The Army took delivery of the first units of the new TITUS armoured vehicle
During the IDET trade fair, the army officially took over the TITUS (Tactical Infantry Transport & Utility System) armoured vehicle. The symbolic key to the wheeled armoured vehicle (KOVS) was received by Deputy Minister of Defence Daniel Blažkovec and Chief of the General Staff of the Army Lieutenant General Karel Řehka in the presence of Generals Petr Milčický, Director of the Force Development Section of the MoD and Petr Šnajdárek, Director of the Communication and Information Systems Section of the MoD.
TITUS is a successful joint project of the Czech company Tatra Defence Vehicle and the French defence company Nexter Systems. The Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic has ordered a total of 62 TITUS armoured vehicles for the Czech Army in 2017, in three versions – 6 units in the command and staff version (KOVVŠ), 36 units in the communications version (KOVS) and 20 vehicles will serve as fire support coordination points (MKPP). The first delivery of six serial TITUS vehicles in all 3 variants has already taken place, with more to follow this year and next. The total value of the contract is CZK 6 billion. Tomáš Mohapl, CEO of Tatra Defence Vehicle, believes that the fleet of TITUS vehicles for the Czech Armed Forces will be further expanded over time.
The development and production of TITUS armoured vehicles demonstrates the successful transformation of the Czech armaments industry, for which the successful implementation of the project represents a major technological leap. TITUS was created by the cooperation of Tatra Defence Vehicle, a company from Kopřivnice, France, NEXTER, a French arms company, and Retia, a company from Pardubice, which focuses on electrical military equipment. The last time a wheeled armoured personnel carrier was developed in Czechoslovakia was in the 1960s, when it was the successful OT-64 SKOT, of which 4,500 were produced and served in our army until the 1990s. Thanks to the project, Tatra Defence Vehicle changed from a design and engineering company into a full-fledged production company and purchased new production technologies for the needs of the project implementation. The TITUS project also means strategic support for Czech industry, which is becoming competitive in the field of armoured vehicle production. The economy as such is also supported by supporting Czech companies and employees.
Compared to armoured vehicles of the MRAP (Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected) category, TITUS is unique due to its high level of durability and high mobility. MRAP vehicles, which were used in large numbers in Iraq and Afghanistan, were characterised by high durability, but at the expense of mobility, as the vehicles were not capable of driving in difficult terrain and had to move on paved roads, making them easy targets for ambushes and explosive devices. In contrast, the TITUS has the same or greater durability, but thanks to the Tatra chassis, the vehicle has no problems driving on difficult terrain and can therefore be moved together with combat vehicles, and is therefore classified as a modern MRAV (Multi-Role Armoured Vehicle). As far as the electronic and communication equipment of the new TITUS for the Army is concerned, these are the most advanced technological systems within NATO military equipment. This is mainly due to several years of development, when it was necessary to adapt all systems to the requirements of the Czech army.
According to Brigadier General Petr Šnajdárek, TITUS represents a significant shift in the digitalisation of the contemporary battlefield. "TITUS is capable of receiving and transmitting information from the fighting units to the command post in a matter of minutes and literally to the other side of the globe. Nothing like this has been available to the Army before." Brigadier General Šnajdárek also mentioned that the TITUS vehicle can be supplemented with a variety of elements – from protective jammers and detectors, to the Nexter Nerva LG Robot system for unmanned operation, day, night and perimeter vision systems, and BMS fire control systems, protection against the effects of weapons of mass destruction to a variety of firearms including 7.62mm, 12mm, 40mm grenade launchers and 20mm cannons, making TITUS not only a top-of-the-line communications vehicle and fire coordination vehicle, but also a highly effective defence vehicle on the battlefield. General Milčický also highlighted the vehicle's capabilities, saying, "By being able to transmit information (video and audio) faster and in larger volumes, this will be an absolutely crucial enhancement in this area. In addition, communication with allies on the common battlefield will be significantly simplified."
Armoured vehicle TITUS
- MRAV (Multi-role Armored Vehicle) category
- Crew of 4 persons, number varies by vehicle type
- High ballistic protection (STANAG 3). Body welded from heavy armoured sheet metal, with armoured plates and windows on the outside, internal walls lined with composite materials (spall liner). Effective protection against infantry weapons, heavy machine guns and artillery ammunition fragments, mines and IEDs.
- TATRA T 815-7 Force chassis with central tube and independently suspended, air-sprung semi-axles with first and third axles steerable
- Air suspension system with the possibility of changing the vehicle ground clearance. Outer turning radius 13 m, climb rate 60%, side roll value 30%. Tactical tyres 16,00 R20 with central inflation system, which allows not only adjusting the tyre pressure for different surfaces, but also driving with tyre punctures
- Vehicle speed on paved roads up to 110 km/h with a range of up to 700 km
- Universal armament carrier – Remote controlled weapon stations with the ability to mount a 12.7 mm calibre machine gun or 40 mm calibre grenade launcher. Possibility of installing a remote-controlled turret with a 20 mm rapid-fire gun and a 7.62 mm machine gun. Possibility of mounting up to three light machine guns on the hatch at the three roof hatches. Firing is also possible with a gun located in the folding ramp. Other versions of the TITUS armoured personnel carrier allow for the function of weapon system carriers – anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles or a mortar of 120 mm calibre
- Electronic and communication systems provide classified and unclassified radio communication and data link in VHF and UKV bands and also by satellite tactical communication (SATCOM), including the use of integrated cryptomodules
- The vehicle is equipped with the already proven STAR Light 3 SF protective jammer from the Czech company URC Systems spol. s r.o. The jammer protects against the current threats of radio remotely launched IEDs, including 4G and 5G mobile communication systems. The system is ready for connection of a dedicated anti-drone jamming module (MAD). Also new is liquid cooling to reduce the jammer's build volume. The jammer succeeded in military trials
- Power is provided by an alternator connected to the vehicle's engine when the vehicle is moved. In both stationary and autonomous modes, the engine is switched off and the electronic systems are powered either from batteries, mains or a generator
- The radios and necessary components in the new MKPP vehicles will be compatible with the equipment already in place in the Czech Army. The new titles will also allow the fitting of a Battlefield Identification Friend or Foe (BIFF) system that can recognise own-foreign units
- Protection of the crew from the effects of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons