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AUSA Global Force: Leonardo DRS Highlights Next-Gen Combat Vehicle Technology

Leonardo DRS Range of Capabilities for Optionally-Manned & Robotic Vehicles

Leonardo DRS showcases the company’s range of defensive protection, weapon and EO/IR systems that will be available for the Next Generation Combat Vehicle (NGCV). 

The Vehicle Protection Systems is a new ground-breaking defensive technology for smaller combat vehicles that automatically detects and neutralise incoming threat projectiles before they reach a target. “The system is 40% lighter than the previous systems, with enhanced power management and is just as effective in protecting a vehicle as the original TROPHY system,” the company states.

Leonardo DRS and Rafael are qualifying the lighter-weight and equally-effective VPS in live-fire tests with US military officials observing. Tests have shown that TROPHY VPS has the ability to protect vehicles against the full range of direct fire, anti-armor rocket and missile threats.

Built into the TROPHY VPS are protection technologies that add further layers of security for the vehicle and crew and are provided by Leonardo DRS. A combination of threat signature data, assessing EO/IR sensors and programed algorithms, the technology gives users the ability to quickly identify the location of hostile fire and conduct a counterattack to reduce the threats on the vehicle.

The Leonardo DRS technology that gives the ability to detect enemy weapons prior to a hostile fire event can be incorporated into TROPHY VPS. With advanced radars and processors targets are identified through the weapon bore or optical sites. The technology can sense a host of hostile weapons hidden in complex urban landscapes to open fields.

Aircraft-based defensive protection systems developed to counter exponentially growing heat-seeking anti-aircraft missile threats can also be effective on new platforms like the NGCV. A combination of electro-optical and laser-based systems being tested are showing a great deal of promise for improving survivability for vehicle crews when threatened by these missiles.

As the US military develops the NGCV fleet in the coming years it will require anti-heat-seeking missile technology. While the vehicle platforms will become increasingly sophisticated, older and improved missile technology will still be a threat. These laser-based high-tech tools are available now to upgrade the current fleets as well as to incorporate these new protection technologies into future platforms. The modernisation of US military ground forces has called for giving troops the most state-of-the-art vehicle-based EO/IR technologies available that can see long distances and through the most difficult environmental conditions. 

For the robotic variant of the NGCV, Leonardo DRS’ parent company, Leonardo has developed powerful 120mm/.45 caliber low-recoil force cannon. With its light weight and the low-recoil force of the gun, it provides the fire power of a main battle tank with great accuracy, without impairing the tactical and strategic characteristics of mobility of the vehicle it is mounted on.

The Mounted Family of Computers Systems II (MFoCS II) is the vehicle-based computer hardware that supports the Army’s Joint Battle Command – Platform (JBC-P) and features critical system capability upgrades, cybersecurity improvements, and multi-touch displays. In addition, there are significant performance enhancements of the platform computing server used for tactical situational awareness and global “Blue Force Tracking” and In-Transit Visibility logistics tracking.


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