M992A2 FAASV Field Artillery Ammunition Supply Vehicle
The The M992A2 series Carrier, Ammunition Tracked Vehicle (CATV) / Field Artillery Ammunition Support Vehicle (FAASV) accompanies the M109A6 and completes the howitzer section. The CATV has a crew of five. The M992A2 is a full-tracked, aluminum armored, ammunition resupply vehicle with a hydraulic powered conveyor for single-round transfer of ammunition. The M992A2 is comparable to the M109A6 in terms of speed, mobility, and survivability. In addition to ammunition handling equipment, the CATV features projectile rack assemblies and storage compartments; a diesel powered auxiliary power unit used to drive the hydraulic system and recharge vehicle batteries; and an automatic fire extinguisher system (AFES).
The M992A2 Field Artillery Ammunition Support Vehicle (FAASV) is the firing-position partner for the M109A6 Paladin and other M109 series self-propelled howitzers. It provides timely, efficient, armor-protected ammunition delivery to cannon artillery systems during both firing and non-firing conditions.
Able to carry a 12,000-pound (5,454 kg) ammunition payload, the FAASV can be configured for various ammunition needs and specifications. A 50-caliber machine gun is part of the FAASV's defense. Artillery cargo and crew are protected from fire threats by separate Automatic Fire Suppression in both crew and engine compartments.
An 11.5-horsepower auxiliary power unit provides power support to the FAASV in the field, enabling it to move any type of towed howitzer at a maximum forward speed of 40 mph (64 km/h) and a reverse speed of 7 mph (11.3 km/h). The same Low Heat Rejection engine used in the M109A6 Paladin provides cold start capability and high horsepower for the vehicle, enabling the FAASV to keep pace with artillery forces.
The M109A6 basic load is 37 complete conventional rounds and two Copperhead rounds. The CATV basic load is 96 conventional rounds and four Copperhead rounds. The CATV may average one to five rearming moves per day in addition to tactical and survivability moves. A section, consisting of a howitzer and a CATV, normally operates as one of three sections in a platoon but may operate alone in a fire area.
Field Artillery Ammunition Support Vehicle is a field artillery weapons (M109A2 self-propelled class) in terms of speed, mobility, and survivability. This full-tracked, self-propelled, diesel-powered vehicle is a highly mobile and maneuverable. It is capable of long-range, high-speed operation on improved roads. It is also well-suited to rough terrain, muddy or marshy ground, sand, snow, and ice. The M992 can also for can also ford waterways where maximum depth is 42 inches.
The traditional approach is to permanently assign one CATV per howitzer section. The assigned CATV resupplies ammunition to the howitzer section. Using the CATVs in Support of a Platoon, CATVs are controlled by the PLT SGT. Two CATVs will resupply the howitzers, while the third is conducting rearm or performs overwatch. When two CATVs have depleted their ammunition supply, they are dispatched to the battery or platoon rearm point and the third takes over resupply of the howitzers. This method ensures availability of ammunition. However, it complicates ammunition accountability. The chief will not be able to input all of the "on-site" ammunition into the AFCS. When the expenditure rate is extremely high, "CATVs in support of a platoon" better facilitates class V resupply. During periods of minimal ground threat, "one CATV - one howitzer" enhances the task of ammunition accountability.
The M992A2 upgrade was accomplished through a materiel change program. It includes all of the enhancements found in the A1 package and such features as an improved radiator; reinforced side-door sponson; final-drive quick disconnect; relocation of the personnel heater and hydraulic reservoir; and improvements to auxiliary power unit (APU) reliability, availability and maintainability (RAM) criteria.
The final A1-to-A2 conversions were completed in March 1999, and final A0-to-A2 conversions were completed in April 1999. In addition to these conversion efforts, United Defense LP received follow-on contracts for 96 "new build" M992A2 systems in July 1996, with 36 additional conversion systems placed on contract in November 1998. These 36 conversion systems are unique in that they are being remanufactured into new M992A2s from excess M109A2/A3 howitzer hulls. Program savings from this process allowed for an additional 6 M992A2 vehicle conversions (42 in total). Deliveries of these additional conversion vehicles were completed in December 2001. The resulting inventories, however, reflected a shortfall between M109A6 Paladins (957 units) and the supporting FAASVs (664 + 125 + 96 + 42 = 927). Program planners indicated that the Army was likely to seek funding to close this 30 vehicle gap.
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