USMC upgrades light armoured vehicles with rocket launchers


The US Marine Corps' (USMC) first two light-armoured vehicle anti-tank modernisation (LAV-ATM) A2 models have been integrated with the latest and advanced rocket launcher.

US Army Tank Automotive Command LAV line logistician Chuck Zuhlke said that the new modified target acquisition system (MTAS) turret represents a vast improvement for the LAV-ATM's tank-killing capabilities.

Zuhlke said: “The Marines are excited about getting the new capabilities of the MTAS turret.

“One of the advantages of the MTAS is that it is always in the up position. They can scan on the move, they can track on the move, and when they stop they’re instantly ready to fire.

“The previous weapons system Emerson 901 (aka Hammerhead) turret would have to be stowed when the LAV was on the move. When they stopped they would have to raise the turret and then they could scan and engage the target.”

"The Marines are excited about getting the new capabilities of the MTAS turret; one of the advantages of the MTAS is that it is always in the up position."

Emerson 901 turret units had been installed on the LAV-AT line since the vehicle was first rolled out in 1983, and the USMC noted that it had become necessary to replace the approximately 30-year-old turret system with the latest launcher.

The MTAS system began development in 2012 with the aim of being launched in the field this year.

Zuhlke added: “These are the first two vehicles to come off the line at production plant Barstow with the MTAS. Production plant Albany will also start inducting these vehicles and incorporating the turrets.”

Final testing of the MTAS turret is almost complete, and the upgraded system is expected to be rolled out for deployment on the Marine units in the near future.