long with French studies saying that a fire mission should not take any longer teh one hundred seconds. This is obviously aimed at peer or near peer conflicts. This leads the article to state the obvious that self propelled artillery is therefore preferable.

The article next point out that the majority of todays SP Artillery is tracked but this is difficult to deploy and is costly to maintain and operate, and that SP artillery mounted on an armoured truck chassis is the better solution, being just as effective when considering modern systems, as well as being cheaper to purchase and operate. OF course it is also easier to deploy and requires substantially less support in the field, though the need for effective "Limbers" to keep the guns or Rocket launchers supplied is also mentioned.

I find this pretty interesting and must admit I agree to these points , especially with regards to what the British Army chooses to replace the AS-90 with given the aspiration to be able to rapidly and easily deploy our planned BCTs around the world. The fewer tracked platforms needed, such as the Challenger 3 and the engineering variants of the Challenger 2, there fore reducing the supply chain need to support such deployments and logistic to actually get there.

What it also highlights for me is the decision of the Australian Army to purchase the South Korean K-9 155mm SP Gun to replace its M777, given its desire to deploy and fight away from Australia as its key mission, therefore protecting said country.

The way I see it is that if a country aims to defend itself against localised threats in the main such as Germany or Poland, then tracked self propelled artillery still makes sense. However if a country aims to have a global role, not just to defend its overseas territories' but allies as well, the deplorability and ease of supporting such a deployment are a high priority. Yes you can ship an AS-90 as fast as a say Archer to a theatre by ship, but it is the getting to the ship and what happens at the other end that matters. This is why I am such a strong advocate of the British Army replacing the AS-90 with a wheeled platforms, of which many exist, and purchasing a number of HMARS to replace half the Army's inventory of tracked GMLRS, still leaving one to be part of the Deep Fires BCT along with the two or more Ajax Regiments. This unit should be forward based either in an existing Barracks in Germany or a new one further east in Poland along with support units to make it self contained.

I would then form three Artillery Regiments each of three Batteries of say MAN/Archer SP 155mm Guns using both extended range precision rounds and cargo rounds of a similar range, a Battery of HIMARS, and a UAV Battery. The last would be supplemented by UAVs and other ISTAR assets within and attached to the respective BCT forming a comprehensive web, to identify enemy positing and units, as well as degrading the enemy's ability to use the same capabilities. These units would be future proofed to a large extent and the next technological leap is going to be in teh munition each use, both in accuracy and range, and hopefully reduced costs as manufacturing techniques improve.

Well hopefully this will get this thread talking again, the same edition has much to say about topic such as CAMM and CAMM-ER, as well as the effects Digital Engineering is having on the development of complex systems and I will post my views on these in the near future.

So endith the lesson, go in peace my children. :D

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