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Nexter and Thales are developing the (PROtection Multi Effets Terrestre Unifiée (PROMETEUS) Active Protection System for the combat vehicles that France is procuring or modernising under the SCORPION programme. Nexter recently presented the development status in a video on Twitter.

PROMETEUS has been designed to protect against the threat of missiles and rockets and has been laid out as an add-on protection package. Fitted to the GRIFFON for example, it consists of two frames that enclose the bonnet and the roof of the crew cabin in a U-shape respectively. On the roof, four radar sensors provide a 360° detection capabilty. The two frames accommodate a total of 22 active countermeasure elements.

Approaching threats are detected at a short distance and evaluated by the associated computer system. With a response time of less than 0.1 seconds, the countermeasure is triggered and the threat neutralised. Residual parts of the threat can hit the vehicle, but are not expected to cause any significant damage.

Active protection is complemented by passive protection against threats from ballistic impacts and detonations (IED), including transparent protection with spinel ceramics made of a magnesium-aluminum.

The overall adaptive system is designed to neutralise conventional and future threats, Nexter states in the video. Final dynamic tests with PROMETEUS on GRIFFON are planned for 2022.

Gerhard Heiming