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  #1  
Old 09 Aug 17, 00:05
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New French MBT Leclerc 140mm "Terminateur"

French army presents prototype new Leclerc main battle tank armed with a new 140mm gun. This is presumably because the next Russian MBT is expected to have at least 140mm main gun (or greater).

If French colleagues have more photos please post!


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  #2  
Old 09 Aug 17, 00:13
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Everyone is going lite and the French are going heavy. Okay, maybe we can subcontract them for the next big tank battle.
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Old 09 Aug 17, 00:40
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It's only a preserved tech' demo... at least the turret is, from what I've read.
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Old 09 Aug 17, 02:31
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Can something like that gun be mounted on an Abrams?
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Old 09 Aug 17, 08:28
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Since sabots are sub-caliber anyways, does the actual bore diameter really matter? With HEAT rounds, bigger is better, but I thought those weren't used as much anymore.
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Old 09 Aug 17, 08:34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johns624 View Post
Since sabots are sub-caliber anyways, does the actual bore diameter really matter? With HEAT rounds, bigger is better, but I thought those weren't used as much anymore.
Agree, it comes down to the penetration.
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Old 09 Aug 17, 09:40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johns624 View Post
Since sabots are sub-caliber anyways, does the actual bore diameter really matter? With HEAT rounds, bigger is better, but I thought those weren't used as much anymore.
If the ammunition case is bigger with a heavier powder charge then you can continue using the same sabot projectile but at faster velocities, no?
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Old 09 Aug 17, 09:46
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Why would you want to?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merkava188 View Post
Can something like that gun be mounted on an Abrams?
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Old 09 Aug 17, 09:47
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Nope, no need to replace a tube when you can design better ammo. And currently the ammo is over kill.

Quote:
Originally Posted by johns624 View Post
Since sabots are sub-caliber anyways, does the actual bore diameter really matter? With HEAT rounds, bigger is better, but I thought those weren't used as much anymore.
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Old 09 Aug 17, 09:53
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The Leclerc T4 prototype.....this is an thingy from the 1990s I believe, back when experimenting with smooth bore guns was all the rage for a short while. More of a turret tech demo, modular armor, etc.

Wonder what prompted this to reappear?
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Old 09 Aug 17, 10:01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johns624 View Post
Since sabots are sub-caliber anyways, does the actual bore diameter really matter? With HEAT rounds, bigger is better, but I thought those weren't used as much anymore.
It's been considered recently because of the T-14 Armata MBT, due to the Afghanit active protection system that comes with it. It can intercept targets up to 1,700 m/s, with predictions it can possible do faster targets some time in the future.
Improving the propellant of the 120mm can only go so far, a larger gun could be the only choice... unless other means of defeating the T-14 present itself.
Chances are, the Afghanit could be used on other vehicles, thus making them harder to land the first shot. But there is much conjecture as to how well it really performs against a APFSDS.
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Old 09 Aug 17, 10:11
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They like the 120mm.

http://scout.com/military/warrior/Ar...030s-101457963
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Old 09 Aug 17, 11:35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MonsterZero View Post
If the ammunition case is bigger with a heavier powder charge then you can continue using the same sabot projectile but at faster velocities, no?
Only if you increase barrel length. That's why magnum rifles generally have longer barrels than standard calibers.
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Old 09 Aug 17, 12:57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MonsterZero View Post
If the ammunition case is bigger with a heavier powder charge then you can continue using the same sabot projectile but at faster velocities, no?
There's a practical limit to the velocity regardless of the size of the round. Basically, you need continuously expanding gas pushing on the round as it moves through the barrel to accelerate it.

So, you can either lengthen the barrel... Which has a practical limit due to things like gravity causing droop, the rigidity of the barrel decreasing with length causing vibration that degrades accuracy, etc. Or, you can increase the volume pushing on the round.

What happens is at some point you can't go longer on the barrel, or increase the diameter of the round. There's also a metallurgical limit to this in terms of strength of the gun itself and the wear it suffers every time it's fired... And yes, even smoothbores wear out.

So, the practical limit appears to be about 5,000 fps or so. The solution to better penetration when the velocity is limited is increase the mass of the shot and make it tougher and harder so it penetrates more armor. One way to do that is make the shot in something like a Hot Isostatic Press furnace (HIP furnace). This is one way to make artificial diamonds for example too.
What happens here is you expose the round to extremely high temperatures and pressures forcing the atoms to compact more closely together than is possible in nature. So, you increase the mass of the round by say 10% while leaving its size the same as before. By simultaneously choosing a tough, hard material you improve the penetration some more as well.

Then there's frictional heating of the round when fired. The round is moving so fast that it heats up, possibly to orange hot or more and the material it's made from softens as a result. That decreases penetration. So, now you have to apply some heat resistant or ablative coating to the round so it survives the trip to the target. This gets harder to do the faster the round travels. Again, you're up against a practical limit.
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Old 14 Aug 17, 11:24
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Looks more like a publicity stunt; would cause endless supply headaches for limited improvement in utility (especially given the limited anti-tank requirement where larger calibre might prove useful).

NATO countries periodically consider a move beyond 120mm and then realize that it is not economical at present.
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