L-42 'Vortex' MAFV
A Modular, Multi-Purpose Armoured Fighting Vehicle
The Verhun 'Vortex', is a light, modular, multi-use wheeled
vehicle developed by Verhun Defence Systems. The Vortex was developed to complement and
replace] the militaries aging ground units with a [b]logistically and mechanically universal vehicle.
Featuring an array of modular armaments, including infantry fighting and optional
defense capabilities, the Vortex promises to cater for a wide variety of roles and mission specs.
Verhun Defence Systems 'Vortex' MAFV
Photo of a base-unit Vortex MAFV.
L-42 'Vortex' MAFV
Infantry Fighting Vehicle
Verhun Defence Systems
Modular Armoured Fighting Vehicle
The Vortex is a multirole armoured fighting vehicle designed by Verhun Defense Systems to accomplish a number of operations through the use of installable mission modules. The nations participating in the Vortex program have changed as the program has developed. The Vortex vehicle is produced by the Verhun company (armoured vehicle technology) industrial group, and the programme is being managed by OJAC (Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation) - a project of the Council for Defence.
A distinctive and unique feature of the vehicle is its composition of a drive platform module and interchangeable mission modules which allow several configurations to meet different operational requirements. The modular nature of the vehicle allows for lower costs, easier logistics for spares and quicker training for crews. Equally, the export potential for the vehicle is larger than the Vortex's contemporaries - with importing nations able to design, build and install their own modules if they choose to do so.
The Alteran Republics has order over 800 vehicles, to be delivered by 2025, with at least 500 of the order comprising of vehicles with APC modules. As part of the OJAC initiative, the Alteran Republics is pushing for adoption of the vehicle by its allied neighbours - namely Noronica, Vancouvia, Roendavar and Balnik - to further decrease logistic and unit cost.
The Vortex is an eight-wheeled multirole vehicle, which at the time of its development easily dwarfed most contemporary vehicles with its size. With a development stage combat weight of 33 tonnes, it was also about 10 tonnes heavier than many of its contemporaries. In recent years the size/weight differences between Vortex and its contemporaries have reduced considerably, with Vortex quoted to have a combat weight of 36,500 kg in 2016. The current combat weight of the Vortex in a standard APC configuration is quoted as up to 38.5 tonnes.
Vortex consists of two key elements: the platform/drive-line (the drive module) and the removable mission module. The current production standard sees the vehicle equipped with the Rowlands L-9 Mk.III powerpack, with a standard engine rating of 530 kW (711 hp).
The platform/drive module has the driver located front right, with the power pack to the left. The Rowlands powerpack can be replaced under field conditions in about 30 minutes and can, if required, be run outside of the vehicle for test purposes. Vortex is a full-time all-wheel drive, the front four wheels steering. The suspension is double-wishbone coil springs, independent all round. Tyres are 415/80 R685 and a central tyre inflation system and run-flat inserts are fitted.
The mission module is a key (and unique) feature of Vortex, it allows the vehicle to be rapidly changed to meet different operational requirements. Vortex mission modules are pod-like units that are fitted to drive modules to form a complete mission variant vehicle. Mission modules are attached by four points and can be swapped within an hour under field conditions. The driver can access his compartment through the mission module or in an emergency via the large single-piece power-operated hatch above this position.
Production Vortexes are fitted with a variety of armament ranging from a 7.62 mm light machine gun in a remote weapon station to a 20 mm cannon in a turret. Numerous armament options are offered, including the Alteran standard .280 calibre medium machine guns. Most in-service Vortexes are equipped with a remote weapon station for self-defence or a customized turret. The Vortex allows users to install and operate their own compatible turret. Altera, for example, operates the 30/40mm and 105mm turrets lifted from the L-21 Stoat.
The Vortex is constructed from rolled all-welded steel armour to which module-based appliqué armour kit can be fitted as required by mission threat estimates. OJAC state that the armour packs included composite and ERA options; keeping in line with similar vehicles across the region. The vehicle will withstand anti-personnel and large anti-tank mines under the wheel, platform or side attack. It has previously been stated that Vortex's baseline armour is all-round resistant to 14.5 mm armour-piercing ammunition in accordance with Altera's Standard Armour Requirement Level 4 (STAR L4).
To increase survivability in case of armour penetration, the crew compartment is completely covered by a spall liner. The spall liner stops most of the fragments of the armour and projectile brought about by hull penetration. To further enhance crew protection, the seats are decoupled from the floor, this preventing the shock of a mine-detonation being directly transmitted to the crew. The roof armour of the Vortex is designed to withstand artillery fragments and top attack weapons such as bomblets fitted with a High-Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) warhead.
Mechanized Infantry Vehicle
The standard variant of the Vortex is known as the Mechanized Infantry Vehicle (MIV), which comprises of a spacious cabin within the module. The space is suitable for deploying up to 9 fully equipped troops or similar equipment that utilizes the open space. Combined with a cupola, most of the MIV modules have the option of a remotely controlled turret; either a medium or heavy machine gun, or a 20 mm autocannon.
Armoured Personel Carrier - MIV-APC
Armoured Combat Ambulance - MIV-A
Combat Reconnaissance Vehicle - MIV-CRV
Command Post - MIV-CP
Contaminant Biological Radiological Nuclear - MIV-CBRN
Engineering and Demolition - MIV-ED
Infantry Fighting Vehicle - MIV-IFV
Logistics Carrier - MIV-LC
Mobile Gun System - HEC-105MGS
Mortar Carrier - MIV-MC
Heavy Equipment Carrier
A variant of the MIV, the Heavy Equipment Carrier (HEC) is a modified version of the base MIV with a tweaked suspension and power transmission to better handle the increased load expected of it. The HEC is better suited to handling modules dedicated to the "heavy lifting" roles expected of its class.
Anti-Ship Launcher - HEC-ASL
Armoured Recovery Vehicle - HEC-ARM
Artillery Gun Module - HEC-155AGM
Counter-Battery Radar - HEC-CBR
Medium/Short-Range Aerial Defence - HEC-JAMM-SR/MR
Long-Range Aerial Defence - HEC-JAMM-LR/BVR
Alteran Republics - Alteran Ground Defence Force
Alteran Republics - Public Security (Police/Internal Security)
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