UK assessing Rafael's Trophy as potential active protection system for new Challenger 3 tank

The pioneering technology is being assessed as part of a program for the modernization of the British Army. The world's only combat-proven active protection system, made by Rafael, has already been deployed by the IDF and the U.S. Army 

The Challenger 3. Photo: RBSL

Israel's Rafael Advanced Defense Systems announced Thursday that its Trophy active protection system (APS) for armored vehicles has been selected by the UK Ministry of Defence for the next phase of detailed assessment and integration with the British Army's new Challenger 3 main battle tank.

The selection is a result of a study conducted by the ministry as part of an upgrade program led by prime contractor Rheinmetall BAE Systems Land (RBSL), which will entail detailed integration and system trials of this lighter Trophy variant, the Trophy MV, to fit the particular requirements of the vehicle, Rafael said.  

Developed by Rafael in response to successful anti-armor attacks, the Trophy APS provides combat-proven protection against rocket and missile threats and simultaneously locates the origin of the hostile fire so the crew can immediately respond. Trophy, the only fully-integrated, combat-proven APS in the world, has been installed on IDF Merkava tanks since 2010 and has also been installed on IDF Namer APCs. The system has also been supplied to four US Army Abrams tank brigades, and will soon be supplied to Germany for its Leopard tanks, according to the company. 

Trophy has made numerous combat interceptions with no injuries to crews or dismounted troops or damage to platforms since its first operational interception in 2011. The APS has accumulated over 1,000,000 operating hours, including 5,400 successful field tests, and contracts have been signed for serial production of over 1,800 systems, said Rafael. 

David Farmer, Team Leader for the Challenger 3 delivery team at Defence, Equipment & Support, the procurement arm of the UK Defence Ministry, said "I am delighted to welcome Rafael to our cohort of industry delivery partners who are working together to bring Challenger 3 to life. This is a significant programme for Defence, and the British Army and represents a huge shift in the modernisation of our land forces. The pioneering new technology that we are planning to use will allow us to deliver an immense warfighting capability."

Brig. Gen (Ret.) Michael Lurie, head of Rafael's land maneuverability systems directorate, said "Trophy APS has saved the lives of numerous soldiers and has been instrumental in protecting assets on the battlefield and enabling tank crews to maneuver safely under anti-tank fire and perform their missions safely and fully. This system has changed the rules of the game in the armored warfare arena, and the UK's decision to choose Trophy for the protection of its crews, ushers in a new era for its armored forces as well. We are thankful to our UK partners for joining other nations and tier-1 armored corps who have put their trust in Rafael's Trophy APS."

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