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Self Propelled Artillery

guns_and_roses

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I read that the CF retired its last SP artillery systems not to long ago. To my understanding SP artillery is used to support mechanized infantry. Seeing as we have 6 mechanized infantry battalions, wouldn't it be important to get new SP artillery? If the Govt gave the money what system would benefit Canada the most, what would be your preference. I have no expertise in artillery systems but if I had to choose I'd choose the Swedish Archer system coming out soon. http://www.fmv.se/WmTemplates/Page.aspx?id=1373  ,It mentions at the bottom that Canada may be interested.
 

Michael OLeary

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SP artillery as operated by the Canadian Army was designed to support armour and mechanized infantry forces in high threat environments like the anticipated WWIII battlefields of northwest Europe.  Equipment requirements are more fundamentally focussed on doctrinal considerations than simple links between types of equipments used by the various Corps.  Step back and look at the bigger picture.  "Interested" doesn't necessarily mean our doctrinal development will take us down that road.
 

Rayman

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Ive seen some talk of this in SFU CASR...something about the MOBAT (a 105 mounted on a medium truck) and then a LAV mounted 105... Archer does look nice though but then again from what I gather it all comes down to do we really need that? Guess ill have to wait till after im an arty reservist to find out.
 
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As good as something like the archer seems, I don't really see a need for it really.  I mean it just seems like a faster, more protective version of a M777(closed cabin as opposed to open), with a little higher fire rate. I am sure for the price, it just is not worth it in the end. As from what I hear, the M777 does a good job.

If we did need something, I am sure something like the PzH 2000 would be a little better, as I assume, and someone correct me if I am wrong, this would offer a little better protection from direct fire or IEDs (sure the Archer would not be far behind, maybe better) if the need was there.  I hear the Dutch are using theirs extensively in Afghanistan right now and they have a few for sale. So maybe they would be a little cheaper then the Archer. Plus we can get them now if needed.

As part of the general public I am just not big on the whole idea unless someone on here can tell me otherwise.
 

Rayman

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Someone on here in another thread pointed out a few flaws with those PzH 2000s. One of them being one system malfunctions the whole gun stops working. If we have to get parts for these things from half way around the world well... We could easily see batteries out of service for weeks. Personally if Joe Six-Pack was up for it id recommend something like the MLRS 270 or HIMARS. However the cost of munitions alone would probably be through the roof. Realistically though I think the army will continue to acquire M777's and probably a new 105 or light gun.

Correct me if im wrong but I heard the main reason the M-109 was decommisioned was not only the age of these things, but the fact they were heavy, and werent air-portable.

 

a_majoor

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As ponted out, doctrine has a lot to do whith what sort of equipment is chosen (as appealing as shopping out of the Jane's catalogue might be). Other factors intrude as well, often ones more concerned with actors like the Treasury Board and our elected officials. Assuming the SP gun is deemed an important project, many potential candidates such as the "Archer" might not even receive consideration since they would have inordinate O&M costs due to the small overall fleet size and unique nature of the equipment. (If we already operated a fleet of Volvo heavy earthmoving trucks then the story might be different).

I would guess, as a SWAG (Scientific Wild Assed Guess), that any mechanized or SP weapon would either be based on the new meduim truck chassis (an "Archer lite"), or be a LAV III derivative. Logistical and economic factors would make these the strongest contenders *if* an SP weapon was desired.
 

combatbuddha

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120mm Breach loading Mortar surrounded by a LAV Chassis would be a good alternative.
Bring back the M109s, upgrade the FCS and powertrain and move forward. They are simple and effective. Big, yes but didn't we just get some of them new big a-ro-planes?
 

Fencer_1983

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There are obvious advantages and disadvantages to self propelled artillery or auto loading artillery.  I'm no expert... but I'm joining the artillery reserve so this stuff interests me.

From what I understand, the issue with self propelled artillery is flexibility.  They're a more specialized piece of equipment whereas a towed gun is more flexible.  The M777 is ultra light in comparison to any SP artillery - afterall it is essentially just a gun with wheels.  A SP mortar has the added weight of armour, engine, ammunition, etc.  So the M777 has the weight advantage and thus the flexibility advantage of how it can be deployed on the battlefield. They can be towed in, air dropped, or brought in by helicopter's rather easily, if I'm not mistaken.

Also it's a relatively simple piece of equipment.. being manually loaded means less things can break down.  Auto-loading technology is relatively new and has its technical drawbacks.

Of course the advantage of something like Archer is it can 'shoot and scoot' easily and thus avoid counter battery fire more effectively.  It requires a smaller crew, so you save money on training, equiping, and so forth.  It can do Multiple Round Simultaneous Impact (MRSI) which is definitely nice.  And it also has a a slightly higher rate of fire..

I think though for the current needs of the army the M777 is great piece of equipment and will be what the CF uses for the next 10 years at least.  We only have, what, 8 right now?  Hopefuly we get a bunch more.
 

tomahawk6

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m02006112600407.jpg


M109 Replacement Enters Production

December 21, 2007:  The U.S. Army is buying 18 of the new (still in development) NLOS-C self-propelled howitzers, for $28 million each. Basically, the  army is buying prototypes. Congress has ordered that the NLOS-C be deployed by 2010.  These 18 vehicles will be used for training and testing, so that mass production of a much cheaper NLOS-C can begin in 2009.

As a replacement for the half century old M-109, the NLOS-C will be the first of the eight MGV (Manned Ground Vehicle) systems to enter service as part of the FCS (Future Combat System) program. The FCS brigades have fewer troops (2,500) than the current (and newly implanted) combat brigades (3,500 troops). The FCS brigades depend on automation and more electronics to make up for manpower. If that worked, many in the army believed that the NLOS-C would quickly replace the M-109, especially in the newly reorganized Brigade Combat Teams. But there is resistance to this vision of the future.

The prototype of the 155mm NLOS-C, fired several thousand rounds in three years of field tests. The system was cobbled together in six months, after the new Crusader SP artillery system was cancelled. The current self-propelled system, the M-109, is a fifty year old design. Although the M-109 has been frequently updated, the NLOS-C incorporates many new technologies. This includes an auto-loader (from the Crusader) and a more modern 155mm gun (the M-777, a towed, British designed system) and an APC chassis with a hybrid-electric engine (to reduce fuel consumption.) This all weighs 23 tons, about the same as the M-109. But the NLOS only has a two man crew, compared to five in the M-109.

The final version of the NLOS-C will be heavier (about 27 tons), because more defense systems have been added, to reflect experience in Iraq. be a ton or two lighter. The M777 howitzer will not be used in the NLOC-C, but an even lighter (by at least half a ton) 155mm gun. 

Congress originally demanded that NLOS-C be in service by 2008, but now 2010 or '11 seems more likely. Production of the final version was supposed to begin next year, but that appears to be delayed because of development problems. The manufacturer says otherwise, but not the troops who have actually used the NLOS-C.

Meanwhile, the new Excalibur GPS guided shell, which entered service in the past year, could change everything. Excalibur appears to work in combat, and this is radically changing the way artillery operates. Excalibur means 80-90 percent less ammo has to be fired, resulting in less wear and tear on NLOS-C (and less time needed for maintenance), and less time replenishing ammo supplies, and more time being ready for action. The NLOS-C uses GPS and networked computers to take care of navigation, fire control and communicating with its customers (the infantry and armored vehicles of the combat brigade it supports). Each battery (4-6 guns) has several support vehicles with ammo resupply, maintenance and such. Thus while each NLOS-C only has a crew of two, there are additional support personnel available to help with maintenance. This is another new development, a crew too small to do all its own maintenance, that will require a lot of testing.

But if the new self-propelled gun works out, the M-109s may disappear a lot more quickly. Currently, the army plans to keep M109s around until 2050, just in case. You never know, and it pays to be careful.

Discovery has a fun little game called NLOS Cannon Challenge.

http://dsc.discovery.com/tv/future-weapons/games/cannon/cannon.html
 

Franko

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I recognize the track system. Hope they never have to use it in the snow.          ::)

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Franko

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tomahawk6 said:
Based on the Bradley I believe.

Rubber one piece track with plastic sprocket, 2 piece idlers. Not made by Deil.

Has a nasty habit of either snapping or popping completely off at the worst time.

Hopefully the one in the picture is only a trial and not the end production model.

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Franko

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tomahawk6 said:
No the full production model wont be out for another year or so.

Good to hear. There is still hope then.

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tomahawk6

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Evidently the production model will have a durable rubber/plastic tread design instead of metal. Of course if they discover problems with the track I suppose they could switch back to metal. How it operates in the desert is important as it does in snow or mud.
 

ironduke57

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Regarding one piece rubber track´s: They are IMHO not practical in war time. One of the reason for my opinion is the hassle when it is damaged.
(Replacing just the damaged parts vs. replacing the whole track.)
Originally our Wiesel featured an one piece rubber track, but already some years ago they were changed to an classic design.

Regards,
ironduke57
 

Nfld Sapper

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Guess my post was OPSEC ;D


Ok MODS how many lashing do I receive?
 

Michael OLeary

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The NFLD Grinch said:
Guess my post was OPSEC ;D


Ok MODS how many lashing do I receive?

The simple approach is ... if you think it might be an OPSEC issue, don't post it.
 

Nfld Sapper

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True should have known better.

So back to my intial question, how many lashings do I receive there all might MOD?  ;D
 
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