GD-RAFAEL’s Reactive Armor Equips US Military
The USA’s M2/M3 Bradley Fighting Vehicles have played a central role in armed operations in Iraq. Many of them are now doing it with special reactive applique armor tiles that significantly improve their protection against anti-tank rockets. General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products Inc. in Burlington, VT is the main supplier, in conjunction with Israel’s RAFAEL who pioneered the design.
The add-on armor kit for the M2/M3 Bradleys, for instance, includes 105 tiles that look like small boxes and attach to the sides, the turret and the front of each vehicle. The armor is some of the most advanced in the world, and includes both passive protection of strong material that diverts the rocket, plus reactive protection. That reactive protection uses a very special, insensitive explosive that is detonated only when hit by a missile or rocket; it will not react to other heat sources, or lesser impacts from small arms or shell fragments. The resulting explosion disrupts the incoming armor-penetrating blast jet. That’s the theory, anyway. What have the results been like? Have improvements been made? What purchases have taken place, and when?
The Birth and Refinement of Reactive Armor
Reactive Armor and Future Threats
US Contract Awards: Bradley Reactive Armor
Other Contract Awards & Key Events
Additional Readings & Sources
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