Hanwha AS21 Redback Represents Latest Generation of IFV in the Future of Armored Warfare

Seoul, South Korea, October 18, 2023 - At this year's ADEX (Aerospace and Defense Exhibition) held in Seoul, Hanwha Aerospace, a leading South Korean defense company, highlights its AS21 Redback, one of the most modern tracked IFVs (Infantry Fighting Vehicles) in the world. The vehicle was recently chosen by the Australian army to replace the older M113AS4 tracked APC (Armored Personnel Carrier) vehicles.
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The AS21 Redback is now considered as one of the most modern tracked IFV Infantry Fighting Vehicles in the world. (Picture source Army Recognition)

Earlier in July 2023, the Australian Government made headlines by announcing the selection of the AS21 Redback as the top contender for the LAND 400 Phase 3 project. This initiative aims to replace the now-obsolete M113AS4 tracked APCs (Armored Personnel Carriers) fleet. With this decision, Australia became the inaugural foreign nation to procure the AS21 Redback.

The AS21 Redback represents the next generation of tracked IFVs, integrating a plethora of advanced technologies. These encompass superior firepower, enhanced protection, and unmatched mobility. A standout feature is its Integrated Vectronics System (IVS), which facilitates seamless information sharing across sights, tracking sensors, communication systems, onboard weaponry, turrets, the Active Protection System (APS), and vehicle controls. This is made possible through a central data processing computer, situation awareness cameras, video streaming devices, and condition monitoring systems.

Constructed by Hanwha Aerospace, the AS21 Redback is segmented into three primary components: the hull, turret, and powerpack. The hull's design prioritizes protection, incorporating modular armor to shield against diverse threats, including mines, IEDs, and kinetic energy projectiles. This adaptability ensures the vehicle's suitability across varying threat landscapes.

In terms of armament, the AS21 Redback is fitted with a two-man turret armed with one Bushmaster MK44S 30mm automatic cannon, a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun, eight 76mm multi-barrel smoke grenade dischargers, and two SPIKE LR2 anti-tank guided missile launchers. Additionally, it can be optionally fitted with the EOS R400S Mk2 HD or R150 remote weapon system and Javelin anti-tank guided missiles.

Hanwha Defenses AS21 Redback IFV Represents the Latest Generation in the Future of Armored Warfare 925 002
The AS21 Redback is fitted with a two-man turret armed with one 30mm automatic cannon, one 7.62mm coaxial machine gun, and anti-tank guided missile launchers. (Picture source Army Recognition)

The AS21 Redback offers all-around the hull ballistic protection Level 5 STANAG 4569, and mine protection Level 4a/4b. Level 5 of STANAG 4569 provides protection for armored vehicles against 25mm APDS-T ammunition fired from a distance of 500 meters with an impact velocity of 1255 m/s, against 155mm High Explosive artillery shell splinters from 25 meters, and against explosions equivalent to 10 kg of TNT detonated under the vehicle's belly. Levels 4a and 4b of STANAG 4569 define the mine protection standards for armored vehicles. Level 4a ensures that vehicles can withstand the detonation of 10 kg of TNT from a distance of 4 meters to the side, while Level 4b ensures protection against a 10 kg TNT explosion directly beneath the vehicle's belly.

To increase protection, the AS21 Redback is also fitted with the Iron Fist, a hard-kill active protection system (APS) designed by Israel Military Industries (IMI). This system provides a robust shield against a wide array of threats, including rocket-propelled grenades, anti-tank guided missiles, and tank-fired ammunition. The Iron Fist employs advanced detection mechanisms, such as a radar sensor by RADA Electronic Industries and an optional infrared detector by Elbit's Elisra. In the face of imminent threats, an explosive projectile interceptor is dispatched, which neutralizes the threat through a controlled explosion, ensuring minimal collateral damage.

On the mobility front, the AS21 Redback is powered by an MTU eight-cylinder diesel engine, boasting 1,000 hp. This allows the vehicle to achieve road speeds exceeding 65km/h and an impressive operational range of 520 km. Its composite rubber track (CRT) system ensures superior maneuverability across challenging terrains, making it a formidable asset in diverse combat settings.

In conclusion, the AS21 Redback, a brainchild of Hanwha Aerospace, stands as a symbol of the fusion of advanced mobility, potent firepower, robust protection, and high-tech onboard equipment in contemporary infantry fighting vehicles. Its potent MTU engine guarantees swift movement, while its unmanned turret ensures pinpoint firepower. With its modular armor and state-of-the-art defense mechanisms, the Redback promises unmatched protection, solidifying its position as the future of armored warfare.

Defense News October 2023