WASHINGTON — The U.S. Army has chosen to move forward with the Iron Fist Light active protection system for its Bradley Fighting Vehicle, after evaluating the APS’ ability to be installed on the vehicle.
The Army will now install the system onto a number of Bradley vehicles for a second phase of more extensive testing and evaluation, according to a release from the industry team providing the system.
That team, made up of General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems and Israeli companies IMI Systems and Elbit Systems, are working to integrate and test the system, designed to protect the Bradley from threats like anti-tank missiles, rocket propelled grenades and other weapons.
Iron Fist It uses a variety of sensors and countermeasures to stop those threats before they reach the vehicle. They include a electro-optical “soft kill” jammer and a physical “hard kill” interceptor to stop threats from getting closer to the vehicles.
“We are excited to move into Phase II and bring the vast capabilities of our Active Protection System to the Bradley Fighting Vehicle. We look forward to continuing to partner with the Army on advancing this important technology as well as enhancing integration capabilities across multiple Army platforms” Steve Elgin, vice president and general manager of armament and platform systems for GD-OTS, said in a statement.
While the release announcing the progress in testing did not say what the next phase would look like, it could mirror the same process the Army has used to qualify and evaluate Rafael’s Trophy for the Abrams tank. More advanced tests will likely be against multiple types of threats in a simulated urban environment.
The decision can be seen as a vote of confidence in the system and could mean further fielding on a larger number of vehicles down the road.
Jeff Martin is the Associate Editor for Multimedia and the host & producer of Defense News Weekly, airing online and on American Forces Network worldwide. In his role as Associate Editor, he reports worldwide on the military and defense industry and leads a market-leading multimedia team.