Colombian Army down to half of its APC fleet

by Erich Saumeth Cadavid

M-113A2 Colombian, with desert scheme and camouflage mesh. (Janes/Erich Saumeth Cadavid)

The Colombian Army has 28 operational M113A2 armoured personnel carriers (APCs), about half of what it operated 10 years ago, according to army documents viewed by Janes.

Food Machinery Corp – now part of BAE Systems – delivered up to 88 units of the A1 variant in 1977. This stock shrunk to 54 vehicles in service at the beginning of the last decade, and Dynamic Trading Solutions (DTS) upgraded the vehicles to the A2 variant.

The army supply was reduced to 40 and then 32 in recent years, according to army documents shared with Janes. In January 2022 that number was cut to 28 operational vehicles, which were serviced to extend their lifetime at a cost of USD2.9 million, a US-Colombian Army agreement revealed at the time.

The M113A2s, locally called Military Personal Transport-113 (TPM-113), are deployed within three areas: Mechanized Infantry Battalion No 6 with 77% of the available units; Mechanized Infantry Battalion No 5 with 14% of available units; and Army Infantry School for instruction work with 9% available, according to army documents.

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IDET 2023: Arquus and VTU team up to offer Czech special forces vehicle

by Nicholas Fiorenza

Arquus and VTU are offering the Light European Vehicle for a long-standing Czech special forces requirement. (Janes/Nicholas Fiorenza)

Arquus and the Czech Military Technical Institute (VTU) displayed the Light European Vehicle (LEV) at the International Defence and Security Technology Fair (IDET) held in Brno, Czech Republic, from 24 to 26 May.

Arquus and VTU representatives told Janes that 169 LEVs had been offered to the Czech Republic under a tender for vehicles for the 601st Special Forces Group.

The LEV is based on Arquus's Sabre special forces 4×4 vehicle, which can be crewed by up to five soldiers. The vehicle has an automatic transmission and a top speed of 110 km/h. It has a minimum payload of 2,000 kg and a combat weight of up to 9,500 kg. The LEV has a maximum length of 6,500 mm, a width of 2,300 mm, and a height of 2,600 mm, and can be transported by A400M and C-130 transport aircraft, as well as CH-47 helicopter.

It is armed with a 50 calibre machine gun and has weapon stations for up to five 7.62 mm machine guns.

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UK hosts inaugural AUKUS AI trial

by Olivia Savage

The Blue Bear Ghost fixed-wing UAV tested during the inaugural AUKUS AI and autonomy trial. (Crown Copyright)

The UK hosted the first AUKUS artificial intelligence (AI) and autonomy trial in April to promote synergies between Australian, UK, and US AI-enabled assets.

Held at Upavon in Wiltshire, the exercise involved collaboratively swarming the different AI platforms to detect and track military targets in real time in a representative environment, the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on 26 May.

The trial incorporated platforms such as the Challenger 2 and the Warrior armoured vehicle, the Viking unmanned ground vehicle (UGV), an FV433 Abbot self-propelled gun, and the Eastern Bloc BMP OT-90 armoured personnel carrier alongside unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) – Blue Bear Ghost and Insitu CT220.

Together, the teams developed joint machine learning (ML) models for the platforms that were subsequently modified “in flight” to incorporate new targets and adapt to changing mission scenarios – a world first. This data and the AI models were shared among the three partners, the MoD said.

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IDET 2023: Czech Republic receives first TITUS vehicles

by Nicholas Fiorenza

A TITUS 6×6 armoured vehicle was handed over to the ACR during a ceremony at IDET 2023 on 24 May. (Janes/Nicholas Fiorenza)

The Tactical Infantry Transport and Utility System (TITUS) 6×6 armoured vehicle was handed over to the Army of the Czech Republic (ACR) on the first day of the International Defence and Security Technology Fair (IDET) 2023 held in Brno, Czech Republic, on 24–26 May 2023. The vehicle was one of five TITUS artillery fire support co-ordination posts delivered earlier in May, according to a 23 May Nexter press release on its participation in IDET.

The Czech Republic ordered 62 TITUS vehicles in 2019 – 42 command staff and liaison vehicles and 20 artillery fire support co-ordination posts. The command staff and liaison version can be used as a signals vehicle. Most of the vehicles will go to the ACR's 4th Brigade Task Force and 7th Brigade Task Force, the latter of which has been designated as a heavy brigade committed to NATO.

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The Colombian Army has 28 operational M113A2 armoured personnel carriers (APCs), about half of what ...

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