South Africa’s Denel Vehicle Systems has developed, using internal research and development funding, a new version of its RG31 Mk5 4×4 mine protected vehicle as a mobile gun platform called the Ibululu.
The baseline RG31 is typically used as an armoured personnel carrier (APC) with the troop compartment extending to the rear.
On the rear of the Ibululu, however, is the Denel Vehicle Systems Tactical Remote Turret 30 (TRT-30), which in this configuration is armed with the Russian 30 mm 2A42 dual-feed cannon and a 7.62 mm co-axial machine gun (MG). These weapons are laid onto the target by the gunner seated in the protected cab using a flat-screen man machine interface (MMI) and twin control handles.
TRT-30 traverse is powered through a full 360°, with weapon elevation from -15 to +55 degrees at a speed of 55° per second. The actual depression can depend on the platform it is fitted to, as this may be limited by hull top obstructions. If required, prohibited zones can be programmed into the system so that any obstructions, for example on the roof of the platform, can be avoided.
An automatic target tracker (ATT) is fitted for increased accuracy while the platform is moving. The sighting system consists of a stabilised day camera with a continuous zoom from 2.5 to 22.5°, a thermal camera with similar capabilities, and an eye-safe laser rangefinder. The latter has a maximum range of 10 km (6 mi).
Denel Vehicle Systems said the Ibululu platform has a gross-vehicle weight (GVW) of 14,500 kg (16 tons), of which 2,000 kg is payload.
Its front-mounted protected power pack is a Cummins QSB diesel developing 205 kW, coupled to an Allison 3000 SP fully automatic five-speed transmission and Axle Tech BT600R transfer box.
Maximum road speed is quoted as 100 km/h (62 mph) and the Axle Tech 4000 (5G) suspension enables cross-country mobility.
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