Italian company Leonardo has successfully demonstrated new active protection system for combat vehicles

According to information released by the Italian company Leonardo, the company has successfully trialed a high-tech new Active Protection System (APS) approach for military vehicles such as tanks and armored personnel carriers. Called MIPS (Modular Integration Protection System), the new approach brings together layers of electronic and physical protection technologies to equip vehicle crews with a formidable defensive shield.
Follow Army Recognition on Google News at this link

Army Recognition Global Defense and Security news
Italian company Leonardo has developed a new APS Active Protection System for combat vehicles called MIPS Modular Integration Protection System. (Picture source Leonardo)

The new MIPS (Modular Integration Protection System) is developed in collaboration Abstract Solutions, CGI, Frazer-Nash, Lockheed Martin UK, RBSL, Roke and Ultra Electronics. to respond to the Icarus program of British armed forces.

In September 2017, the British Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) has placed a contract with Leonardo to improve the survivability and protection of Land Armoured Vehicles through Active Protection System (APS) technology. APS can detect and defeat threat missiles within 100 milliseconds, which is less time than half the time it takes a human to react to a visual cue.

As the performance and sophistication of modern battlefield weapon systems continues to improve, the vulnerability of Land Armoured Vehicles and their crew to these threats continues to increase. Dstl is conducting a proof of concept Technical Demonstrator Programme (TDP) to develop a Modular Integrated Protection System (MIPS). Under the Icarus TDP, Leonardo will lead a team of UK industry experts to develop an APS Electronic Architecture (EA) that is founded upon Modular Open System Architecture design principles.

The Leonardo team brings together a range of UK industry experts in their respective fields as well as representation from UK academia that can draw upon previous UK investments in related technical areas. Team members working to deliver the Icarus TDP are BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin UK, Ultra Electronics, Frazer-Nash, Vetronics Research Centre, Abstract Solutions, Roke Manor Research and SCISYS. Leonardo was chosen as the lead due, in part, to our experience in the field of ‘open-systems’ integration such as our instrumental role in the development of the UK’s Generic Vehicle Architecture (GVA) standard and the related NATO-GVA (N-GVA) standard.

One of the primary objectives of the team is to develop and demonstrate a UK sovereign Modular, Integrated Protection System (MIPS) Electronic Architecture (EA) that enables “best of breed” APS sensors and countermeasures to be selected, integrated and deployed across the Army’s fleet of land vehicles in order to defeat the wide range of battlefield weapon threats present in varying operational environments.

The demonstration of the developmental MIPS architecture was a key milestone of project Icarus, a Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) technology demonstrator program (TDP). DSTL launched the program in response to the increasing prevalence and rapidly evolving threat of battlefield weapon systems such as modern Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPGs) and Anti-Tank Guided Weapons (ATGWs).

During the trial, which took place at the MOD Shoeburyness range in Essex in July, representative weapons were fired from short range at MIPS. The developmental system integrated a combination of commercial off-the-shelf and surrogate sensors and countermeasures that were each adapted to integrate into MIPS. This trial provided a comprehensive test of the ability of the MIPS sense, control and reaction sequence to respond appropriately to threats within extremely short timeframes.

MIPS is based on open-systems and model-driven principles to form the basis of an architectural and infrastructure approach to ground vehicle protection that supports the modular integration, affordable acquisition & safe deployment of ‘best-of-breed’ sensors and countermeasures to deliver UK operational independence. This includes sensors and ‘soft’ protection systems that focus on early threat detection and attempt to disrupt, decoy or spoof the incoming threat and ‘hard’ countermeasure systems to intercept and physically defeat the incoming weapon system, known in military terminology as a ‘kinetic effect’.

The MIPS solution is specifically designed to enable the vehicle’s protection system to be rapidly tailored, evolved and certified to protect crew members as new threats emerge on the battlefield.

As well as establishing, demonstrating and testing the MIPS solution, a through-life capability roadmap and initial approach for acquisition have been produced to help inform UK MOD as it looks to establish a way forward to mature the MIPS capability and bring it into operational service.

Following the successful conclusion of the TDP as originally scoped, contract amendments have been placed to extend the program to explore the potential application of MIPS to deliver counter-drone and counter-ISTAR capability solutions. Through this additional work, the implications and modifications necessary with respect to the MIPS architecture, system model and draft MIPS Standard to enable this outcome will be established.