MRAP Armor Update:

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This was passed along to me from a source on the EFP retro-armoring for MRAPs currently in Iraq. Looks as if we have some fidelity on the numbers (and this is also posted in the comments section of the previous post, but for the benefit of those that don't readily dive into pots of boiling oil, I cross-post it here).

From MSNBC:

Meanwhile, at Camp Arifjahn in Kuwait, the military is reinforcing some of the blast-resistant vehicles with additional side armor and it shipped as many as 20 of the newly upgraded vehicles to the battlefront in April. An additional 30 are to go into Iraq beginning this month.

Navy Lt. Cmdr. James Hadley, who is overseeing the upgrades in Kuwait, said not every MRAP is getting the additional armor, which increases the vehicle's weight by as much as 5,000 pounds. The extra protection, he said, is being added to vehicles destined for hot battleground areas.

The additional armor is shipped in kits to Kuwait and installed on the MRAPs, which only recently arrived at a facility dedicated to outfitting the vehicles with antennas and equipment before being sent to troops.

An extra 5,000 pounds added to a vehicle that already weighs in at 19 tons in some cases? Ouch.

An our source tells me...

EFP protection is included as standard equipment on all improved MRAP I vehicles built as a result of the MRAP awards announced 18 Dec 2007.

Additional improved MRAP I production contracts issued after that date include the same EFP protection requirement. For example, the BAE-TVS Caiman had a further award of 1024 trucks added after that Dec 16, 2007 award.

Delivery requirements for additional armor kits for earlier fielded MRAP vehicles were added at roughly the same time.

The Army and USMC are both getting deliveries of improved MRAP I vehicles between May 2008 and Dec 2008 per the contracts I mentioned. The same applies to EFP protection upgrades for fielded MRAP vehicles.

Now we're all spooled up. Thanks to readers and other sources for the gouge.

-- Christian

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