Annex E. International Armaments Strategy
Army Science and Technology Master Plan (ASTMP 1997)

R. Ground Vehicles

Objectives for this technology area include advances in diesel propulsion (See E-II.B for discussion of advances in gas turbine propulsion), better track and suspension to increase cross-country mobility, and improvements in survivability through improved ballistic protection and reduced observables, including use of electric drive. Table E.II-17 summarizes capabilities and opportunities in each technical subarea.

Table II.E-17. Ground Vehicles

SYSTEMS INTEGRATION EC Nations have capabilities in various areas IS RPV's Teleoperation
SW Armored vehicles
VEHICLE CHASSIS AND TURRET Structure and design Israel
China ROK
INTEGRATED SURVIVABILITY Vehicle survivability Israel Sweden     Russia Bulk ceramics
MOBILITY Gas turbine Secondary batteries Autonomous control; diesel engines electric drive Austria Diesel engines Ceramic engine; Electric drive   Russia Electric drive components; batteries, switches
INTRAVEHICULAR ELECTRONICS SUITE Multisensor integration Integrated electronics and optronics        

Advances in ground vehicle system integration and chassis and turret design are likely to be found among traditional developers and manufactures of military armored systems. The UK, France, Germany, Israel, Japan, and Russia manufacture or have development programs for main battle tanks. Japan and Germany, with the US are leaders in automotive propulsion, with both having significant capabilities in functionally gradient coatings, with Germany a world leader in air-cooled diesel propulsion.

Integrated survivability involves a suite of capabilities ranging from detection avoidance to ballistic protection. Again, niche capabilities may be found in countries that develop and manufacture armored systems. Highlights of note include German capabilities in integrated CB defense, and Russian developments of bulk ceramics with potential applications to ballistic protection.

Primary interest in electric drive is found in major automobile producing and exporting countries (specifically, the US, Japan, and Germany) driven primarily by growing restrictions on exhaust emissions. In electric drive Japan is world leader in virtually all aspects, with strength in batteries, fuel cells, power control and switching components. France is strong in batteries, and Russia has strengths in certain types of rechargeable batteries and in power switching components. Germany is a world leader in autonavigation and autonomously-driven vehicle technology; Japan also has a strong research program in this area, and in remote control. Finally, Israel's experience in the tactical use of RPVs and UAVs may contribute to advances in teleoperation of ground vehicles.

The following subsections identify specific opportunities where existing or near-term pending agreements offer significant potential benefits.