PLA Next Generation Main Battle Tank


drowingfish

Junior Member
Registered Member
I think that the AI not only will solve the targets (IE actually shooting at them and/or automatically correcting failed shots). I think that the AI through fusing information coming from a multitude of sensors will also serve as the primary spotter for the crew, it will detect possible targets, pass them to the commander for positive identification and selection of ammunition to shoot and then the commander will hand them back to the "gunner AI" to engage them.
This capabilities will provide a leap in efficiency compared to the current "hunter-killer" methods. However these functions are not incompatible for a 3 man crew (T-14 either has them now or will be able to have them in the future) but the benefit of a 2 man design will come at a decreased tank weight while maintaining the same or comparable protection levels and achieving a superior fighting performance to a traditional 3-4 crewman tanks (without AI) or slightly inferior or comparable performance to a bigger crew enhanced by AI.
reducing to two crew is a bad idea, even with AI. because there will be instances where at least one crew will have to dismount, possibly under fire. even if you have AI still better to have a third crew in the vehicle.
 

Petrolicious88

Junior Member
Registered Member
reducing to two crew is a bad idea, even with AI. because there will be instances where at least one crew will have to dismount, possibly under fire. even if you have AI still better to have a third crew in the vehicle.
Agree. In a two manned tank, one crew could be injured, incapacitated, etc..etc…. Then you are left with one person doing a 3 man job.

Even with advanced auto loader, you should have 3 people minimum. In the future, MBT could be completely automated, but that’s a long way off.
 

PeoplesPoster

Junior Member
I wish people would stop throwing ai around like it’s a magic bullet that’ll solve all problems. AI as is can’t even tell the difference between a dog or a cat half the time. It’ll be years before it becomes reliable enough to entrust human lives to during a combat situation.
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
The main issue with a theoretical 2 man crew for an MBT is that any repair on the tank now requires a recovery vehicle. As at least one of the crew is pulling security. You have basically taken the third crewmen and put him and a number of other tank crewmen and put them on the ARV. An ARV that is now a very busy bee. So to pay for your 2 man crew you are likely needing double if not triple the number of ARVs
No matter the task an ARV is needed. From topping off the main magazine to fixing a thrown track. Fueling and changing fluids. All demand an ARV to add more hands and eyes.
 

SimaQian

Junior Member
Registered Member
2 man crew is when crew loss and injury is problematic. 2 man can do 3man job, but 1 man cant do 2 man job.
Much better if no man inside at all. It should be the long term goal to have a fully remote controlled or autonomous battle tanks. Most anti tank weapons are designed to kill the crews. So getting rid of the crew should be the ultimate goal.
 

LawLeadsToPeace

Junior Member
Registered Member
Much better if no man inside at all. It should be the long term goal to have a fully remote controlled or autonomous battle tanks. Most anti tank weapons are designed to kill the crews. So getting rid of the crew should be the ultimate goal.
Unless tanks can float and traverse across anything or have tracks that can’t be jammed by mud or whatever nature likes to throw at them and have zero problems that normally would require people to fix them while meeting the same requirements as that of modern day tanks, I don’t think that will ever happen.
 

BoraTas

Junior Member
Registered Member
My imaginary specs. It will be over the top and it will be incorporating all existing experimental technologies. It will also use technologies from aviation that are not used in AFVs previously.

Armement:
- 125 mm ETC-CTA gun that uses single-piece munition. ETC will enable up to 2200 m/s muzzle speed
- Autoloader and 40+ rounds in the turret bustle. This is possible since the use of CTAs would make the rounds very compact as it buries the projectile in the propellant.
473and223.png
Both are the same munition

- 16 rpm fire rate (Enabled by the CTA again). The autoloader should also be capable of setting the fuse, providing ammo type selection and unloading.
- 7.62 mm coaxial + at least 2 remote weapon stations that can be used to mount 7.62 mm, 12.7 mm, 14.5 mm or a grenade launcher.
- Munitions for the main gun would be MPAT (thus no need for separate HEAT, canister, HE-frag), APFSDS (a long segmented DU rod), AHEAD (against helis, drones, and small PGMs)
- 0.5 arcminutes first shot accuracy
- 8 small VLS for 180 mm surface to surface missiles with up to 12 km range

Situational Awareness:
- 4 man crew. Commander, gunner, driver, drone operator
- Blue-force tracker
- Beidou and inertial navigation
- A quadcopter/octocopter drone for situational awareness
- A rising common aperture optronic mast for commander with HD SWIR spotter, HD day, HD multi-frequency MWIR, HD low light, high color sensitivity day spotter, laser illuminator (with selectable beamwidth), laser rangefinder, laser spotter, laser spot tracker. The mast should be stabilized in 6 axes and be able to zoom to its diffraction limit. The tank should also provide the stationary version of the same assembly to the gunner. Also, the driver should also have the needed night vision equipment.
- Rising mast ground observation radar
- Laser-based intrasquad comms
- Helmet mounted displays for crew members
- Use of panoramic screens for human-machine interface
- Voice control
- High-speed, directional, LPI datalink
- Context-aware and probabilistic sensor fusion and networking (the F-35 style)
- SATCOM
- RWR and LWR
- IIR based missile-approach warning system
- LIDAR-based meteorological sensor. This will allow the tank to measure the atmospheric conditions through the way of the projectile
- Automatic, AI-assisted data analysis would be a must with all these capabilities anyway
- The data about this is scarce but seismic detection of the presence of the enemy AFVs is an emerging technology. The tank should be able to integrate such sensors when they become available.

Propulsion:
- 55 tons max weight as dictated by the geography of China
- 1750+ hp OPOC diesel
- Serial hybrid drive train. Mechanical transmission is completely eliminated. The benefits are high initial acceleration and an equal reverse speed. Reliability and lower fuel consumption are additional benefits
- A largeish battery for silent mode
- Active hydropneumatic suspension for gun accuracy and off-road mobility

Protection:
- Heavy emphasis on stealth. Both radar and IR. This is a must for survival in the drone era because enemy aerial assets will be everywhere.
- EMCON capability (Laser communicator would be extremely handy while using this)
- A trophy style active protection system
- DIRCM against Javelin type missiles
- Multispectral smoke
- Recoverable radar decoy launcher and jammer
- Old school IR jammer against old SACLOS missiles
- Passive armor is hard to say anything for as public data about it is very scarce. But considering the possible enemies of China and China's refusal to participate in proxy wars, the armor should be heavily focused on the front. New materials like boron carbide ceramics, high-ductility DU alloys, titanium alloys, latest-gen NERA arrays, nanocrystalline steels should be used. The top of the tank should also have some armor against artillery delivered EPFs.
- 4th gen ERA
 

TK3600

Junior Member
Registered Member
I advocate something more conventional. 3 man crew, bustle autoloader, hybrid propulsion, Type 15 style suspension, electric transmission, and hard kill APS. Old features like laser jammer remains. And if without sacrifice to features above, some levels of stealth design.
 

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