General Dynamics to procure active-protection sensors and vetronics for Army fleet of Abrams battle tanks

July 21, 2020
The Trophy vetronics locates and destroys incoming enemy anti-tank missiles and rockets by using a 360-degree radar, processor, and on-board computer.

WARREN, Mich. – Armored combat vehicle experts at General Dynamics Corp. will integrate active protection sensors to shield the Army’s fleet of M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks from rocket-propelled grenades, anti-tank guided missiles, and similar threats.

Officials of the U.S. Army Contracting Command at Detroit Arsenal in Warren, Mich., announced a $44.4 million order to General Dynamics Land Systems in Sterling Heights, Mich., to procure improved fire control electronics units for the Trophy expedited active protection system aboard M1A2 Abrams tanks.

General Dynamics is working with the Leonardo DRS Land Systems segment in St. Louis to procure the Trophy active-protection system for the Abrams tank. DRS is adapting technology developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. in Haifa, Israel, to help shield M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks from rocket-propelled grenades and anti-tank guided missiles.

DRS and Rafael are adapting the Rafael Trophy active protection system to the M1A2 Abrams tank. Rafael developed Trophy together with the Elta Group of Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. in Ashdod, Israel. The Trophy system intercepts and destroys incoming missiles and rockets with a shotgun-like blast.

Related: Army set sights on sophisticated vetronics and technology for future main battle tanks

Trophy vetronics is designed to locate and destroy incoming enemy fire instantly using a 360-degree radar, processor, and on-board computer. It can locate, track, and destroy approaching anti-tank-guided-missiles, rocket-propelled grenades, or similar anti-armor weapons by launching a countermeasure to detonate the incoming munition away from the vehicle.

The interceptor uses small shaped charges attached to a gimbal on top of the vehicle. The small explosives fire to a point in space to intercept and destroy the approaching round. Trophy locates and identifies incoming threats with radar that scans the tank’s perimeter out to a known range. The on-board computer determines the optimal kill point for any incoming threat.

Trophy has been used in combat on Israeli Merkava tanks. In addition to locating and destroying incoming missiles and rocket-propelled grenades, the system also can locate and cue weapons to the positions enemy shooters.

Related: Army orders Stryker A1 armored combat vehicles with new vetronics to support future battlefield networking

The DRS-Rafael Trophy system can defeat known anti-armor shaped-charge weapons, like missiles, rockets, and tank-fired high-explosive anti-tank shells before they strike the tank.

The system enables networked threat awareness by pinpointing and reporting shooter location improves platform protection with low risk of collateral injury, and can ensure freedom of movement and maneuver, DRS officials say. On this order General Dynamics will do the work in Tallahassee, Fla., and should be finished by October 2022.

For more information contact General Dynamics Land Systems online at, Leonardo DRS Land Systems at, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems at, or the Army Contracting Command-Detroit Arsenal at

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