TenCate Advanced Armour: developments in 2013
The major part of the TenCate Advanced Armour results for the first nine months of 2013 can be seen against a backdrop of cutbacks in defence budgets. This had appreciable consequences mainly for vehicle projects, some of which were deferred or withdrawn, while others were spread over a number of years.
In the United States there was evidence of recovery and revenue growth in the first half of the year, particularly in personal protection. In Europe revenues declined, mainly as a result of delays in deliveries to Eurocopter. These deliveries will, however, now be completed in the last part of the year. Nevertheless, the Advanced Armour group continues to be involved in a number of vehicle and aerospace projects, the fruit of many years of investment in key customers.
Manufacturing in Vissenbjerg (Denmark)
Within the Defenture consortium TenCate Advanced Armour will supply all the antiballistic panels for fifty new vehicles for the Commando Corps as from 2014. This relates to Air Transportable Tactical Vehicles for the Chinook, a helicopter for the transport of personnel and materiel. In comparison with current SUVs, these special forces vehicles have better road holding capability and greater load capacity. There is a possibility of follow-up orders being placed. The site in Primarette (France) has supplied 50 armour sets based in part on ceramic for the CAESAR (CAmion Equipé d'un Système d'ARtillerie) from Nexter. This is a truck fitted with artillery, for which ready-to-install kits have already been delivered.
In mid-2013 Lockheed Martin opted for improved LAST® lightweight composite armour for the protection of aircraft of the type AC-130J (Super Hercules). TenCate Advanced Armor USA has played a part in the development of this armour by QinetiQ. LAST® armour can be installed in a range of aircraft and helicopters.
Aerotron Brazil selected TenCate Advanced Armour as a partner for the design of ballistic protection for aircraft of the type Embraer KC-390. This is a medium size, twin-engined military transport aircraft, which is being developed by the Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer. According to Embraer, the potential market for the KC-390 is approximately 700 aircraft. So far six countries have signed letters of intent for sixty aircraft.
Meanwhile a large number of countries and OEMs have shown interest in the TenCate ABDS™ active blast countermeasure system. This is the first active protection system for vehicles in the world against exploding mines. In combination with passive armour this system protects the structure of the vehicle. TenCate Advanced Armor USA has unveiled at the AUSA Conference this underbody blast mitigation system. Third party tests confirm that the TenCate ABDS™ active blast countermeasure system can dramatically mitigate the deadly impulse energy effects of an IED blast.
The team from TenCate Advanced Armour in Singapore has signed a three-year contract with a shipbuilder established there for ballistic protection for the crew and mission-critical equipment on a number of ocean-going vessels. TenCate will design, develop and build the lightweight protection, the ultimate aim of which is to increase the survivability of the crew on board these ships, without comprising on speed or performance. The end-user is based in the Middle East. TenCate Advanced Armour in this way will strengthen its position in the maritime markets in this region. Substantial growth is occurring here, with orders having been received for a range of armour solutions including those for patrol vessels, crew vessels, landing craft and rigid-hull inflatable boats.
Within the CTruk GLB consortium, TenCate Advanced Armour supplied the ballistic protection for the twin-hulled offshore raider (THOR). This fast, armoured vessel can be deployed for transport to and from drilling platforms and for patrol tasks. Thanks to the effective cooperation, the consortium was able to rapidly develop and deliver this protection. The lightweight composite structure provides THOR with excellent fuel efficiency and savings on operational costs.
In France a new generation of lightweight ballistic inserts was introduced. These offer protection against the effects of the Kalashnikov, one of the most common firearm threats. This new TenCate Multi-light™ ballistic solution offers army and police unprecedented protection, wearer comfort and mobility. The inserts are 750 cm2 in size, less than 15 mm thick and weigh less than a kilo. This constitutes a difference in weight of 20% compared with existing inserts. This considerable reduction is the result of an adapted TenCate process technology and a balanced combination of raw materials.
The site in Newark launched a new line for personal protection, which includes soft body armour materials and models and hard body armour panels. This line of protection equipment offers army and police higher levels of protection than what is currently available on the market.