Active Protection for our Armed Forces

Posted On: 5th July 2016

The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) has placed a £7.6 million contract with QinetiQ to evaluate an Active Protection System (APS) for armoured vehicles. Government Opportunities

QinetiQ will work with a number of sub-contractors, including Airbus Defence and Space who are contracted to deliver, for evaluation, a number of systems based on the MUSS® self-protection systems. The technical assessments will quantify how well the system performs against a range of weapon systems, and will also include a BAE Systems appliqué integration of a MUSS® system onto a Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank to demonstrate potential future capability.

The MEDUSA Technical Assessment Programme (TAP) is a key part of on-going Dstl research into APS, alongside a complementary effort to develop the open architecture to support a future modular capability.

Dstl has been investigating APS for a number of years, and considers them an important part of a future survivability capability for keeping pace with new threats. A holistic view of survivability is required, drawing upon a range of technologies, which address all aspects from prevention of target detection to mitigation of potentially lethal effects. Active Protection defeats threats before they strike a vehicle, by sensing them and providing a ‘soft’ response (based on jamming or obscuration of the guidance mechanism) or ‘hard’ response (based on physical interception).

Dstl’s Heather Elsley says it could provide game-changing improvements for our Armed Forces:

“These systems have the potential to improve the survivability and situational awareness, with an ability to minimise the weight growth that could impede the mobility of vehicles. This project is the first step on this path for Land Platforms – our ultimate aim is to provide a fully integrated, modular and layered system that can detect, track and defeat a wide range of threats, whilst assisting the vehicle crew by providing situational awareness and target cueing.”

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