U.S. aerospace and defense company General Dynamics Corp has demonstrated 360-degree Active Protection System applicable for armored platforms from light 4×4 vehicles up to medium and heavy Armored Fighting Vehicles during the 2019 NDIA’s Armament Systems Forum.
The latest General Dynamics’ APS uses sensors, tracking radar, launchers and countermeasure munitions to defeat and/or deflect anti-tank guided missiles and rocket-propelled grenades away from combat vehicles. APS technology enhances force protection and survivability, especially when combined with a passive armor protection system.
The new systems, commonly known as the Iron Fist, developed in cooperation with Israeli defense company IMI Systems.
The modern Active Protection System provides 360-degree protection for close-range scenarios in both open terrain and urban environments. Through its two sensing techniques – a search-and-track radar and staring infrared sensor – the System offers robust and reliable threat detection, accurate trajectory prediction as well as short reaction time in all terrain environments. The revolutionary design of the Iron Fist Light Decoupled minimizes the dimensions of the APS while maintaining combat efficacy and force protection. The system’s SWaP facilitates rapid integration onto the full range of combat vehicles, and opens new possibilities to upgrade legacy platforms where size, weight and power constraints are a challenge.
- Protection against RPGs, and ATGMs and RRs
- Rapid reaction time for short range RPG engagement
- 360° coverage, high elevation angle
- Two independent sensing techniques (RF and IR)
- Operational in both open terrain and urban environments
- Situational Awareness based on 360° HD camera coverage
- Hostile fire detection (HFD) and small arms ammunition burst detection
Designed to protect soldiers and vehicles from anti-armor threats, the Iron Fist rapidly and reliably detects, tracks and neutralizes anti-tank rockets (i.e. RPG), anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs), kinetic energy and high explosive anti-tank(HEAT) rounds with two layers of active protection.
For optimal reliability, the system utilizes two independent sensing techniques: radio frequency (RF) and passive infra-red (IR). Upon a threat warning, a long-range soft kill electrooptical jammer engages the threat’s tracking and sensing behavior. If needed, a close-range hard kill interceptor physically destroys or deflects the threat a safe distance from the defended platform. The blast interceptor effectively destroys or deflects an incoming threat with minimal fragmentation, minimizing collateral damage or injury to nearby personnel.