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Future US AFV development


LUCASWILLEN05

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3 hours ago, panzersaurkrautwerfer said:

1. The ATG1500 will run on pretty much anything that'll burn.  From aviation fuel, to regular gasoline, diesel, kerosene etc, etc.  It's actually one of the advantages of the engine in that regard.

2. In terms of technical leads, one of the problems is in general, the state of the art hasn't advanced much on a whole.  Basically if there's a technical breakthrough than yes a new tank would be wise, but right now without that technical breakthrough there's no sense to building something completely new (or rather, maybe the next technical breakthrough is rail guns, and the entire tank will have to be designed around heat sinks, separate drive and "power" plants, or it'll be in using some crazy armor array that the entire vehicle will need to be designed from scratch for).  

Again, people are working on these things, just it's not exactly the kind of thing shouted from rooftops.  

I guess it depends how good he much hyped T-14 turns out to be. As you say though actually building a new tank now probably isn't a good idea. But we should a last be thinking about it on the drawing boards, Maybe the next tank would be designed around lasers/particle beam weapons or, as you say, rail guns. Likely this technology is some way off yet though

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20 minutes ago, Apocal said:

Why is running on JP-8 a concern? And I'm pretty sure an Abrams will run on anything you put in, it is just JP-8 is the Army's preferred brand, so every vehicle uses it.

Probably for the same reason that running your car (regularly) on the wrong type of fuel is also a sub optimal decision  :rolleyes:

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3 minutes ago, LUCASWILLEN05 said:

Probably for the same reason that running your car (regularly) on the wrong type of fuel is also a sub optimal decision  :rolleyes:

Almost every ground vehicle in the US inventory uses JP-8. It isn't a unique thing to the Abrams and I'm somewhat mystified on how you came to conclusion it was the wrong fuel. On top of that, I'm almost certain the AGT1500 specifically is fuel type agnostic, so it burns diesel, gasoline, straight kerosene, or even straight up bunker crude.

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25 minutes ago, LUCASWILLEN05 said:

I guess it depends how good he much hyped T-14 turns out to be. As you say though actually building a new tank now probably isn't a good idea. But we should a last be thinking about it on the drawing boards, Maybe the next tank would be designed around lasers/particle beam weapons or, as you say, rail guns. Likely this technology is some way off yet though

The current technology curve indicates the T-14 is not going to make it in numbers, as described.  Basically if there were several T-14 equipped Brigades right now, working as advertised it might be interesting.  But again as of right now, they're parade floats.  Interesting additional caveats:

1. The Armata program was supposed to replace several different vehicle fleets in their entirety.  This was part of the economics argument for a mass overhaul.  It looks like the procurement will be much slower, and there's lot of legacy programs that need replacement right now though.  This opens an interesting question to if the Russians will basically have to focus on updating their current fleet...or will have to move ahead with replacement at the expense of keeping a large amount of the Russian Army on BMP-2s and T-72s into the 2030 range.  

2. There's a distinct lack of progress in the industrial situation in terms of actually producing the T-14, and a lot of the technology for it still relies on imports.  Arguably it'd have almost made sense to instead skip the whole T-14 business, focus on T-90 upgrades, while working on building the basis to actually build domestic high technology vehicles.  

 

31 minutes ago, LUCASWILLEN05 said:

Probably for the same reason that running your car (regularly) on the wrong type of fuel is also a sub optimal decision  :rolleyes:

As Apocal has pointed out:

1. JP8 is the fuel the US Army.  If the US Army is out of JP8, then something likely is wrong to the degree that fueling tanks is a secondary concern.

2. The Abrams does JP8, other avgas, kerosene based fuels, conventional gasoline pretty well.  Diesel or less refined products have the following caveats:

a. The Abrams used to have a smoke generator that was run by basically pouring fuel onto a heated surface.  This has been disabled because diesel does not smoke properly or burn completely in the smoke generator area, leaving a possible fire hazard (or at the least, fuel outside the engine system).

b. Extended diesel operations basically lower the mean time between services requirement.  This isn't "I drove the tank on diesel once and now I need to tear it down!" it's "I should do the annual services as a biannual as a preventative measure."  I believe this is one of the issues the Australians ran into with their Abrams fleet, they basically ONLY ran on diesel, without the accompanying increase in services. 

In terms of combat operations, we fully anticipated being able to basically loot fuel if required (or, if there was someone at the service station they'd get a receipt, and assuming the second Korean War didn't kill them they could make a claim later).  With that said,  the use of JP8 as a primary fuel is about as valid as claiming the Russian use of fuel in general is a mistake, and not having wood burning tanks (no need for fuelers!  Issue axes and buckets!  Steam worked for the railroads!) is a critical error.  

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17 hours ago, Apocal said:

Almost every ground vehicle in the US inventory uses JP-8. It isn't a unique thing to the Abrams and I'm somewhat mystified on how you came to conclusion it was the wrong fuel. On top of that, I'm almost certain the AGT1500 specifically is fuel type agnostic, so it burns diesel, gasoline, straight kerosene, or even straight up bunker crude.

Well. let's just say that running your car on the wrong type of fuel s not generally advisable. Trying to run Abrams on diesel probably would not do the gas turbine engine much good although it will probably work or a while at least  ;https://aviation.stackexchange.com/questions/13042/why-do-jet-engines-use-kerosene-rather-than-gasoline

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16 hours ago, panzersaurkrautwerfer said:

The current technology curve indicates the T-14 is not going to make it in numbers, as described.  Basically if there were several T-14 equipped Brigades right now, working as advertised it might be interesting.  But again as of right now, they're parade floats.  Interesting additional caveats:

1. The Armata program was supposed to replace several different vehicle fleets in their entirety.  This was part of the economics argument for a mass overhaul.  It looks like the procurement will be much slower, and there's lot of legacy programs that need replacement right now though.  This opens an interesting question to if the Russians will basically have to focus on updating their current fleet...or will have to move ahead with replacement at the expense of keeping a large amount of the Russian Army on BMP-2s and T-72s into the 2030 range.  

2. There's a distinct lack of progress in the industrial situation in terms of actually producing the T-14, and a lot of the technology for it still relies on imports.  Arguably it'd have almost made sense to instead skip the whole T-14 business, focus on T-90 upgrades, while working on building the basis to actually build domestic high technology vehicles.  

 

As Apocal has pointed out:

1. JP8 is the fuel the US Army.  If the US Army is out of JP8, then something likely is wrong to the degree that fueling tanks is a secondary concern.

2. The Abrams does JP8, other avgas, kerosene based fuels, conventional gasoline pretty well.  Diesel or less refined products have the following caveats:

a. The Abrams used to have a smoke generator that was run by basically pouring fuel onto a heated surface.  This has been disabled because diesel does not smoke properly or burn completely in the smoke generator area, leaving a possible fire hazard (or at the least, fuel outside the engine system).

b. Extended diesel operations basically lower the mean time between services requirement.  This isn't "I drove the tank on diesel once and now I need to tear it down!" it's "I should do the annual services as a biannual as a preventative measure."  I believe this is one of the issues the Australians ran into with their Abrams fleet, they basically ONLY ran on diesel, without the accompanying increase in services. 

In terms of combat operations, we fully anticipated being able to basically loot fuel if required (or, if there was someone at the service station they'd get a receipt, and assuming the second Korean War didn't kill them they could make a claim later).  With that said,  the use of JP8 as a primary fuel is about as valid as claiming the Russian use of fuel in general is a mistake, and not having wood burning tanks (no need for fuelers!  Issue axes and buckets!  Steam worked for the railroads!) is a critical error.  

Thanks for the info on fuel. What, in your professional opinion, would happen to the gas turbine engine if you tried to run it on diesel fuel? Maybe you could get away with it once but, as you say. the Australians found hat they required increased servicing

Regarding the T-14 budget, as we both agree is likely to be the issue for the Russians https://www.fool.com/investing/general/2015/02/14/russias-t-14-armata-tank-may-feature-a-fatal-flaw.aspx

Likely the result might be smaller high tech  tank  fleets. In 2014, after budget cuts. Britain only had 227 Challenger II 

http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/british-army-has-just-227-tanks-left-after-spending-cuts-1442463

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2 hours ago, LUCASWILLEN05 said:

Thanks for the info on fuel. What, in your professional opinion, would happen to the gas turbine engine if you tried to run it on diesel fuel? Maybe you could get away with it once but, as you say. the Australians found hat they required increased servicing

Regarding the T-14 budget, as we both agree is likely to be the issue for the Russians https://www.fool.com/investing/general/2015/02/14/russias-t-14-armata-tank-may-feature-a-fatal-flaw.aspx

Likely the result might be smaller high tech  tank  fleets. In 2014, after budget cuts. Britain only had 227 Challenger II 

http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/british-army-has-just-227-tanks-left-after-spending-cuts-1442463

The diesel doesn't burn as cleanly.  It means you need to clean out the engine more often.  I wasn't a tank mechanic, and worked more with the doctrine and the "tank as a tool" vs "tank as machine" element, but there was no problem running the tank on diesel beyond the simple fact it needed the periodic engine tear down more often to keep everything ship shape.

So in game terms if I had to fight my company off of diesel fuel for the duration of operations in the Ukraine, it'd have about zero effects in that 1-4 month window.  The Australians opted o run their tanks hard, on diesel, and for budgetary reasons chose not to do the more frequent periodic maintenance, in addition to being new to the platforms and suffered as a result.

As to the T-14, a overall smaller tank fleet is possible but doesn't seem to match Russian strategic intentions or posturing.  It seems likely a large mechanized army is part of their doctrine and posture for some time to come.  Unless we see a mass scrapping/conversion of mechanized to motorized units/units being closed I think the most likely COA is continued T-72/T-90 upgrades, a very small "prestige" amount of T-14s (see KA-50/Russian fighter jet procurement for a good example of this), and continued saber rattling. 

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1 hour ago, Michael Emrys said:

Strongly agree. When total annihilation of the human race became a possibility, war became something more serious than mankind's favorite outdoor seasonal sport.

Michael

While not wanting to stray too far away from the original issue which was the high cost of MBTs we are in a situation reminiscent of the Cold War but with a key difference. This is now a multipolar international system more like the  pre WW2 system. \We do not need ro get into  detailed debate/analysis f this here though - and I am certain most, if not all of us are familiar with the geopolitics and he current international situation

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19 hours ago, panzersaurkrautwerfer said:



As to the T-14, a overall smaller tank fleet is possible but doesn't seem to match Russian strategic intentions or posturing.  It seems likely a large mechanized army is part of their doctrine and posture for some time to come.  Unless we see a mass scrapping/conversion of mechanized to motorized units/units being closed I think the most likely COA is continued T-72/T-90 upgrades, a very small "prestige" amount of T-14s (see KA-50/Russian fighter jet procurement for a good example of this), and continued saber rattling. 

Agreed. Particularly given the cost of developing and producing the T-14 including setting up the production lines might well prohibit lge numbers of these tanks any time soon although one cabnnot rul out an eventual phasing out of T-72 models for either T-90 or possibly T-14

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2 hours ago, LUCASWILLEN05 said:

Some interesting thoughts on he Abrams engine issue here - although the military professionals here will probably know all of this  already B)  http://g2mil.com/abramsdiesel.htm

g2mil.com is Sparky's site. He's literally insane, for starters. Secondly, he isn't the most honest person out there. Thirdly, his actual military experience consists of never deploying to a warzone and being so nutty the Army Reserves or National Guard refused to promote him to Captain. Fourthly, he's also the guy who claims that Shermans and King Tigers are superior to the Abrams.

Point No. 1 is generally true, but he flat out lies in the specifics to strengthen his case. There was a study conducted by Marines of their own fuel use in OIF I (the initial invasion, lots of AFVs involved, including 130 Abrams) and found the share attributable to AFVs was modest, with the overwhelming number due to trucks everywhere and for every purpose imaginable. The MEF involved was more or less proportional (edging towards somewhat heavier, in terms of combat vehicle numbers) to the heavy divisions that Sparky describes (130 tanks, ~100 LAVs, 500 AAVs, etc.). Reasonable extrapolation would tell you that a switch to diesels wouldn't reduce by a full two-thirds the number of tankers required unless tanks were some ridiculous percentage of fuel use, like ninety percent, followed by doubling the fuel efficiency.

No. 2 is irrelevant since a tank's tracks show up just as readily on IR as the engine and even if they aren't visible for whatever reason (but the rear exhaust is?) modern IR sensors are quite capable of detecting any running engine out to their maximum range. Even the limited capability sets, as anyone who has ever worked with one can tell you. Which should point to just how limited Sparky's real life bonafides are...

No. 3 is just a straight lies, from top to bottom. You don't want to stand literally behind the exhaust of an Abrams, but there isn't a death ray coming out of the back and it definitely doesn't prevent people from riding on top.

640px-M1A1_desant.JPEGIt is worth noting this specific pic is from a patrol.

Additionally, there have been exhaust deflectors fielded since at least the nineties (here, go to page 103, but it is just a really simple design, locally made). There aren't many pictures of them for whatever reason, but I know units use them because I've seen them firsthand. Same goes for the tank/infantry phone, which has been fielded for well over a decade at this point. At any rate, there isn't anything magical about being on top of the tank that imparts heightened sensory perception. Troops arrayed around the tank work just as well at identifying and suppressing threats. Of all the AARs to come out of Fallujah that discuss tank-infantry coordination -- here are a few -- none of them describe the Abrams as being uniquely disadvantaged by not being able to have troops mounted up top. In fact, none of them say troops should be up there at all.

I can't speak to No. 4, but I strongly suspect is BS too, given his proclivities.

In short, it is a really, really bad source for information.

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5 hours ago, LUCASWILLEN05 said:

Some interesting thoughts on he Abrams engine issue here - although the military professionals here will probably know all of this  already B)  http://g2mil.com/abramsdiesel.htm

Nthing the "Sparky is an idiot" line of discussion.  Addendum to points:

1. It's worth keeping in mind that while the Abrams burns more fuel to do it, it does have a similar radius of action to other tanks thanks to larger fuel tanks.  Sparky's contention that the tanks halted in 1991 because of gas turbine fuel consumption would be wrong.  Diesel tanks would have had to have stopped to fuel too around the same time, they'd just have had a slightly longer fueling period (slightly.  It's not like it takes an hour to fuel a tank or something).

2. Utterly stupidly irrelevant. Any engine is going to glow pretty good, along with the tracks, and modern thermals will pick up the difference in heat raditating from different colors of camouflage.  

3. There's an infantry phone on the back of most Abrams now, and we used to stand in front of the exhaust pretty often on cold days or if we were wet.  Basically it's like a massive hair dryer in terms of comfort level.  Which is to say unless you're willing to characterize a hair dryer as  death ray, not exactly a valid point.  The reason not to ride the tank has more to do with the fact the only really safe place to ride on the Abrams is on top, and dismounting in a hurry from that high up in full battle rattle is risky in terms of causing injury. 

4. It is expensive.  So were the Bradley power packs, etc, etc, etc.  That said, of course the engine is going to account for a lot of the maintenance costs.  It's where most of the moving pieces are, high temperatures, etc, etc.  A tank might make it all the way to the scrap yard with most of the "Systems" original, but engines break and wear out.  Fact 'o life.  

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43 minutes ago, Mishrae said:

Not necessarily, Lucas may not have paid enough attention to realize Sparks is a raving hack lunatic  

Source bias based on preconceived notions.  If you are looking for sources to support your own preconceived notions rather than verifying if your notions are valid, it leads to interesting places. 

arguing with an experienced tanker over the merits of the engine in said tank is not a great idea, but it does lead to interesting posts from @panzersaurkrautwerfer So I guess I should say thank you?

thank you @LUCASWILLEN05

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1 minute ago, sburke said:

Source bias based on preconceived notions.  If you are looking for sources to support your own preconceived notions rather than verifying if your notions are valid, it leads to interesting places. 

arguing with an experienced tanker over the merits of the engine in said tank is not a great idea, but it does lead to interesting posts from @panzersaurkrautwerfer So I guess I should say thank you?

thank you @LUCASWILLEN05

Theirs always a silver lining :D

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3 minutes ago, sburke said:

Source bias based on preconceived notions.  If you are looking for sources to support your own preconceived notions rather than verifying if your notions are valid, it leads to interesting places. 

arguing with an experienced tanker over the merits of the engine in said tank is not a great idea, but it does lead to interesting posts from @panzersaurkrautwerfer So I guess I should say thank you?

thank you @LUCASWILLEN05

LOL, yeah and since said member has done this many many times I have the forum set to ignore him so I only read @panzersaurkrautwerfer's posts which were interesting. :D

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37 minutes ago, sburke said:

Source bias based on preconceived notions.  If you are looking for sources to support your own preconceived notions rather than verifying if your notions are valid, it leads to interesting places. 

arguing with an experienced tanker over the merits of the engine in said tank is not a great idea, but it does lead to interesting posts from @panzersaurkrautwerfer So I guess I should say thank you?

thank you @LUCASWILLEN05

True, It's a shame though because dying on a hill over "Abrams a ****" is one of the worst to die on

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As off the mark as Sparks is on a lot of things....   I think he has some good idea's in there.  If for some reason we ever wanted/needed tons of APC/IFV fast for cheap upgrading the m113 seems like it might work.  I also think the containerized force/ "battle-box" concept or whatever he calls it has some merit.  And while it seems unworkable in most cases, the idea of making an alternative road network during an occupation is at least an interesting idea. 

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