GD showed the Stryker Counter-UAS soft- or hard-kill air system

The new air defense vehicle, created as part of the M-LIDS program based on the Stryker armored personnel carrier, is being demonstrated on Flag Day and the U.S. Army’s Birthday. The new air defense system is designed to combat small, compact, and low-noise drones, including attack drones.

GD showed the Stryker Counter-UAS soft- or hard-kill air system
Photo by Georgios Moumoulidis

Weapons are combined – kinetic [Coyote missiles] and non-kinetic [electronic warfare] effectors. Additional from General Dynamics Land Systems [GDLS] 30 mm autocannon and machine gun.

More about Stryker Counter-UAS

The Stryker Counter-UAS is a mobile anti-drone system designed to detect, track, and neutralize hostile unmanned aerial vehicles [UAVs]. It is a variant of the Stryker armored fighting vehicle, which has been modified to carry a suite of sensors and weapons specifically tailored to counter the drone threat.

The system works by using a combination of radar, electro-optical/infrared [EO/IR] sensors, and electronic warfare [EW] equipment to detect and identify incoming drones. Once a target has been identified, the Stryker can engage it using a variety of weapons, including a 30mm cannon, a 7.62mm machine gun, and a launcher for the AGM-114 Hellfire missile.

GD showed the Stryker Counter-UAS soft- or hard-kill air system
Photo credit: GDLS

In addition to its offensive capabilities, the Stryker Counter-UAS is also equipped with a range of defensive measures to protect itself and its crew from enemy fire. These include reactive armor panels, which can absorb or deflect incoming projectiles, and a smoke grenade launcher, which can create a smoke screen to obscure the vehicle from view.

The Stryker Counter-UAS is designed to operate in a variety of environments, from urban areas to rugged terrain. It is highly mobile, with a top speed of over 60 miles per hour, and can be transported by air or sea to wherever it is needed. The system is operated by a crew of three, including a driver, a commander, and a sensor operator.

Stryker chassis

Let’s dive into the nitty-gritty of the Stryker chassis, which serves as the backbone for the Counter-UAS system. This 8×8 wheeled armored vehicle is designed to offer maximum flexibility and adaptability, making it an ideal platform for countering drone threats. Here are some of the key technical specifications that make the Stryker chassis stand out:

Weight: With a combat-ready weight of 19-26 tons, the Stryker chassis boasts a balanced mix of mobility and protection.

Engine: Equipped with a powerful Caterpillar C7 diesel engine, the Stryker can reach speeds of up to 60 mph [97 km/h] and cover a range of 330 miles [530 km] on a single tank of fuel.

Armor: The Stryker’s hull is made of high-hardness steel and can be further augmented with modular ceramic composite armor for enhanced protection against threats like RPGs and IEDs.

Weapon Stations: The chassis features multiple weapon station options, including a remote weapon station, which allows for the integration of the Counter-UAS system, as well as other weapons like machine guns, grenade launchers, or anti-tank missiles.

GD showed the Stryker Counter-UAS soft- or hard-kill air system
Photo credit: GDLS

Electronics: A state-of-the-art digital backbone supports advanced communication, situational awareness, and power management systems for seamless integration with various mission equipment.

Transportability: The Stryker’s dimensions and weight allow for easy transportation on aircraft like the C-130, C-17, or C-5, ensuring rapid deployment to various theaters of operation.

In addition to these technical specifications, the Stryker chassis also boasts excellent off-road mobility and a low-maintenance design, making it a reliable and efficient choice for countering drone threats in various environments.

The Stryker is equipped with a specialized armor package that enhances its protection against a variety of threats. The vehicle’s hull is built from high-hardness steel, providing a strong defense against small arms fire and shrapnel. For added protection, the Stryker can also be outfitted with ceramic composite armor, which offers increased resistance to heavy machine gun rounds and shaped charge warheads. 

Active Protection Systems

In addition to its robust armor, the Stryker Counter-UAS is fitted with advanced active protection systems that detect and counter incoming threats. These systems use a combination of sensors, radars, and electronic countermeasures to identify and track potential threats, then engage them with either soft-kill [jamming, decoys] or hard-kill [interceptor projectiles] measures, ensuring the vehicle and its crew remain safe. 

GD showed the Stryker Counter-UAS soft- or hard-kill air system
Photo credit: GDLS

Smoke Grenade Launchers

For a tactical edge in combat, the Stryker is equipped with smoke grenade launchers. These launchers can create a smokescreen that obscures the vehicle from enemy observation and targeting, allowing the Stryker to maneuver and reposition itself safely when under fire. 

Integration with Other Defense Systems

The Stryker Counter-UAS platform is designed to integrate seamlessly with other defense systems, enhancing its effectiveness in a battlefield scenario. This includes interoperability with other ground vehicles, as well as communication and data-sharing with aerial platforms and command centers. This ensures that the Stryker functions as a vital component within a larger, coordinated defense network. 

Sensor and Detection Systems for Counter-UAS

When it comes to detecting and countering drone threats, the Stryker Counter-UAS employs cutting-edge sensor and detection systems. These advanced technologies work in unison to provide comprehensive protection against various types of aerial adversaries. 

Among these integral components is the Radar System, which is responsible for detecting and tracking potential threats within a specific range. This system effectively distinguishes between friend and foe, ensuring accurate targeting and reducing the risk of collateral damage. 

GD showed the Stryker Counter-UAS soft- or hard-kill air system
Photo credit: GDLS

Another essential part of the Stryker Counter-UAS is its Electro-Optical and Infrared [EO/IR] Sensors. These sensors enable the system to locate, identify, and track targets even in low-visibility conditions. By integrating EO/IR sensors, the Stryker Counter-UAS is equipped to handle both daytime and nighttime operations with ease.

How it counteracts?

The Stryker Counter-UAS is effective in countering drone threats and enemy targets in several ways. First, it is equipped with a variety of sensors and radars that can detect and track drones from a distance. This allows the system to quickly identify potential threats and take action before they can cause harm.

Another way the Stryker Counter-UAS is effective is through its ability to disrupt the communication between the drone and its operator. By jamming the drone’s signal, the system can prevent it from receiving commands or transmitting data, rendering it useless.

In addition to jamming, the Stryker Counter-UAS is also equipped with a variety of kinetic weapons, such as guns and missiles, that can be used to physically destroy the drone. These weapons are highly accurate and can be operated remotely, allowing the system to engage targets from a safe distance.

Finally, the Stryker Counter-UAS is designed to be highly mobile and adaptable. It can be quickly deployed to different locations and can be customized with a variety of weapons and sensors depending on the specific mission requirements. This flexibility makes it a valuable asset in countering a wide range of drone threats and enemy targets.

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