Dispatches from Afghanistan: Armored vs. Blast Resistant
Canadian military think tank CASR notes that:
“On 26 September 2006, a suicide bomber attacked a Canadian convoy 2km from Kandahar Airfield. The bomber detonated a explosives-laden minivan while trying to ram an RG-31 Nyala Armoured Patrol Vehicle. The result differed dramatically from earlier attacks on armoured [Mercedes] G-wagons. Instead of charred wreckage, the blast- resistant [BAE Systems OMC] Nyala limped home with little damage. Instead of wounded or dead, no-one was injured inside the APV.”
See the full CP article describing this situation (only available here thanks to a canoe.ca technical glitch), and note the Canadian troops’ contrasting lack of confidence in their up-armored Mercedes G-Wagens; DID has covered both this specific problem, and the larger global trend of which it’s a part.
CASR’s “Blast-Resistant Vehicles For Beginners” offers contrasting pictures from Afghanistan and explains the basics re: how to make vehicles mine-resistant… something that isn’t the same as up-armoring them. See also Part 2: Tracing the Origins | Part 3: Tweaking the APV | Part 4: The Hybrids | Part 5: Applique or ‘Add-on’ Armour and the Case for Blast-Resistant Support.
In addition to V-hull designs like BAE OMC’s RG-31 Nyala featured in this story, Force Protection’s Cougar, ADI’s Bushmaster, et. al., DID has also covered alternative/additional options like the KMW Dingo 2′s composite blast pan, the Iveco Panther CLV’s collapsible layered approach, et. al. It’s a topic that looms large as the USA considers what will come next after contracts for its Hummers, FMTV medium trucks, and HEMTT heavy trucks end during the FY 2007-2008 time frame.