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12 February 2016

The German Army's Guidelines for the Near Future

According to the German Army Concepts and Capabilities Development Centre (ACCDC), a paradigm change is foreseen in the future capabilities of the German Land Forces. ACCDC Chief of Staff Brig.Gen. Bernhard Liechtenauer presented the German Army's guidelines for the near future during International Armoured Vehicles 2016 (IAV 2016), 26 January, in London, UK.

These include the identification of legacy systems as dual capability systems; the adjustment of legacy systems; closing gaps for the probable mission; phasing-out of no longer suitable legacy systems; air mobility and air manoeuver capability; multinationality and interoperability; and aircraft systems capability.

Projects in the Army ISR domain include acoustic sensors (pictured was Microflown AVISA's Acoustic Vector Sensor [AVS] technology) and laser, SIGINT, and hyperspectral sensors; as well as the HUSAR medium range UAS, shown as a fixed wing artist conception. Projects in the effects domain presented were high energy lasers, where several German companies have been making strides (MBDA and Rheinmetall).

An interesting feature was the presentation of the Main Ground Combat System (MGCS) as a project in the effects domain. After more than half of a century, the LEOPARD 2 MBT in service is to be replaced from 2030 on by the MGCS, which is supposed to ensure duel capability, momentum capability and assertiveness capability including: Superior protection, reconnaissance (quick reaction), superior effectiveness, and tactical manoeuvrability.

According to the presentation, by 2025 the LEOPARD 2AX should have phased out(or modernised) the 2A7, which again should be technology-wise passed by the MGCS by 2035 the latest. This sees Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW - in its future position with Nexter), as the original LEOPARD maker, and Rheinmetall as possible contractors.

Projects in the support domain see protected transporter capabilities, as well as new AEVs, pictured being Rheinmetall's KODIAK.