Stryker LAV III LSPH
Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Also Known As: T7 105mm SP Howitzer
Origin: United States of America
Denel Land Systems, General Dynamics and Rheinmetall Defence
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Description: The Stryker vehicle is the result of lessons learned by the US Army during the Gulf War in 1991. Current light divisions are deployable but they can not stand up armored forces. On the other hand, current heavy divisions equipped with Abrams and Bradley tanks can defeat any armored forces but they need months to be deployed (the US Army requested 6 months to build up the heavy forces that defeated Saddam Hussein). The Stryker meets both requirements deployability/mobility, and lethality/survivability. The US Army original plans were to procure up to 2,131 Stryker vehicles to equip six Interim Brigades Combat Teams (IBCT) through 2008. The estimated cost of the Stryker, originally named Interim Armored Vehicle (IAV), program was $4 billion. Each Interim Brigade will feature more than 300 Stryker vehicles and the first one (3rd brigade, 2nd infantry division) will achieve operational capability in 2003. Finally the US Army procured more than 4,000 Stryker vehicles.
The Stryker armored vehicle weighs no more than 38,000 pounds, can be airlifted by a single C-130 aircraft, and has enough armor to stop small arms fire. There are 10 variants of the Stryker vehicle: Infantry Carrier Vehicle, Mobile Gun System, Anti-Tank Guided Missile Vehicle, Reconnaissance Vehicle, Fire Support Vehicle, Engineer Squad Vehicle, Mortar Carrier Vehicle, Commander's Vehicle, Medical Evacuation Vehicle, and the NBC Reconnaissance Vehicle. Each vehicle provides all around 14.5mm integral protection, RPG-protection through add-on armor, overhead 152mm HE airburst and NBC protection, as well as individual crew respirators and reduced thermal and acoustic signatures.
The Stryker LAV III Light Self-Propelled Howitzer (LSPH) is a joint project between General Dynamics, Denel Land Systems (DLS) and Rheinmetall Defence combining the Stryker armored chassis with the T7 turret. The T7 turret developed by DLS is fitted with a 105mm artillery gun along with 36 projectiles and charges provided by Rheinmetall Denel Munitions. The General Dynamics' Stryker armored vehicle remains air transportable by C-130 sized aircraft even with the T7 turret. The turret weighs 3,750 kg with both automatic and manual loading while the whole system with 36 projectiles and charges weighs 18,200 kg. The resulting artillery system can hit targets at ranges from 6 to 30 kilometers utilizing a 105mm 58-caliber gun while delivering an error below 0.3% (18-90 meters). The LSPH only requires a crew of three: driver, commander/gunner and loader. The Stryker LAV III Light Self-Propelled Howitzer underwent testing in South Africa at the Alkantpan testing range in the Northern Cape in the Summer of 2011.
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