Mane Aerospace October 2018 - Page 12

The Challenger 2 is well established as Great Britain’s army tank of choice. It succeeded the popular Challenger 1 in 1998 and this year marks 20 years it has been in service.

One question that comes up with a 20-year-old tank is whether or not it is as superior now as it was back then. The Challenger 2 made so much technological and mechanical strides from the Challenger 1, that only 5% of the parts from the Challenger 2 can be interchanged with the Challenger 1.

Technology has advanced a lot, but the Challenger 2 has held up well and with constant technological advancements are able to add things on to extend its life. It is expected to be in service for another 17 years, taking it through to 2035, courtesy of the British Army’s LEP (Life Extension Programme).

There are 2 major suppliers are bidding to win the rights to go with their framework and designs for Mark 2 of the existing Challenger 2. The process is already underway with a decision expected on the developments and advancements on the tank by mid-2019.

One of the suppliers has listed a few of the technological changes they wish to implement on the updated model. These include a new thermal imaging system for acquiring targets better at night, better sensors, improved weapons control systems and crewstations.

This isn’t all of the changes as there are plenty of technological advances in order modernize this iconic British Military machine.

Improved control panels with the very

12 | MANE AEROSPACE, DEFENCE & SPACE | OCTOBER 2018

Challenger 2: Modernising an Iconic British Military Vehicle