India’s Future MBT To Be More Lethal: DRDO Chief
India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has planned to equip its future MBT tanks with a 125 mm gun, third-generation anti-tank guided weapon (ATGW) and an air-defense machine gun.
Speaking at the International Armoured Vehicles 2017 conference in London, Dr U. Solomon of the DRDO’s Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (CVRDE) also highlighted the plan of the main gun having the capacity to fire guided munitions. The munitions are likely to be either Israel Aerospace Industries’ Laser Homing Attack or Laser Homing Anti-Tan (LAHAT) missile.
Other ammunition will include programmable airburst munitions and amour-piercing, fin-stabilized discarding sabot (APFSDS) natures, IHS Jane’s 360 reported Monday.
The new MBT is intended to replace the Indian Army’s fleet of T-72M1 ‘Ajeya’ MBTs and are scheduled to enter service from early 2020s.
The turret design will be unmanned, with the three-person crew seated in suspended seats below the turret – a configuration that is intended to enhance protection against underbelly blasts from mines or improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
The Bharat power pack – set to replace the existing power packs of the Arjun Mk I and Mk II MBTs, as well as power the future MBT – is identified as a 2,200 kg unit powered by DHPP-A fuel. This is intended to operate at altitudes of up to 16,400 ft and temperatures as low as -20° Celsius.
This requirement is for Indian Army’s need to operate in mountainous areas, particularly when deployed along India’s border with Pakistan.
A dynamic track tension adjuster will also enable the MBT to maintain ground traction when crossing obstacles and soft or rough terrain.