Tankita - small heavy armor
thought that a compact, well armoured, two or three man vehicle might have lots
of uses. To quote some of my old notes:-
My favourite idea to construct
a Tankita is to recreate the M114 (left)
or T114 (right), which had one less roadwheel than a M113 and no infantry
accommodation. The Lynx "M113
and a half" was a similar but superior vehicle used by the Dutch
The increased power to weight ratio that this configuration would give could
be used to carry higher levels of armour
and modern weapons. A lower hull and sloped sides, rear and glacis would
also increase protection.
The vehicle will probably mount a 25 or 30mm light cannon and a co-axial machine gun. An alternative system worth exploring is a variable rate .50 calibre gatling mini-gun with a large supply of on board ammo. Other options include Mk-19s, OCSW and 60mm Gun-mortars. This turret armament will be supplemented by pylons for rocket pods or missile tubes mounted on either the turret or hull sides. A typical vehicle can therefore attack with ATGWs, Missile launcher rockets, Stingers, FFAR salvos and machinegun and cannon fire. The South African 76mm high velocity tank gun may arm some tankitas, producing a vehicle similar to the M24 Chaffee or Scorpion light tanks
Alternately, the vehicle may be of an assault gun
configuration, resembling the SU-76i
or Hetzer. We'll
term this variant the Tankita Support Gun System (TSGS). Such a gun may also
have anti-aircraft applications. There would be various ways to
use Tankitas and more than one form may be created. A variant based on the
Wiesel hull is proposed later.
The Tankita is not a Main Battle Tank, it's what the name says, "a little tank." Think of it as an enhanced Scorpion/Scimitar based on M113/4 hull. -it is a Cavalry Fighting Vehicle, lighter and more versitile than the M3 but better protected than the M113 and BV-206S. The webpages linked to in the Reference section show the range of turret systems that other nations have managed to fit to M113 hulls -weapons of up to 90mm. All that is needed is a lower, better protected hull. The Tankita and Assault Gun-mortar are the final two pieces that the M8, M113, BV-206S force needs. I can see a Mechanised Infantry (or Armoured) Battalion having a platoon of Assault Gun-Mortars in the support company and a Close Reconnaissance platoon of Tankitas.
Special Tactical Operations Assault Tankita. (STOAT)
The M50 Ontos was an
interesting vehicle that mounted six 106mm Recoilless rifles on a very compact
An interesting feature of the vehicle is the rear hatch that allows the weapons to be reloaded without exposing the crew to fire from the front. The doors provide additional protection. http://ontos.homestead.com/draw.html The Ontos became obsolete with the greater use of ATGWs. I don't know if an Ontos ever killed a tank, but some did see combat as highly effective fire support vehicles. In the near future we are likely to see an important requirement for decisive attacks against strategic or political targets by small forces that can be inserted long distances. A similar vehicle to the Ontos might be useful in such a SOF support mission. A modern version might be based on the Wiesel series of vehicles (below) and would be capable of being inserted by helicopter, airdrop or GPADS.
In addition to the 106mm RRs, the vehicle would also mount a .50 HMG and a 40mm Mk-19 AGL. 30mm ASP cannon or the OCSW are other alternatives. Fire and Forget ATGW such as Javelin may also be mounted on the Stoat. These vehicles would also be modified to minimise their audio signature. A Hybrid diesel-electric propulsion (Article) system would be useful.
A typical SOF force might consist of a "stealth" team and a "stoat" team. The stealth team has an All-terrain Bike mounted squad armed with AMRs, Guided Missiles and Extended Range 60mm mortars. As a support/reserve element would be a pair of "Stoats", which will position themselves in a camouflaged position and deploy if needed. This is the "Plan B" or "Ground Spectre" that Mike Sparks proposes at http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/5265/squad.htm
Phil West Phil.firstname.lastname@example.org
Ed. Phil has many other future weapon ideas on his "Scrapboard".