The recent fitment of a Route Clearance Platform Autonomous Control Kit (RC-PACK) on the DCD Portable Mobility (DCD PM) Husky 2G design has maximised DCD’s vehicle-mounted mine detector (VMMD) system – making this Husky model the most strategically important item in the route clearance convoy.
Through an Intensive research and development collaboration between DCD PM, TORC and Critical International Solutions (CSI), the RC-PACK will allow the vehicle to be operated without a driver in high threat zones.
The Husky 2G will be among the landmine detection vehicles and armoured personnel carriers demonstrated by South Africa-based route clearance specialist DCD PM at the African Aerospace and Defence Show near Pretoria from 14 to 18 September.
Part of the DCD Group, a major international heavy engineering and manufacturing force with roots over a century old, DCD PM products have been deployed in conflict and peacekeeping missions across the globe for more than three decades.
“The show is another great opportunity to demonstrate our offerings in the route clearance arena, highlighting not only our cutting-edge products and support services, but also the world-class expertise and capacity within the broader DCD Group,” said Cornelius Grundling, general manager of DCD PM.
The Husky’s versatile multi-sensor platform detects, marks and interrogates land mines and improvised explosive device (IEDs); the metal detector and ground penetrating radar (GPR) sensor can detect a 3m wide path during route clearance. In the event of a detonation, components break apart in a predictable manner to facilitate rapid in-field repairs, increasing uptime and system availability.
Grundling said his company’s theme for the event was to “Focus on what matters by saving lives” – a mission made real by the long history of lives saved through the innovative design and high quality manufacturing standards of the Husky landmine detection range, and the Springbuck and Mountain Lion armoured personnel carriers (APCs).
Traditionally manned by a single operator, the Husky has also evolved to a two-operator version for longer route clearance missions with additional sensors and mission equipment.
“In the APC space, our family of Springbuck mine-resistant, ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicles has been well-received across the African continent,” said Grundling. “The units have been built with simplicity, crew comfort, protection and cost-effectiveness in mind – harnessing internationally available drive-line components for assured performance and parts availability.”
The Springbuck comes in a standard (SD) version, a heavy duty (HD) version and an extra duty (XD) version, with the performance, payload and protection increasing with each model. With permanent 4×4 engaged, the Springbuck is powered by a turbo-charged diesel engine and carries a driver and 10 personnel (nine in the XD model). The standard configuration can be easily adapted to suit various applications including an ambulance, cash-in-transit, riot control or tactical patrol vehicle and with the addition of turret-mounted weaponry, the vehicle can also be effectively used in combat.
“The quality of our products and our support services in the field have earned us customers across Africa – including Angola, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa – as well as further afield in countries like France, Spain and the United States,” he said. “In the US we have a long-standing partnership with Critical Solutions International (CSI), through which we market and support the Chubby Mine Detection System.”
In addition to its Defence cluster, where DCD PM is located, the DCD Group also has divisions that focus on rail, marine, and mining and energy. With a strong export focus, every business in the group ensures compliance with necessary local and international standards related to quality, environmental management and occupational health and safety systems.
“With some 1 900 staff across the globe, the DCD Group ensures we have access to superior engineering expertise and facilities, with a strong research and development focus,” said Grundling.