Bradley Vehicle: Status of the Army's Survivability Enhancement Program

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1990-05-21.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

                   United   States   General   Accounting   Office
                   Report to the
                              I - Honorable
GAO                Barbara Boxer, House of

May 1990
                   Status of the Army’s
                   Enhancement Progrm

                   United States
GAO                General Accounting  Office
                   Washington, D.C. 20648

                   National Security and
                   International Affairs Division


                   May 21,199O

                   The Honorable Barbara Boxer
                   House of Representatives

                   Bear Ms. Boxer:

                   This report responds to your request that we provide you with informa-
                   tion on the current status of the Army’s modification program for
                   enhancing the survivability of the Bradley Fighting Vehicle. We briefed
                   your staff on the results of our work on March 5, 1990.

                   As a result of live-fire testing conducted between March 1985 and
Results in Brief   May 1987, the Army is incorporating a number of survivability enhance-
                   ments into a new Bradley high-survivability configuration referred to as
                   the “A2 model.” This model will be produced in two versions: the
                   Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) and the Cavalry Fighting Vehicle (WV).
                   Enhancements will include (1) the addition of armor to provide protec-
                   tion against 30-mm projectiles, (2) the addition of liners inside the turret
                   to protect the crew from high-velocity debris (spall) resulting from
                   rounds’ penetrating the crew compartment, (3) the addition of armor to
                   protect against antitank chemical energy weapons (this armor is to be
                   provided to field troops when it is developed), (4) changes in the way
                   fuel and ammunition are internally stored, and (5) changes to the vehi-
                   cle’s automatic fire extinguishing system. Because of the weight
                   increases associated with these changes, the Army is upgrading the
                   Bradley power train with a 600-horsepower engine and a modified
                   transmission. Production unit costs (in fiscal year 1989 constant dollars)
                   to the IF%’ will increase by $117,489 and to the crv by $124,789. In addi-
                   tion, 2,033 Bradley vehicles already fielded will be retrofitted.

                   Each version of the Bradley Fighting Vehicle performs a different mis-
Background         sion: the IFV supports the infantry, and the cm supports the cavalry.
                   The IFV’S mission is to transport the infantry squad into battle and, once
                   there, to support the squad and the accompanying tanks by suppressing
                   enemy infantry and lightly armored vehicles. The WV’S mission is to per-
                   form reconnaissance for the armored cavalry. Each version of the vehi-
                   cle has a 25 mm-cannon; a Tube-Launched, Optically-Tracked, Wire-
                   Guided (TOW)antitank guided missile launcher; and a coaxial machine
                   gun. Both the IE~ and the WV were initially armored to withstand hits
                   from up to 14.5-mm ammunition.

                   Page 1                              GAO/NSLADSO-172   Bradley   Vehicle   Modif¶cations

                                         basis of competitive tests. The competitive testing is scheduled to be
                                         completed and a production contract awarded by May 1991, with the
                                         armor tiles released to the troops 2 years later in May 1993.
                                       . Automatic fire extinguishing system. This system will be modified to
                                         incorporate a dual-shot system, which automatically activates after a
                                         l/2-second delay to protect against a second hit. To further protect the
                                         system, cables were rerouted and spa11protection added.
                                       l Engine. The engine’s power was increased from 500 to 600 horsepower
                                         to accommodate the heavier vehicle weight resulting from survivability
                                       0 Transmission. The transmission was modified to improve reliability and
                                         to match the horsepower increase of the engine.
                                       l Internal fuel supply system. This system was modified to exhaust fuel
                                         from vulnerable upper fuel cells before fuel from the more protected
                                         lower fuel cells is used (upper fuel cells will be emptied after the first
                                         40 gallons of fuel are burned).

                                           The estimated production unit cost in fiscal year 1989 dollars will
Production Stattus and                     increase $117,489 for the IFV and $124,789 for the crv. Production cut-in
Cost of Survivability                      dates and unit cost increases or decreases of the individual modifica-
                                           tions are shown in table 1.
Table 1: Production Cut-In Dates and
Cost Increases and Decreases ior the        In fiscal year 1989 constant dollars
Bradley’s Enhancements                                                                        Date of                 Unit cost              Unit cost
                                                                                              production            change for             c”yv&?;
                                            Modification                                      cut-in                   the IPV
                                            Additron of steel applrque armor,
                                            additron of spall liners, relocatron of
                                            ammunrtion, and addrtron of
                                            attachment oornts for armor tiles                 Mav 1988                  $53,199a                $60,50@
                                            Additron of armor tiles (reactrve or              To be
                                            oassivel                                          determrned                  62,419                  62,419
                                            Addition of dual-shot fire
                                            extinguishing system                              October 1991                  3,855                  3,855
                                            Addition of 600.horsepower engine                 May 1989                      2,520                  2,528
                                            Modificatron of transmissron                      May 1969                     (6,005)b               (6,005)b
                                            Chanaes to fuel svstem                            Mav 1986                      1.129                  1.129
                                            Reroutrng of fire extingurshrng
                                            system cables                                     May 1986                          364                364
                                            Total                                                                     $117.499                9124.799
                                            aThe cost of each !ndludual modkatlon      IS not available

                                            ‘These savings are attributable   to a multlyear contract lo produce transmlsslons

                                            Page 3                                              GAO/NSIAD+O-172       Bradley    Vehicle Modifications

           As requested, we did not obtain official agency comments on this report.
           However, we discussed the information we gathered with Army and
           Department of Defense officials and incorporated their views when

           As arranged with your office, we are sending copies of this report to the
           Chairmen of the House and Senate Committees on Armed Services and
           on Appropriations and the Secretaries of Defense and the Army. Copies
           will also be made available to other parties upon request.

           Major contributors to this report were Jim Shafer, Assistant Director;
           Bob Herman, Evaluator-in-Charge; and Don Warda, Staff Member.
           Please contact me at (202) 275-4141 if you or your staff have any ques-
           tions concerning this report.

            Sincerely yours

           I Richard Davis
            Director, Army Issues

(222272)    Page 6                            GAO/NSlAD4lI%172   Bradley   Vehicle Modlficatlonn
         .,,,...    _

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,   There is a 26% discount     on orders for 100 or more copies mailed to a
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                                        The Army plans to retrofit 2,033 of 4,333 Bradleys to the high-
Bradley Fighting                        survivability (A2) configuration. It does not plan to retrofit the first
Vehicle System                          2,300 Bradleys produced because it believes that retrofitting these vehi-
Retrofit Program                        cles would be too costly. Of the 2,033 Bradleys, 662 are the new
                                        A2 model without the upgraded engine and transmission. These A2s will
                                        be retrofitted with the new power pack. The remaining 1,371 Bradleys
                                        will be retrofitted with all survivability enhancements except the dual-
                                        shot automatic fire extinguishing system. The retrofit schedule for this
                                        system has not yet been established. The Army has three Product
                                        Improvement Programs for upgrading the Bradley. The programs and
                                        their estimated unit costs are shown in table 2.

Table 2: Product Improvement Programs
and Cost                                In fiscal year 1969 constant dollars
                                                                                                                    Unit cost         Unit cost
                                        Product Improvement Proaram                                               for the IFV      for the CFV
                                        Hrgh-survivability modification
                                          Addition of steel applique armor
                                          Addition of spall lmers
                                          Relocation of ammunition
                                          Addition of armor tile attachment points                                  $166,637           $166,312
                                        New 600.horsepower engine                                                     34,532             34,532
                                        Modification to transmission --                                               24,917             24,917
                                        Total                                                                       $226,266           $227,761
                                        Note The total casts of the Product Improvement Program do not Include new production costs of the
                                        reactwe or passwe armor tiles that are currently estimated to cost $62,419 pet vehicle

                                        The retrofit conversion schedule is shown in table 3.

Table 3: The Bradley’s Retrofit
                                                                                                 Fiscal year
                                        Bradley model                              1990      1991     1992          1993       1994        Total
                                        Al configuration (upgraded to A2
                                        hrgh-survivabrlrty configuratton)             54      239       395          443         240       1,371
                                        A2 hrgh-survrvability conftgurabon
                                        (addition of upgraded power tram)           249       292        121             0         0         662

                                        We obtained pertinent documentation on survivability modifications to
Objective, Scope, and                   the Bradley, including current cost and development and production
Methodology                             schedules. We also held discussions with program officials from the
                                        Bradley Fighting Vehicle System Office in Warren, Michigan. We con-
                                        ducted our review between November 1989 and February 1990 in accor-
                                        dance with generally accepted government auditing standards.

                                        Page 4                                         GAO/NSL4D9O-172         Bradley   Vehicle Modifications

                        Because of concerns about the Bradley’s vulnerability, the Army con-
                        ducted a series of live-fire vulnerability tests from March 1986 through
                        May 1987. The tests showed that the Bradley, as then configured, was
                        highly vulnerable to anti-armor weapons. The Office of the Secretary of
                        Defense, in December 1987 hearings, reported to the Subcommittee on
                        Procurement and Military Nuclear Systems, House Committee on Armed
                        Services, that because of live-fire test results, the Army planned to
                        incorporate a number of modifications designed to reduce the Bradley’s

                        The Army has made or is planning to make the survivability-enhancing
Status of Planned       modifications discussed in the 1987 hearing. In addition, to accommo-
Changes to the          date the heavier weight associated with these modifications, the Army
Bradley Vehicle         has incorporated a higher horsepower engine and a modified transmis-
                        sion into the new high-survivability (A2) configuration. The
                        survivability modifications are as follows:

                    . Steel applique armor. This armor, consisting of steel plates added to
                        existing armor on parts of the turret and hull, increased protection from
                        14.6-n-m to 30-mm ammunition.
                    .   Spall liners. Spa11liners were added to the interior of the crew compart-
                        ment to protect the crew from high-velocity debris (spall) caused by
                        rounds’ penetrating the vehicle.
                    .   Relocation of ammunition. Twenty-five millimeter ammunition and TOW
                        missiles stowed internally were moved to less vulnerable areas located
                        in the rear, lower part of the crew compartment. In addition, to the
                        extent possible, mines and pyrotechnics (signals and flares) were stowed
                        in external rear stowage compartments.
                    .   Attachment points. Attachment points were added to the exterior of the
                        vehicle (the front, sides, and turret) for the purpose of attaching reac-
                        tive or passive armor tiles.
                    .   Reactive or passive armor tiles. These tiles will be bolted to the prefixed
                        attachment points on the exterior of the vehicle to provide protection
                        against shaped-charged (chemical) warheads used in antitank guided
                        weapons. The Army initially reported that it planned to add reactive
                        armor. However, because of advances in passive armor, the Army has
                        decided that passive armor may be a viable alternative for the required
                        armor protection. Reactive armor explodes outward when hit by a
                        chemical missile, neutralizing most of the warhead’s force. Passive
                        armor blunts the warhead’s forces but does not explode outward when
                        hit. The Army plans to award up to three development contracts in
                        June 1990 and will select the eventual production contractor on the

                        Page 2                             GAO/NSIALhSC-172   Bradley   Vehicle Modifwatiom