Ripsaw (vehicle)

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Ripsaw
Flickr - The U.S. Army - Robotics rodeo.jpg
Type Light tank
Place of origin  United States
Service history
Used by United States Army
Production history
Designer Howe & Howe Technologies
Manufacturer Howe & Howe Technologies
Unit cost 250,000
Produced 2009-present
Variants MS1 (unmanned), MS2 (driver optional)
Specifications
Weight 9,000 lbs
Height 70 in

Armor None (aluminum frame)
Engine 6.6 duramax diesel
750 hp
Power/weight 1000 ft/lbs
Payload capacity 2,000 lbs.
Suspension 16 in. Travel
Ground clearance 24 in
Speed 65 mph

The Ripsaw is a developmental unmanned light tank designed and built by Howe & Howe Technologies for evaluation by the United States Army.[1]

The Howe brothers started the Ripsaw as a small family project in 2000. They introduced it at a Dallas vehicle show in 2001, where it caught the interest of the U.S. Army. Later that year the U.S. Military ordered a prototype MS-1 to be made and shipped to Iraq.[citation needed]

The Ripsaw is intended to perform various missions including convoy protection, perimeter defense, surveillance, rescue, border patrol, crowd control, and explosive ordnance disposal. For perimeter defense or crowd control, a belt of M5 Modular Crowd Control Munitions (MCCM) can be mounted around the vehicle to break up crowds or non-lethally engage personnel with flash-bang effects and rubber bullets. Cameras provide 360-degree coverage for situational awareness for the operator.[2][3]

The Army has tested the Ripsaw while remote-controlled by a soldier in another armored vehicle up to 1 km (0.62 mi) away. Its weapon system is modified to fire remotely using the Advanced Remote Armament System (ARAS), a gun that self-loads its own ammunition and can swap out various types of ammunition, such as lethal and non-lethal, in just a few seconds. These capabilities allow manned vehicles to send the Ripsaw out in front of them and engage targets without exposing soldiers to threats.[4] As of March 2017, the Army is still testing the vehicle as an unmanned platform to test remote weapons stations.[5]

Variants[edit]

  • Ripsaw UGV (non-militarized) prototype could accelerate to 65 mph in about 3.5 seconds, since it was lighter, but it wasn’t as strong/rugged.
  • Ripsaw MS1 tactical UGV utilizes a powerful oversized and customized 650-horsepower Duramax 6.6L V8 diesel engine that delivers 900 ft-lbs (~ 1,220 Nm) of torque.[6] The Ripsaw MS1 was a test platform made to test off-road capabilities. It was exclusively unmanned, cost $200,000 and could accelerate from 0-65 mph in 3 seconds.[2][3]
  • Ripsaw MS2 UGV is made to be larger, faster, and more modular than the MS1. It weighs 4.5 tons and can carry a one-ton payload. The lightweight tubular chassis design is powered by a 6.6 liter duramax diesel engine generating 600 hp and 1000 ft/lb of torque. Fully loaded, the MS2 can accelerate from 0-50 mph in 5.5 seconds and has a top speed of 60 mph. The vehicle can traverse 50 degree gradients and 45 degree slopes. It can be optionally manned or tele-operated from a nearby command vehicle. Armament can include an M240 machine gun or M2 .50-caliber machine gun, and it has been tested with the Javelin missile. If the Ripsaw is damaged or destroyed, parts can be "cannibalized" in the field and re-assembled quickly. An MS2 vehicle costs $750,000.[2][3]
  • Ripsaw MS3 UGV is being tested by RDECOM under the Remote Armed Maneuver Platform (RAMP) initiative to integrate the M153 CROWS remote weapon system onto an unmanned vehicle.[7] RAMP was demonstrated at Fort Benning, Georgia in October 2013 as part of the Army's Armed Unmanned Ground Vehicle (AUGV) program.[8]
  • Ripsaw EV2 is a luxury version, with a fully enclosed body and two seats inside the cab. It can exceed speeds of over 60 mph and has a range of approximately 300 miles. It is currently unknown if the EV2 can mount remotely-operated weapon systems or not. This model is designed for the civilian market but still costs over $1,000,000 with customisable features.[9]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Teel, Roger A.. "Ripsaw demonstrates capabilities at APG." The United States Army Homepage. N.p., 16 July 2010. Web. 4 Aug. 2010. <http://www.army.mil/-news/2010/07/16/42405-ripsaw-demonstrates-capabilities-at-apg/>.
  2. ^ a b c Weaponized RipSaw-MS2 UGV Evaluated for Convoy Security & Support - Defense-Update.com, 14 December 2009
  3. ^ a b c A 9,000-Pound Tank That’s Faster Than a Ferrari - Industrytap.com, 25 September 2013
  4. ^ Ripsaw could lead Soldiers into battle someday - Army.mil, 6 May 2015
  5. ^ Army Still Testing Ripsaw, the ‘Luxury Super Tank’ - Defensetech.org, 21 March 2017
  6. ^ "Ripsaw." Howe & Howe Technologies. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 Aug. 2010. <http://www.howeandhowetechnologies.com/ripsaw.php>.
  7. ^ Remote Armed Maneuver Platform
  8. ^ UGV models face off over firepower, load carrying - Armytimes.com, 12 October 2013
  9. ^ "Howe and Howe unveils Ripsaw EV-2 "luxury tank"". gizmag.com. May 26, 2015.