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The Pathfinder N°33

NOVEMBER 2020

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L'Eclaireur N°32

NOVEMBER 2020

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L'Eclaireur N°31

SEPTEMBER 2020

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The Scout N°30

SEPTEMBER 2020

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L'Eclaireur N°29

JUNE 2020

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The Scout N°28

MARCH 2020

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L'Eclaireur N°27

FEBRUARY 2020

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The Scout N°26

DECEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°25

DECEMBER 2019

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L'Eclaireur N°24

DECEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°23

NOVEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°22

NOVEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°21

OCTOBER 2019

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The Scout N°20

OCTOBER 2019

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The Scout N°19

SEPTEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°18

SEPTEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°17

SEPTEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°16

JULY 2019

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The Scout N°15

JUNE 2019

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The Scout N°14

JUNE 2019

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Issue No. 21 - October 21, 2019

The Pathfinder is a subject-oriented watch for prospective studies on air-land operations, currently conducted by the Command Doctrine and Training Centre (CDEC).

This document is based solely on unclassified sources. Its purpose is to provide a quick fortnightly overview of the information disseminated in the media and likely to be of interest to the world of defence. The briefs collected are limited to raw summaries of the documents analysed and cross-checked whenever possible by interviews conducted by its editors. It is therefore up to each reader to contextualise this information, particularly when it comes from official foreign sources, according to the use he or she wishes to make of it and the nature of the conclusions that he or she must draw from it.




"Russian army to switch to electric vehicles".

Tass, September 30, 2019

(single source)

Russian army units could receive vehicles equipped with hybrid powertrains and electric transmissions. These vehicles would be quieter and would have large capacity energy tanks. As a reminder, last May the Moscow Military Motor Vehicle Inspectorate reportedly received the first two electric IJ-Pulsar motorcycles. In addition to their low environmental impact and reduced noise level, electric motors would be less expensive.



"Испытания российского робота-парашютиста впервые показали на видео"

"Russian robotic paratrooper test videos released to the public."

Rossiskaïa Gazeta, 30 September 2019

(single source)

A video revealing the capabilities of the new Russian automated parachute system was released. The latter would be able to control the direction of the parachute, depending on the intended landing point, without human intervention. The parachute, equipped with brakes, would thus turn left or right, allowing better control of the descent under canopy. The robot would be located thanks to Russian Glonass satellite data. This system could deliver packages weighing up to 200 kg, at a height of 8,000 metres maximum and at a speed of 140 to 350 km/h.



"Bell Unveils New '360 Invictus' Attack Helicopter for Army's Future War"

Military.com, 2 October 2019

(single source)

Last week, the American manufacturer Bell unveiled its new helicopter prototype as part of theUS Army 's FARA(Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft) program. The 360 Invictus would be equipped with a 20mm gun and an integrated ammunition launcher, capable of carrying Hellfire missiles. Highly maneuverable, it would also be able to reach a cruising speed of about 320 km/h.

Availability : 2022



"Startup Anduril Industries unveiled its drone-smashing Interceptor unmanned air vehicle (UAV)."

Flight Global, October 3, 2019

A drone-killing drone"

RFI, 13 October 2019

(source cross-checking)

The American company Anduril has developed a new type of four-engine drone capable of shooting down hostile drones by hitting them at a speed of around 160 km/h. Piloted using software with artificial intelligence, it could identify, lock and engage alone (or after authorisation) a target within a given perimeter. Its shock resistance would make it reusable. This new system would be in addition to existing solutions such as electromagnetic guns or anti-drone nets.



"Informationslehrübung Landoperationen 2019"

"Demonstration: Land Operations 2019"

Deutsches Heer, 7 October 2019

(single source)


At the beginning of October, the annual Bundeswehr (ILÜ) demonstration was held in Münster and Bergen. On this occasion, 2,000 soldiers and more than 500 vehicles took part in a dynamic demonstration highlighting the capabilities of the Army before an audience of officers, civilian and military authorities from Germany and abroad. The 2019 edition welcomed Austrian and Dutch units alongside German units.



"DARPA advances ground-launched hypersonic missile system"

Army technology, 7 October 2019

(source cross-checking)

The US Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has completed a preliminary assessment of a hypersonic tactical missile system. Developed under the OpFires program , this new system would be a key component of theUS Army's future hypersonic ground-to-ground weapon system. This programme aims to develop a new system capable of thwarting opposing anti-aircraft defences.

Availability: 2022



"General dynamics to unveil extended range projectile that uses rocket technology."

Defense blog, October 11, 2019

(source cross-checking)

At theUS Army Association Convention (AUSA), from October 14 to 16, General Dynamics presented its new range of howitzers, including the XM1113 RAP. The latter would allow American 155 mm artillery pieces to increase their firing range, which would then be 40 km, 10 km longer than the M549A1 currently in service .



"AUSA 2019: Textron Systems and FLIR launch Ripsaw M5 US Army Robotic Combat Vehicle program".

Army recognition, 16 October 2019

(source cross-checked)

The American company Textron unveiled its new multifunctional combat robot Ripsaw M5 at the AUSA annual convention. It weighs around ten tons and is capable of carrying out a wide range of missions, from protecting convoys to crowd control. It would have the particularity of being able to transport other robots, such as the Skyraider reconnaissance drone designed by FliR Systems.



"Arms and Security 2019: Infocom displays new Scorpion combat UGV."

Jane's, October 11, 2019

(single source)


On the occasion of the Kiev Armament Fair from 8 to 11 October 2019, the Ukrainian company Infocom unveiled its newUnmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) called Scorpion. Armed with a Kalashnikov 7.62 mm calibre machine gun and two grenade launcher tubes, it would be able to carry out reconnaissance or support missions for infantrymen.



"China Reveals Exotic Flying Saucer-Shaped"Armed Helicopter"

The Drive/Warzone, 9 October 2019

"Flying saucer-like attack helicopter to take to the sky in 2020."

China Military, 12 October 2019

(source cross-checking)

On the occasion of the Tianjin air show, the Chinese company AVIC presented a new type of armed helicopter called Super Great White Shark. Announced as being capable of reaching a speed of 650 km/h up to 6,000 m above sea level, it would have a reduced radar signature thanks to an absorbent coating. Piloted by two operators placed in the centre of the aircraft, it would be equipped with two counter-rotating rotors and two turbojet engines integrated into its structure. As a reminder, at the end of 2018, Boeing and Sikorsky also presented a new-generation helicopter with contra-rotating rotors: the B1 Defiant.

Availability : 2020



"In a first, two Indigenous sniper rifles developed by Bangalore-based firm."

Indian Defense News, October 14, 2019

"In a1st, Bengaluru firm designs, develops two sniper rifles."

Times of India, 13 September 2019

(source cross-checking)

The Indian company SSS Defence designed and developed the first two prototypes of 7.62 calibre sniper rifles for the Indian Army, called Viper and Saber, with a range of 1,000 and 1,500 m respectively. These rifles would consist of parts made exclusively in India, in line with the "Make inIndia" programme launched by the government following the opening up of the defence market to private companies in 2016.





"Clustering Cyber Defence Units for Greater Efficiency"

Ministry of the Armed Forces, 4 October 2019

(single source)

The Cyber Defence Command (COMCYBER) building was inaugurated in Rennes by the Minister of the Armed Forces, Mrs Florence Parly. It will house part of the COMCYBER General Staff and units, which should increase its effectiveness, particularly in the field of offensive computer warfare. As a reminder, at the International Cyber Security Forum in January 2019, the Minister announced that cyber defence would be a strategic priority of the LPM 2019-2025. The latter provides for a budget of 1.6 billion euros for the fight in cyberspace.



"International colloquium: The augmented soldier, a European ethical reflection: 16 October 2019"

Ministry of the Armed Forces, 10 October 2019

(single source)

On 16 October 2019, a symposium on the augmented soldier was held at the École Militaire, organized by the Centre de Recherche des Écoles de Saint-Cyr Coëtquidan (CREC) and the association Euro-ISME (International Society for Military Ethics in Europe). In the continuity of the research initiated in 2015, the aim of this symposium was to continue the reflection on the ethical questions raised by the increased performance of the soldier. Anxious to provide a collective and inter-European reflection, it brought together French and foreign doctors, military personnel, researchers and sociologists.



"LYNX 6: Victory of the Leclerc during the IRON SPEAR interallied exercise"

Ministry of the Armed Forces, 16 October 2019

(single source)

On the occasion of the Allied Exercise Iron Spear , organized by NATO in Latvia from 7 to 13 October 2019, the French cavalrymen of the Sub-Groupement Tactique Interarmes (SGTIA) Lynx won first place in a shooting competition combining speed and accuracy. The competition was the final event of the exercise and demonstrated the mobility, agility, speed and accuracy of the Leclerc tank. As a reminder, the objective of the Iron Spear exercise was to train 28 tank crews from eight different nations (Spain, Italy, Poland, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Norway and the United States).



"Presentation of the Army's 2019 capabilities"

Ministry of the Armed Forces, 11 October 2019

The presentation is available on Youtube via the second link "more information".

(single source)

On October 10th, the presentation of the Army's capabilities took place, with the theme "Keeping the ascendancy over the adversary". The dynamic demonstration and static presentations presented the French elements engaged on the national territory, in external operations as well as the Army's innovations within the framework of the SCORPION programme. For the first time, Belgian forces were taking part in the CaMo strategic partnership (Motorised Capability, cf. Eclaireur n°13).




"War among peoples or war among peoples?"

General Military Review n°55, October 2019

How to conduct air-land combat depending on whether it takes place in the midst of populations or peoples? This is the main theme of the reflection proposed by the Revue militaire générale n°55. This distinction between populations and peoples underlines the imperative of adaptation that applies to land forces in operation. It makes it possible to address the different theories of counter-insurgency, in particular that of David Galula, from which American General Petraeus drew inspiration. The theory then gives way to operational examples, from the Spanish War to the First Empire in the Sahel, via the wars in Indochina. Thanks to contributors from both the civilian (teaching, research, industry) and military (operational and staff officers) worlds, this issue highlights the relevance of an interdisciplinary approach to topics of interest to the Army.



"Where the wars of the future will be fought"

Quartz, October 7, 2019

Authors Daniel Wolfe and Tim Fernholz consider the Arctic, Space, the Baltic region, North Korea and the South China Sea as likely future theatres of operations. Melting ice has freed up a new space in the Arctic where regional powers could compete. Satellites, whether they are spies or just ambitious to occupy space, illustrate the strategic importance of this new environment. Russian interest in the Suwalki Gap, located between the Polish-Lithuanian borders and the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, suggests that tensions in this region are rising. The development of North Korean nuclear weapons is also a source of concern. Finally, China's ambition to recover Taiwan and other islands in the South China Sea also confirms the attention that should be paid to this region.



"Killer robots: between fantasy and provocation, what legal reality?"

Conflicts magazine, October 8, 2019

As a result of technological advances and their impact on decision-making, the law of armed conflict has taken on an increasingly central role, particularly with regard to the regulation and accountability of autonomous weapons. Ysens de France, a specialist in the empowerment of military land-based robotic systems, questions the legal aspect of these new weapons. Faced with the many unanswered questions, an ethical debate is necessary to find common solutions. Discussions are currently taking place within the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW), concerning the deployment in conflict zones of Autonomous Lethal Weapon Systems (ALWS). This poses two major challenges for the law: to identify the technologies concerned and to determine their conditions of engagement.



"Iraq Confronts Its Own Prisoner's Dilemma"

Foreign Policy, 12 October 2019

A survey was carried out in Mosul in early 2019 among two samples of inhabitants, one victim of the terrorist group Islamic State (IS), the other composed of people whose families are linked to the IS, in order to find out their opinions on the fate of the organization's prisoners. Indeed, the Iraqi government's policy towards these prisoners could have a direct effect on the behaviour of the EI, its support among the local population and, consequently, on the long-term stability of the country. Among the questions raised were the following: What status should be given to non-combatant members? Who should be considered a supporter of the terrorist group? What would be the most appropriate penalties for Iraqi or foreign combatants?




World War I camouflage - a weapon that deceives but does not kill."

14-18 Centennial Mission, 9 July 2013

Camouflage was invented during the First World War by two Frenchmen, the painter Lucien Victor Guirand de Scévola and the decorator Louis Guingot, who were then mobilized in the 6th artillery regiment. As early as August 1914, they thought of hiding the guns of their battery under canvases painted in the colours of the surrounding nature. A little later, thanks to Eugène Corbin, all the artillerymen put on earthy coloured blouses over their uniforms and the madder red trousers of 1870, allowing them to be less visible. Guingot then created the first camouflage jacket called "leopard", which was not retained by the army. Guirand de Scévola, surrounded by artists specialising in trompe l'oeil in the theatre, decided to continue his research by painting the guns directly with irregular spots of different colours, in order to break the lines of their shapes. General de Castelnau recognized the strategic interest of this invention and convinced the President of the Republic Raymond Poincarré and General Joffre to develop camouflage in armies.






André-Jacques Garnerin"

Futura Sciences

André-Jacques Garnerin (1769-1823) is the inventor of the canvas parachute. He was a pupil of Jacques Alexandre César Charles, who had the idea of inflating balloons with hydrogen. In 1793, while he was engaged in the army, he was captured by the English. During his captivity, he imagines escaping with a parachute. Released in 1795, he worked as a balloonist, managing the ascent of hot-air balloons. In 1797, he made his first parachute jump at 680 metres, above Monceau Park: having broken the ties holding the balloon from the basket of his balloon, he relied on his parachute, which resembled a giant umbrella, to mitigate the fall of the balloon. After this success, he repeated the experiment in 1799 and made several improvements until the patent was filed in 1802. It was on November 17, 1915 that he made thefirst parachute jump in French military history.


 


 
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